Nellie is an 18-inch-tall girl from exactly 100 years ago! She saw some very beautiful kimono and yukata from Cherry's beautiful albums. Nellie did not tell me that she wanted one of her own, but her eyes shone as she looked at them.
And my eyes shone too! I am interested in Japanese culture
anyway, and kimono are some of the most beautiful garments ever!
Of course, working on anything silky or brocade-y is very hard.
Cherry (who sent us a wonderful pattern!) suggested we try making a
yukata--or informal cotton summer kimono--first. That's probably smart,
since it's so hot where I am, and since I'm not the best seamstress. ANYWAY....
Here is the fabric we picked out. Here, Nellie tries to make heads or tails out
of the pattern. It really was not a difficult pattern, but it's
the first outfit Nellie's actually tried to make herself.
There were a lot of lovely blues, but I thought Nellie already had
enough blue. I selected this pattern at JoAnn's--it is fairly
thick, so thick the fabric cutter initially mistook it for
flannel. It was labelled as the "vintage" category and it looks
like a Japanese-inspired design to me, maybe something that people in
America would have used for their so-called "kimonos" a long time ago,
although probably more recently than the 1900s. ANYWAY...
Nellie helped me to lay out the pattern on the fabric.
"I'm not PM, so the pins don't hurt my tough fingers," Nellie said proudly.
Then we did a lot of sewing...
...and then I decided to make little sandals for Nellie too! I
used plywood which was a bit of a mistake, since I don't have a
saw. I broke a pair of scissors and did some other dangerous
stuff (kids, do not play with plywood and scissors at home!). But I finally got the right forms!
...and then I made Nellie two left sandals. She never once complained, though.
Look at how pretty her new yukata is!
Here she is in front of a wall scroll of my Hostboard namesake (the fellow in red, with the scar), Himura Kenshin.
"Hey," Nellie said, "I hear a distraction! What's that cough?"
Meanwhile, Mini Kit had found a new friend...
"Hello!" Mini Kit said cheerfully. "You're a fairy--that's wonderful! Do you have magic powers?"
The fairy looked rather confused, and then shrugged helplessly, before coughing again.
Mini Kit never considered that the fairy might be contagious. She helped the creature up.
"I never thought I'd meet someone magic!" Mini Kit said. "Can we go off on an adventure? Can we, can we?"
"Who's going on an adventure?" Kirsten asked, peering over.
"Stay out of this," Mini Kit said. "You're too big; you're probably scaring my friend."
The fairy suddenly collapsed.
"See?" Mini Kit accused.
"I didn't do anything!" Kirsten replied. "What's wrong?"
"I've only heard of one fairy ever getting sick," Mini Kit mused.
"And that was when..." The girl whispered, "...when someone
didn't believe in fairies."
Nellie cleared her throat. "Who's that?"
"It's a fairy!" Mini Kit replied. "And she's sick."
Nellie came closer to investigate. "Hm," she said. "It's a pretty doll...but there's no such thing as fairies."
The fairy coughed.
"Nellie!" Mini Kit cried. "It's your fault the fairy's sick!"
Kirsten grew as pale as her white body. "If you can't believe in her...she might die!"
"I'm sorry, Miss Mini Kit, Miss Kirsten," Nellie said, shaking her
head. "But I can't believe in something that's not real."
Kirsten and Mini Kit just stared in disbelief as Nellie walked away.
Nellie felt rather guilty. She wasn't mean, and she didn't want
the fairy to die. But she couldn't help it if she couldn't
She went onto the American Girl Fans Message Board in search of some sort of thread that could help them....
"Come on!" Kirsten pleaded, raising the fairy. "You can fly, can't you?"
The fairy coughed again.
"Hey!" Nellie called! "I just found out how we can save the fairy! Put her in a box!"
"She's not dead yet!" Kirsten called. "Don't put her in a coffin yet!"
"No!" Nellie cried. "We need to send her away! Miss Cheap Lady will fill out the mailing label!"
"I don't understand," Mini Kit said.
"I don't know if she got lost or what, but a nice lady on the American Girl Fans Message Board is missing her fairy doll!" Nellie called.
The fairy coughed.
"She means a lady is missing her real fairy," Mini Kit whispered.
Kirsten and Mini Kit had their doubts, but they gently boxed up their friend.
"She looks sick," Kirsten said. "How can you make fairies healthy again?"
"Just by clapping," Mini Kit whispered.
They heard a couple soft claps...
And the fairy flew up gleefully. She was all better!
"Hooray!" Kirsten and Mini Kit called.
"But I think you'll be safer in another house," Mini Kit added.
The fairy agreed.
So she flew into the box.
"Take care!" Kirsten called.
"Have a safe trip!" Mini Kit added.
The fairy waved back, and soon, she was gone.
But who clapped for her?
"I still don't believe," Nellie whispered, "but it's a medical fact
that dolls claiming to be fairies tend to recover when they hear
Well, it's a happy ending anyway!
On to 10.13.06
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