October 02, 2011
Recently it was "dress as your favourite book character" day at school. For the uninitiated this occassion is also known as send-your-mother-to-the-edge-of-madness-with-some-completely-outlandish-costume-request.
So when Argy announced he wanted to go as "The Gruffalo" with his terrible tusks and terrible claws and terrible teeth in his terrible jaws, I had to do some quick thinking.
"Er yes, wow, that's a great choice" I said, all the while trying to fathom how to construct terrible tusks and teeth. But then a brainwave: "How about the Mouse?" I suggested, hopefully. "Isn't the Mouse the hero of the story?" Argy looked a little uncertain, but agreed.
I swung into action (before he could change his mind) and started rifling through my pattern collection. Mouse, mouse, mouse ... surely there must be something here. Sure enough, I found a pristine Simplicity 2506 - view D included a sort of hood with mouse ears. Excellent.
But my moment of triumph dissipated when I saw the words "Costumes for Toddlers".
Yes, there was no denying it: the pattern envelope clearly showed a bunch of smiling babies modelling the costumes. Bother. I looked back and forth between the pattern and 6-year-old Argy's well-above-average crown circumference. This was going to call for a little ingenuity.
I traced off the hood pattern pieces and then after taking a few flat pattern measurements, decided to employ an alteration technique called the LNA ("Large Noggin Adjustment"). The LNA (which is sometimes also referred in the trade as the "Big Head Spread"), involved slashing and adding extra real estate to all the pattern pieces making up the hood.
With the addition of a couple of darts, the fit was good and I was able to make up a snug mousy hood in brown fleece and beige tricot. I was quite pleased with the result. That is, except for a lingering doubt: when I changed the size of the hood, should I have graded up the mouse ears?
I soon knew the answer. On the morning of "dress as your favourite book character" Argy proudly wore his costume to school. "Hey ... look its a koala" yelled someone.
With my costume-making pride just a little dented, I tried to see the bight side. At least that's next year's costume sorted: Argy can go as Blinky Bill.
This post brought to you as part of Blogtoberfest - October's blogging festival.