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Thursday, 3 May 2012

Kit review of Galt pony

Galt 'Sew a Pony' kit - aged 8 to adult

My 8 year old daughter was given this kit for her birthday. It is more complex than the felt doll she sewed for herself and she needed adult help. I decided that because there was a lot of sewing involved this was a good opportunity to start teaching her how to use a sewing machine, however, rather than teach her with the electric machine, and because she had seen an old working sewing machine at Bletchley Park the previous day, I decided my old 1920s Singer could do with some exercise and she was up for the fun.

So for the first time in about 17 years I got the old Singer going again.   There is a story attached to this machine, but I'll tell you about that in another post.
My girl setting up her sewing on the Singer machine,
notice the pattern pieces on the sheet

Sewing on the Singer machine

The machine can only stitch ordinary straight running stitch, it cannot stitch backwards or do any fancy patterns.  It needed a little adjustment and threading it was an entertainment (fortunately I had left some thread in it so I had some guidance).  It seemed to stitch fairly evenly some of the time, then was occasionally uneven, so eventually we changed to my electric machine to complete the kit.

The kit comes with the pieces ready cut, but also with the complete set of pieces printed on a sheet of brown tissue paper for you to match the pieces to it before you start sewing, and this also means you could cut out your own pieces in your own fabric if you wanted to.  The pads of the hooves are in a shiny stretchy fabric which is a little tricky to sew.  Some of the sewing she did was by hand, using back stitch, however she quickly tired of this in fabric which resisted the needle, which was another reason to use the machine.  Most of the fabric is patterned polyester cotton, easy to sew but there were many seams, a daunting task for an inexperienced sewer.

The order of stitching is fairly complex, I don't think she would have managed this kit without the help of an experienced needlewoman.  I did a fair bit of the machine sewing, simply because I could sit and reach the foot treadle, whereas she couldn't, however she still took a keen interest in helping put the pony together and helped turn parts right side out and stuff the body parts at various stages.  She is delighted with the results (she decided the embroidered nostrils weren't needed) and plays with this little pony quite a lot.  The limbs are fastened on with embroidery thread and buttons, so they sort of swivel a bit.

The completed pony with her box
It was a satisfying kit to assemble, the instructions were comprehensive and clear and the results are good.  But it definitely requires fairly experienced skills to complete.

The completed pony, called 'Emily' apparently

A new dress for Susie

While I was sewing the spring outfit for Florence I also cut out and stitched a dress from the same set of Sasha patterns for my Palitoy Susie. She has thicker arms than the Sasha dolls so I adjusted the arm openings very slightly. It was the only adjustment needed.

The fabric is material I have had for a very long time and suits her colouring well. I am knitting the raglan cardigan for her but with slightly thicker needles to fit her body and arm size better.

Susie in her new spring dress