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  • Writer's pictureClaire Fairall

Finishing my Fairy doll, with a calm mind

Sewing up this fairy doll does not take long, there are not many pieces in her construction, but after I’d sewn her together she spent a lot of time "not quite finished", her face was fine, I liked her sweet expression, but something was just not right.

My fairy doll was not looking as I had hoped. She had lived on my work bench for a week or so, I kept picking her up and fiddling with her hair, her wings, even the pose of her arms but I was just not content with the poor little thing.

I’ve learnt over the last few years that when I start to “fight“ with a project- when feelings of discontent and irritation well up and my mind starts circling around thinking “I will get this finished and looking right if I just sit here long enough”.

Then is the time to walk away, take a break, have cup of tea in a different room or wander around the garden for a little while.

At these times I need to think of other things, because then – after I’ve had look at where to plant some new flowers or wondered whether I really ought to do a bit of housework for a change – then I gravitate back to my studio, sit at my bench with a calm mind and the ideas start to flow again.

There was a time when this process of project creation, of fight, retreat and regroup happened repeatedly, now I usually recognise the feelings of a fight looming, and so I wander off to gaze out at the garden or make yet another cup of tea.

So back to the little fairy….

On the final afternoon of Project Fairy, I’d tried out an “up do” for her, and I thought it worked reasonably well but it still was not the look I’d been imagining. I think she looks a bit more Fairy Godmother than Sugar plum!

After the double whammy of a cup of tea AND a walk around the garden, I sat and looked at her with fresh eyes. I took down her “up do “and gave her a simple hairstyle, then, and this was the big change I’d not been able to see before, I moved her skirt up to give her a high waist, so she looked more childlike.

I’d like to say Tah dah! that was the end of the story however, I’d be fibbing if I did.

I sewed on her skirt then had the simple thought of “She needs a pop of colour at her waist”

This was far easier to think of than to achieve, first I looked through my ribbon stash but didn’t have any which was thin enough, then I made a little twisted cord to tie like a sash around her waist, that didn’t look right it was too chunky.

Next, I came to conclusion that I had to go backwards to progress… I needed to knit in the coloured waist detail. I confess, I had another cup of tea and read my book for a while before I removed her skirt, ripped back 3 rows, changed yarn colour, re knitted her skirt and sewed it back in place.

And now I’m very happy to say that my Christmas Fairy doll is finished, and I love how she looks.

I think I’m going to make her some friends in other pastel colours, but for now she's happy hanging out with the Nutcracker doll- It seems a shame to go to all this effort to get her right and only have the one fairy doll at the end of it!

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