For a couple of months one of my sewing girls has been busily stitching a fabric book. Earlier this year the stork delivered a little sister for Alysha; Velvet. To be just a li'l bit different, we thought a fabric book would be a wonderful present for Velvet. A present that would provide hours of fun and imaginative, conversation and play; a present that could be kept forever.....a unique keepsake, a unique heirloom.
As Alysha lives on a farm with her family, Alysha thought a book with a farm theme could be the setting of the book.
After a lot of thought, and a li'l bit of planning (we tended to make it up as we went along) Alysha started to stitch.
As I guide my kiddos along the yellow brick road of stitching, I am always thinking of fun activities they can stitch and make. My memories of sewing at school are those of which horror stories are written. Sewing teachers of my vintage seemed to have possessed a secret delight in making sewing lessons as irksome as they possibly could. The sewing teachers of old (at least mine were) always seemed to be utterly boring, with no exploration down little paths of delightful discovery, creativity and ingenuity. I cringe when I recall Mrs Colditz's shrill-like screech....(many a parody was made of that name...not nice I know, but alas, true)....regarding the imperfections of my sewing...."that might be good enough for you, missy, but it is not good enough for me.....do it again.....and again....and again!!!!!" She would look at me and my sewing rather menacingly with a rather large ruler in her grip ready to strike one's knuckles if my stitching wasn't to her liking. Oh, she was a horrible woman!
But to get back on the happy and inventive path that the kiddos skip down at the Kim Sharman School of Stitching Excellence......with a lot of clever stitching from Alysha and with a li'l help from me, Velvet's book has been published!
We thought it would be fun it this was to be an inter-active book. A book where a small child could have lots of fun opening a house door or a barn door, to see who or what was waiting inside to say "hi".
We wanted to add a tactile touch throughout the book. The lamb has been sewn with woolly fabric; the clouds with felt to add a sense of fluffy, white clouds etc.
Alysha is one of seven girls! Mmmm.....seven brides for seven brothers, perhaps!
There is something not quite right about this page......can you guess?
Velvet's farm is a place filled with whimsical critters....lady bugs, li'l birdies, fluttering butterflies, sliding snails, buzzy bees and a garden filled with oodles and oodles of "Jack in the Beanstalk" rainbow-filled flowers (mmm...perhaps another storyline for a book??) Velvet's favourite place is her mummy's garden....it is a place of make believe; a fanciful place filled with a child's imaginative play.
Deary, deary me......me thinks that this 'li'l' birdy (along with the other critters) has just flown in from the land of Brobdingnag of Gulliver's Travels fame; just to check out Velvet's floralicious garden. I hope she doesn't "fall off her perch" and land on Velvet's daddy. That could be a wee bit uncomfortable!
After a busy day of playing with the animals, helping her mummy hang the washing on the line and supervising her daddy as he drove the tractor; Velvet has snuggled with her kitty kat on the comfy sofa and fallen asleep. Yes indeedy, living on a farm is exhausting business!
The stitching of this book was the best fun. Alysha loved all the free hand machine stitching. As always I am amazed how the kiddos take to free hand machine stitching as if they have been doing it forever. Alysha was tentative for the first 'ten minutes', but then she was off, whirring and drawing away to her heart's content. This form of stitching is so freeing and as this book was from the outset, meant to be a child's book, complete with a whimsical story and pictures, it didn't matter one iota if Alysha stitched crooked lines. Indeed, the more wiggly and naive the lines, the better.
So there you have it. The Book that Alysha wrote! The transformation of a simple idea; the drafting of the story, the search and collation of just the right fabrics for each component; the clever stitching of each thought by a very clever girl to the stitching together of each page. Yes indeedy, a truly unique book which will provide oodles of fun-filled moments for Velvet as she escapes into the far away land of make believe.THE END
Have a wonderful weekend, everyone!