06 May 2010

Curse of the Creative

When Annalia told me that she wanted a mermaid costume, of course the first thing out of my mouth was, "Sure, we could make one." In fact, Annalia hears this so much that when we are in the store, she no longer asks for things, but asks if we can make it. (It is actually a good way to avoid the "I wants" in a store.)

I would love to say that my impulse to make, rather than buy, is based on the honorable desire to create something beautiful. But no - it is really about some warped rules that I have made for myself. I am not sure when I decided that commercialism was the root of all evil and should be avoided at all cost when raising my children. It probably has something to do with my desire to be different, and not have just another Disney-Princess-tee-shirt wearing girl running around. It is a pride thing (which, ironically, I am not proud of). I don't want to have to say, "Yes, I bought that Ariel mermaid costume because she wanted it." Somehow, in my head, it sounds better if I can say, "Oh, well, she wanted a mermaid costume, so I just whipped one up."

But that isn't exactly the case. She has been asking for this costume for weeks. Finally, we picked out some fabric, and another 2 weeks later, I started. It soon became a chore that I needed to finish before the baby came, and so I hurriedly finished this afternoon. Not exactly worrying about quality or perfection.
There are a couple things about this project that I am proud of though. For one, it only cost $1.50. I try to be frugal in my spending, and aware of the resources that I use in my daily life. One of the ways I achieve that, while still doing the crafts and projects I love, is by using the things I have. I did purchase a yard of fabric at Walmart, but everything else is scraps I had laying around. This is something I want to pass on to my children, using what you already have before purchasing something new.

The other pride, that I am truly proud of, is the joy this costume brought for Annalia. As soon as I put it on her, she exclaimed, "Look Mommy, I am a real mermaid now." And she swayed her hips, twirled around, and then ran outside to show her Nana. Knowing kids, and what happens to even the most beloved toys, I know that this outfit will eventually be shoved to the bottom of the dress-up box, and forgotten for months. But for now, she is blissfully happy to pretend that she is a real mermaid. And I am glad that my part in it was more than just an impulse buy, but rather a thought out, time consuming project that I endured for this moment of childhood joy.

3 comments:

LifeAtTheCircus.com said...

You did a fabulous job and you are such a great mom, teaching your girls so much from your example! My mom sewed so much for me and I always loved it. She made all my formal dresses for HS dances and my wedding dress and bridesmaid dresses. I Loved it b/c I knew whatever dress I wore was an original.

pethtelfamily said...

I want one now too!!! I am always in awe of the things that you do and accomplish. In fact Miriam and I were just discussing the awesome things you do last week. :) I can only dream of being as gifted on a sewing machine, therefore I have the most respect for those who can. I I can totally relate to the commercialism and we try to steer clear of it as much as possible in our home. So, when you get a chance later this year, can you make Addie a mermaid costume? I'll start gathering the scraps we have laying around. :)

Margot said...

Karlene,
You are so talented. To just "whip up" a mermaid costume with rucheing (sp?) What a great job!
Margot