The Nifty 50’s: Bring it on, Danny & Sandy!

Halloween, this year, has come and gone, but there are little reminders all around our home that continue to make me smile.  I love this time of year, especially the warmth of the season’s colors both inside and out.  And, although most of the trees now look barren and cold,  their leaves long ago blown away in the blustery Nebraska wind, it also serves to remind us that nature will again come full circle in the spring.

Inside our little home, a yellow bungalow, fall is most evident.  From wooly, hooked rugs, made by yours truly, to an abundance of pumpkins and crows and twiggy vines; it’s a comforting place to sit a spell.  Not a fancy place, mind you, but cozy.  We love the old character of our 30’s, stick-style bungalow, and we’ve tried to restore as much of it as we could to its original simplicity and splendor.

And speaking of old things, I worked hard to recreate an oldie, but goodie, for Emily’s Halloween Dance a few weeks back.  She and her guy-friend wanted to attend the Jr-High Halloween Dance as a “couple,” and they needed ideas for costumes.  The “Bride of Frankenstein” was suggested by many, as she was sporting those lovely stitches through her eyebrow (this story from a previous post, “Series Points & Sutures: All in a Good Day of Motocross!”), but alas, she declined.

When I searched the internet for “couple costumes,” I was a little put off by the suggestions that came up; definitely not what I had in mind for my teenage daughter and her friend.  I did find the idea of Sandy Olsson and Danny Zuko from the movie, “Grease” to be both clean and fun, however.

After all parties involved agreed to the “Grease” theme, I went online and searched for “affordable” costumes.  I was pretty disappointed to see how much the costumes were selling for, and feeling more and more hopeless when I couldn’t find any of them in their sizes.  In hindsight, I can see this was a good thing, as it forced me to get creative.

I felt if Emily were to be the “cheerleader Sandy,” we could make it work.  And since my mother-in-law does lovely work with a needle & thread, I was certain she would make the long, red felt skirt for Emily.  My job would be to create a school emblem for the front of a sweater, and also some T-Bird lettering for the back of a leather jacket.

It took some thinking, and a trip to a bigger city for some red and white felt, but soon after, I was making progress.  I carefully sketched out the emblem and the letters for the project, cut them out of felt, and proceeded to iron them on with fusible interfacing.  I didn’t iron the letters onto the leather jacket, however, I used adhesive-backed felt for that; it worked like a charm!  I also added a red felt collar to the sweater; I thought it was a nice touch.

Emily & her friend looked SMASHING for their dance.  I had big plans of taking them both to the event that evening,  snapping a zillion pictures; but unfortunately, I came down with a bug and had to stay home.  My dear husband took them instead, and bless his heart, he tried to get a couple of photos for me, but this is what he came home with…Are you dizzy yet from looking at that?  Sorry, it was all for the dramatic effect :-).  He tried, but I’m afraid those big paws of his are “all thumbs” when it comes to handling my camera.  Thankfully, all was not lost.  “Danny’s” mother snapped a few photos  before they left his house, and as you can see with the one below, they were a little more in-focus.

Remembering back to the Jr-High dances I went to, there was always that awkward silence, and nobody really danced.  We all dressed up to… stand around in groups and “talk” about dancing, and like I said, it was awkward!  Emily told me she and her friend actually did dance, and they had a wonderful time.  They even won the “Best Couple Award.”

So as I hang up these costumes and store them away, I’m reminded of all the fun we had putting them together.  Buying them would have been more expensive, and I would have missed out on the fun of getting in touch with my artistic side.  It brought me joy, and a sense of accomplishment to be creative, as well as reminding me how much I miss being crafty in this hectic life of ours.  I’m definitely going to make it a goal to start some winter projects, and enjoy the free time (when I have it), creating something fun.