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Sewn Products

These are called Dressing Frames .  They are lessons that lie flat on the table within a wooden frame.  the frame is necessry for attractively displaying the lesson to the children and for storage.  Here is an example of different ways both of those goals can be achieved.

The panels can be removed from the frame for washing and disinfection.  They are designed specifically to allow children to teach themselves how to negotiate the difficulties of getting dressed. 

I’m showing you the buttoning exercises.   Fine motor skills are progressively developed from starting with large buttons, to exploration of adn practice with different sizes and finally the smaller buttons that a child would encounter on a typical shirt.

There are quite a few problems evidenced by this display. 

First, the problem of having production off site.  I was making these in a different location than the company and was unaware they had done the photoshoot.  My first prototypes were chosen since the better made products had been shipped to fill orders.  The crew chose the badly aligned green panel to use for the publicity shoot.  Complete communication and scheduling breakdown is glaringly evident, to me at least. 

Second, no sewing professional was onsite.  No one involved in the shoot was attune to the accuracy attainable in sewn products, perhaps directly attributable to the decline of value put in well made, well fitted clothes our culture now accepts.  Without the knowledge of good sewn craftsmanship they did not look for edges that matched up well nor threads that were well finished off.  Here was the failure of protocal in introducing a new type of material into the company.  Properly done, the photos would have been submitted to me for approval before publication.

Third, sourcing, a major problem for production!!!  The buttons I had chosen did not photograph well.  The lessons require buttons that have a ridge on the edge so that children’s fingers can grasp and insert the button into the fabric slit.  It is very difficult to find buttons in the exact sizes I need for the “Graduated Button Panel”.  Even the fabrics have become thinner and more prone to stretch over the past 3 years even though the bolts are from the same manufacturer.  I believe that I saw an immediate drop in quality right after the expiration of the quotas requiring a certain percentage of fabrics to be sourced from factories in certain underdeveloped nations.  (Georgene, do you remember the name of that initiative? legislation? world trade standard?)

Fourth, the photographer did not have the skill necessary for commerical photography nor an eye for composition and balance.  Parallex is evident and lighting is inconsistent, giving the overall impression of poor quality that reflects on the product itself.

And I won’t bore you with the simple but seemingly difficult lessons of how to keep cloth clean in a dusty environment!  Ah, growing pains!


About Mary Beth

I am fascinated by changing patterns and colored threads. I sew garments and am teaching myself to machine knit. Since selling the building that housed my workrooms, The Stitchery, I'm searching for a place to set up the knitting machines again. There must be room here somewhere!

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