Tuesday 15 December 2009

Angels we have heard ...

...that I might just have stumbled across something else to add to the list of "Things which I rather love to make" please welcome my newest crafting crush: fabric dolls.

The first one I made last week I'll be sharing on the Gauche Alchemy blog on Friday then, caught up in the 'Oh my, making dolls is sooo much fun I need to do it every single day' type of hype, I went on to make an angel as a Christmas gift for a friend:

Both of the dolls I've made emerged as a result of finding fabrics in two of my recent design team packages. While I could have used them by layering them on layouts or for making mini-book covers I really wanted to exploit the potential for creating something tactile and 3D.

The one-piece body of the angel is made from a section of the heavy cotton canvas which is part of the current 'Resolutions' kit from CraftyTemplates., as is the yellow netting I've used to make the wings and halo. [ETA: I've posted a full tutorial on how I made it here - on the Crafty Templates blog].].

Here's a close-up of so you can see the glitter cabochons [also from the 'Resolutions' kit], buttons and beads which I used to form the halo.

The irregular shape of the head section it's over-large size and it's tilt came about entirely as a result of me following what was only a very quick sketch directly onto my fabric in a pencil whose lines I couldn't really see when I was feeding it through the sewing machine ... a machine whose presser foot didn't let me follow the pencil line because of .... well, you don't really need to be on intimate terms with my sewing machine anatomy ... let's just say it was tricky!

So, not wanting to unpick it and start again [I'm really not a patient person when it comes to things like that!] I decided to work with the shape instead of fighting it and it began to .feel similar in some ways to the depictions of saints in Russian icon paintings:

When I positioned the face and began adding the glitter cabochons that I recognised a similarity between the shape and style of what I'd made and these kinds of images. Perhaps my wonky stitching was actually a subliminal result of watching the BBC4's 'The Art of Russia' series!

I don't think there's anything in that series about crochet, embroidered trimmings and velvet ribbons ... so 'm pretty sure the details I added to the angel's gown were all my own idea!

[The yellow Italian cotton lace is again from the Resolutions kit and the rest is from my own stash].

I'm so tempted to make dolls for each and every possible occasion next year and just wish I'd thought of the idea sooner so i could have a heavenly host all ready to hand out as gifts next week. But come next Christmas everyone I know will be getting a fabric doll!! Unless ....

...unless, and as unlikely as this may sound, unless I get distracted by yet another shiny, pretty, new craft in the meantime... but, really though, how often does that happen .....??

J :)

p.s: there's a smidgen more decoratively festive / festively decorative inspiration from Kirsty and I in the new Copy+Paste challenge we posted today!


  1. Oh-so pretty, especially in Coraline yellow.

    I like to think if I were an angel, I too would have a halo made from buttons.


  2. This is just some kind of awesome :)

  3. Tee-hee! I know just what you mean about being impatient.. and ever-distracted by shiny new crafts!

    Your angel is an absolute darling, esp with her head tilted so alluringly.

  4. Nicely done! I love that last photo with the yellow accents. That Russian Art programme is fab isn't it? Looking forward to next weeks already

  5. This is so fun and beautiful! Awesome job!


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