This is my second year participating in Sew in Tune. Both years, I found it super hard to decide on a song to draw inspiration from. I want to sew all the songs! I’ve been listening to a lot of [recent] Eddie Vedder lately, so I was going to do something of his, or classic Pearl Jam. I even made up some Soldier of Love tees, thinking I’d use them for Sew in Tune.
But then my boys wanted to wear them early, and I wanted to share them for KCW. But my mind was in a 90s’ Grunge place after that. Stone Temple Pilots, Stone Garden, Pearl Jam, Nirvana. I love them all. So instead of one particular song, I’m cheating and going with a whole genre.
Grunge came to light just as I was entering my teen years. It was angsty and gritty. The music and fashion of “I don’t care”. How much more teen can you get than that? We all wore flannel and holey jeans. My friends and I would shop Thrift Town and Savers looking for the perfect “grandpa” sweaters. And we ate up the Seattle music scene, making mix tapes and buying CDs to play on our discmans. In looking over their wardrobes, Grunge plays a pretty big role in even how I dress my kids now. When I was planning out my sewing plans for Sew in Tune, I realized I was listing things I already had made, or at least had on hand. Old Man Sweater: Greenpoint Cardigan. Cozy Flannel: Johnny B Good shirt. Band T-shirt: Soldier of Love tee. And we always have a generous supply of holey jeans around here. I added some waffle knit from an old shirt to the inside knees of one pair, and we had Grunge.
But only sewing two rectangles of waffle knit to the inside of a pair of RTW jeans didn’t really seem like doing enough for Sew in Tune, though it definitely fits the attitude of “bare minimum effort, roll out of bed, and wallow in my feelings” that is Grunge. So I decided to pay tribute to an icon, the martyr of Grunge and frontman for Nirvana, Kurt Cobain.
I was in high school when Kurt Cobain died. ( Twenty years this April, crazy! ) Walking the halls the week after his death, kids were sobbing at their lockers. It was a big deal. He was a big deal. Nirvana’s songs could go from slow and calm to raging and screaming in just a few cords. The fashion fit that, too: lazy and laid back, but with an underlying anger and a refusal to conform.
I based Jonas’ look off of Cobain’s 1992 MTV Music Awards fashion statement pants and iconic striped tee. The tee is the Let it Be Tee from Ottobre 6/2010 with some blue and white stripe from Girl Charlee.
The pants were some RTW from our holey-jean pile. I slapped some patches on the legs and added some bright fabric to the cuffs, and that was it.
My son was so excited for this outfit, that he insisted on wearing it to school the morning after I finished it. And then he tried again the next day. I realize wearing the same outfit over and over would be so totally grunge, but I had to lay down some rules that he can only wear them once/week. I’ve become so old and lame.