Monday, June 04, 2007

Repeating the pattern?

When I was growing up my Mum, like many women tried to find piece work that would fit in with being at home after school and in the holidays - she did B&B, she painted pegs to look like soldiers and highland dancers, she helped organise play schemes but most consistently she made toys for a local craft shop.

My clearest memories of Mum before she took up antique dealing are of her sitting each evening in front of the wood burner with a willow basket full of half made animals waiting to be hand finished.

Recently I have been drawn to making toys again - and I am looking back to patterns from the 60s and 70s, probably quite similar in style to the patterns copied from magazines in my youth. This cute pony is my favourite at the moment - made in soft suede effect fabric with felt mane and tail he is just the right size and squashiness for a small hand.

I wonder whether this is a form of broodiness - my girls are growing up fast and are not as attached to soft toys any more (though they pleaded for, and got, all my prototypes for the toys I am working on at the moment). I don't intend to have another baby - perhaps this sewing soft things is a displacement activity (though if you ask me professionally I will spout that I want to develop a children's section for the website)


Gigibird said...

Your mother sounds very industrious.
Soft toys are very emotive – I’m sure the appeal they carry crosses all ages - I have all the little things I made with my Granny and often think about making something similar now…

Alice C said...

My mother was very similar - one of her projects was making hobby horses with soft heads on a wooden stick. She had a waiting list of customers but - I am sure you will relate to this - got bored after the first thirty. She is far too creative to repeat projects over and over. The ones that she made were works of art!

Jane said...

Lynn - my Mum is very, very industrious - never without something to do. She now paints (and runs an antique shop). She also manages to provide a great number of beautiful knitted jumpers for the girls.

Alice - I had a stall in a porch on Sunday and was looking at one of those hobby horsese which was hanging on a coat hook thinking "MMmmmm I wonder how difficult it would be to make one of them . . . "

Liz said...

You are probably right about it being a form of broodiness. My daughters are 18 and 20 and dont really need me as much as I would like,anymore. I have got a puppy as I have a lot of time and love to give, and it is so nice to have someone that is pleased to see you when you come home! You already have your dog, so stick with the soft toys!!

carolyn said...

It's probably six of one and half dozen of another so take advantage while the desire is there.