Monday, December 27, 2010

I've Finished my Christmas Projects!

I finished my Christmas sewing a few minutes ago in preparation for our family get together this coming weekend.

I am a doll person. I'm not a collector or anything, but I dearly loved dolls as a child. I would stay with my grandmother as a preschooler on the four or five days a month my mother worked at my dad's hardware store. Every day after lunch, she would take whatever doll I brought and without using a pattern or anything, make a new dress for my doll. These little dresses had puffed sleeves and ruffles. They did not have buttons because my grandmother did not have a buttonholer that would make the tiny button holes, but the back edges had a sturdy bound placket that worked well with safety pins. I wonder what grandmother would have thought about velcro. When I was about 8, she had a stroke, and after that her vision was affected so that she couldn't sew any more. Although my mother sewed all the time, she hated making doll clothes, so I didn't get many from her. By the time Barbie came along, I was old enough to be interested in sewing costumes for my Barbie doll. In fact, I was really too old to be interested in playing with Barbie, but the sewing was fun.

My daughter was not particularly interested in baby dolls, and my oldest granddaughter isn't, but the two little ones like to play with dolls. This year for Christmas, they are getting Madame Alexander dolls that are still baby dolls, but more or less toddlers with pigtails. I decided to make them some clothes that are easy to put on and take off since the mamas are only three themeselves.

For the youngest granddaughter, I made a butterfly capri pant outfit, a princess bubble with bloomers that matches the pillowcases I made for her, and a pair of sock monkey pajamas. It just happened that one set of sisters had monkey Christmas pajamas this year. The background in the photo is the two minkee doll blankets that I made from some leftovers.

The older-by-5-weeks granddaughter also will have a minkee blanket, the capri outfit, and the sock monkey pajamas, but her bubble matches the owl pillowcases that I made for her. You do realize that this "matching" bit is the fancy way of saying I used scraps? That sock monkey fabric should look familiar as well. The other reason for using the scraps is that sewing with really good quilting cotton is like knitting with the really expensive yarn. It just feels so good!

And I finally figured out how to make some overalls that would fit the boy sock monkey! The pitiful thing is that I realized I needed to make the same kind of alterations to the pattern that I use when making pants for myself because we both have disproportionately large rear ends. I also, of course, had to allow room for the monkey's tail.

Random thought: I had to open up one of the dolls for fitting purposes, and I thought I was never going to get it out of the box. There were several cable ties, and the dress was literally sewn to the packaging. Then random parts were covered in plastic bubbles. I complained to my daughter, who suggested I take the other doll out as well and just put the dolls in with the clothing. I was thinking about how frustrating it would be for a child, but then I remembered when we used to get dolls that had the satin hairbows impaled into their heads with straight pins! Does anyone else remember this? Talk about toy safety! Even then I thought it was kind of gruesome.

1 comment:

Pam said...

Those doll outfits are adorable! I love the story about your grandmother. I hope I leave my grandchildren with such nice memories someday. :)