Years ago, my friend Susan asked me to accompany her to help select a mother-of-the-groom ensemble. We drove to Kansas City where she chose a vintage kimono fabric which was custom-made into a beautiful jacket.
She wore the jacket to her son's wedding and to other occasions as well. The custom house had used the wrong side of the kimono fabric for its striped effect, but these stripes had floating yarns which made the fabric more delicate. Eventually, the silk started to break down, fray and even shred in places. Susan didn't want to give up on the precious jacket so she asked us at The Sewing Workshop if we had any ideas about how to salvage the fabric.
We decided to remove the lining and cut the jacket apart in order to use the portions of the fabric that were not damaged. We selected a few vintage kimono silks of our own and started arranging blocks of her fabric plus additional fabrics to make "new fabric". We decided that our Peony Vest was the perfect pattern to use for this new design. It has simple shapes that lend themselves to color blocking and piecing, without a lot of interruptions. The project took a few weeks, but in the end, Susan was thrilled with her new vest. Now she can continue wearing a garment that brings her such great memories!