RAISING MY RAINBOW

My Son The Dressmaker

One of the things that I remember most about my maternal grandmother is that she loved to sew.  And, she was damn good at it.  Like, she could whip up a prom dress if you needed one at the last minute and she made more quilts than our family knew what to do with.  You only need so many blankets when you live in Southern California.

As a child, I remember playing with her rainbow-colored, plastic-headed pins and produce-inspired pincushion.  I’d imagine that they were tiny gum balls clinging to a giant red tomato with a strawberry repelling down the side to safety.

My grandmother would have let me help with the actual sewing, but it just wasn’t my thing.  Her talents, creativity and never-ending patience were lost on me; but C.J. would have loved her.

My mother, Nana Grab Bags, loves to sew and her and C.J. have been spending a lot of time in her sewing room lately.  They started out using fabric glue and Stitch Witchery on their creations.  Now, they have moved on to C.J. draping fabric on himself and Nana Grab Bags pinning it.  Then, she carefully removes it and sews it just the way it had been pinned.  My son cries as if he’s been assaulted when he gets a small splinter or scrapes his knee playing outside, but if he gets poked or scratched by pins while draping and sewing he doesn’t bat an eye.  Instead, he tells me that it’s okay.

My mother offers her style suggestions and they discuss design.  But, ultimately, it’s C.J. decision and Nana Grab Bags gladly obliges.

C.J. recently designed his own dress.  Brace yourself, because it’s a lot to take in.  All fabric, accouterments and placement were C.J.’s decision.

Some of the fabric C.J. selected because "it's shiny and sassy and drapey."  Clearly.
Some of the fabric C.J. selected because “it’s shiny and sassy and drapey.” Clearly.
This ribbon reminded C.J. of fairies and fairy tales and Barbie.
This ribbon reminded C.J. of fairies and fairy tales and Barbie.
These fabric rosettes are super sassy fancy flowers according to C.J.
These fabric rosettes are super sassy fancy flowers according to C.J.
He picked this iron-on patch because it reminded him of Monster High.
He picked this iron-on patch because it reminded him of Monster High.
C.J. and Nana started with  Mock Smock fabric that comes smocked at the top and pre-finished at the top and bottom.  C.J. paired it with pink glitter spandex leggings.
C.J. and Nana started with Mock Smock fabric that comes smocked at the top and pre-finished at the top and bottom. C.J. paired it with pink glitter spandex leggings.
Draping the fabric and pinning the flower and fringe.
Draping the fabric and pinning the flower and fringe.
Nana pinning the back per  his instructions.
Nana pinning the back per his instructions.
Making decisions.
Making decisions.
Nana tied the back so that it would be no-sew.
Nana tied the back so that it would be no-sew.
Teamwork.
Teamwork.
Working it.
Strike a pose. Vogue.
All smiles.
All smiles.