I bought four pure wool jerseys at a garage sale recently. They were actually two long sleeved jerseys and two vests. The guy selling them said they were hand spun and hand knitted by his mother for him. She had since died of cancer. He said the wool came from up the Wairoa Valley near Blenheim. I think one of the best things about reusing is that your product already has a history - in this case one of a mother's love for her son and her skill as being able to turn raw wool into lovely warm jerseys.
I took them home and removed some of the joins. The two vests ended up as four pieces of knitted material. The jerseys had their sleeves removed and were then opened out - keeping the shoulder seams together. I then pulled the wool down from the sleeves and ended up with a couple of balls of good quality hand spun wool.
My mother in law Everdien is a clever lady and she helped me to plan my blanket. We ended up using the two opened out jerseys and the two halves of one vest. These were sewed together with a bright coloured wool in a cross stitch pattern. As Everdien said I can always change the colours as the mood suits me. There were gaps for the neck holes and a few other gaps due to waist tapering so I had to knit extra pieces to fit using the original wool from the sleeves. Finally Everdien crocheted around the outside to hold it all together. I had thought of using it as a floor rug but it is just so lovely and cozy to wrap around you. So it is a throw for the couch and a blanket as required.
With the two remaining pieces from the last vest I sewed them over a pillow and made a regular pillow and a bolster pillow. All together they create the most nuturing comforting little nest - which I usually have to share with Leo. While I am enjoying them I often think back about the original creator and I think she would approve.