The last time I blogged I was up to my elbows in ladder stitching. To be honest I wasn’t sure the dolls were all going to get done in time – but after a couple late nights, a couple skipped evening events and a two hour car ride to my sister’s house – I was able to put the finishing stitches in these 7 little mermaids the night before the party.
Did you guys guess that the dolls I was working on were going to be mermaids? Did you know the party theme would be Ariel?
The Bug is a girl after my own heart. My sister can attest The Little Mermaid was by FAR my favorite princess growing up. I was two years older than the Bug is now – my sister 6 years older than that – when the movie came out (that is a round about way of not reveling my age – hopefully you aren’t good at math or don’t know when the movie came out.) I never watched the movie silently – I would sing along with every song – always wondering why Disney hadn’t asked me to voice Ariel! Again I am sure my sister will affirm that my singing was every bit as good as that of Jodi Benson's. Right Lindsay??? RIGHT???
But presumably you aren’t checking our blog to hear about the cruelty the world dealt me at such a young age.
Suffice it to say when I learned the theme I was on board (did you catch the pun? – it is a bit of a stretch.)
My sister had come across the mermaid doll in Hillary Lang’s Wee Wonderfuls. I thought I might try winging it – but lets be honest – my sister is the free styling sister – I am the one that needs a pattern to follow! So I took a tour of the Barnes and Nobles in my area – luckily there are three within 15 minutes of where I live because it wasn’t until the third store that I found the book.
I am so glad I got the book – at $30 I thought it was a bit pricey – but I am SO very glad to have had it to follow. It was so much more than just the pattern and instructions – there was a great glossary/sewing technique section in the back. You already know that I am indebted to the book for the re-introduction to the ladder stitch, but more than that, there are some useful instructions specific to doll making and to embroidering stitches. Plus have you seen the pattern for the inch worm in this book? SO CUTE!
That being said, the project wasn’t all rainbow fish and seashells. Not going to lie a couple nights I had to just walk away from the project out of pure frustration. Probably the most frustrating part was the hair piece. The pattern calls for corduroy or velvet for the hair – I used wool felt. I think the difference in thickness caused a little more issues when trying to reverse the pieces – specifically the bang piece. Then once the hair got attached it felt more like a toupee to me. But then I added the ric-rac flower piece in her hair – and the whole thing came together.
So when I finally finished the first mermaid I was so happy/relieved that even though it was late I wanted to send a picture to my sister. I was a little delirious maybe – but I saw some blue fabric and before I knew it the stage was set.
This is the pic text I sent my sister. I won’t mention the eye roll my husband gave me when he saw this – he had no idea how creative I could be, clearly.
Even given the frustrations - I really do like how the mermaid turned out. The body is stuffed tightly the fin stuffed loosely, allowing the fin to bend and move giving the illusion that the mermaid is swimming.
And then when I overheard the Bug tell her friends – with the pride overflowing – that her Aunt Shell made the mermaids – all the frustrations were washed far away! I am SO happy to have contributed a piece of the day that made one not so little four year old SO happy – especially after all the joy she brings me.
Project mermaid – S*U*C*C*E*S*S!~Michelle