The JOY of Frittering

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frit·ter [frit-er] VERB 1. to squander or disperse.

chittyperf1There’s an old wives tale, or perhaps it’s a folk story, of acquaintances cleaning out a recently deceased woman’s home. On her dressing table were pretty bottles of perfume, filled to the brim. In her kitchen, collecting dust there was an old unpopped bottle of champagne and in her closet there were several pretty dresses with the tags still on. I don’t recall all the details, but the moral of the tale is: Don’t wait for a special occasion to use your precious things. The special occasion is the Here and the Now.

For some reason, this story really stuck with me.

I find myself struggling with that concept daily. When I work on sewing for dolls, I am frequently working with vintage fabrics. Sometimes the pieces I find have just enough for a single dress or coat.

Or, ooh! Look at these nifty buttons! What a miracle that I have four of them! FOUR!! And I look at the little girl who is next and think, “She’s nice, but I should save this fabric (or those buttons) for someone more worthy.” It’s my natural instinct.

It will be a nightmare enough when I die. I certainly don’t want people going through my things, finding really cool fabrics and trims that I never got around to using, waiting for that perfect worthy doll.

So I use! I FRITTER! And I do it with JOY.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERATake this dress that I made for Savannah. It is a mild example of what I mean, but it fits nonetheless. I based her dress on an original from the same model of doll in a smaller size and I used this very vintage green fabric that I have less than a yard of and these cute red buttons.


OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAHer coat was made from the lining of a “London Fog” coat given to me by a friend for just such a purpose. The slithering interior sleeves were used as lining. You can’t see it in this photo, but her coat has a pretty trim encircling it which also matches the trim on her muff. The trim was a recent find from the place I affectionately call “The Crazy Lady’s Store.” I love that place! There was less than a yard and *Poof* now there are only inches of it left!

But I’ve learned that the most important doll is the one that I’m working on right that moment and no matter what their state, they are all worthy.

And in life the most important occasion is the very day that you’re in.

You can see Savannah’s adoption page HERE. I need to hire an efficiency expert to see what takes me so long, because she’s not quite finished. I have her onesie to make and more photos to take.














If I were really really good, I would have also used the cute Santa pin from the original dress and added it to my own creation. I used a sweet old Red Cross pin given to me by the Mayor of Rolfe instead.














I love that Santa pin. Clearly I haven’t mastered the concept completely yet. Room to grow!

Happy Monday!

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2 Commentsto The JOY of Frittering

  1. rhiannon says:

    Wow I totally get your sentiments. I picked up the cutest feed sack fabric and can’t bear to use it on anything yet. I was curious what year and kind of sewing machine you use. Crazy lady stores sounds so fun!

    • Ruth says:

      Use it! Do! Of course, sometimes that’s easier said than done, but I try!

      My sewing machine is a plain ol’ basic Singer that I bought at Target four or five years ago. Super basic! It has a couple of extra stitches, a scallop one and something else (besides the zigzag), but nothing special. I’ve seen them on sale for $89. It’s a good little machine!

      I’m sure whatever you choose to use your fabric on will turn out wonderfully. You do and make the neatest things EVAH!