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Maker Mayhem #2

Granny and Shady Lady: When “craft” crosses the line.

If you’ve reached the point where you’re buying press-on fingernails and fake eyelashes and full-sized adult nylon wigs to glue onto life-size human figures made of old queen-size support pantyhose, you’ve slid way past the realm of “craft project” and crossed the threshold into some kind of personal hell for which there is probably a psychiatric diagnosis—and no return.

This horror show from 1982 is arguably the lowest point of a very dark but fortunately short-lived period in which pantyhose were considered a viable crafting medium. And clearly, the world of pantyhose crafts was one without boundaries, as evidenced by “Granny and Shady Lady.”

There are so many questions worth asking here, the first being the obvious: Why? Is there a need being met or a purpose being served for the Maker? And why—of all the characters one could build from pantyhose and polyester fiberfill—did the creator of this project decide on an old lady and what we can safely assume is a woman who has sex for money? There are also the burning questions about their relationship and the missing backstory. Mother and daughter? Madam and whore? Are they both whores? Are we supposed to be in Amsterdam? Are these figures fully functional?

It’s only when you read through all seventy-nine steps of this project that you really get a sense of what a truly sick journey this is: the days spent stuffing support hose and shaping arms and feet and torsos and stitching eye sockets and ears, working through bits of instruction like “force the rod into the cavity in the center of the head (Figure K),” and what about the steps this how-to never covers? Like the time you’ll have to spend shopping for Granny’s housedress and her granny boots or slippers, and a slutty little number for Shady Lady. Their wigs and their fingernails. Their panties. The instructions say to “make up the face exactly as you would your own,” and even suggest using real eyebrow pencil. The instructions also refer to these ladies in quotes: “ladies,” as if they weren’t born female. Dubious.

The caption of this photo tells us that by seating them in your living room, Granny and Shady Lady “may possibly scare off uninvited guests.” I’m pretty sure this hot mess would do a pretty great job of scaring off invited guests too, and possibly everybody else in your life as well because what kind of disturbed freak would want to fabricate an old lady and a blonde prostitute out of queen-sized support pantyhose and ensconce them in their living room like big throw pillows? How fast would you run for the exit if you walked into the home of someone you just started dating and saw these? This is cock block of the highest order.

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