It may come as a shock to you but I rarely go shopping. Since working at ASOS, I’ve been more of an online shopper and when I do spend, I like to think it’s on the more conservative side of splurging. This might be why that whenever I do hit the high street, I tend to feel sensory overload and get overwhelmed by the creativity of it all. The styling of the mannequins, the visual merchandising, the products themselves. They’re so inspiring that ‘I could do that‘s start flying around my head.
Take one Topshop jumper…
One such DIY idea was spawned before Christmas upon inspecting the Topshop undone embroidered jumper. An embroidered jumper, I thought, that could quite easily be replicated and could have even more embellishment added in the process.
So as not to cheat the shop entirely by ripping off its products, I sourced a different and cheaper Topshop jumper in the sale to create my woollen masterpiece on. It’s a pretty good base to start from as the rip effect and tassels already add a bit of a roughed-up, boho vibe and the hotch-potch stitch of the knit gave me a a great start to great creative on. I pulled the odd few balls of leftover wool from my childhood (and probably my Mum’s childhood too) out of the cupboard and picked out the colours I wanted to use.
I used a wool needle (again, inherited but you can buy them at department store haberdashers) to stitch into the jumper wherever I felt like it. I used the interesting textures of the jumper to inspire the design whether it be giant cross stitches over a lattice-style knit or using blanket stitch along the edge of a twist.
I ended up pulling parts out and replacing them with different colours but keeping the stitches loose and not tying the ends helped with this. I took the design half way along the top of the jumper and down the top of the sleeve. Just be careful not to stitch the arm together at this point and remember that once your arm is in the sleeve, the design may look different to when it’s laid flat.
Once I’d built up as much embroidery as I was happy with (aka once my my back was tired from leaning over) all there was left to do was to try it on. The good thing about this DIY is that you can always undo the bits you don’t like and add to it later on. Once you’re happy with the placement though, it’s best to thread the ends on to a needle and knot them. I’m not looking forward to washing this guy but when I do, it’ll be an inside-out jobby on a low spin I think!
Next, I’d love to get back into beading. I’ve seen some great jumpers on the highstreet with beaded letters that I’d love to try out. Have you been inspired lately? What’s next to make on your list?
CBA? Shop them instead: