I'm sitting at the desk which doubles as a writing and sewing table on the first Sunday of Spring, gearing up to re-organize my sewing room, which has almost become a storage room. It's gotten so cluttered, that if I don't do something, I won't be able to concentrate on dolls or blogs or anything else other than the stuff behind me. (There is something to be said for feng shui!)
Since the holidays, I've been busy with my day job and have had to put sewing and doll making aside. But recently, some time has opened up and I'm anxious to start working on the ballet dolls.
A few weeks ago, I stumbled upon a Youtube clip of Mikhail Baryshnikov and Natalia
Marakarova dancing to Chopin's mazurkas, played by Jerry Zimmerman, circa 1977.
It was so charming, not to mention breathtakingly athletic and beautiful, the way only ballet can sometimes be, that I've watched it at least ten times and never get tired of the music or the dancers. (How wonderful to find something so alive from the past brought into the present!)
It seems daunting to even attempt to make a ballet doll after watching real dancers such as these. My original inspiration for the ballet dolls is a pastel by Miriam Boroff, an artist who lived across the street when we moved here thirty years ago, then moved away. Sadly, she died last year at age 99 in San Diego.
The pastel of these two young ballerinas hangs below the window above my sewing table, where I see them every time I sit down to sew. The doll head here is the first face I have hand drawn with markers, rather than embroidering and it's rough copy of the ballerina's face on the left. I now see that I'll have to make red braids to wind into buns on each side of her head.
Well, the sun is shining and the trees have burst into bloom outside my sewing room windows. So I'll roll up my sleeves and begin. Later, after a walk, I plan to make a fresh start on the dolls, with a clean, organized room behind me.
Have a great week And go see some ballet!