Saturday, November 8, 2014

Becoming Tinkerbell

In all the bustle of getting ready for Halloween and the kids' vacation with their grandparents, I'd completely forgotten that I'd actually snapped a few photos of Syd's design and construction process for her Tinkerbell outfit.

I didn't take a photo of what, to me, was the cutest moment: Syd watching a Tinkerbell movie, sketchbook and colored pencils around her, and pausing it every time Tinkerbell demonstrated a new pose that showed off a different aspect of her outfit. Syd recorded everything from Tinkerbell's hairdo to her pom-pom shoes in her sketchbook.

Thankfully, I had felt of an acceptable color in my fabric stash. I REALLY don't want to buy new fabric until I've used up the old, but I'm also putty-like in the face of a child's artistic determination, so I'm glad that I didn't even have to think about fighting that internal battle. I took Syd's measurements at her chest and from chest to knee, showed her how to transfer the measurements to graph paper, and here she is working out the bottom width of her garment:

Syd then sewed the side seams and top elastic casing, and later fringed the bottom:

I had assumed that tight elastic at the top of this dress would be enough to hold it in place, but on my straight little noodle, it was not. There goes my idea for a Trashion/Refashion Show garment that she can sew herself! I tightened the elastic several times, but finally ended up just instructing her to keep hitching it up. 

We used part of my wire hanger wings tutorial for Tinkerbell's wings--Syd sketched the template, but the wire hangers were too difficult for her to work with, so I bent the wire--but Syd rejected any sort of fabric overlay as being too far of a deviation from her original concept, so Matt did have to buy clear cellophane gift wrap from the Dollar Store and let Syd hot glue that to the wire frame:

Matt also took Syd to a shoe store so that she could ask for (and receive!) two of those cardboard shoe inserts that new shoes come with (it's been ages since I've bought the child new shoes, so who knows how she managed to remember those!), and her plan had been to paint them green, attach pom poms, and somehow adhere them to the tops of her regular shoes, but fortunately she finally decided that her dress and wings and hairstyle were enough--whew!

The child tells me that she wants to be a dress designer and hair stylist and ballerina when she grows up, but if you ask me, she has an affinity for engineering. We often joke that Will's perfect occupation would be the dictator-for-life of a small island nation, so I think Syd would be all set as her Czar of Public Works.

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