Friday, 10 December 2010

a social experiment bag

A collection was growing:

one of these cars is doin' its own thing
Meanwhile, I found this piece of material in a car boot sale in North Wales this summer. I loved the bright colours, the Richard Scarry-esque hive of activity and the nostalgic Americana Ed Ruscha-kind of vibe about it. If such a vibe exists. Which I doubt. But what to do with it?

Well, perhaps it was time to give the collection a home. And, along the way to think about some of the nature vs nurture questions that being a mother to two young daughters (what do you mean you don't want to wear trousers anymore??) makes me ask myself.

Will there be no toy cars in my life? I read an interesting interview with the theatre director Katie Mitchell on this subject, she calls it 'the pink age' and that it is to be celebrated.

Back to the racetrack. I thought it needed backing, ballast for it to lie flat enough to be a proper playmat. So I found some black needlecord and sewed it to the back. Then, I bound the edges with bias binding. To keep back and front together I also added a few tiny hand stitches so as not to disturb the lovely print.

I wanted it to be portable, and so made a little bag. Just what this house needs, more bags. I got these little teddies from a neighbour's yard sale. He also sold me the gingham which had a lovely tea-towel cotton grade of strength and thickness.

Cars go in the pocket, track in the bag and we are ready to play.

I cannot honestly say this had as warm a reception as the time I made my daughter a doll. There was also a funny moment that I did not manage to capture on camera where she wrapped it around herself like a dress. But, we shall see. I am learning that toys find favour at all sorts of unexpected times. So I live in hope. A hope tinged with realism.

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a year above the shop

a year above the shop