Blog Tour host Mimi Kirchner

feltweefolknewcoverblogToday, doll artist and all-round versatile maker of wonderful things, Mimi Kirchner is hosting the Felt Wee Folk BLOG TOUR. The tour schedule is listed at the bottom of this post, with links to participating blogs. I invite you to follow along. There are reviews of my new book and opportunities to enter Give-aways for copies of Felt Wee Folk: New Adventures.

Mary Corbet – Needle n’ Thread kicked off the tour on Tuesday with a post featuring a beautiful curly-haired doll she made based on my book’s instructions and patterns.

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Today’s blogger, Mimi and I met more than 30 years ago through the Boston area’s art/craft community and have been friends since. Here she is in my studio, sharing a magazine spread about her tattooed dolls. I’m so glad that she’s getting this great exposure!

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You can see Mimi’s creations all over the internet and in social media, on her blog, Facebook, Instgram, Flickr and Twitter. She’s constantly updating her blog with her latest projects, from swaddled babies to burly tattooed men and a whole lot of other treasures. She sells originals, as well as patterns for making her pin cushions and a variety of dolls in her Etsy Shop. Thank you, Mimi – you’ve been an inspiration to me and so many others!

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I’ve written about a visit to Mimi Kirchner’s studio here, her pin cushions here and some of her ceramic ornaments that I bought years ago here.

Felt Wee Folk BLOG TOUR Schedule:

March 3 – Mary Corbet – Needle n’ Thread

March 6 – Mimi Kirchner – Doll 

March 10 – Margaret Bloom – We Bloom Here

March 12 – C&T Publishing’s Blog

March 13 – Kimara – Wee Folk Art

March 15 – Phoebe Wahl

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Felt Wee Folk BLOG TOUR

feltweefolknewcoverblogToday, I’m happy to announce a Blog Tour for my new book, Felt Wee Folk – New Adventures: 120 Enchanting Dolls! It’s the first time I’ve hosted one and I’m excited! For the next 2 weeks, some of my favorite bloggers will post reviews and Give-aways for a chance to win copies of Felt Wee Folk: New Adventures. By following the list at the bottom of this post, you can visit each blog, starting on their designated day, read what they have to say and enter a Give-away, if they offer one. It’s a good way to discover some new blogs worth paying attention to!

C&T Publishing has generously offered to supply books for the Give-away winners; hard copies for USA and e-books for international winners.

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To follow the tour, click the corresponding link, starting on the dates listed. Some bloggers have made dolls from the book, which they’ll be sharing in their posts. I’ve already seen pictures of an adorable pair of impish boys and another blogger has told me that she’ll be including the results of a family doll-making session!

Keep checking the list, as it will be updated with new participants during the whole month of March!

The tour kicks off with Mary Corbet – Needle n’ Thread. Tips and Trick’s & Great Resources for Hand Embroidery. Mary Corbet is an author, reviewer and all round collector of information about hand embroidery. Her site has fantastic instructional videos for learning just about every stitch. Mary writes, “I believe the world needs beauty, and embroidery is one of the most beautiful visual arts. To teach others to embroider, to inspire them to try new things with needle and thread – to me, these are worthwhile goals. I love teaching, and Needle ‘n Thread is my opportunity to teach a wider audience something that I’m really passionate about – the art of hand embroidery.”

Felt Wee Folk BLOG TOUR Schedule:

March 3 – Mary Corbet – Needle n’ Thread

March 6 – Mimi Kirchner – Doll 

March 10 – Margaret Bloom – We Bloom Here

March 12 – C&T Publishing’s Blog

March 13 – Kimara – Wee Folk Art

March 15 – Phoebe Wahl

Book Giveaway: Making Peg Dolls & More

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I am excited to be included in Margaret Bloom’s blog tour for her new how-to book, Making Peg Dolls & More: toys that spin and bring sweet dreams. This charming hard cover volume joins the author’s popular first book, Making Peg Dolls, with new projects that act as imagination boosters for children, parents and teachers. To enter a Giveaway for a copy of Making Peg Dolls and More, please follow the directions at the end of this post, just before the nifty book trailer.

51abssZ0qWLAlthough we haven’t yet met in person, Margaret Bloom and I have developed a mutually supportive online friendship. We share an interest in designing and showing how to make little play figures which are influenced by the wisdom of Waldorf Education. Our approaches are different; Margaret’s peg dolls are perfectly suited for children to make, whereas my wee folk dolls (Felt Wee Folk) require more handwork skills and are geared toward adults. Margaret’s books fill a void in the craft and toy world and I recommend both of her books to anyone who has children in their lives.

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In her new book, Margaret takes the concept of a simple peg doll to another level, introducing projects that animate the static wooden figures, sparking active creative play. The book sets the stage with a thoughtful Foreward by kindergarten teacher, Shaifa Oppenheimer, who writes, “Unlike many other sense-depriving toys, interactive screens and other products marketed to young children, which actually stand between the child and the true exploration of our beautiful green earth, this little book is an antidote and a balm.”

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The book is very well organized and written in a friendly conversational tone, like the author is personally explaining the process to you. Poetry and familiar stories linked to the peg doll characters begin each chapter, adding lively and poignant narratives to the projects.

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There are clear step-by-step directions for painting with non-toxic colors, dressing and decorating a variety of peg dolls that take the form of mobiles, tops, marionettes and other toys. She also shows how to make felt wall hanging scenes, with pockets for the peg dolls to call home. Helpful tips appear alongside the general directions and each project is clearly marked with one, two or three leaves, which indicate the skill level. The book’s simple, charming designs include just the right amount of detail to make the little figures eye-catching and engaging.

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Margaret’s Peg Doll books stand out as more than simply another series of craft how-to’s. They symbolize the reclaiming of childhood in today’s technological world and encourage the creation of toys that will be appreciated and admired long after the children are grown.

Margaret’s books are available at all of the usual online booksellers like Amazon as well as shops that also sell craft supplies for the book’s projects, such as Bella Luna Toys, A Child’s Dream Come True & Castle in the Air.

To enter the Giveaway for a copy of Making Peg Dolls & More, please leave a comment (on this post) which mentions your favorite childhood toy. The contest is worldwide and the winner will be picked at random on Feb. 15th. Here’s the book trailer:

You can follow the Blog tour and enter more book Giveaways by linking to these specially selected sites:

February 2nd :: The Crafty Crow

February 3rd :: Clean

February 4th :: Castle in the Air

February 5th :: Salley Mavor (Wee Folk Studio)

February 7th :: A Child’s Dream

February 9th :: Forest Fairy Crafts

February 10th :: Bella Luna Toys

Febraury 11th :: Ben & Birdy

February 12th :: Twig & Toadstool

February 13th :: Wee Wonderfuls

12K Rabbitat Giveaway!

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Three years ago, I commissioned a local filmmaker to make a video about my artwork. In this day and age, moving pictures, with spoken word and music seem to be one the most effective ways of communicating information. Daniel and Elise from Undercurrent Productions did such a great job putting together RABBITAT, using material they recorded in my studio and outside. The film has been an indispensable tool in helping tell the story of my artistic journey.

And, I’m happy to share the news that RABBITAT has gone beyond 12,000 views on Vimeo! To celebrate, I am offering a worldwide Giveaway. To enter, please leave a comment on this blog telling me what subject or theme you are drawn to in either making or looking at art. Two winners will be picked at random on July 31st, to win an 8 x 10 print of Slow Work, Fine Work.

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print – Slow Work… Fine Work

Faux flowers Giveaway winners!

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Congratulations to the 3 Giveaway winners; Susan Fiebig, Retro Sandy and Lena Frost! They will each be notified and sent a set of faux flower petals to make skirts and wings for 6 fairies. Thank you to the 100+ contestants who entered!

Many of you wrote such sweet messages about how much you enjoy making these fairies. Some of you also plan to teach your grandchildren how to make them. It warms my heart to hear this. Over the past few years, since I started the blog, I am sometimes so touched by your comments that I get teary. Can it really be that making a simple little doll can make a difference in someones life? Your personal stories and warm messages are very much appreciated, even if I don’t answer every one!

The fairies started as a spontaneous afterthought, when an article about my work was getting ready to go to press for the March 1999 issue of Mary Engelbreit’s Home Companion Magazine. I was asked if I had any items or projects that readers could send away for. I quickly put together a Blossom Fairy Kit and figured out a price. After the magazine came out, I was inundated with orders. The only way people could see what the fairy looked like was to search one of the photos of my studio through a magnifying glass! One thing led to another and before I knew it, Wee Folk Studio became a kit business, with new designs added every year. Eventually, there were 10 doll designs and 10 felt purse kits. At this point, the wee folk were ready to be introduced to a wider audience through my how-to book, Felt Wee Folk: Enchanting Projects. The fairies have been good to me, but after about 8 years, I was ready to give up the kits in order to work on the illustrations for Pocketful of Posies full time.

Reading your comments on my posts made me keenly aware of the need for a revised edition of my how-to book, even though I’d convinced myself that one was enough. It took some time for me to get on board, but in less than year from now, Felt Wee Folk: New Adventures will be published. See posts about it here. I’ll be selling the original book in my Etsy Shop until then. I’m not sure if it will disappear or not when the new one comes out, but C&T is planning on offering the non-doll projects on-line.

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4000 Facebook Likes Giveaway!

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The Wee Folk Studio Facebook page has just reached 4000 Likes! To show my appreciation, I’m offering a Giveaway. Since many of you have made or want to make fairies from my Felt Wee Folk book, the prize is something you can put to use ~ Faux Flowers for outfitting your wee folk dolls. Assorted packs of flower skirts and wings are also available from my Etsy Shop.

To enter the giveaway, just leave a message on this blog post and 3 winners will be selected at random on April 28th. People from all around the world are welcome to try for the prize.

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fairy making supplies

Rabbitat Giveaway winners!

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Poster – Rabbitat

Thank you to all of you who entered the giveaway to celebrate 10,000 views of the Rabbitat film! I found your comments fascinating and loved hearing about which materials you like to work with. I think that this was a good sampling of the kind of people who follow my blog. Most of you revealed your preferences for wool, yarn, felt, paper and fabrics of different kinds. A more eclectic group won my heart, when they picked a variety of unconventional materials, from wire to corn husks. All in all, you are people who like to set your hands in motion making things–my kind of people!

And now for the winners! They are Ava Genho, a girl who likes to make little dolls, Vickie Conmy who works with Angora, which she shears form her own rabbits and Jonquilly, who praises Tyvek paper. I will contact them and shall be sending them each a Rabbitat poster.