Saturday, July 16, 2011

Felt Needs: Lost in Translation

 In a world with no laundry, dusting, or grocery shopping the days would be filled with the construction of little people like these:
Or like these. Notice the baby in the half of a walnut shell. It's a good thing to have a son in law who readily agrees to saw walnut shells in half for his mother-in-law. He obviously didn't know what he was getting into when he asked to marry my daughter. "Young man, do you saw walnut shells in two? If not, sorry, it's a no go."
Their little hats are acorn caps that the grandpeeps find in their yard. Her rolling pin is a button and their little faces are painted wooden beads. Their bodies are made by wrapping pipe cleaners with embroidery thread.  I know what you're thinking. "That woman has way too much time on her hands." Actually not.
Here's a close-up of baby on the half-shell. Charlotte helped me be faithful to the creation mandate when we made these back last fall. She insisted that he is the baby Jesus.
Which, of course, is an idea that gets me into trouble. Why not make a wool felt nativity scene? That would be so fun and the grandpeeps would enjoy playing with it. They could use it to tell us all the Christmas story come December. Certainly, I thought, if I Google "wool felt nativity" there will be something online for either inspiration or purchase. The only thing I came up with that was in keeping with my style was a pattern for some animals. Excellent.
I ordered pronto and the nice lady in the foreign country quickly responded that she'd ship it right off as soon as the postal strike in her country ended. Notice foreign country and postal strike. "No hurry," I replied. "After all, it's only July." Remember I'm the lady with time on my hands. After a day or two she contacted me again with a new offer to immediately send me the PDF pattern at no charge instead of waiting for her tax dollars to show up at work. The only hitch. If I took the PDF pattern I needed to be aware that she hadn't entirely, completely, fully, totally finished translating the pattern and instructions. Uh oh.
I'm just a little rusty on my Dutch.
But this nice lady in the foreign country with the postal service on strike who sells patterns written and illustrated in Dutch did send the English translation, to my relief, with the promise that if one carefully follows the instructions this collection of materials
can be simply stitched into this pleasant herd of os, ezel and kameel.
Let me just say that the cattle are not yet lowing. I'm having a bit of trouble with the pattern piece "tussenstuk." I'm stuk all right. "Leave here on the bottom and the back piece of the hoof about 2mm. The bottom remains a little apart, through which the donkey can stand better. Place o on o and stitch to underneath the front......" It's a good thing I have some time on my hands. At this rate it's going to take every bit of the four and one-half months until Christmas. If you'll excuse me, I have a lot of work to do...."the pipe cleaner can have some room to sit in the body, more room is better than too tight..."





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