I love babies. I love little children. Sometimes its easy to forget that they are experiencing everything for the first time with eyes of wonder.
Sometimes if I'm working on a doll wondering if she is going to come out like the idea I had in my head, my daughter, Livia or my little Silas will walk by and with a voice fraught with excitement, will say "Oh mommy, she is so pretty" or "I like your baby, momma" and suddenly it doesn't matter if she comes out like the picture I had in my head.
I made a few dolls for my children and they loved them, bless their hearts. They have played with them and drug them hither, thither and yonder.
My husband is the type of husband that while he encourages me in every way as a mother and home maker he likes for me to have a little bit of industry. For several years I sold tamales on Saturdays at a local farmers market. That was a lot of fun. I met lots of interesting folks and made a some extra money. For different reasons, farmers market became not doable anymore and I was looking for something different to do.
I had been learning to knit and could already sew and somehow or another I got the idea in my head to open an Etsy store to sell dolls and doll clothes. I still remember the feeling of selling my first item....
I sold another doll outfit and was super excited. Then I sold my first doll.
This is Gracie and I've made her two more times....excepting that I find it literally impossible to make an exact replica of a handmade doll. Once she had brown hair and flew with her grandma to Japan to meet a sweet little girl.
Gracie the Brown
And once she was supposed to be a totally different doll with curly hair but on looking through my sold orders on Etsy, the Little Miss decided she wanted a doll like Gracie and I didn't mind because Gracie the First is my most favorite doll ever.
Gracie the Third
I took off most of 2010 off. My husband was gone for a total of 6 months working with the BP Oil Spill way down south in Louisiana. During that time my oldest daughter met a wonderful man and within a 6 month span was courted, fell in love, got engaged and was married in January of 2011. They are now expecting their first baby in February of 2012 and I can hardly wait.
Back in February I was itching to get back into doll making so I started with a new dolly, Missy.
Since starting back to doll making I've sold 13 dolls and many doll outfits. I'm not looking to be a huge business. My dolls are made by me using my hands, sewing machine, crochet hook and knitting needles. I can't mass produce dolls and have no desire too. I enjoy the process of making a doll. If I felt I had to make a bunch or in a manner of speaking "keep up with the Jones" doll making wouldn't be any fun.
There is a verse in the bible that reads: 1 Thessalonians 4:11 And that ye study to be quiet, and to do your own business, and to work with your own hands , as we commanded you;
I think of this verse when making dolls and when working around the house. I've often quoted it to my children who, at times have been too chatty or rambunctious during our work times.
I felt a bit melancholy today. When I first started making dolls I had no idea there could be contention, hurt feelings, accusations and in general, plain ill will in the doll community. Actually, I had no idea there was a doll community. I was ignorant and it was bliss. I'd been making dollies, expecting little girls and boys to play with them till they were dirty and worn from lots of love and fun.
I think my fellow doll maker Little Jenny Wren said it best when she said in this blog post...
...thinking about how very strange this on line world can be
and that it is so much better to live most of your life in the real world and make real things
than live in a virtual world and not make much at all.