i can remember when i started dating. after my divorce, when i found myself in my mid-twenties, a single woman. i had the pleasure of meeting a few interesting men, and eventually my utterly charming and sexy husband. i can remember a casual date with a man, i don't remember much about him, but i remember talking about how i couldn't wait to make halloween costumes. not for myself, not for me and him, but for my children one day. to make halloween costumes from stuff found around the house or thift shop, it just seemed like one of those things i have been waiting my entire life to do. also, i never trick-or-treated as a kid, so the whole halloween holiday seemed pretty grand to me.

fast forward a few years and i have a little one of my own, and many experiences under my belt that fit into the category of "things i have been waiting my entire life to do". one of these things is not only making halloween costumes (i already have chloe's planned for this year!), but also making her tiny little t-shirts from old adult concert tees, and skirts from sheets, and re-doing her room with thrifted red and white gingham. also on that list is taking her on walks and teaching her what the street signs mean - when we can walk, and when we need to wait. teaching her how to spell her name, and counting with her. we count everything: steps we walk down and up, cheerios on a plate, how many plastic toy bugs can fit into her play frying pan. i was made to do these things. i have been waiting my whole life for it. 

i was going through pictures on my phone today and noticed, with a smile, just how much of her wardrobe i have made. now i won't toot my horn too loudly - most of the stuff is really simple skirts, t-shirts made from old ones, and a couple really simple dresses. but it made me happy to see her wearing them. i do love some store-bought things... but my taste tends to be on the pricey side. you don't even want to know how much time i spend ogling boutique kids clothing - i love comfy, simple, and unique things. alas my current budget allows for very few of these things, so i mend and make do. i love clothes that allow chloe to be a kid, things that wash well and last, things that are easy for her to put on. and i love making these things.

tonight i made her a couple band shirts. during the day i try to play music and keep the tv off. she likes to listen to classic rock, and bon iver is one of her favorite bands to dance to. christian keeps his eye out for concert tees from some of these bands, tees that i can transform into tiny tees for her. i cut the tees down keeping the original neck, then use portions of the sleeves, and hem the bottom. i have an overlock machine, which makes it easier, but i have heard of people doing this with a regular machine set to zig-zag stitch. i love the softness of the tees. i have also made her quite a few skirts from sheet material. the top edge of a sheet usually is a good weight for a fun full skirt, and then the rest of the material can be used for dolls, or quilts, or bags, or whatever.

i took this photo while we were playing in the driveway yesterday afternoon. the entire outfit is handmade. the t-shirt used to be christian's. i caught her mid-jump. i figure some day she will either love or hate that i make clothes for her. of course i hope she loves them, that she thinks they are awesome, that she values handmade things... and deep down i hope she learns to mend and make do.


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