East Coast Meets West Coast: Grey Gardens and Plush You

Each fall for the past three years I’ve looked forward to making a piece for the Plus You show at Schmancy in Seattle. It’s such a fun opportunity to try puppet designs that are more ambitious than usual. The first year I tackled the “Golden Girls” and last year it was the cast of “Orange is the New Black.” This year I wanted to keep with the “strong ladies” vibe and did a set I’ve been wanting to make forever– Little Edie and Big Edie of Grey Gardens.

The Grey Gardens documentary is one of my favorite movies of all time, and those two are such incredible memorable (and confounding!) characters. The designs had a number of elements that can be tough to capture in felt– hats, scarves, strange “costumes,” as Little Edit refers to them. I’d sketched ideas for these puppets for years trying to get it just right, and it was also tough to narrow down what I wanted them to wear– Big Edie in her tube top or that crazy sun hat? Little Edie in her famous “best costume for the day” with the pants under the skirt? In the end I opted to recreate Little Edie from the flag dancing scene and Big Edie in her blue bathrobe.

Big Edie Bouvier Grey Gardens Finger PuppetLittle Edie Bouvier Grey Gardens Finger Puppet

I’m pretty happy with the results and think the essence of the Edies is there. The Plush You opening party is next Friday, October 10, so if you’re in Seattle, definitely go check them out in person.

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