Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Felt Nesting Dolls

It's that time of year, just before Halloween, when one starts to think about Christmas. At least I do. I imagine most mothers are like me...as the days get shorter, our hands start to itch with wanting to make stuff. Usually, this time of year sees me busily crafting five times five little items to share with other mama friends, to create our beautiful Advent Sticks. This has been a beloved tradition for the past four years.

This year, we collectively decided that we're busy enough with work, housekeeping, the various animals in our care (dogs, cats, chickens, bees, horses, etc.), and our children's extra curriculars (hockey, stepdancing, piano, singing, etc.), and that maybe this year we could...well...ease off a bit.

This led us to decide that we'll each craft five items only, to share with one another at a gathering sometime before Christmas. We'll add in a bottle of wine (or three) to the gathering, and all will be merry!

I had already begun these little felt Russian Nesting Dolls (they don't really nest!), and have decided that these will be my gift to my dear friends in crafting, mothering, and everyday life. Traditionally, these dolls come in all varieties; I've seen nesting angels, and a nesting Farmer in the Dell set.

There's something so sweet and charming about the Peasant Mother style of Matryoshka, though, isn't there? Even the name sounds maternal. Our little circle of mamas is not comprised of blondes in kerchiefs, but the sentiment is the same.

The serene face, the healthy figure, the roses in the cheeks: these are mamas that have found their wisdom and peace in their roles.

They embrace the busyness of their lives, and know when to take a moment to rest.

They also have great fashion sense, and looked so sweet near this red bowl of eggs that I couldn't resist adding it as a prop to this photo shoot!

The pattern came from Better Homes and Garden's Holiday Crafts magazine, which I buy every year at the grocery store. It's well worth the cost; this year's edition contains many lovely felt projects, with wonderful patterns. I have a few others on the go and will share as I complete them.


  1. Your stitching is beautiful! Your friends will love these, I'm sure.

  2. But what about the surprise factor? Now they all know ! :)
    I should get that mag and see if there is anything I can do it. Beginners welcome?

  3. These little treasures are just so beautiful, I love the detail, very inspirational.

  4. Cute! They would make precious ornaments. I wonder if that version of the mag is available in the US?

  5. Beautiful dolls and an even more wonderful tradition.

  6. I would love to see the farmer in the dell set, my nieces would love them! Is it in the magazine as well? We have a no battery, soundmaking, drive a parent crazy rule between siblings for kids gift. This would work well :)

  7. These are beautiful! I wanted to buy my children nesting dolls for the holidays last year, you can find some really wonderful ones online. Some are expensive, but many are made for children and quite lovely.

    I am sewing part of my sons Halloween costume from felt - using felt to create the spikes on his back as he'll be a dinosaur. It's the easiest material to find in vibrant colours and just the right feel to stand up straight. I shall post photos on my blog when I am done. I like felt because I can hand sew it, which means I can take it nearly anywhere and it's easier to complete a profect. Machine sewing means that I have to begin and complete a project in one sitting, or I have to put everythign away at the end of the night so little hands don't get into things they should not. Now, I think I might have to rush off and find the magazine you speak of....Squee!


  8. Sorry for the typos! (Time for bed..)

  9. They are gorgeous! I love that you have local mamas to swapwith, so nice.

  10. Your Matryoshka's are so pretty, and your stitching is so great!


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