Back on November 23, I blogged about finding some wonderful pieces of fabric in my late mother-in-law's attic. Among the many treasures I unearthed, there was some red velveteen that I thought would be perfect for Christmas jumpers for the twins. Yesterday, finally, I got around to making them--just in the nick of time. I plan to get them packed up and shipped off today, and with any luck the girls can wear them to Mass this Sunday. (Note to the babies' mommy and daddy: be on the look-out for a package!)
I've mentioned before that my mother-in-law was quite a gifted seamstress. And I know for a fact that she worked with velveteen many times. The lovely dove gray jacket and full-length skirt that she wore for the winter wedding of her oldest son and me was an outfit she'd stitched up for herself. She also made gorgeous black velveteen dresses for her daughters to wear to college formal dances. Before yesterday, I'd only used this type of fabric once, for an open jacket that had no zippers or buttons. That jacket had been fairly easy to make, though, so I didn't expect to encounter any problems while I worked on the twins' jumpers.
I would have loved to be able to get some advice from my dear mother-in-law while I was working with that rassa-frassin' velveteen yesterday, because it's so thick that it can be a bit of a pain at times. The pattern I was using called for 3/8" buttons, but when I tried to open up the tiny buttonholes that would fit those, I could barely cut through the layers of velveteen and nearly ruined a garment that was otherwise finished. I ended up making some adjustments, which included using 3/4" buttons instead of the smaller ones and lengthening the buttonholes I'd already made.
[By the way, if any of my sons are reading this: were you hoping that today's post was going to be about sewing? Are you riveted to your seats, thinking, "What happened next, Mom? How does the story end?!...And when does it end?"]
Anyhoo, the jumpers ultimately came out okay. I wanted to make some little blouses to go with them out of some Christmas calico fabric (again, a treasure from Mom's attic), but the pattern I was using had the most confusing directions. Sadly, in the battle of wills that ensued between that pattern and me, I was the loser. So I ultimately gave up and bought some white onesies to go underneath the jumpers.
I think my little twin granddaughters are going to look adorable in these matching jumpers, and that makes yesterday's trials all worth it. And once again, I feel that a piece of Mom is being passed on to this new generation--and I imagine her smiling when she sees how pretty her great-granddaughters look on Christmas day, wearing the red velveteen from her attic.