Thursday, March 6, 2008


I have a gap under my front door. Both the metal piece and the weather stripping have been missing since i moved into the apartment. Besides being unsightly, it creates a draft that blows directly onto the loveseat where i sit to watch movies, do paperwork, play games, eat or basically anything i am doing in the living room. Normally i just wrap my legs up in a blanket, but on Saturday I decided that i had had enough. Why don't you have your landlord fix it? you say. Please, service from my landlord is slower than traffic around the DC Beltway. You're pretty handy Nik; just go to Home Depot and buy the stuff to fix it yourself, you helpfully suggest. I am not spending money (even a little) on something i shouldn't have to fix; that's why i pay rent. Obviously the only solution was to make a draft guard. Yep. Make a draft guard. That sounded easy in my head. Let's remember, however, that i am not very good at sewing at all, and this thing would have to be large enough to block that gap and sewn by hand. Piece of cake, says I!
I knew it would have to be sturdy so i decided to use denim; in the fabric pile i found the remnants of an old pair of shorts. I realized it would have to stand up on its own. That would require side panels i decided (as if i had any clue how to sew in side panels) so i grabbed the leg from my favorite pair of retired purple jeans. Finally, I wanted it to be really heavy to block the stupid draft so i needed stuffing with a bit more heft than cotton batting or fiberfill (neither of which i had anyway); look at that pile of old uniform shirts. Perfect
Next for the design. Every idea i had involved some creature with legs. Let's examine that... a) that is WAY beyond my skill level; b) the idea is to be on the ground to block the draft. okay... snake? no. eel? no. really short weiner dog? no. fire demon? maybe. How about just the head of a creature, maybe some sort of door guardian? Door guardian it is! I drew a very (VERY!) basic design and got to cutting. And cutting. And sewing. And cutting. And sewing. This crap was hard, people! More cutting, more sewing, etc. Do you have any idea how long it takes to cut a polo shirt into 1 inch strips? Of course, there was no measuring in this design. I don't know enough about sewing and seam allowances (whatever they are) to need to measure.
As it started to take shape, she slowly took on her own personality. All of the exposed seams (that would be about 50%) were done in dark purple thread to contrast with the light denim. Eyes of vintage purple and AB crystal beads, cute triangular faux mother-of-pearl nose from Grandma's button box and a bright pink Sharpie smile. Of course, there had to be hair so i used 2 different fibers with purple components. Don't even ask how i got it (mostly) evenly distributed and sewn into her head seam. A little scissor action so that she could rock the bangs and we can all see her eyes and Voila - DOREEN! She's lopsided, lumpy and a bit homely. But she has bright eyes, always smiles and is perfectly capable of guarding my door and blocking that draft. Take that, ditzy landlord lady!


Kaaren said...

Doreen - Door. Ha! I did not get it until Jake said "DOOR-ene." LOL

Niki said...

Thanks for finally joining the party, Kaaren!

Melanie said...

Okay, I totally didn't get that until Kaaren's comment. Just a little slow!

Kaaren said...

See? Not just me!