A Metropolitan Museum of Art Restoration…At Home.

One Year Ago, Miss Doodle 2 and I Created a Clay Sculpture Ballerina.

Inspired by Degas’ The Little Fourteen-Year-Old Dancer.

We Used a Newspaper Armature, Twig Legs, Clay, and Tulle.

 Screws Drilled into her Twig Legs Keep Her Steady.

It was a “Mom and Me” Project.  In Clay.

Our Little Dancer Was a Surprise Success.

True She is Clunky when Compared Side-by-Side to the Degas Masterpiece.

But She is Loved.

Just Lovely.

Until Binx the Terror Cat Took a Shine to the Little Dancer.

Slowly.  Steadily.  Stealthily.

Binx Ate the Tutu Skirt Right Off the Dancer.

 I would find Hair Balls Mixed with Tulle and Gold Glitter.

All Over the House.

The Ballerina Skirt was Getting Progressively Shorter.  And Raggedy.

I was Afraid The Little Dancer would Soon be History.

And Then I Watched This…

A Restoration Conducted by The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

The Met Costume Division.  Conducted by Glenn Petersen, The Met’s Costume Conservator.

The Costume Experts Took the Degas Dancer From That…To This.


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The Video is Marvelous.  So Simple to Follow.

Stunning Results.

So We Tried The Met Costume Restoration.

At Home.  As another “Mom and Me” Project.

How Hard Can It Be?

First Step was to Remove What is Left of the Tutu.

No Turning Back Now.

We were Left with a Small Pile of Tulle, Glitter and Cat Spit.

But the Dancer is Still On Her Feet and Standing.

Slowly We Exposed the Body All Around.

Taking Care Not to Snap an Arm or Break the Hands.

Jo-Ann’s Silk Tulle for the Skirt.  Soft Ballet Pink.  2 yards.  $4 Total.

I Didn’t Age the Fabric, like the Met Conservator.  I Liked the Look Straight Out of Jo-Ann’s.

Next, Gather the Waist.

Hot Glue for the Surgical Procedure.  Hope it will Hold.

Ready for the Skirt Restoration Application.  The Cat Dish is a Good Head Rest.

It Was Smooth and Fast.

A New Silk Ribbon for Her Braid.

Just like The Met, Our Skirt is Longer than the Original.

Thankfully, The Met Doesn’t Have Quite the Same Conservator Issues that We Do.

Here She Comes.   In For the Kill.

Binx Doesn’t Miss a Trick.

Lucky for Binx, Someone Loves Her.

But It’s Not the Little Dancer.  🙂

Thank You Glenn Petersen of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, NYC.

Love Your Magical Inspiration.

7 thoughts on “A Metropolitan Museum of Art Restoration…At Home.

    1. Many thanks…I’m not a huge cat lover…but I’m coming around. If I had known the real scoop on Tortoise Shell cats, I would have tried to pass on this rascal. But she does give me lots of good material…no pun intended. 🙂

      1. But tortoise shell are not all the common. Especially the ones where the three colors combine on the nose — tan, black, and white. We had a lovely one once. Her name was Stripey.

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