Wednesday, 9 April 2014

The Owl and the Pussycat


Firstly, outrageously late due to being unwell and then taking a brief blog break to enjoy the start of the Easter holidays with my children, a winner to the Christine Haynes Complete Photo Guide to Clothing Construction book giveaway. Thank you so much for all the wonderful entries. The winner*, Emma Made, wrote:  I posted a chocolate bar once. I bought a chocolate bar and a stamp in the post office. I had the letter in one hand and the chocolate in the other and I posted the chocolate! Happy day for the postman! X PS great giveaway Florence. I felt slightly fascinated by what happened next: if you were a postman would you eat an unopened chocolate bar that you found in the postbox? Did Emma have enough change to buy another chocolate bar? Did she walk coolly away after posting it or did she spend a few minutes desperately peering into the black mouth of the letterbox wondering if there was a way of retrieving the chocolate? Do mice ever venture inside postboxes? Do rats ever venture into postboxes? Do postmen ever open up the postbox to find wildlife leaping into their arms? Emma, please do send me your address and I'll send the book to you with all good wishes that no rodents nibble the envelope while it's awaiting collection from the letterbox. And if anyone happens to be married to a postman, please do pose my questions to him and report back! Or maybe there is a sewing postlady reading?


In my last post, I mentioned that while I was in bed with tonsillitis and a fever well over 100ºF my daughter sprang upon us the need to be transformed into an owl in approximately 48 hours time. My husband said that he was happy to tackle a mask with her, but would be clueless as to the rest of the costume.


If I had to sew anything while feeling that ill, it would have been this curious be-feathered t-shirt. I found the colours incredibly calming, loved cutting something out with no need for the pieces to be identically sized and enjoyed building up rows of feathers, not worrying too much about quite where they went.


I hadn't imagined using most of my treasured Sketch or Architextures on an owl costume, but my desire not to leave the house to buy alternative fabric insisted upon it. Nor had I ever imagined putting these fabrics together, but all I could think of while I was sewing the feathers on, was what a gorgeous quilt they would make.


My daughter and her friend were attending an evening event together as The Owl and the Pussycat. As the actual pussycat wasn't here when I photographed our owl, our real cat acted as a stand-in. She was slightly disgusted by our attempts at recreating a bird and no attempt to flatter our artistic efforts by savaging it and leaving it splattered over the floor of the utility room was made on this occasion.


In other thoughts, I've noticed that more and more often I'm using square photos on my blog as I frequently rely on my iPhone camera which tends to be set to take them in this way (this is an especially good option for when you find the lens of your favourite proper camera with several deep scratches running over it). As so many people take square photos to upload to Instagram and other sites that favour squarism now, I often wonder when the first proper square cameras will appear, whether most photo frames will eventually feature square apertures and whether our children will look back on our 4"x 6" photos as things of quaint curiosity. 

Florence x

* Emma was picked as the winner purely on the grounds that there are few things worse than losing chocolate when you'd been imagining eating it.

18 comments:

  1. Beautiful owl! I love those fabrics together too!

    I anxiously scrolled to the bottom of this post to see if anyone had commented in response to the postal inquiries! I often worry about what I would do if I accidentally dropped something even more important than a chocolate bar in a mailbox- would I sit beside the box, waiting for the mail man to come unlock it and beg him to believe me when I say that the family heirloom jewelry/very important legal document/who knows what truly is mine and that I'd like it back? Is there a postal hotline you can call to have an emergency mail man come unlock the box?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's almost made me want to seek out a post person for an interview - there are so many fascinations.

      Delete
  2. Wow the costume is just beautiful! I really can't think many things worse than loosing a bar of chocolate ether. And the square photos fit really well. I can see why photos might become all square in the future!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I missed the post about your illness. I am so sorry you were so sick! The costume, however, is perfect and your husband did a great job on the mask too.

    ReplyDelete
  4. oh, Florence, you are a HOOT :-)

    ReplyDelete
  5. Wow, this looks so lovely! What a sweet costume!

    Question: can you buy chocolate bars at the post office in the UK? Maybe people here in the States would be less grumpy if they could buy a little treats while they were waiting on line!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Not in a main post office, but many of our smaller ones are within shops - usually selling stationery and sometimes sweets etc.

      Delete
    2. As Nina says. Often our post offices are part of small newsagents (normally on the corners of streets, so sometimes referred to as 'corner shops' and then you would always be able to buy chocolate at the same time as posting letters. There's also usually a post box outside corner shops. However, English post offices are becoming far fewer and there are less and less in corner shops, which is really inconvenient, but does mean you're less likely to have a mishap with posting a chocolate bar.

      Delete
  6. Wow, fantastic costume, what an amazing husband and wife team!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you - despite not usually enjoying sewing costumes, I did really enjoy this!

      Delete
  7. Any such last-minute demand is known in my family as a Policeman's Helmet - because my sister once casually mentioned, as our mum dropped us off at primary school on the way to work, that she'd be needing a policeman's helmet for her role in that evening's dance class show... You did manage to conjure up a very beautiful owl, though, whereas my sister unfortunately had to perform in an imaginary helmet.

    I want to know whether Emma put the stamp on the chocolate bar before posting it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I love the idea of an imaginary helmet - I may send her off in an invisible costume next time!

      Delete
  8. .... and now I too am pondering the fate of the hapless Chocolate Bar... I would be very, very sad if I had to post a Chocolate Bar. Truth be told I would probably need to be rescued from the Post Box... I would definitely attempt sticking my arm down as far as it would go in the desperate attempt to retrieve that bar of delight. The Owl costume is BRILLIANT! Well done! Even more so as you were ill when you made it. Applause!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, that's my thought - I can imagine getting my arm in and getting wedged around the elbow and then having to suffer the humiliation of being 'cut out' of the post box.

      Delete
  9. Oh yes, I've posted non-post all right. I posted my house and car keys whilst holdingon to the stamped birthday cards.... I hung around for four hours, a coffee here, a cup of tea there and was waiting for the postie at the clearing time given on the post box... Before he opened the box, I could tell him in detail how many keys, what sort of key-fob etc. so he sorted the bunch out from the letters and gave it back with a laugh... He said he'd had dog-leads, an odd glove, but sadly, didn't mention chocolate...

    ReplyDelete
  10. I'll skip the chocolate bar question, and go straight for the proper square camera :)
    In the pre-digital age, I shot medium-format film for years and years, with Rollieflex and Hasselblad cameras...the kind that make a small, satisfying, sprockety sound when you turn the fold-out crank to advance the roll of (unsprocketed) film to an unexposed section. Although I also used standard 35mm transparency film for a lot of scientific work, the 2.25" square format was my true favorite. I remember having a long discussion trying to work out why cameras had ever gone from square to rectangular format...how the pendulum swings! :)

    ReplyDelete

Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a message - it's always really lovely to hear from people.

I now tend to reply within the comments section, so please do check back if you've asked a question or wish to chat.

Florence x