Halloween is in the air!
As leaves blaze and crisp air acts as a harbinger of the cold dark days ahead young and old hearts turn to the joys found in autumn days. There is however one small segment of the population who fears this time of year more than any other. I clipped a newspaper article about their dilemma many years ago and get a hoot from it every time I think about it at Halloween.
Women who work in fabric shops dread October more than any other time of the year.
Every year there is a crop of women (women of the corn?) who as mothers of young children feel it is their maternal obligation to make their children’s Halloween costumes. Like the Christmas cookie baking ritual with the kids, it is embedded in their genetic code that the kid’s Halloween costumes must be a labor-of-love made by their own hands.
As the article describes, these particular mothers who barely know how to thread a needle descend on fabric stores, purchasing patterns, mounds of not-easy–to- sew fabrics and notions in order to create the most intricate fairy princess costumes and vampire capes imaginable. Failing to create the perfect costume, they call the store desperately seeking assistance. Like airplane disaster movies, they expect the poor clerk to talk them through the pattern step-by-step over the phone. Fraught with anxiety, some moms bring their project back to the store, pile it on the counter and beg the clerks to put it together for them. The look on the clerk’s face must be priceless.
There is a simpler way. For those of us who find following pattern directions challenging or find working with specialty fabrics difficult; use your imagination. Son Robert was a Clifford the Big Red Dog fan. Safety and warmth are high priorities in making a great costume for a child. Red sweatshirt, sweatpants, knit hat, three of my long red knee socks for ears and tail, a belt with attached doo-dad, a little make-up, and voila! Clifford comes to life. A warm, safe and happy trick-or-treater ready to take the neighborhood by storm, that’s what makes Halloween great!