28.2.15

gargoyles




This blog post here by lovely Molly of Remedial Eating got me thinking about gargoyles... and peg dolls.

Toward the bottom of the post, you will see a photo of peg dolls created by Molly's son based on the four elements: earth, fire, wind, and (not pictured) air.  Peg dolls in the guise of the four elements led me to ponder a uniquely medieval concept: the four humors. Blood, phlegm, bile and... what was the fourth one... earwax? Ah, yes. That would be blood, phlegm, black bile and yellow bile (musn't forget about black bile).


Discussion of black bile and earwax aside, if you know me, you know I cannot resist suggestions for making peculiar peg dolls.  I get an idea in my head, it has to be done, and sometimes I end up with peg dolls like these.  Hence today, gargoyle peg dolls. (Will peg dolls based on the the four humors be far behind?  Something to ponder.  I will leave that one up to your imagination.)

19.2.15

thank you



Now that the blog tour is over, I wanted to extend thanks, once again, to everyone who participated. Thank you to Cassi, Rachel, Karima, Salley, Deborah, Lenka, Sarah, Catherine, Maureen, Hillary, Molly... And, of course, thank you to the marvelous elves at Hawthorn Press!


One might think it would be a time to take a break from peg dolls around here, but the plan is knuckle down and finish the proposal for book #3 (yes, book #3 -- the outline has been sitting on my desktop almost since the day I started work on book #2.)  I'll be back as soon as that proposal is shipped off... I promise!


P.S.  In case you missed it, here is the blog tour schedule:

February 2nd :: The Crafty Crow
February 3rd :: Clean
February 4th :: Castle in the Air
February 7th :: A Child's Dream
February 9th :: Forest Fairy Crafts
February 10th :: Bella Luna Toys
February 11th :: Ben & Birdy
February 12th :: Twig & Toadstool
February 13th :: Wee Wonderfuls
February 17th :: Remedial Eating

18.2.15

remedial eating & making peg dolls


photo by molly hays :: remedial eating

Today I am grateful to have Molly Hays of the blog Remedial Eating posting about my new book Making Peg Dolls & More. (She was originally going to post during the blog tour, but delayed due to a bout with the flu. So glad you are well now dear Molly!)  To visit Molly's blog post you can click here.

photo by molly hays :: remedial eating

The first thing you are likely to notice about Molly's blog is the photography.  I could not replicate it here within the templates of my blog, but Molly has a way of pairing photos so that her images play off each other in color, texture and content.  Go look -- you'll see what I mean!!

photo by molly hays :: remedial eating

The next thing you will notice is Molly's writing; she has knack for elegant turn of phase, wandering off on tangents down the scenic by-ways of conversation, and then steering things back again, so that by the end of the blog post, you feel like you've had a good chat over a cup of coffee. Then it's time to wave good-bye with happy words of "See you next time!" and a scrap of paper clutched in hand scribbled with titles of a few new books to read and a list of ingredients to pick up on the way home for a recipe she mentioned.

photo by molly hays :: remedial eating

And the recipes she mentions?  They're great.  I was completely obsessed with this salad over the summer and am obsessed by this Basque Pie pretty much all the time.  Through Molly's influence I now candy orange peel on a regular basis for making granola and other baking purposes (panforte, anyone?).  Molly tends to go heavy on recipes for baked goods, and this is a bonus (no complaints from this quadrant).

photo by molly hays :: remedial eating

Thank you, Molly, for posting today about my book!

February 2nd :: The Crafty Crow
February 3rd :: Clean
February 4th :: Castle in the Air
February 7th :: A Child's Dream
February 9th :: Forest Fairy Crafts
February 10th :: Bella Luna Toys
February 11th :: Ben & Birdy
February 12th :: Twig & Toadstool
February 13th :: Wee Wonderfuls
February 17th :: Remedial Eating

photo by molly hays :: remedial eating

14.2.15

mail myself to you





I'm a-gonna wrap myself in paper.
I'm gonna daub myself with glue,
Stick some stamps on top of my head;
I'm gonna mail myself to you.

I'm a-gonna tie me up in red string,
I'm gonna tie blue ribbons, too,
I'm a-gonna climb up in my mail box;
I'm gonna mail myself to you.

When you see me in your mail box,
Cut the string and let me out;
Wash the glue from off my fingers,
Stick some bubblegum in my mouth.

Take me out of my wrapping paper,
Wash the stamps off my head,
Pour me full of ice cream sodies,
Put me in a nice, warm bed.

-- by Woodie Guthrie

(My 4 year old and I have been singing this song together all week. In case you are not familiar, here is a clip of John McCutcheon singing it...)


Wishing you a happy day
xo

13.2.15

wee wonderfuls :: making peg dolls & more tour


dolls & photo :: hilllary lang

Today is the final day of the blog tour for my new book Making Peg Dolls & More, and the host for the final stop is Hillary Lang of the book & eponymous blog Wee Wonderfuls.  To visit Hillary's blog tour post you can click here.

doll & photo :: hilllary lang

I've been a long time fan of Hillary's book Wee Wonderfuls, so when one of my blog-readers pointed out that Hillary had created some peg folk inspired by my first book, I took the opportunity to say hello & introduce myself (above you can see Hillary's fairy godmother peg doll... oh my.).

dolls & photo :: hilllary lang

Not only has Hillary created endearingly quirky doll patterns for her book, she sells additional (& equally endearing) patterns through her shop (plus patterns for embroidery designs!).  And if you are not inclined to stitch up dolls yourself, you can find ready-made dolls based on Hillary's designs for sale at Land of Nod.

Thank you, Hillary, for hosting the final stop of the blog tour today!

dolls & photo :: hilllary lang


Below is a schedule for the entire blog tour.  Please follow along and visit each of the participating blogs. Not only will you meet some of my favorite people here on the internet -- you may also find opportunities to win copies of the new book!

February 2nd :: The Crafty Crow
February 3rd :: Clean
February 4th :: Castle in the Air
February 7th :: A Child's Dream
February 9th :: Forest Fairy Crafts
February 10th :: Bella Luna Toys
February 11th :: Ben & Birdy
February 12th :: Twig & Toadstool
February 13th :: Wee Wonderfuls
February 17th :: Remedial Eating

12.2.15

twig & toadstool :: making peg dolls & more tour


toadstool house and photo :: twig and toadstool

Today Maureen MacMillan of the blog Twig and Toadstool is hosting the next stop of the blog tour for my new book Making Peg Dolls & More.  To visit Maureen's blog tour post you can click here.

fairy tea-set and photo :: twig and toadstool

Maureen blogs at Twig and Toadstool with her friend Shanti.  Together they take turns innovating  crafts for their blog, and their capacity for coming up with new ideas seems endless.

acorn charms and photo :: twig and toadstool

The crafts on Twig and Toadstool are organized by season, and if your are looking for ideas, it's worth your time to browse through.  Meanwhile, here are links to a few of my favorites:  I adore these acorn cap necklaces, these mandala wreaths, and I can't begin to tell you how much I love these tiny bird nest ornaments.


rainbow fairies and photos :: twig and toadstool

If you like fairies, there are these ones, these ones, these ones and so many more...

spring blossom popsicles and photo :: twig and toadstool

Thank you, Maureen, for hosting today and for featuring my new book Making Peg Dolls and More on your blog!

acorn charms and photo :: twig and toadstool

Below is a schedule for the entire blog tour.  Please follow along and visit each of the participating blogs. Not only will you meet some of my favorite people here on the internet -- you may also find opportunities to win copies of the new book!

February 2nd :: The Crafty Crow
February 3rd :: Clean
February 4th :: Castle in the Air
February 7th :: A Child's Dream
February 9th :: Forest Fairy Crafts
February 10th :: Bella Luna Toys
February 11th :: Ben & Birdy
February 12th :: Twig & Toadstool
February 13th :: Wee Wonderfuls
February 17th :: Remedial Eating

11.2.15

ben & birdy :: making peg dolls & more tour


photo & shirt design :: catherine newman

Today Catherine Newman of the blog Ben and Birdy is the hosting the next stop on the blog tour for my new book Making Peg Dolls & More.  To visit Catherine's blog post you can click here.

Catherine Newman is author of the book Waiting for Birdy, a contributing editor at Family Fun magazine, and she also writes for a variety of other magazines including Brain Child, Oprah, and Real Simple, plus for the New York Times parenting blog Motherlode. In her essays, Catherine is fierce, wise, poignant and funny all at once. I don't know how she manages to balance all this together in her writing, but she does. Beautifully. To find a few of my favorite pieces by her, you can click here, here, here, here, here or here. If you've never read anything by Catherine, feel free to go ahead and read now (my blog post will still be waiting here for you when you get back).

photo & shirt design :: catherine newman

And Catherine's blog is laugh out-loud in public & embarrass yourself funny.  Spit your coffee across the table because you are laughing so hard type of funny.  (you've been warned. finish your coffee before you read her blog.)  Here are links to her recipes, favorite board & card games, and craft tutorials such as this anatomical heart stencil-design (to see her post with full instructions, you can click here).  As a person who, herself, posts craft tutorials, I have a special appreciation for the way Catherine writes hers!

photo & shirt design :: catherine newman

Several months ago, I wrote Catherine a goofy, fan-mail type of email. I hope you like her essays, recipes, tutorials, and game recommendations as much as I do!  Thank you, Catherine, for hosting the blog tour for my new book today.

photo & shirt design :: catherine newman
Below is a schedule for the entire blog tour.  Please follow along and visit each of the participating blogs. Not only will you meet some of my favorite people here on the internet -- you may also find opportunities to win copies of the new book!

February 2nd :: The Crafty Crow
February 3rd :: Clean
February 4th :: Castle in the Air
February 7th :: A Child's Dream
February 9th :: Forest Fairy Crafts
February 10th :: Bella Luna Toys
February 11th :: Ben & Birdy
February 12th :: Twig & Toadstool
February 13th :: Wee Wonderfuls
February 17th :: Remedial Eating

10.2.15

bella luna :: making peg dolls & more tour



Today's stop on the blog tour for my new book Making Peg Dolls & More is hosted by Sarah Baldwin of Bella Luna Toys & the blog Moon Child.  You can find Sarah's post for the blog tour by clicking here (and please read to the end of my blog post today to find a a 10% discount coupon code which Sarah is offering my readers!)

photo :: bella luna toys

Bella Luna Toys offers a beautiful selection of natural toys, craft supplies and other products for children and families.  Most of the toys & other products at Bella Luna are made in the US, Canada & Europe, and everything in the shop is certified to be ethically and sustainably made. The toys Sarah selects for her shop encourage imaginative play -- classic toys which are designed to last for many years, handed down generation to generation.

photo :: bella luna toys

Sarah also has an M.S. Ed. in Waldorf Early Childhood Education and has authored Nurturing Children and Families. This is a practical book for leading parent/child classes or playgroups inspired by Waldorf education, and the book can also be used by Waldorf early childhood educators or anyone homeschooling preschool age children.  Sarah's knowledge and commitment to early childhood education shows in her blog where she offers Q&A about using Waldorf craft materials such as Stockmar paints, modeling beeswax & block crayons.  Additionally, she offers advice about cooking with children, singing & playing music with children, and so much more -- plus her discussions are often supported by video demonstrations.

photo :: bella luna toys


Starting today (and ending Sunday, February 15th), Sarah is offering a coupon code for a 10% discount on my books plus on wooden peg doll forms, wool felt sheets and opaque water colors at Bella Luna Toys.  At check out, you can type in the code PEGDOLLS10 to receive the discount. Are there any birthdays coming up in your house? It will be worth your time to also browse through the truly beautiful toys, games, musical instruments, books & craft supplies which your family can enjoy for many years.

photo :: bella luna toys


Thank you, Sarah, for making such a beautiful selection of toys available through your shop, for the helpful, gentle words on your blog, for hosting today on the blog tour, and for the generous coupon code for all my readers!!

photo :: bella luna toys

Below is a schedule for the entire blog tour.  Please follow along and visit each of the participating blogs. Not only will you meet some of my favorite people here on the internet -- you may also find opportunities to win copies of the new book!

February 2nd :: The Crafty Crow
February 3rd :: Clean
February 4th :: Castle in the Air
February 7th :: A Child's Dream
February 9th :: Forest Fairy Crafts
February 10th :: Bella Luna Toys
February 11th :: Ben & Birdy
February 12th :: Twig & Toadstool
February 13th :: Wee Wonderfuls
February 17th :: Remedial Eating

9.2.15

forest fairy crafts :: making peg dolls & more tour


dolls & photo :: forest fairy crafts

Today's stop on the blog tour for my new book Making Peg Dolls & More is hosted by the very lovely Lenka Vodicka-Paredes of the book and eponymous blog Forest Fairy Crafts.  To see Lenka's blog tour post you can click here.

Lenka's book Forest Fairy Crafts is full of simple projects and clear instructions for teaching children the basics of hand-sewing, but what will draw any child (or adult) to this book is the way it is infused with warmth and whimsy.  I was charmed to notice that the section on making hats was called "fairy hat shop," the section on clothing was the "fairy dress shop," and the section on hair was titled "hair studio!"

doll & photo :: forest fairy crafts

Besides being an author, Lenka also teaches art & craft to elementary school age children.  Her blog is filled with projects she has facilitated in classrooms, and there are many delightful ideas, but my favorite project is this one.  Another favorite post on Lenka's blog is this one.  Lenka's love and understanding of children so clearly shines through the words she writes and stories she tells.

Thank you, Lenka, for hosting today's stop on the blog tour!

doll & photo :: forest fairy crafts

Below is a schedule for the entire blog tour.  Please follow along and join me at each of the participating blogs. Not only will you meet some of my favorite people here on the internet -- you may also find opportunities to win copies of the new book!

February 2nd :: The Crafty Crow
February 3rd :: Clean
February 4th :: Castle in the Air
February 7th :: A Child's Dream
February 9th :: Forest Fairy Crafts
February 10th :: Bella Luna Toys
February 11th :: Ben & Birdy
February 12th :: Twig & Toadstool
February 13th :: Wee Wonderfuls
February 17th :: Remedial Eating

7.2.15

a child's dream :: making peg dolls & more tour



Welcome to day #6 of the blog tour for my new book Making Peg Dolls & More. Today's stop is hosted by Deborah Staggs of the gorgeous shop A Child's Dream.  You can find Deborah's blog post for the tour by clicking here (and please read to the end of my blog post today to find a 10% discount code which Deborah is offering my readers!)


I am often asked where I purchase felt for my work.  The answer is easy: A Child's Dream.

I started off buying 2 bundles of Holland Wool Felt Seasonal Collections and quickly added a set of organic plant-dyed colors to my stash.  From there, I bought a swatch card, learned which colors I used most and started ordering my favorites in 18" sheets. (Favorite colors? Cool Blue & Lilac plus every shade of the organic plant-dyed greens and blues.  I'm also partial to the organic plant-dyed red-violet.)

This felt is perfect for peg doll crafting and any other type of felt-craft as well.  It's pliable enough to wrap around tiny dolls, but thick enough to withstand intricate stitching.  Am I paid to endorse this felt?  No. Not a dime. It's just the best stuff around.


But A Child's Dream doesn't just carry felt.  They carry every sort of fiber you might need for felting & spinning, doll making supplies, patterns & kits, plus an excellent assortment of craft books and other art materials for drawing and painting.  (My favorite paint?  I use this.)


Are you looking for a way to jump-start your peg doll making?  A Child's Dream also carries Peg Doll Sewing Baskets, and according to Deborah, these are so popular that she can barely make up a batch of baskets before they fly out the shop.



To celebrate the release of Making Peg Dolls & More, Deborah is offering a 10% discount code on wooden peg doll bases and Holland Wool Felt Yards + Cuts (individual pieces of cut felt only -- not bundled seasonal collections).  The code is DOLLCRAFTS and it will be valid through Saturday February 14th. (Note: the discount will show up once you apply the code in your shopping cart.)

Additionally, if you order a copy of Making Peg Dolls & More from A Child's Dream, they will include a mini-bundle of wool felt plus two large wood peg dolls.  This offer is also good through Saturday, February 14th.

Thank you Deborah for carrying such beautiful supplies, for generously offering the discount code for my readers, and for being so supportive of my books & my work!


Below is a schedule for the entire blog tour.  Please follow along and join me at each of the participating blogs. Not only will you meet some of my favorite people here on the internet -- you may also find opportunities to win copies of the new book!

February 2nd :: The Crafty Crow
February 3rd :: Clean
February 4th :: Castle in the Air
February 7th :: A Child's Dream
February 9th :: Forest Fairy Crafts
February 10th :: Bella Luna Toys
February 11th :: Ben & Birdy
February 12th :: Twig & Toadstool
February 13th :: Wee Wonderfuls
February 17th :: Remedial Eating