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Best Old School Disneyland Souvenir

When I was a kid, my family went to Disneyland pretty often (we either lived in or near Southern California while I was growing up) and my favorite souvenir was a set of mouse ears with my name sewn on the back — in golden yellow thread, of course. If you went to Disneyland in the eighties, chances are you had a set of mouse ears as well!

From trips to Disney Parks as a parent, it’s pretty clear to me that classic mouse ears are no longer the souvenir of choice, but I’ve had my kids get a set anyway, because it’s not just the hat, it’s more about ordering the hat…

… and watching the worker at the sewing machine do their thing. I remember being fascinated watching as a kid, and I confess, I found it equally as fascinating to watch as an adult. The sewing machines are all the same, and don’t seem to have any special knobs or buttons. From what I could tell, they sew one type stitch. Period. And they’re LOUD. The seamstresses (and seamsters? is that a word?) are fast as lightning.

It looks like they’re just scribbling with the stitches, moving the hat around faster than you can imagine — I think a typical name takes like 10 seconds or less. They don’t use a guide. They don’t sketch it out with a pencil first. But when they’re done, your name will be centered on the back in elegant script. Fancy as can be. No spelling mistakes. I wish I had a video of me watching the process as a kid — I’m sure my jaw was dropped and my eyes were wide.

The memory of watching as a child was so distinct for me, that I wanted to make sure my kids got to see it too. How about you? Have you ever had your name sewn into a pair of mouse ears?

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