General Sewing

The fastest cat alive!

Gather ’round children…there’s a story behind today’s creation.  (Isn’t there always?)

My cat has lightning-fast reflexes, and moves like a greased pig – particularly when checkup-time rolls around and she knows a car ride is imminent.  She honestly seems to sense when this is about to happen, which means that occasionally I have to tackle her like I’m trying out for JV football in order to get her in her carrier and get her to the vet’s office on time.  A couple of years ago, she had to stay overnight for observation, which compounded the tackle-and-ride trauma with apparent abandonment.  I had stopped by to visit her after work, and she was so mad she wouldn’t even look at me.  I felt like the worst parent ever as I poked my fingers through the cage bars in vain and, as there were other people around, tried not to cry over my new title.

And then I saw the sign.

Written hastily in red Sharpie, and taped over her medical information on the front of her cage, it proclaimed, “I’m fast!”

My first thought was one of smug validation: it wasn’t that my reflexes were slow.  My own rather unscientific observation had now been corroborated by a veterinary professional.  See?  She is fast, and the traumatizing tackle was necessary.  And then it hit me:

The cat had tried to do a runner.

And suddenly I felt the way I imagine parents of two-legged children feel upon receiving notice that their child has just displayed some sort of ungracious or otherwise unpleasant behaviour – like, say, getting stuck in the mud while the class was planting trees for Earth Day, and then refusing to hand her shovel over to the teacher so that he might dig her out, because she was under strict orders not to let anyone else use it.  (True story.)

Fast-forward a couple of years: kitty is happy and healthy, but since her annual checkup is getting close, I thought she could use a little jacket to ward off the autumn chill as she’s being shuttled from Point A to Point B.


I used McCall’s 5776, and modified View C to suit my needs.  The instructions called for fringing the edges which didn’t seem very aerodynamic and Flash-like to me, so I lopped off some of the extra fabric and finished with a narrow hem instead.  The Flash logo was cut from felt and sewn on by hand, and Velcro at the throat and under the belly keep things in place.

(She’s not quite as enamoured with it as she appears in the photo.  She doesn’t hate it, exactly, but whenever I try it on her, she does a little kitty moonwalk to try and get out of it.)

General Sewing

Halloween ahoy!

I do love Halloween – I think it may very well be my favourite holiday.  The stores stay open, no dopey special dinners required…and you get to wear a costume and consume unholy amounts of sugar!  More holidays should be like that.

Anyway, I’m showing up at work tomorrow as a somewhat contemporary (assuming this is somewhere in the late 1940s) Little Red Riding Hood.  I’ve had the pattern for the cape for a while, but only just got around to making it.  See, I found this sweet gingham square-dance dress (according to the tag) at a vintage store, and immediately fell in love with it as it reminded me of something that Vladimir Nabokov’s Dolores Haze might wear.  However, I had the sneaking suspicion that if I showed up wearing the dress and had to answer the inevitable “What are you?” with “Lolita”, I’d be subjecting myself to a barrage of “But what’s your costume?” and so on.  Just a hunch.  *sigh*  The cape was a very necessary addition, using a Simplicity pattern whose number escapes me at the moment, and made from (believe it or not) an old satin sheet.

So I decided to reinterpret Red Riding Hood as a slightly more modern girl.  She’s going to be a bobby-soxer, with saddle shoes and cuffed white socks, a nifty wicker lunchbox-cum-purse instead of that boring old basket, and hopefully a knowing gleam in her eye as she fends off the office wolves.  *snerk*

Modeling the requisite red satin cape, made with my own two hands, over the nymphettish dress, is my dress form Dolores (herself named after little Miss Haze).  Please ignore the blurry background, as I chose to smudge the clutter out rather than actually, you know, tidy up. sure are looking good...