I am a doll maker.

22 Oct 2011

me and my mum, taken by a street photographer, around 1960/61

When I was a little girl, way back in the 60s,
 I learned to knit at my mother's knee,
 I learned to sew on her old Singer Featherweight,
 I played with my dolls,
 I played in the bushland around my home with our gang.
I enjoyed the rituals  of a Tasmanian 60s childhood with Cracker night in May,
Sunday school picnics,
 long summer days spent at the Basin,
winters of wood fires, woollie jumpers and Disneyland on the TV on Sunday nights.

family portraits 1964

I have always, always made things with my hands and usually with a needle of some sort.
 I have knitted and sewn my way through my life.
With the birth of my third child, my only daughter I found my way to
Waldorf doll making using natural fibres;
 wool stuffing, cotton knit skin, a simple embroidered face, woollen hair
and clothes much like the clothes I wore all those years ago in Tasmania in the 1960s.

me and my little sister 1964

From that first doll I knew I had found my bliss,
found something to make that not only gave me great joy
 but that could be loved, enjoyed and importantly used.
It was and still is important to me that what I make is practical and useful
as well as beautiful to look at, hold and touch.

little Hollie and sweet Julia

Each doll I make comes from my imagination.
 Every element of the doll is made by my own hands from the best materials I can find.

Each doll goes from me to their new home with the warmth and energy of my spirit.
Handmade creations always carry something of their maker with them.
Knowing that the more than 300 dolls I have made have gone on to share
 good times and bad with their new owners,
that they have become a part of someone else's childhood
completes the circle for me.
 The wonderful loving childhood that I enjoyed,
 that made me what I am and gave me the skills and imagination
 I need to make these dear sweet dolls
 is being infused in some way
into the lives of those who choose to give one of my dolls a home.

I love that, I do.

Tina the toadstool sprite

9 Responses to “I am a doll maker.”

  1. Nagyon szép történet volt, köszönöm :)

  2. love that you do too! Alison B

  3. So many of those mid-century childhoods were so special, I share that with you sweet Jenny.

  4. What a sweet post! I too, had a wonderful childhood. Mine was during the late 60s & early 70s, but was similar. I wish all children could have a childhood like our's. Things are definitely different now.
    Your dolls are awesome and we can see the love you put into each one. It's very visible. You heard your calling and you answered it. :o)

  5. What a lovely post to read - thank you for sharing!

  6. Wonderful post. You and your dolls have inspired me over the last couple of years to make my own dolls, and I've taken steps to do just that, steps so small that most people would find it laughable. The next time I manage to take another step, maybe it will make for enough news to write a blog post about it, and I'll send you a link. In the meantime, I have your lovelies to look at. Thank you!!

  7. How wonderfully said and shared Jenny. you paint such a vivid picture for us to enjoy. Thankyou for sharing your words and talent.

  8. Very sweet post indeed.
    I remember Disney on Sunday evenings and Wild Kingdom too. I have several memories attached to those Sunday evenings.

  9. loved your story! I think you are also a story teller!
    Thank you.


Thanks so much for taking the time to chat. I don't always have time to reply but I do read every message you leave.