Saturday, September 20, 2008

Ecclesiastical Embroidery Part 2

My husband is trained to be a pastor in the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, and we're hoping someday soon that he'll be called to be a pastor. It's tricky business though because it's one of those crossings of spirituality and practicality, but I'm not going to get into it. Anyway, once he gets a called, he gets ordained which means he can officially do things like consecrate Communion and baptize people and stuff. It's pretty cool. It's a once-in-a-lifetime thing. It's a big deal. Ordained pastors are marked by wearing stoles over their white robes (albs). And so when Mike decided to trained for pastoral ministry, one of the ladies of his congregation painted him this beautiful watercolor stole. (See left.) It has the Holy Spirit coming down. It's have the flames of fire coming down on people's head. It's just amazing (if not officially liturgically correct because it's not totally red--I got over that). However, the thing I didn't get over is that it make Mike look tiny. And since he already gets the "What? Are you still in high school?" looks when he guest preaches, we don't want that. Okay, okay I don't want that.

So I did a google search and found this website on liturgical vestment making and emailed Elizabeth who has put everything together. She sent a really nice email back explaining the process and recommending her stole kit. So when I started crafting back in November, it was one of my purchases. (Yeah, I've been planning this project for years.) The stole kit sat on my desk for a very long time. I finally cut out the patterns in July and realized that I could use that pattern to get all the details of the stole. So I went on a stole hunt. Fortunately, our pastor has like 4 different types of stoles. So I traced out the shape on the one Mike liked the best and will be using that pattern for adapting the stole. Last week I finally cut out the pattern and then realized what I really need to do is make a little stencil thing so I can see how the pattern frames the design. Sigh. So that was one of my weekend projects. We took the above picture of the stole in its full glory, and then I set to ripping out the stitches. Fortunately, I had the last six episodes of Buffy the Vampire Slayer to watch. (PS Buffy the Vampire Slayer is amazing. I never saw the series finale, and it's amazing! Post coming soon.) So several hours and many passes with the steam iron later, I have the designs ready to frame.

The dove side is easy because the head is centered and small enough that it's okay to trim the sides. However, our little pentacostal people pose a problem because there is this cute kiddo with a flame on his head and he's adorable and very much needs to stay on the stole, but the original stole was curved at the neck and the pattern doesn't curve. I might not have enough seam allowance to do the set back method (which wraps the face fabric around the interfacing so the lining doesn't show). I think I can do it the normal way, but I'm slightly mourning the delay of the set-back method. However, it's assuaged by the fact that I'm currently watching Surf Ninjas.

(--We seek something money can't buy--the knives of Kwantzu. --Oh yeah, cause we all know money can't buy knives. Once I went to a cutlery store and said "Here's $100,000. Can I buy a knife?" And the store owner said, "No money can't buy knives!")

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