Leonard Cohen had his famous blue raincoat, Acacia had her famous purple butterfly dress which was also torn at the shoulder and generally tatty after being worn day in and day out for over a year. She even slept with it next to her like some kids have a favourite soft toy. Unlike the tale of angst of the famous blue raincoat, the butterfly dress bore only happy, sunny memories. The butterfly dress was bought in Edinburgh when Mum visited her sister Carmie and was impossible to replace.
Last week I knew that I had my work cut out for me, Acacia had a plan, a plan of great detail and magnitude. The butterfly dress was to be replaced. As Acacia (aged 3) does, she listed every detail; I had to buy white fabric to be painted using fabric paint with butterflies and a purple background, it had to be the same style and have red buttons at the back. At the fabric shop I tried hard to convince her to use purple fabric as the background, no luck. I was very worried that the picture in her head would not measure up to the final product and the dress would be rejected. As we worked I kept telling her that the dress would be a bit different and she must not cry if it is. She is prone to distress when things don’t go according to plan.
I found an old pattern and cut out the pieces, the fabric painting took 3 days. She, Fjord and I all worked on it. At last on Sunday I started putting the dress together and just before her bed time it was ready for her to put on. Oh the relief when I saw the expression of delight when she looked in the mirror.
“Thanks for the trouble you took from her eyes
I thought it was there for good, so I never tried”
I’m so happy that we tried and succeeded. She now calls it her magical butterfly dress. Let’s hope the next project is easier.