Thursday, August 22, 2013

time flies when you’re having fun.

last week i fell victim to what i affectionately call A Sewing ADD Day.

meaning, in a short while i sewed a dozen HST for my quilt, gave that up and made covers for 4 of my living room pillows…errr, make that 3. i never finished the 4th, because then i gave that up and made a dress for elliot.

by the time i got to the dress i managed to get myself slightly under control—and by that i mean i forced myself to finish the dang thing, so i would have accomplished at least ONE thing in total for the day. it’s the little things, right?

but in my defense—this dress has been in the pinboard of my mind for quite a while now. the fabric in my stash, the idea pinned and the truth is i’m going through a bit of a…”thing” right now.

here, let’s talk. (pats seat beside me) i need a good sharing sesh, k?

see, elliot is our last baby. she is two now, on the cusp of full-blown toddlerhood: weaned, potty-trained, speaking in sentences. you get the drift. and i find myself kicking and screaming and clawing at the last vestiges of babyhood.
picture the wile e. coyote hanging on the edge of the cliff, with the road runner pecking at his fingers.
in this metaphor i’m wile e., the cliff = babies, stupid road runner = time.

i’ve always hated that road runner.

i’m not going down without a fight. i can’t. the thought that no new googiebaby will ever cross our threshhold makes my eyes tear, my heart hurt and my uterus ache.

nevermind that we simply can NOT have another—for reasons practical, emotional, physical, financial, spiritual, mental…it has nothing to do with that. i am a baby lover through and through, and no matter how i may love a niece or nephew or grandbaby it will never again be MY baby. (although i’ve been assured that grandbabies are simply awesome. we’ll see. i have a ways to go yet.)

in the meantime i embrace elliot’s remaining wisps of babyhood with a fervor. my manic brain has fixated, of all things, on clothes. i have pinned scores of adorable dresses and ideas, and—while many of them can easily work for older kiddos, a lot of them are for babies. or in my head i’ve pictured it on a baby. bubble rompers? this, my friends, is my last summer of bubble rompers.

hold on, i need a tissue. and maybe a stiff drink.

this rapidly concluding august is also marking the rapidly approaching conclusion of my time as the momma of a fat-bellied knock-kneed chubby-wristed little. and i’m having a bit of a hard time with that.

so you see why when my brain wanders whilst i sew and all these ugly thoughts start in my head, i quickly toss aside quilts and pillows in favor of faux smocking and short sundresses. in my head i’m running out of time! i never did this! or this! i wanted to make this! and crochet this! and sew this!

because, this:

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this is one of them. the mock smock frock done by danielle of my sparkle has been in my head, destined to be paired with this 1/2 yard of blue and pink shirt weight plaid for over a year now. and in another couple of weeks both shirt weight and a 1/2 yard aren’t going to cut the mustard.

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so it was now or never no time like the present make hay while the sun shines. and really, the dress was simple enough. i cut a big wide section of the fabric—just about 1 1/2 times 1/2 the circumference of her chest.
and while that all sounds good and technical, what it really means is that i took a piece of pom trim i had laying next to me from my recently abandoned pillow sewing, wrapped it around e’s chest where she lay on the couch and marked it with my fingers, then eyeballed half and stuck a pin in, held it to my fabric and went another half of that further for my length.

so…yeah. 1.5x 1/2 the circumference.

then i smocked. or mock smocked. for the actual instructions i’ll send you over to danielle’s tutorial. she’s got photos and everything.

i started roughly in the center and worked out on each side. i kept adding columns of smocking until the piece was just about the size of my Official Pom Trim Measuring Apparatus. add a shirred elastic thread back and a skirt using the rest of the fabric and it was done.

getting some decent pics, however…

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elliot was game. she was getting candy to sit on the horse and say cheese? yeehaw. and then in that incredibly perverse way that only two year olds and women at certain times of the month have, she suddenly decided NO. meltdown of epic proportions.

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seriously. with tears and snot and everything. and then it worked itself out and she climbed on the horse and had a skittle and all was right with the world.

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she even rode side saddle for a bit. fancy girl.

so where does that leave us?

well, first of all: i’m a little bit in love with this dress.
and i did spaghetti straps, which i’ve been doing a lot of lately because i was SOOO scurred of them and in awe of people who could do them, and then it turns out they’re not too hard. but we’ll talk about that later.

and yes, i fully realize that she could wear this dress at 3 or 4 or 8 or even 20 because it’s just THAT CUTE. but this was a baby dress in my head, so on my baby it shall be.

and my other issues? well, i had a stern talk with myself the other day. and i reminded myself of this: if i spend too much time worrying over how fast it’s going, or lamenting the babies i no longer have…well, i’m missing out on the awesome KIDS i do have.
i can’t cry over the past and neglect the present, right? there is so much FUN ahead of us. we have kids—with thoughts and opinions, who we can talk to! and they talk back! and say funny things and make us laugh! baby is just one part of it. and certainly not even the best part.

the baby times were fun. hard, yes, but fun. i’m going to miss them. always. i’ll never be the lady giving you dirty looks when your baby cries in a restaurant/airplane/otherwise awkward area. no…i’ll be the creepy lady eyeballing your baby a little too hard and saying things like “if you need to use the bathroom i’ll hold her for you. you can trust me, i have five of my own.”

for reals. you can. i just wouldn’t go too far if i were you. ;)

i do still wish i made that baby got bach shirt, though…

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