Thanks, Abby, for inviting me here today for Flashback Friday!
I’ve been thinking a lot lately of the importance of tradition and the value of sharing something of yourself. And because it’s almost Halloween, I’ve thinking about that, too.
I made bat costumes for my son and his cousin in 2004 when they were 1.5 and 2, respectively.
The bats were simple, but exactly how I’d pictured in my head and I was ridiculously proud of them.
Three years later, my second son wore one for Halloween 2007.
Even though my sewing had improved over the past three years since I’d made it and I could see all kinds of things I’d change, it was so fun to pull it out and have it worn and loved again. It wasn’t perfect, but I had made it and I was still proud to have my child wear something I created.
Ever since I was pregnant with my first, I’ve made my children’s Halloween costumes every year. Including in utero, when I altered my maternity shirt to be a backboard complete with hoop, and the kid-filled belly as the basketball. I don’t do it to save money, as anyone who has made a homemade costume can attest that you can usually buy a cheap store bought one for half what you’ll pay in fabric and materials to make your own. Some of the costumes I’ve made over the years have been unique with no ready-to-wear alternative, but the main reason I make these costumes is because I love the tradition of it. It’s my thing. Even before I really was into sewing, and the only time I even dragged my machine out was the last week of October, I looked forward to this time of year and coming up with something new. I still look forward to it, and now my kids do, too. I love that they expect it of me now. I love that they have such confidence in my ability to recreate what their imaginations dream up. And I love how excited they get when I’m making their costume of choice, and especially when it’s finished, and they beg to wear it right away, and then to bed, and then the next day. I love being a part of their creativity and imaginations by sharing my own through sewing.
Sewing, and other creative arts, has such permanence. There are so many things that I do for my family every day that just doesn’t last. Dishes get put back in the sink dirty, laundry gets soiled and thrown back in the hamper, toys get dragged from their bins, and bums have to be wiped over and over and over. When I make something for my family and friends, it lasts. It’s a tangible piece of my love and appreciation for them in my life. It’s cheesy, but I love that about sewing for others.
And so this year, the bat costume has been dusted off and washed for another year of trick or treating, this time by my third son.