Monday, September 8, 2014

Ugly Ducklings to Swans

Over a year ago, I was shopping the clearance area at my local JCP and I found these hideous Christmas ornaments (orange - really?). They were originally priced at $16 each, marked down to $.97 - the day I was there they were an additional 60% off, so I bought five of them for 40 cents each. Because they were made of wool I knew they had potential -  how could I resist at that price?

I removed the embellishments and already they looked better.......

Six months ago, my small quilt group decided to do pass around projects. Each of us assembled parts & pieces for a fiber related item and each month we worked on someone else's project. I put my orange balls into a shoe box and added some pretty colors of embroidery thread - asking each person to add stitching to one wool ball. The finished pieces exceeded my expectations when I received them back about a month ago. I just finished stitching MY contribution to the project so they're all done now and I wanted to share with you. I suppose I could have dyed the wool balls a different - more desirable color - or kept the orange and gone with a fall/autumn theme using gold/green/brown/red threads, but I'm so very pleased with they way they turned out!

The gals in my group spent several evenings each stitching while watching TV and their efforts are SO appreciated! They look lovely displayed in a wooden bowl now - and can be used year round! Thanks ladies!

Now, the appliqued hearts that I removed in the beginning, I stitched down onto a piece of soft yellow wool to make a small quilt. I will add red borders and maybe add a green vine around the outside with leaves added.

Much better than they started out, yes? I'm sure glad I bought those ugly Christmas ornaments!







22 comments:

Karen said...

What a difference the embroidery on the balls made. Beautiful results.

Lori said...

That is so creative! How fun to see what your group has done with the balls. I love them!

Sue SA said...

What lovely treasures you and your friends have created!

Janet O. said...

That is pretty amazing to see how those "ugly ornaments" started out and then to see the two pretty projects they ended up being a part of. You are so clever. I would have walked past those ornaments and not given them a second thought. You saw potential and now it has been realized. The stitching on the balls has transformed them! And what a cute little quilt you have created from the hearts!

Kaaren said...

Great save and look at the memories that have been created. Perfect!

Lesley said...

I love each wool ball and how uniquely they are stitched. Great start to a mini-quilt!

Yvonne said...

Great bargain and I love what you made of it!

Cheryl said...

Very clever! Love the end results.

Kathy ... aka Nana said...

Wow ... what a huge, huge difference the embroidery made to those balls ... and the little quilt is going to be so sweet, too!

Me and My Stitches said...

How creative you are! I wouldn't have even thought to buy those - and what a great price you got! Love how they turned out after your friends gave them a transformation, but I really love your little wall quilt!

Me and My Stitches said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Nedra said...

Yes, I like your versions much better! You always have such an eye for thrifting, and repurposing.

Nedra said...

Yes, I like your versions much better! You always have such an eye for thrifting, and repurposing.

Kyle said...

Oh, my gosh, Gayle, those are quite the transformation! Your friends totally changed those wool balls. Don't you wish you had even more! What a treasure and I love the way you saved the original heart shapes. I couldn't even tell what was on the balls in the first photo. Really orange for Christmas? You did great.

gloryquilts said...

That was really creative of you. I wouldn't have had that vision... I would have used them as pincushions or dryer balls!
I love them!!

audrey said...

I actually liked the original balls, but the new stitching just looks amazing! How very special for you.:)

Saundra said...

Goodness, I thought the originals were okay. But the transformation of the segments is delightful! Great eye and thinking outside the box.

Saundra

Caroline Heinrichs said...

Well said sister, well said!

Three Sheep Studio said...

I am amazed at the transformation of your purchase ! All so beautiful.
Very clever ;)
Rose

Jennie in GA said...

What vision! I am impressed!

MARCIE said...

How very clever of you and your talented friends!

Carrie P. said...

oh, both are much better! great idea.