|Polly's Snowshoe Valentine Messenger|
Snowshoes have been around for centuries. Native cultures developed a bentwood frame with cross-hatching to deter snow build-up, in a large shoe that would evenly distribute body weight to cross snow covered terrain easily. Snowshoes were an essential piece of equipment for fur traders and trappers, or anyone who needed to get around in deep, frequent snowfall. Hitty had something in common with traditional snowshoes as both she and they were made from the hard wood, white ash!
While recreational use of snowshoes began with snowshoe clubs in Quebec, Canada (who held events where races and hikes were combined with fine food and drink), the manufacture of snowshoes for recreational purposes really began in the late 19th century, when serious recreational use became more widespread. And, Polly, ever stylish and contemporary, played in them in the 1920's.
|Even Cupid Snowshoes|
The Melton wool, double breasted sport coat is lined in off white Shantung silk. It lines wool so beautifully, and makes a nice rustle when Polly "shoes" across the snow. The tassels on the ends of her belt and stocking cap are made from pretty wool yarn.
Two things come to mind immediately when discussing this design of this coat set. One is the cap sleeve epaulets, and to my surprise, the sleeves. The sleeves were quite a surprise to me when once again I studied the illustration. In discovering that the bands did not go all the way around, but were set in a seam of their own, the epaulet problem was resolved. Let me try to explain.
|Underneath It All|
After the belt, and cap were made, I decided Polly needed leggings rather than white stockings. If you've ever been snowshoeing or cross-country skiing, you'll know that her little legs would have been red and chapped with chill simply wearing stockings. Her little mittens must be one of my favorite pieces about this set. The thickness of the fleece stretched over her hands to an exact, snug fit!
|Handmade Valentines To Mail|
With the snowshoes, I had these from a purchase made last year when I first attempted the project. I wanted to make a band or wrap that she could slip the toe of her boot into that would hold its shape and her foot. After removing the original leather straps with an Exacto knife and tweezers, I made two top half portions of shoe slippers. I gathered the edges, sewed the ends together, then sewed this piece to the center of the snowshoe. NO GLUE!!! Much more authentic, and everyone knows glue disintegrates when wet with snow!
|Our Cute Little Polly|
Towards the end of this project, I was beginning to work on a Valentine Postcard Outfit for Daisy. This is when it occurred to me that Polly might need a handmade Valentine to hold. And, of course, that spun into a full set of mini, handmade valentines and a satchel to carry them to the mailbox in. She became Polly's Snowshoe Valentine Messenger!
I'm tickled to pieces with this set and its not only a great sporting outfit for winter, but a darling costume to wear for Valentine's Day. My work table is still an explosion of red and white valentine fabric, but off to one side is an array of greens and shamrock prints.
Don't let the deep snow keep you indoors! Strap on a pair of snowshoes and go! Its a blast and a great way to enjoy the beauty of winter.
Miss E. Mouse
|Edwardian Sporting - Snowshoes On Back|
|Two Little Snowshoers|
|I have to make this for Daisy!!!!|
|Snowshoe Into the New Year|
|I love this one - Take me there! The Sierra looks like this where I cross-country ski.|
|A Valentine Snowshoer|
|Another coat with the epaulets. Does Polly need a second one?|
|To Thee From Me|
|Off She Goes!|