Photos at last.

I promised photos from June, but decided to just include those in with the more current ones. I’ve been creating items for my craft business as fast as I can (considering I’ve had two surgeries in two months) and I’m happy with what’s been completed so far. One of my favorite things is what I like to call “Felt Peeps,” because that’s what everyone thinks they look like. I’ve made literally dozens of them and will probably do more, because they are handmade from start to finish and I can completely make one sitting in my recliner, from the tracing and cutting, to the stuffing and stitching. They are totally hand stitched from high quality wool blend felt (not the acrylic craft stuff.)

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This simple little rag-type doll will be dressed in jumper, apron, pantaloons, bonnet and shoes and I plan to make quite a few of them in different hair and eye colors.

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She’s about 12″ tall and has embroidered facial details and yarn hair.

The smaller version of this doll, which is meant to be “her” doll, but will actually be sold as a separate item is here.

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And for scale:

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She’s only a bit less than 4″ tall and entirely hand made and painted. She will also have a dress, apron, pantaloons and bonnet. I can’t wait to make these tiny clothes!

Here’s just a small sampling of the tiny felt folk I intend to make.

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For scale:

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These are made from pipe cleaners, embroidery floss, wool felt, wool roving (for hair), hand painted (by me) wooden beads and real acorn caps for caps. The skirts and wings are from deconstructed silk flowers. I plan to make lots of fairies of various sizes, plus family groups of “regular” people, as well as a king, queen, princess, wizard, etc. These are very detailed, but fun when I’m in the proper mood. They are made in stages, so I do maybe 8-10 at a time and work a rather slow assembly line process.

I don’t see these as children’s toys, because of their delicate nature, but more as collectibles.

And last, but not least, and probably my favorite up to this point, are my Baby Dumplings. Approximately 10″ tall and made from flannelette, poly stretch knit, and craft fur, the faces are hand painted and needle sculpted for a more realistic shape. I love these sweet babies and made (and sold) dozens of them years ago. I hope they sell well, because they are a joy for me to make. They are toys, but probably for the 3 years and up set, due to noses and ribbons possibly being able to be removed by a rough toddler.

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I think the back is almost as cute as the front:

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Well, there’s a sneak peak at my progress, as it stands. I obviously have lots more to do and haven’t even begun clothing the poor little naked ones, but I’ve made a tiny drop in a big bucket for my future business. I’m loving it all.

I haven’t begun my “main attraction,” which will be my Waldorf dolls, and I’m still tweaking my paper doll, which is based on the Waldorf dolls. I also plan to do some clothespin dolls, if time permits, so I will have some more small, inexpensive items. And then, there are the American Girl doll clothes, too.

I haven’t pictured them here, but I also have made a ton of fabric Easter eggs. My first show is just a few weeks before Easter next year, so I’m thinking the eggs and the felt chicks will do well as moms are shopping for tiny things to add to Easter baskets. I can proudly proclaim that mine or sugar free, fat free and gluten free 😉

Apologies!

It’s been awhile since I posted, and actually, I had a post ready to go in late May-Early June, but it needed photos; I saved it in draft form and then forgot about it…and never took the photos 😦 I’m so embarrassed.

Life has taken some crazy turns since mid-June…breast cancer (caught early and I’m going to be fine!) and the decision to go ahead and retire. I had planned on working till the end of the year, but knowing what I was going to have to deal with (surgery and radiation) caused me to rethink the whole thing. I’m lucky to have worked for a state agency that allows me to keep my insurance as a retiree. As I’m not 65 yet, Medicare is not an option, so this was an absolute necessity. So I retired as of Aug 1, but actually left my job two weeks before that to have surgery.

I have most of the surgery behind me (they do have to go back in a remove a tiny bit more) and still have the radiation to deal with. Probably 5 times a week for 6 weeks. Yuk, I know, right? But I don’t have to lose a breast (or my hair) and I don’t have to lose my life, so I’m not complaining. Just dealing with it and moving on.

The good news is that I’m already up to my ears in doing what I love, which is making things with fabric, stuffing, thread, yarn, ribbons, etc.–especially dolls. I am stocking up on inventory in preparation for my first craft show, which will be next February. It’s a big one–Friday night through Sunday afternoon–so I have to really have a lot to sell. I probably need enough to fill my tables and then have some in reserve to re-stock if supplies dwindle. This is daunting in itself, but not knowing what will sell well and what won’t is the hard part. The last craft show I checked on had NO dolls being sold, so I think I have a niche, but how much?

My plan is to make a lot of small, inexpensive things, that I can easily restock, a little less of the mid-priced, mid-sized, things and just a few of the larger items. My Waldorf dolls will be the least in number, but I plan to take custom orders for these, so I just need to have maybe a half-dozen for display.

American girl doll clothes are something I can stock up on and I know they’re popular, but how many other people will be selling them? Ah, there’s the rub.

And then there are all sorts of other things to be considered….table covers, signage, pricing tags, display containers (racks, shelves, baskets, suitcases.) It’s a lot to decide and do, but now that I’m not having to deal with “work” my mind is free to play with all of this, and find bargains, too.

So, even though it’s in reverse order, I will probably get those photos taken that were supposed to go with my LAST post (ahem) and get it up here very soon. And then I will wait a couple of weeks and get photos of my more recent stuff and update everyone.

OH! I almost forgot….I probably will….at some point in the next few months…be moving my blog to a Weebly-hosted site. It’s rather inexpensive for an account that will allow me to sell my items online, as well as continue to blog. It seems easier (cheaper) and more cohesive than Etsy and search engines will still be able to access it. A fellow entrepreneur has her own site and blog there, and it looks like a good plan. Cheap and easy, what more could I ask?

So look for further updates to all of this soon, along with photos! I’m well and doing what I’ve been waiting for 30 years to do.