Monday, January 12, 2009

The Art Smock

Lying in bed would be an altogether perfect and supreme experience if only one had a coloured pencil long enough to draw on the ceiling.  ~ G.K. Chesterton

Ess' design with my applique scraps in the foreground.

How is it that we have survived all our preschool years with painting, crafting and “playdoughing” at home without needing to purchase an art smock? Yet when my eldest daughter commences school I am required to provide an art smock for her!?  There is a streak of rebellion in me which surfaces when I am told what I need to buy for my family’s needs.  Certainly I understand the need to purchase school uniform and pay various school fees but an art smock?

So while purchasing school shoes and socks and various other required items, I resolved not to buy an art smock.  You can buy some horrible PVC  and/or licensed ones with Dora, Thomas, Spiderman and the likes on them (I really dislike licensed clothing with TV characters printed on them). I searched online to find some ideas about how I might make one from the fabric I hold at home using my very adequate sewing skills.  In no time at all I had found a pattern and the lovely Kellie had emailed it to me.    Ready to have printed, cut out, appliquéd and sewn together.

Hmm yes appliquéd. It is years since I have done any appliqué and it has almost always been handsewn.  As this art smock will require frequent washing – I assume (and hope) it will be regularly used!, I decided I would follow guidelines and machine-sew this little baby.

This applique has certainly stretched my own creative skills and abilities.  If you thought sewing in straight lines was difficult you should try fine curves. Don’t look too closely at my flowers or curlicues – they are not perfect.  I am sure however that a new more modern machine than my 20yr old Pfaff would serve to help me sew them with ease!! It wouldn’t be my skill or lack of practise and patience at all, would it?!

So in creating something for Ess out of items I already had at home, I hope that I have given her something to use which will extend her creativity. Indeed it has already.  With the scraps from the appliqué I completed she has created her own designs.

Here’s to handmade!


Kellie said...

Wow! It looks fantastic Cathy! Your lovely daughter will be the envy of all her friends as she wipes her paint covered hands on her smock LOL!!! I'm so pleased you made it. So will you have a go at the Puppet Theatre now??

Cee said...

Your puppet theatre pattern is gorgeous Kellie and I will certainly have to think about that. It will be a big project for me but it seems I could try it with success.

I am glad you like the smock. I am pleased as well and will be delighted when it gets paint smeared all over it!!! :)

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