|Beautiful white dress and photo of dolls in background wearing dresses using the same material|
Last year's birthday gift from me to me will be a year old in June. Smiling Debbie (Smilling Debbie) arrived a couple of weeks after last year's birthday. She made her first appearance on the blog here.
Smiling Debbie has been redressed a few times but has not enjoyed a redress since the Christmas season of 2013. I recently shared photos with fellow collectors and made a note during the share that she was long overdue for a redress.
This past Wednesday, which was my birthday, I visited the post office to retrieve mail and was pleasantly surprised by a package. The contents consisted of a letter, a photograph, a gorgeous white dress sewn from the most beautiful ribbon-accented fabric, a length of yellow ribbon as an extra sash, and a pair of white lace anklet.
|Dress with blue sash, white lace anklets, and photo of two of Betty Ativie's dolls|
The package was from doll friend, Betty Ativie, who made the dress without the use of a store-bought pattern. Her letter indicated she made dresses from the same material for her favorite doll, Leleti (by Annette Himstedt) and Janelle (a Lorna Miller Sands creation) and had enough fabric left to make one more. The dress I received was the additional dress. Betty ended her letter by writing, "I hope you will enjoy this 'Just Because' gift."
I read the letter while seated in my car on the post office parking lot. After admiring the dress, I immediately knew who would be the lucky recipient. So I rushed home to "play dolls." What a perfect way to spend the afternoon of the anniversary of my birth.
After Smiling Debbie's redress, I telephoned Betty to thank her for her kindness. She had no idea that day was my birthday. We were both fascinated by the coincidence of her making the dress and it arriving when it did. We both agreed the act was inspired by God. She said, "He wanted you to have that dress!"
Since Smiling Debbie did not have shoes to complement her new dress, I traced her barefoot on a piece of card stock to create a pattern before going shoe shopping later that day.
|Tracing of Smiling Debbie's foot, which was used to measure shoes for her extra wide feet.|
At the store, the tracing served as the doll's foot. I was able to insert the tracing inside shoes to ensure a proper fit. I already knew she would require a toddler size 6, but due to the width of her foot, unless the shoe is a wide cut, not any size 6 will fit. I found white ballerina style shoes at Marshall's. A day later, I purchased an extra pair of infant's lace ankle socks.
After the redress, Smiling Debbie took the following photos to share.
|A grosgrain ribbon rose accents the toe of Smiling Debbie's new shoes. She holds the anklets Betty sent, which are too small for her.|
|She models her new dress, shoes, and anklets while holding Anisha by Heidi Plusczok.|
|The yellow ribbon sash prompted an exchange in doll companions from Anisha to Jamilla by Wendy Lawton.|
|The final photograph was taken outside with a brown bear companion who has lost one of his yellow slippers somewhere in the doll room.|
Thank you again, Betty for your thoughtful generosity and for brightening my day. Smiling Debbie thanks you, too!