Bed book peek: North Africa (part 3)

This is the third post about the North African illustration for my new children’s book. To see more, click the links for Part 1 and Part 2 in the series. The scene will be included in My Bed, which will be a book about where children sleep around the world, with each spread depicting a different culture and living environment. The story is written by Rebecca Bond and will be published by HoughtonMifflin in 2020. Here are links to posts showing other finished illustrations for the book:
South America, JapanIndiaAfghanistanRussia. and Iran.
To see a list of all my books, click here.

After constructing the houses with felt, wire and clay beads, and stitching the landscaping, I made this child to sleep on the rooftop terrace. With the exception of the fingers and toes, she is made the same way as the dolls in my how-to book Felt Wee Folk – New Adventures. Her bare feet are similar to the hands, but it’s a bit more tricky to make them look natural. (Sorry, the hand and feet technique is proprietary.)

Hair styling with thread brings out their individuality.

Her nightie is made from an old monogrammed hankie that was part of a relative’s trousseaux. I took advantage of its white edging while cutting out pieces of fabric for the garment.

Here she is, settling down for a cool night’s sleep on the roof deck.

I made my first palm tree for this scene, which required some photo research.

The tree trunk texture was fun to replicate with lots of fly stitches. I played around with light and dark colors to give it definition and dimension.

To give the right appearance at the top, just below where the palm fronds fan out, I sewed a clump of glass leaf beads.

And then there was the really fun part, when I got to use variegated silk ribbon thread! It’s one the few new needlework products I actually buy. I really like the selection of straw silk from Silk Road Fibers.

A felt moon appeared from behind the leaves.

and started to shine with the addition of some metallic thread.

So, that’s it for this illustration. I’m working hard to complete the whole book by next winter’s deadline and will be sharing more scenes in the coming months.

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14 thoughts on “Bed book peek: North Africa (part 3)

  1. I look forward to these posts so much! I hope that the next time I visit our son I’m NH, there will be an exhibit somewhere near you so that I can see some of your work in person! Absolutely breathtaking details and such skill with the needle! Reworked Vintage pieces from your stash make it all so fun!

  2. Thanks for sharing! Love your work. I have your books and both wee folk instructional books. Can I sell dolls if you are given credit?

    • Hi Ellen, Thank you Ellen for asking for permission to sell dolls made from my instructions and patterns. The question is a tricky one and my answer may not be clear and satisfactory. My policy is to allow the selling of dolls based on my designs, if the profits go to charity. There are sellers on Etsy, etc. who make obvious knock offs who have never contacted me. There’s quite a variety of copies out there, with the only consolation being that many of the dolls are poorly made, making them hard to sell. I cannot give outright permission because I don’t want people to think anyone can make and sell them. The situation has gotten out of hand to the point where I am grateful if people give credit. I hope this helps, even with the ambiguity.

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