Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Softies Reflections

Well, my little Woodland Girl didn't win the SewMamaSew softies contest, but the standard of entries was amazing and it was great to see some of the inspirational winners and entries! I particularly like the winner of one of the categories, Anabela Félix. Her dolls are gorgeous whimsical creations of mainly fairytales. I think they are adorable.

This is one of her dolls from her Etsy shop that I really love.

Check our her shop blita on Etsy.

I'm going to put my Woodland Girl for sale in my Etsy shop. It's hard for me to know what price to put on her as she took so much time and effort to make. I think a lot of craftspeople struggle with this question. We don't want to charge too much for our work as we want people to be able to afford it and buy it. But we also don't want to devalue our work either and take away from the time and effort it takes into creating our masterpieces. And often if we underprice our own work, we do a dis-service to other craftspeople too.

I think I have also had bad experiences at markets when people have literally said my prices are too high. This is so disheartening, especially at markets when you have often paid a good price to even have a stall! I think I have just accepted that people will buy handmade if they value handmade. My dolls, and dolls like the one above, can't compete against the mass-produced cheaply made ones sold in toy shops. But if you want something completely unique, maybe personalised and basically your own cuddly piece of art, buy a handmade one!

I've called my Woodland girl 'Willow' and here she is having adventure in our front garden. I hope someone out there will take her on an adventure of their own. She will love it, and her squirrel friend, 'Tully', just can't wait! Find her on my Etsy Shop here.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Woodland Girl - 6WeeksOfSofties Competition

I love making dolls but more importantly, I love designing and making new ones! I make a lot of dolls for my customers on Etsy and a lot of local people here where I live in Ireland. But those dolls are mainly personalised dolls for babies or superheroes! So when SewMamaSew began their '6 Weeks Of Softies' competition, I took the plunge and decided to design and make something new.

Meet my 'Woodland Girl'....
 I had some beautiful woodland forest fabrics in my fabric stash that I've been wanting to use for ages. Corduroy is one of my favourite fabrics and I had this beautiful olive green remnant from a pair of trousers I made for my oldest boy when he was about two (nearly 10 years ago!). I had also just bought some marked down brown corduroy jeans that I couldn't wait to cut up and use!
 Woodland Girl's hair is made of felt plaits to which I hand-stitched leaves I had made with freehand machine embroidery. I wanted to make her look like she belonged to the forest, and could blend in easily with the woods around her.

 As a finishing touch I hand stitched a little felt squirrel to sit in her skirt pocket. A little companion for her woodland explorations!

 Just a few pics of the details of Woodland Girl's boots, leaves and face.
I hope you like my little forest girl. I'm really pleased with how she turned out and although she was a lot of work, I loved every minute! Can't wait to design something else soon. The thing I love about making softies is that they are all so unique! I see each and every doll I make as a piece of art I have created, full of love and attention to detail. I think this is what makes handmade stuff so special, someone has not only designed it, but has put their heart and soul into making it too!