Monday, May 31, 2010

pippi by mail

I recently had tremendous fun making a Pippi Longstocking doll. I boxed it up and sent it along with the Lauren Child illustrated edition as a gift for a little girl I know who turned five.

I tried to make the doll have the same messy, sketchy look as the Pippi in the book, and I'm happy with the way she turned out. I used linen for her face, hands and legs. Cottons for her dress and stockings. Her braids are made of strips of felt. I toyed with the idea of including some kind of bendable wire inside the braids to make them stick out, but gave it up as too dangerous.

I thought I'd be smart this time and embroider the face before it was all sewn together, but that was a mistake. Stuffing really changes the expression, and the eyes ended up slanted in the opposite direction that I had intended. So I picked them out and redid them after it was stuffed. Lesson learned.

Somehow I had managed to come through my childhood having never read the book or seen the movie, so last year my eldest and I read this version out loud together. We really loved it. I especially love Lauren Child's illustrations of the characters with all her trademark textiles and wild typography. It's a beautifully designed book, and makes a great gift.

Since the book was so enjoyable for us, we also rented the classic 1969 movie. Mistake. I'm so sorry to those of you who love it. Maybe it is because it holds no childhood nostalgia for me since that was the first time I saw it. Thing 1 and I kept exchanging very puzzled looks. She also kept asking me questions like, "Mommy, why is Pippi the only one in weird clothes? Why is her green underwear always showing? Why don't any of these things happen in the book?" Maybe the movie gets better if it is viewed on MST3K.

But the book is delightful. See?

Monday, May 10, 2010

pip and pop

"C'mon, sweetie. Smile! Whew, look at that droopy lip. Please? Just one picture?"

(changing tactics)
"Ok, I changed my mind. Don't laugh whatever you do."

"Wait, you're losin it. Be very serious. I DON'T want you to laugh."

"Tryin to take a picture here. NO laughing! Don't laugh! Look mad. Frown for me."

"Aw, man! You laughed."

My youngest's sixth birthday was celebrated in style over the weekend with plenty of pizza, ice cream cake and family. I managed to finish her birthday outfit and her Pip and Pop otter softies in time for the festivities. More about the pattern for her outfit in another post.

Pip and Pop came together fairly easily after a trial run with a cheap piece of terry cloth I had laying around. I had to make some adjustments for the impossible (luxurious) thickness of the purple towel I was using for the final products. It was so thick I couldn't turn the arms or legs so I had to interlock them on the edges, but with the purple thread and the fuzzy terry cloth you really can't tell.

I have several handmade things lined up that I'd like to share, but I'm still in the middle of May's Special Occasion Landslide, so this week is packed. I'll have to wait until next week sometime to get back in the blog saddle.

Thanks so much for your sweet comments checking on me and my back! Physical therapy is going really well, and making a huge difference. I'm doing great, and so thankful to God.