Thursday, February 2, 2017
Patchwork Doll Slippers
When I was a little girl, my grandmother collected dolls. She had them on stands all over her living room, and my sister and I were fascinated by them. She bought them from shops or by mail order from the catalogs that came to her home every month. Then one day she showed me a catalog from a new business called Pleasant Company, the forerunner of what's known today as American Girl. I remember poring over those pages for hours, studying the details and stories about each of the dolls they offered (only Kirsten, Samantha & Molly in those early days). I made lists of which items I wanted and how much each would cost, reworking those figures over and over again. Sadly back then, a doll just wasn't in our family budget. It was disappointing, but I managed to wring plenty of enjoyment out of the catalogs alone, so it wasn't the end of the world.
Over the past few years, my girls were each able to get their own American Girl doll from grandparents on both sides of our family for their birthdays. It's given me so much pleasure to see them enjoying a treat that I only dreamed of when I was young. We were surprised when a temporary AG shop came to San Antonio for the holidays last fall, and my daughters visited it any chance they could get before it closed at the end of January. On our very last trip to the store last Thursday, my husband insisted that I get a doll for myself as part of my Valentine present, so that I could finally have one of my own. I felt like a child again as I picked out Rebecca Rubin to take home with me. My mom purchased some clothes and even Rebecca's little kittens to go along with her. So here I am, feeling spoiled to pieces by my lovely family and having so much fun playing pretend with my daughters as they hold their weekly sister sleepovers and tea parties.
When my mom presented me yesterday with a sweet pair of pajamas that she bought for Rebecca on eBay, I suddenly thought how fun it would be to make her a pair of patchwork slippers to complete the outfit. I traced her shoes for a pattern and used a few of my smallest Liberty scraps along with some pale blue Essex linen. It was tricky working with such tiny pieces -- I've never bound anything so small! -- but I'm so thrilled with how they turned out.
It's true -- I love my new doll. But mostly I adore my precious family who surrounds me with love in such thoughtful, sentimental ways.