Wednesday, 2 September 2015

The Triplets

They are slowly getting together, Clare, Lettuce and Marcie. 
But they were not born triplets. The oldest just got fed up being "the oldest", people thinking she should be more grown up than her sisters. The youngest being fed up that everyone assumed she is the spoiled one. Which she is NOT!
People of course still try to figure out who is the oldest. But the girls will not tell. Many think Marcie is the oldest. Mainly because she sticks out as her hair is very different. And people seem to think the child that sticks out must be the oldest. Which is silly. And completely wrong in Marcie's case. Others think Lettuce must be the youngest. Because she looks like the youngest. A bit more delicate, a bit more crazy. They might be right. Or not at all. 
What I do know is that Clare is the most serious of the three, when she's not being very silly. Lettuce is the bounciest one, when she's not lying on her bed reading for hours and hours. Marcie is the best secret keeper - when she is not out gossiping and telling everything anyone confided in her to her sisters ;) Lettuce is the gossiper, Clare the reader and Marcie the silly one. Marcie loves books, Lettuce laughs a lot, Clare tells her the gossip to laugh about...
They are all very different, in and out. They fight a lot and make up a lot. Each prefers to be on her own, they hug constantly. Make fun of each other and confide in each other...
They are very excited, especially the youngest one. And the middle one. But most of all the oldest one ;)

Please not that they are at an early stage so there is no blush applied yet, the hair is not attached yet, etc... So changes in appearance are always possible ;)

Friday, 21 August 2015

How I became a "doll maker" - Part 1

First things first: I put doll maker in "" because honestly, I don't view doll making as my profession. Most people in my private life don't know I make dolls, I don't go around and tell people. If I do tell, then it's more like "oh, I sometimes make a doll" which tends to surprise people (who does that? how? why?). I feel to understand these dolls you need to see them, touch them. To understand "doll world" you need time and experience. For an outsider it can be a weird place (my husband keeps telling me ;)).

So how did I get here? 

I could tell you a poetic story of an inner calling but people who know me would smile a huge cheeky smile at that and I would get lots of funny e-mails.

Honestly it all came from two FB acquaintances who kept liking these Bamboletta dolls. The more I saw the more intrigued I was. Back in that day I only saw Bambolettas, DFH and Tumbleberries, Pookidolls shortly after. I started to research. I like to know things - some people might call me a know it all - I call it curiosity ;)

I have always been working with my brain, priding in my good memory and good and easy grades at school, never having to work for good grades. But I felt hey, with brains and the internet I am sure I can make a doll like that. Not as cute, but I just want to see how hard it is.
So I looked for tutorials. And I found a head tutorial so I tied my first head. Just made a body from scratch, how I thought I might like it. Not like my own body (I have never been thin except in my teens, I was a very well nourished baby and toddler and my current body shows my relaxed lifestyle I guess ;)), but more like my kids' body, who are both very very slender and more delicate looking. Very first one was chubbier though, with ghost neck, completely understuffed though i felt i had stuffed and stuffed forever... 
I showed a friend (the one who kept sharing the pics of Bambolettas etc.) and she brought me a Bamboletta to show me what she meant by "stuffing more". Back then Bambolettas were the holy grail. Really all of the aboved mentioned dolls were almost impossible to get for a normal mortal person with slowish internet due to living in a little village in the countryside.
So I made the second. Who had feet, but not in a way that I could make neatly. And who had a ghost neck ;)

So more research, drawing a pattern in case my next doll was "it" and I wanted to make a second one. By that time I was already hooked of course. And I knew what I wanted. So grudgingly I asked my mum how I could possibly achieve this and that. Because she is a seamstress and taught textile works at school back in the days.
Grudgingly because I had always told myself that I will never become like my mum for some reason. I was always a stubborn child who would figure out stuff herself. I had a theory but I wanted her ideas. 
She smiled and said she never thought I'd ever follow in her footsteps. So I told her that clearly making and selling doll clothes wasn't the same as making cloth dolls! But what I had forgotten, she reminded me, was that she had started out making cloth dolls!!!! Thankfully I had forgotten because I doubt I would ever have started had I remembered. When I was a child, just before the "plastic dolls" got really big everyone had one of these cloth dolls made with a plastic mould for the face, where the fabric would be glued to and the face painted on. All stuffed with wool of course. She made and sold these dolls before people ran to the plastic dolls who openend and closed their eyes etc...

So she gave me tips and was very, very proud to be able to help and to see that all her preaching about how to sew and knit in my childhood seemed to have stuck in my brain even though I always pretended not to listen...

I always knew I would work with the Swiss Laib Yala fabric as it was close to my childhood dolls, the ones my mum had made. Though back in my beginnings I got a few messages asking me why on earth I would choose a lesser fabric with such a strong structure that took focus away from the feature when there was de Witte Engel readily available that was so much more smooth! (Glad this opinion seems to not be there anymore and most agree that both fabrics are of very good quality and it's really personal preference what you use)...

Of course I needed more dolls to figure out quality issues, etc. Looking back I guess I should have made more before buying but I guess most of us feel like that in hindsight. I sold my first few dolls (after giving the first 5 away) for almost double material cost, which back then was quite a price for a new maker!

Over time and with many influences my dolls have changed, grown, and become more me. Though I still love some of my first few dolls very dearly and still like a mum do feel they are perfect and surprisingly very much me already. I guess I was lucky there were not too many makers around then so that forced me to find my own style. Looking around I felt none of the existing were "me" enough that I would want to make them or look-a-likes. I also had no idea there were makers outside of FB!
I got to know more makers, followed some doll groups on FB and it all went from there.

To this day I feel my dolls are myself even though they have changed and I have been influenced by much and many in different ways (more details later), but I think they do have my weak chin, smallish eyes, long cheeks ;) they have my androgyn face I guess (my mum thinks with every head I make: oh, wonderful another boy ;)) and of course my stubborn self. BUT: I am not very slender, I have small feet just to name two obvious differences....

I have decided not to include pictures this time. So you can imagine more, and it takes more motivation to read, discouraging a few people as I am not sure I should share everything I did here (point one, everyone would love the maker to be gorgeous, having grown up the perfect daughter who willingly learned from their loving mum and not someone maybe average looking who was always the spoiled, stubborn brat ;))

Wednesday, 1 July 2015


For my english speaking followers: I decided to do this project in German, as I heard about it through German doll makers and I thought it would be fun and challenging for me to try in German. If you have any questions or google translate makes no sense at all feel free to contact me ;)

Ich kann gar nicht glauben, dass ich erst heute auf die Puppen-Mit-Macherei 2015 gestossen bin. Ein Projekt von NATURKINDER und Mariengold. Jeder, der eine Puppe machen will, kann dies tun, an bestimmten Tagen geht es um bestimmte Themen und wir teilen unsere Erfahrungen. Einige werden ihre ersten Puppen machen, einige mit Anleitung, andere Freestyle.

Für mich ist es ein komisches Gefühl, dies auf Deutsch zu machen. Deutsch ist meine Muttersprache, ich bin in der deutschsprachigen Schweiz geboren, aufgewachsen und wohnhaft, also sollte dies für mich natürlich sein. Da ich jedoch zum Puppenmachen über Facebook und daher in englischer Sprache gekommen bin, fehlen mir für dieses spezielle Thema öfters die deutschen Begriffe.

Seraina - eine meiner ersten Puppen im Verkauf
Ich wuchs auf mit einer Mutter, die Schneiderin und Handarbeitslehrerin war, aber für uns Kinder zu Hause blieb. Sie fing an die Glorex Puppen mit den "Schablonen-Gesichtern" und Stoffkörper zu machen und am Markt zu verkaufen, als dann immer mehr die "Plastikpuppen" aufkamen hat sie gewechselt zu Puppenkleidern aus Plüsch. Schon als kleines Kind habe ich ihr am Markt "geholfen". Nach vielen Jahren entschied sie sich dann, dass man aufhören muss, wenn es plötzlich ein "muss" wird. Sie kümmerte sich vermehrt um den Naturgarten, machte Weiterbildungen im Bereich Heilpflanzen, Ornithologie, etc. und hat nun ein Buch über ihren natürlichen Garten geschrieben und veröffentlicht.

Als ich dann die Puppen auf Facebook entdeckte, damals vor allem die von Bamboletta, da wollte ich es auch unbedingt ausprobieren, obwohl ich wie wohl die meisten Kinder nie genau in die Fussstapfen meiner Mutter treten wollte. Es brauchte auch eine Weile, bevor mir bewusst wurde, wie ähnlich dies ist ;) In der Online Waldorf inspirierte Puppenwelt gab es damals nicht so viele verschiedene Puppenmacherinnen wie jetzt und ich fand mich in keiner wirklich wieder, also arbeitete ich zunächst einfach Freestyle, bis ich eine Puppe mit Proportionen erhielt, die mich selbst ansprach. Seither habe ich mein Muster immer wieder überarbeitet und wie es ist mit Handarbeit ist keine wie die andere. Des Öfteren habe ich einen Kopf vor mir und füge dann hier und da etwas Länge in den Beinen und Armen hinzu, mache den Körper einmal etwas schlanker, nächstes Mal etwas breiter.

Für die Puppen-Mit-Macherei werde ich eine Puppe machen, die etwas anders werden soll. Ich wollte schon lange eine etwas fülligere Puppe herstellen - meine werden immer eher wie meine Kinder, ausgesprochen schlank, nicht wie ich früher, eher etwas pummelig ;) Und mir scheint, dies ist genau der richtige Moment für solch ein Projekt. Ich werde also mein bestehendes Muster überarbeiten.
Ob diese Puppe zum Schluss auch in den Verkauf kommt oder dann doch bei mir bleibt, das werde ich während dieses Projekts sicher spüren. Ich lasse mir da vieles offen.

Ich habe alles and Material hier, das ich benötigen werde (ich horde gerne Materialien). Neue Stopfwolle werde ich wohl noch bestellen.

Wednesday, 24 June 2015

Vivian Moonshadow

Vivian was born a bit special, wise beyond her years, always alert, always seeing right into the people around her. This scared some people, made others think she was some kind of psychic. But she is not. For fun she sometimes told people what star sign they are. Why it worked most times she never really found out because honestly, she knows it can't be true. Why should people be who they are deep inside because they were born at a specific time? So she stopped doing that, because it scared her a bit. Though she will not admit it. She says it started boring her and was just a trick.
Vivian will never ever tell you her star sign. Or why there are some almost white hairs in her "mane". She is good at keeping her secrets but look keeping yours from her. 
I have my theory about her but they will remind just that. Mere theories. But I doubt she has more than theories about it herself.
I do know she is very proud, very confident, very "her". Ever since I met her (and that has been a while) she and I have never doubted who she is. She is also impatient (deep down I think that comes from her sometimes sensing what is going to happen anyway so she wants it to just happen so we "can get on with something else") and has a wicked sense of humour. She needs to be treated as a person and not as a child. Though she does love to be cuddled - but she will not initate it often.

you can find more pictures of her here:

Vivian Moonshadow measures about over 20 inches, she is my first sculpted doll. You could call her a prototype but I do not plan to sculpt many dolls as my more traditional style is something I could never give up. I enjoyed making her after letting go of my fears of failure first. Being my first she is by no means perfect. But those tug at my heartstrings most, like with "real" people, I am drawn to imperfections. I was surprised at who Vivian could have become, so many choices to be made and it took me a while to dare finish her because it felt strange to close the doors to her "parallel personalities" that could have been. I guess choices were harder knowing I will not make many "like" her so the closed doors will not be inspirations for a new doll but just be a little spark inside of Vivian.
In the end she became who I first envisioned (and me laughing at myself for ever thinking she could be someone else) but I love to think that some of the choices we didn't make are still buried inside her and if she loves her new home and trusts you enough, she will show you those as well <3
Vivian will be available auction style soon. I will announce details on my fb page as soon as she and I have figured it all out and I am sure I can let her go - not because I feel I have to protect her but because of all the time we spent together, my pride of how well my dip into sculpting turned out... Because it feels like a chapter will end with her.

Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Mona - the vergissmeinnichtKuss miniMe

In theory it seemed so much fun and easy to make a mini me for a sleepover collaboration. But working on Mona was harder than I thought. We all have our individual styles and mine isn't very lifelike/realistic. So I decided to go with trying to capture the essence of me. And the big longish head ;) When I made the head I wasn't happy with it and chose a different one, not longish - but somehow the face seemed more "me".

Then the clothes.. as I don't live in a sleepover culture I had no idea what age people ususally do them. I spent some nights with friends during my early school years but that was just  me staying over, not a sleepover and nothing like a party, just having awkward dinner with the family, where I tried to be as polite and nice and generally non disturbing to the family as possible, and then going to bed and talking in bed longer than we were supposed to. At that age I mainly wore the clothes my mother chose and often made herself. 

Then there were the school trips. Going away with the class for a week in our teens, in hostels in a room with half of the girls (I was always in a class where there were about 8 girls max, average about 6, so we got the small rooms), where we of course tried to sneak over to the boys or were worried the girls in the other room would be more adventurous or have more fun than we did. That was also the time of the "dancing parties" where everyone would only dance to slow music and it seemed like an ok way to get a bit closer to the boys we liked. Me having grown into the tallest girl in class over the summer, towering over most of the boys as well didn't really help me not feeling awkward.
Well, what can I say, I have spent a lot of time thinking about me as a child and a teenager throughout this project, trying to figure out if an appropriate clothing style for it would be the colourful handmade unisex clothes my mum made me or the very, very more average than average clothes I wore in my early teens as not to stick out under any circumstance... 
I thought back to how I felt, all the insecurites, everything that held me back, how we all longed to live in the u.k. or the states where there were boarding schools, that seemed to be so strange, exotic and everything interesting happening there, big adventures amongst girls, blood sisters, boy stories, sleepovers; where you can drive a car at 16 or have your elder 16 year old siblings drive you around so you wouldn't depend so much on your parents. Thinking back to all the boys we talked about in our teens and who they are now. Now suddenly realizing they felt as insecure as we did back then. The heartache we caused and felt, the drama, the jealousy, the friendships that lasted, the ones that broke. How that child and teen is still a big part of who I am. 
Then sending Mona off, worrying if she will make friends, if she will be as shy as I was, as self conscious. Seeing the gorgeous other girls, more sophisticated, more confident. Knowing exactly who the mini me wanted to be like, who she wanted to be her best friend...
Childhood isn't always as happy as it looks even for the children blessed with a "happy childhood". Teenage years are straight down horrible for most. I know I had a happy childhood and easy teenage years. And thinking back to the girl I was has pushed me to places I thought I had forgotten. And then suddenly I saw Mona on the pics with the girls, through Megan's eyes, who did the best job ever. And I felt so happy, so happy to see Mona obviously having a great time, seeing how happy she is, how happy I often was even though of course the memories sticking most are the ones with drama and unhappiness. And I felt a bit ashamed for thinking: hey, that girl is/was actually quite cool. And yes, she is/was ME. In a way.

Mona will be looking for a new home this Sunday, 21st of June in a short auction from 3 to 4 pm EDT here:

Monday, 25 May 2015


Gioia is probably the grumpiest, sulkiest girl I have ever made. Most know by now that my dolls tend to be very good at sulking but Gioia does take it to a new level. 
To "help her on" a bit I have given her the softest suri alpaca tailspun yarn hair and made her body a bit softer than usual to make her extra huggable. Because what else stops sulking as well as some very good cuddles?
This means her hair is delicate and she's even worse at standing than my usual dolls (usually I can take a few pics of them standing up with very clever posing and a lot of patience but I really couldn't manage with Gioia).
Gioia will be available in my indiecart shop sometime this week. I hope she will find her perfect home where she will be loved despite her strong head ;)
She has dark tan skin, blue eyes and is wearing a gorgeous dress by Dommi Design. She will also come with my traditional heart undies and socks and handknit boots. Maybe some other items of clothing will be added in the next few days.

More pics here:

Friday, 15 May 2015

The big surprise

So, I just had an idea, and as it will be my birthday soon I thought why not just follow up on it ;)

I will offer a doll, a particular doll that I will be working on next (while I also work on some overdue wish list dolls). 

She will be a big doll (around 19 inches but that varies a bit).

She will have dark tan skin.

And the rest I will just decide as I go along.

Soooooo... You need to be a bit crazy to purchase this doll/spot for a doll. Because you will not be able to choose anything. You will have no say at all in the creation. There will be no pictures, no communication until I send you the tracking number end of June latest.

What I can say about her:

She will be a girl, a big girl, non sculpted.

you will be able to VETO one hair style (yarn, weft, locks), I will decide on hair length and colour. I will use a "natural" colour for the eyes (I never make dolls with pink eyes for example). 

So, this doll can be a crazy pink haired girl, or a timid brunette. She will have attitude, but what attitude I cannot say yet.

So this doll will be for the very courageous, the ones who really, really, like all my dolls and are up for a big adventure. I understand this takes a lot of trust. But I promise I will make you a doll that I truly love in the hope that you will too. My choices will not be influenced by what I know about you, the buyer, though.

Oh, one more thing I can promise: She will come in my trademark heart undies :)

So, if you're up for it shoot me a message on FB. But please no wishes or suggestions ;)

Oh, she will be 550 CHF (swiss francs) plus 50 CHF shipping. So 600 CHF in total, due until this sunday, may 17th. If more than one person is interested I will choose in 24 hours from now... 
If noone is interested I will make her and offer her RTG end of June latest...

Monday, 13 April 2015

Kaimi Mahina aka Gloria

UPDATE - Kaimi "Gloria" has found a new home. Thank you very much for the love you have shown for her <3

i will not talk long about kaimi. kaimi is the name she told me, then i checked and well, the internet told me it was a boy's name. so we added the girl name mahina to it (that's the law in switzerland, if you choose a gender neutral or confusing first name the second name must be very clear on that). but then when we brushed out her hair I kept humming "gloria" by van morrison. so i just added it. kaimi isn't sure about the gloria. it's also not her official name, i let her fight that out with her future mum. and yes, there will be fights, and laughs, and many incredible moments. you will see ;)

before i spam you will lots of pics of kaimi i will let you know what we decided for finding the perfect home for her. i wanted to wait and think about pricing this size more (so far i sold none bin, the ghost girl were this tiny about 12 inch size and they were auctions for charity, one mmao, then missy of course was auctioned for #loveforalex) but kaimi will not let me. she said she will decide.
so this is how it goes:
if you are interested to bring 12 inch kaimi to your home (and you better be very ready, she is not for the faint of heart):
- comment on this blog that you would like to. no story or anything needed, just your name (easiest your fb name so i can contact you immediately after the drawing)
- then, when kaimi feels she has been patient enough, or teasing enough, i will write all names on pieces of paper and she will draw a name

and now to the "special feature":

i know this is scary. but kaimi is corageous and adventurous. and she insists ;) she says if someone doesn't dare / isn't comfortable with this type of pricing they could never handle her anyway ;)


if you have any questions, feel free to contact us. kaimi might just answer you ;)

Thursday, 9 April 2015

Vivian Moonshadow - a long overdue try

Like I guess many makers I have watched sculpted dolls emerge, refine and become perfection. I am in awe of the makers who truly have perfected this art and I see every day how difficult it is to get it right. 

I spent quite some time imagining what a sculpted doll of mine, truly mine, could look like. Would look like. Should look like.
I will admit, I was scared to try because until I tried I knew it would be my choice to not needlefelt my dolls, to still make my heads the "traditional" simple waldorf way. That it's not my fear of failure stopping me but my love for my simple dolls. I always knew one day I would have to try, maybe never show anyone the result, maybe like it maybe not. Then take it from there. 
My worries have made me late to the party. I had people tell me to try, that it was bound to turn out well, people telling me not to as they loved my dolls just the way they are and are worried I would stop making them and only make sculpted dolls from then on. And all that time I had the nagging feeling that maybe I didn't have a choice, that maybe I would be crap at sculpting...
One evening, when the light wasn't good enough for me to sew (my sewing machine stands in a place where the natural light is great but there is not enough artificial light to work there in the evenings/nights) and I had knitted all I felt like knitting I sat down with one of my heads I wasn't sure about and just dived in and didn't stop before I felt that I had made my first sculpted face. Vivian Moonshadow was born - or half born as I really need to adjust my body pattern for her first and that will have to wait a bit...

Before you ask: I have no idea where I go from here. I will definitely make more "traditional" dolls, not sure if I will make many sculpted dolls. I loved making Vivian and I am proud and happy how she turned out. Vivi and I are sharing lots of smiles and secrets. She has many secrets to tell...

Friday, 13 March 2015

I'm just not sure Missy

Some dolls I need to be especially good. So I choose the save option. Try to make a "save" doll, pleasing to my eye, no experiments.
So for the LoveforAlex doll that was my way to go I decided. But then the head had a biggish nose. And I made a second head. But I was drawn to the big nose head but "Missy, I'm just not sure about you" went through my head. Some might be surprised about that. And it's true. Even though Swiss German is my native language all my doll making is in English, even the talk to them in my head...
So I tried out skin tones and stopped at the one I call Terracotta. I love this skin colour but I wanted something that would appeal to more people because "I am just not sure, Missy". Then something was off when I did my "usual" eyes and I just kept going mumbling "I'm not sure at all, Missy". I went to bed unsure, woke up unsure, Held up the "sensible" choice of dark brown locks to her and felt "this could actually be ok, Missy". But ok wouldn't be good enough. For fun I held up the gorgeous locks I got from Laura Spinner. And I was in love. In love with Missy. But still I feel "I'm just not sure, Missy" because Missy is different. Different good in my eyes, but definitely not the save choice of anything. But the more fun, adventurous choice, Missy's choice <3
Only she knows what clothes she will choose I guess. So I decided she knows best and I just get to enjoy the crazy ride with her.

Sunday, 22 February 2015

Back from holidays in the Swiss Alps

Yesterday we arrived back from a sunny, warm one week holiday in the Swiss Alps, where 3 of us were skiing and I was enjoying the clean air, the quiet (lots of skiers but the village is car free, so all roads are white and only a few snowmobiles are around), walks, books and some knitting.

I marvelled at the constructions against avalanches that are scattered throughout the Swiss Alps and might be suggested to the UNESCO as culturale heritage as our dealing with the avalanche danger seems to be quite unique (Switzerland and the Swiss Alps are densely populated so just not being in the danger zone isn't always an option)...

On the way up in the gondola


On the top gondola station

The Aletsch glacier - longest glacier in the Alps

The Matterhorn. Far, far away but still quite impressive

Wooden avalanche "stoppers"

Big "avalanche stoppers" - to be seen everywhere in the Swiss Alps

It was very warm - thawing everywhere

Lots of animal tracks - we saw some deer and lots of birds

My new snow boots were a perfect investment

On the perfect bench on my favourite walk
The view from our holiday apartment