how not to make a mouse costume

I am trying to make mouse costumes for the church pageant tomorrow (ears and a nose) and instead, it looks like Penis Face. Merry Christmas, baby Jesus. images

I would never normally volunteer to make costumes, sewing is not my strong suit. However, one of our kids was cast as a mouse and they didn’t have a costume in storage. This child was traveling with the other parent, missed a rehearsal, wants to quit. It’s discouraging for a tween to be cast as a rodent with a nest of squeaky children who are five and under. It does not bolster one to call them the “cool ring leader” mouse. And it likely doesn’t help that the other got cast as a camel. Not only is it an entirely appropriate nativity ungulate, it’s a lead role and it comes with a costume.

I am determined to make a mouse costume that is “cool”. I head into Michael’s Crafts and pick out my materials, piecing together a design as I stroll down the aisles. I am starting to think I am a genius. I giggle to myself with glee. Oh the child is going to be relieved!

I get home and arrange all my lovely things on the table in such a visually appealing order, it is Martha worthy. I have enough materials to make several mouse costumes! I phone up the pageant organizer and elect to make one for the other mouse with a speaking part, a girl of five.

Nora watches as I wrap faux fur around a cone to make a nose. It looks like a nose. It looks adorable. I could do this for a side job. I could go Etsy. I attach whiskers and a pom pom end and decide to make two little round puffy cheeks to hang under the nose. I attach these to a toque with ears and…

Penis face with balls. And it reeks of glue so badly, any child will get high sniffing this for five seconds. It’s late now, Nora assures me, “Mom…it’s a little weird…but it’s fine. It’s really nice of you to try.” And she goes to bed. I text my Fellow a picture of the penis face. He writes back, “It looks great.” Liar. Look how quickly my loved ones have learned to dance around my fragile ego. He offers, “And we could always just put a black dot on the end of the kid’s nose…” Why didn’t I think of that? So easy. Five seconds. No, I had to construct a superciliary over a nasal cavity with mystacial.

I throw the mouse parts outside to let the glue gas fume out and wish a raccoon on the bits. Then I crack open one of Fellow’s beers (I never drink beer) and watch Marco Polo until I can’t stand the male posturing any more and head to bed.

In the morning I look over my puff balls and fur and thread. I go into the kitchen and whip up a nice frittata to boost my self confidence as a home maker.IMG_2698

I decide to tackle it all again. Luckily I have the little girl mouse costume as a prototype before I begin on the child’s. Not that one child is more important than the other…I snip and I sew and I trim and I fuss and I needle and I discard and I start again. I watch a youtube video on how to make a perfect bow and after watching it twenty times trying to figure out what “…and just tuck it under and through-” means. I finally say “F it” and suffice with a wobbly pink bow. I pull the toque, ears and nose on Nora a million times while she plays Cool Math on line. Patience. Patience. Patience my little mouse. Rome and rodent weren’t built in a day.

Four hours and fifty five dollars spent on something that might not get worn. I could have bought a new beret and watched a double matinee with a fancy coffee. But that’s parenting, isn’t it? I think even kids can tell you love enough to try.

Finally, after several adjustments…I get it kinda right.


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