Inspire Yourself

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The Creativity Club assignment for January was to quote yourself – to listen to what I’ve been thinking and pull something out of that, and then to write it down (or make it somehow), in some lovely way. I thought of so many things over the week, but as it turns out, they were all to do with,

just being okay – with right now, with saying no, with ending things that aren’t working, with the idea of adding more time.

But the one up top there, that’s what I couldn’t get out of my head. It came from a conversation with a friend a few weeks and in what felt like a sort of confession I said, ‘I’m good at being busy, but I don’t think I like it.’

I’ve always done well being in multiple activities with scheduled days, lots to do, and eventually I started taking on other people’s busy-ness too. Then I had kids and that added more to balance. And now, I’m starting to realize the importance of shutting most of it down, of only saying yes when I am so excited about something, of systems that can give me more time, and taking the time back for me. I don’t want it to feel like there are too few hours in the day, and I am Done telling people or feeling like I am too busy…

And so, it seems this assignment became something a bit more for me. I love that.

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Shop Is Open!

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Hello! I feel like I’ve been waiting (and working) for ages to be able to say this, but my shop has re-opened! I want to spend more time this year making sure that the dolls are consistently available online, so I am happy to have reached my January goal of getting all these little beasties out there. I am in love with so many of the new fabrics and can’t wait for you to hold them in person!

Here’s how it’s going to work…most of the dolls available in the shop are made to order in limited numbers. I want to be able to provide a great product that I have worked hard to design and create, but I also want to be able to change up the variety of animals if I can no longer access that fabric, or if my creative curiosity nudges me to move on to a different design or animal. So there will likely be animals ‘retiring’ and new versions that pop up throughout the year.

Another thing that’s different is the clothing, which will now be purchased separately from the dolls. Even though I know that the clothes are charming, I also know that when gifting to a baby, or even just to a kid who loves to take the clothes off and they are never seen again, well, I wanted the dolls to stand alone too. So the choice is yours! If you don’t see the kind of outfit you are looking for in the shop – just send me a message through etsy or by email (boolahb@gmail.com), and we’ll work it out.

So a big yay for all this! You can head over to the shop by clicking on the link over on the right, or with this link here.

As always, thank you so so much for your support!

Creativity Club and KCW

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Exciting news from over at Elsie Marley, because I love it when people run with an idea and get others involved. Especially when that idea involves making, at it’s best and worst and for no other reason than just making. Plus, admit it, we all want to belong to a club. See my button over there on the side? I’m totally in the club. You should be too, because of peer pressure.

Also! Kid’s Clothes Week is starting up again at the beginning of February – I am hoping to participate in some way, and you should too, because again, peer pressure. And because making kid’s clothes out of clothes you already have is one less step than the step where you let yourself loose in the fabric store…

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Have a good one!

A Few Craft Books to Enjoy

We have a certain library here with a really great selection of art and craft books – and every time I get there I come home with a big stack. I am not always into the project part of most craft books, but more often than not they are lovely to look at and provide lots of inspiration. These are a few of my recent favorites…

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How To Make Stuffed Animals

I have seen so many people in the plush world lately making the type of animal that is outlined in this book – not exact copies (okay, sometimes they are exact copies), but smaller felt animals made in this style. It’s not something I had ever tried, and after having the book around for a while I decided to make the bulldog for a secret santa gift…

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This was it in the end, and I really loved how it turned out. But, it was made with a bit of struggle. It’s funny, when I went to do a google image search of the book for this post, I came across one of Abby’s reviews of this same book from years ago. She sums up pretty much everything I felt about the book, especially the parts about the pattern pieces needing to be enlarged (riiight, I have no way of doing that at my studio, so I ended up taking measurements and drafting a new pattern, not very convenient), and also the splaying of the legs, which, even with pretty stiff wool felt I had to go back in and fix. But besides those little troubles, I think most of the animals are very cute and would be a good place to start if you are wanting to join the above mentioned club of tiny felt animal makers.

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{images via Billygrrrl.com}

Make Your Own Cute and Easy Pompoms

We all love a good translated Japanese craft book around here, right? Just like everyone else seems to say about this book, I really hadn’t thought that much about pom poms before. I mean, I love them, obviously, but that you can make patterns within them? Mind blown.

And for a bit more cute felt…

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Stitched Safari

I can just barely look at this book it’s so damn cute. I didn’t get a chance to try out any of the projects, but I would really love to get a copy for myself to work from. The animals are all hand stitched, so it would likely be a bit more of a time consuming personal project for me, but it also seems like you would have a lot more control over the finished product this way. My little guy was asking me for days about making him that little rabbit. Gaaah!

I would love to hear any recommendations you have for must-see craft books!

*This post was in no way sponsored, but here’s another shout out to the local library!

Many Weeks In Photos

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The weeks before and after Christmas, they were bits of creating here and there and last minute getting together of gifts. They were made up Christmas trees and made up traditions and late bedtimes. They were spent inside around food and outside around snow – spent with family and some precious moments alone. Both stressful and carefree, getting us to the end of the year. And now I can’t think or read or write fast enough about everything that I want this next year to be, it feels good to be at the start again.

Happy New Year~