Friday, January 13, 2012

Crafty Cat and Crafty Hats

Wow.  Where on earth is January going so fast?  You'd think someone somewhere sped up the cosmic clock or something, the rate it's going.  I'm still geeking out about how quickly 2011 disappeared, apparently while I was off looking in another direction.  In a state of total bemusement, most likely.

Not as much as usual to show for the first (nearly) two weeks of the new year - but I haven't been totally idle, mind you.  Just not swamped.  I'm luxuriating in that sensation, I can tell you.  I'm sure more work is coming down the pike faster than I can say "I'm sure more work is coming down the pike..."  While I've had some breathing room from client orders, I decided the time was right to work on some sewing for charity - and to start a new "tradition" for the Sewing Assistant, who, try as I might, simply refuses to stay fired.  Looks like he has tenure.  So, while he remains (permanently) in my employ - following no one's rules but his own, of course - he might as well dress the part, don't you think?  I was chatting with one of my clients last week about a project we will be working on and we were both laughing about how neither of us currently wears things to represent what we do - which is silly, actually, since I do so much sewing for other people.  I should really be wearing my own work.  What better way to advertise my skills than that?  Somehow, it always seems to be selfish or idle, since I'm not getting paid for it.  Yet, the reason I wanted to sew like this in the first place was to continue my lifelong pursuit of creating things with my hands, and making a statement about myself in the process.  So that is this year's goal (not resolution - GOAL - I have found that when I attach the former word to my plans, they go directly out the window) - to start WEARING MY WORK.  Literally.  And I'm planning to have some fun with it along the way.  Whether it speaks about my identity remains to be seen, but it should definitely speak about my abilities, at any rate.

So since I have made plans for making things for myself to help represent me, my work, my abilities, and my craftiness/artfulness, I figure the Sewing Assistant should reap the same benefits.  And boy, does he like to strut his stuff.  I've been making him interchangeable collar covers every couple of weeks since right before Christmas, and I've never seen a cat look for so much attention due to what he's wearing before.  It's pretty humorous to watch him preen in front of anyone who notices the new collar cover - you'd think he was posing for the cover of Cat Fancy or something.


Neko wearing his Christmas striped collar cover, while simultaneously
attempting to un-decorate the tree my son and his girlfriend had
just finished trimming.  What you can't see here is the ornament
he just knocked off the tree onto the floor, shortly before he
jumped down to play soccer with it.
And yes, that is his handiwork you see there on the back of the couch cover.  Yes, indeed.  Scratching posts be damned.

I didn't get a photo of the second collar cover, which we all decided needed to be changed after the New Year.  I made that one out of a lovely blue background with white frosty trees.  Plus glitter.  Lots of glitter. I thought it would make all the teenage/twenty-something guys who come and go around here (quite a few of them on motorcycles) groan and roll their eyes.  Strangely enough, that hasn't been the case.  And now as soon as they come in the door, they are all asking, "Where's Neko?  What's he wearing today?"

Sounds like a serious Sewing Challenge to me.

The third collar cover to make its appearance so far this year:
Leopard Velboa.
Fuzzy, Big Cat-ish, and Stylin'.  He's loving it so far.
And loving my sewing chair, as you can see here.  He keeps stealing it....

Thankfully, most of these are from either the remnant bins or the flat-fold (i.e. CHEAP) sections of the local fabric stores I've been known to haunt.  So when he trashes one (like the pretty blue one I didn't have a chance to photograph), I don't worry about it too much.  He provides such a nice contrast to any color or print I can put on him, I predict that this is going to be the start of quite the wardrobe.  Maybe I'll need to hire a stylist for him....

I probably should hire one for myself, while I'm at it.  My friend whose daughter is working on her Girl Scout Gold Award wanted to take a photo of me with the huge sack of fleece hats I made for the project.  (About 38 or so of them, actually.)  Of course, I couldn't just stand there and hold them.  I absolutely had to wear one.  I chose the one that made me think of Winnie the Pooh for some reason.....

Her camera was acting up, so we had to suffice with
a cell phone shot, which is why I look very disproportionate.
Yeah, that's my story, and I'm sticking to it.

I had wanted more of the red to show up, because this hat just
screamed POOH!, but it doesn't show here as much as I had wanted.
Most likely due to the giant hair clip I had holding my hair in a bun
in the back - it kept pulling the hat to the back so you couldn't see the red.

It's awesome to work with a young designer - she's been making these hats herself, to wear to night practice during marching season, to give as gifts, etc. for quite some time now.  Her designs are clever, colorful, and a whole lot of fun to see & wear.  She's making this batch (somewhere in the neighborhood of about 100, I believe) to give to kids in the hospital, especially to chemo patients.  I can't wait to hear how well they are all received.  I can't imagine ANYONE stifling a smile or an outright fit-o-giggles when they start modeling these.

Any time you can bring a spot of joy into someone's life, no matter how briefly, is well worth it.  Which is why I always accept projects like this - helps me keep my head on straight by helping me put things into a greater perspective.  And I can never fault the time spent doing that.

1 comment:

  1. I love the pictures of Neko wearing his color covers! Also LOVED that you took time to work on all those hats when you are already so busy! We will have to get a better picture of you in the "Pooh" hat! we absolutely cannot have you looking disproportionate! Don't you spoon?