Monday, May 27, 2019

old suede / new pockets

I used to collect old jackets and coats, though I didn't always wear them. Sometimes I cut off the vintage buttons to replace ordinary buttons on sweaters I'd bought, or I cut up the fabric to use in other ways. I especially liked suede jackets. Once, when I was visiting R's parents, I saw this suede jacket on the top of a heap of clothes destined for a charity bin. I immediately scooped it up. I'm short but so were R's parents. The jacket fit. I took it with me on a trip to Europe in 1990.

Where did we go? Paris, Venice, Austria to visit my family, Prague. This pic was taken on the bridge that crosses the Vltava River in Prague.

When we returned home, I had to take the jacket to a cleaner because the collar was black. He wanted to know what I'd done with. I could only think of Prague where--in 1990--people heated with coal. The air was hazy with spring mist and coal dust.

R's father wore the jacket for a decade and before he got it, it belonged to his son-in-law. How long had he worn it?

I wore it for many years. When the lining ripped, I patched it. The pockets were finally so bagged-out and stretched from my fists that they gaped. I wore it till my backpack straps chafed the suede to holes. I kept the jacket to use to make patches.

The other day I started making a new bag for myself out of paisley upholstery material that I bought on St-Hubert in Montreal. I decided to add an outer suede pocket for my sunglasses. I don't know where I got the idea to press an iron onto the rectangle I'd cut from a section of sleeve. The sleeves are all that's left from the jacket. Suede is skin. It doesn't want to be ironed.

I thought I ruined it--and no doubt I did, as suede. Except that I like how it's wrinkled and warped.

I'm especially glad that I can keep the old and useless and rejected in use a bit longer.

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