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Two local 4-H’ers competed in the recent national Make It With Wool contest after having earned their spots there in the statewide competition last year.

Natalie Sensenig of Denver and Madison Cophenhaver of Lebanon both competed in the national competition, which was held in Fort Worth, Texas, on Jan. 19-22.

Each state sends its first-place junior and first-place senior to the national matchup, which is sponsored by the American Sheep Industry Women and designed to promote the wool industry and wool growers.

In the Junior division (ages 13-16), Copenhaver placed in the top 10 with a wool jacket, top, and paper bag waist pants. According to a news release, Copenhaver was inspired to create the jacket by a similar outfit she saw online, and was able to adapt a McCall’s pattern to get the diagonal look she had in mind.

Each individual plaid in the jacket had to be painstakingly matched. The jacket and pants are fully-lined and include in-seam pockets. Copenhaver said that she loves being able to wear her outfit for any season or occasion by pairing it with different items or accessories.

Copenhaver is a junior at Cedar Crest High School and president of the local 4-H Friends Club.

Madison Copenhaver of Lebanon wearing the wool jacket, top, and paper bag waist ensemble which was her entry to the national Make It With Wool Contest. (Provided photo)

In the Senior division (ages 17-24), Natalie Sensenig of Denver was first runner-up. Sensenig transformed plaid Pendleton wool she had won in a previous sewing contest into an ensemble that looks like a skirt and top, but is actually a dress.

Sensenig modified the jacket pattern to include a collar and zipper, as well as adding a floral lining just for fun. A shirt pattern was combined with a dress pattern for the dress-in-disguise, which also includes underlining, a side zipper, matched plaids, and a Hong Kong hem. According to the news release, “difficulty matching colors finally taught Natalie to fabric shop online.”

Sensenig is a preschool teacher in Lancaster County and also operates her own sewing/alterations business. She is also a 4-H sewing volunteer.

Natalie Sensenig of Denver was named the first runner-up in the Senior division of the national Make It With Wool competition. (Provided photo)

The 2023 state competition will be held Saturday, Oct. 7, at the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex. Registrations are due by Sept. 5. For more information, contact Linda Siegel, Pennsylvania Make It With Wool director, at 717-274-1197 or linda@lebaweb.com.

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