I had long, skinny children.
Who always outgrew their clothes in length, far before said clothes fit them in width.
As they grew, fitting them got to be a greater and greater problem.
Did you know that few companies, back when my babies were growing, created clothing for children who look like they have been shaped in a taffy-puller?
Or on the torturer’s rack.
Well, it’s true.
And, by the way, shaping children in either of those methods is illegal.
Just thought I’d point that out.
So . . . long, skinny children . . .
Ever try to find pants to fit a 28 inch waist and a 38 inch inseam?
I did what any desperate and decidedly broke mom would do. I started making my children’s clothes.
All of their clothes.
Shirts, pants, shorts, dresses, skirts, blouses.
I even took a short course in making 5-pocket blue jeans and made them.
Rivets and all.
I made so many and got so proficient that I stopped even needing instructions and could whip up a pair – from cutting to trying on the finished article – in less than two hours.
I had even been known to make them in my sleep.
Of course they didn’t look quite the same.
But I digress . . .
One thing I discovered with blue jeans was the fact that you are fairly limited in things you can do to make them . . . remark-able.
Oh, you can sew trim into the outer seams.
And use different colours of thread.
But probably the most noticeable of TYCD (things you can do) is to mess with the back pockets.
And yes, I went there.
I embroidered many things on my kids’ back pockets.
Then I got the wild idea of using their initials.
Only they didn’t always agree.
For example, Erik refused to wear his jeans embossed with the giant letters ‘E’ and ‘T’ on his back side.
I don’t know what his problem was. I thought it would be cute to be called ‘ET’.
Finally, in an attempt at mollification, I added a ‘B’, for his middle name of ‘Blair’.
I then used the same idea for his next younger brother’s jeans. Robin Duff Tolley. What could be better than ‘RDT’?
He thought it was great.
Until his father asked what the ‘RDT’ stood for. “Rabbit, duck, turtle?”
“Nooo! Robin Duff Tolley!”
Yeah. Those pockets had to come right off.
I replaced them with something a little less controversial.
But the name remained. From then on, our Duff was known as Rabbitduckturtle.
Have you ever heard of the consequences of labelling a child?
Well, the stories are true.