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Dollmaker's Journey

November 2008 Issue 84

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Dream ~ Imagine ~ Create ~ Grow ~ Believe ~ Magic
At we help your creative dreams come true.

November 2008 Issue 84

Copyright 2008 by Dollmaker’s Journey

Dollmaker’s Journey Customer Connection newsletter is a free e-mail newsletter. Tell your friends, family and fellow dollmakers about us, and feel free to forward this newsletter to those who might be interested. You can visit our companion website at:


You can read all the past issues online. Go to:
The archives include an easy to follow index to all the past issues.

Dear Dollmaking Friends,

As the year draws to a close, it is time to reflect on family and friends, both new and old, that have enriched our lives. We are grateful for whatever quirk the powers that be gave us to be able to see life through "rose colored glasses". It's fun to visualize the amazing things one can do with an acorn cap, a leaf, a piece of rope, or a drain strainer (makes a great king's crown!)

Estelle Katz poses an interesting question. She wrote: "I came across something in Madeleine Maddocks' books that got me to thinking. She says never to say that you make dolls because immediately people think of toys for children which is not what most of us make. I know that when people ask me what I do and I tell them that I make dolls, their first response is "oh do you knit them" Horrors. She mentions something about fabric people and does hit upon the fact that many of us who work in fabric are not thought of as crafts people or this being an art form in any way. My oldest daughter is a master quilter and seldom uses someone else's designs but is judged on the same level as "did you make that skirt". Not snubbing people who use fabric for clothing as this is an art in itself, but am trying to bring myself and others like me into the fibre artists level. Have you ever given it any thought? Would love to hear your ideas. I don't think that there is a doll in my house that could be played with or really handled by dirty hands. I heard a story recently by a museum curator, who when asked to be careful in handling a quilt was told, but it is only a quilt. Love to hear your thoughts."

I have graduated from a crafter, to a doll maker, to a doll artist, to a fiber artist, to a writer and pattern designer. Do any of you have a special term or phrase to identify what you do? If so, please share them with all of us by emailing Bonnie at At Dollmaker's Journey we carry a variety of patterns, but tend to specialize in the "art doll" genre. And yet, Estelle is correct. When I mention the term "dolls" people look at me with a condescending smile and say, "How sweet", not realizing that many of the things I make are NOT suitable for children. I began my journey making Raggedy Ann and Andy dolls for my children, transitioned to porcelain with a kiln and lots of molds, and finally returned to my first love, fabric, because with cloth you are not limited by someone else's vision. I still love rag dolls, love trying new patterns, but also enjoy the challenge of creating something wonderful from scissors, thread, fabric and lots of imagination.

Bonnie and Mary Ann


Our NOVEMBER SALE continues through Sunday with 20% off everything in our brand new STUMP DOLL category. Be sure to check out this diverse array of patterns.


Q: Triskaidekaphobia is the unnatural fear of what?

A: The number 13.

Congratulations to Mavis Huntley from British Columbia, Canada. Your name was selected at random from all of the correct quiz entries, and you will receive a $10 gift certificate from Dollmaker’s Journey. Watch for your name in a coming month!


Since November is a time for remembering friends and family, the question of the month is:
Q: Who was it that said, "The only way to have a friend is to be one!"
A. Robert Frost
B. Rene Descartes
C. Abraham Lincoln
D. Ralph Waldo Emerson

Everyone who emails in the correct answers by December 15th will be entered into a drawing for a $10 gift certificate to Dollmaker’s Journey. The winner will be announced in the next newsletter. Email your answers to Bonnie at Put October Quiz in subject box. Please include your full name and where you live (state/country) in your email. NOTE: Several times in the past a winner was drawn with no name or state/country included. When that happens we have to draw again. So please, make sure you include this information with your answer.


Estelle Katz writes: Once again I have used a Doll for all Seasons Pattern. This time she became Joan of Arc. I wanted to submit her as a Woman of Valour, but as some of the women in my guild are quite orthodox I don't think that they would have appreciated it.
What I did do, however, was straighten braided mohair. The straight stuff that I have is awful, so I unbraided pieces of the hair, sprayed it with hair spray and used my straightening iron. Not as sleek as I would like it, but it does work. I sewed the fibers in the middle so that one side folded back over the stitches. It actually covered very well. Now if I can stop getting fibre in my mouth I will be happy.
(You can see Estelle's Joan of Arc at )



Q: Do you have any patterns for Indian dolls?

A: If you go to and click on pattern category, then ethnic, you will find several suitable Indian patterns. Each of these patterns include directions for both the doll body and clothing. Keep scrolling through pages - some are on the last page.
You can also check out
Scroll down to the November doll. Noonapokus is my version of a 1620's Wampanoga Indian girl. You will need two patterns for this doll. First, you need the basic Doll for All Seasons pattern for the body. There are many patterns for clothing that fit this doll. Then get the November Noonapokus pattern for the clothes, with directions for how to make the hair, make the moccasins, weave the basket from raffia. For any of these dolls, you might want to get some ethnic fabric (#10 - #12 are American Indian shades). For long straight hair check out beauty supply stores such as Sally's Beauty Supply. They sell hair for as little as $4.95 that can be used for many dolls. This is what I used for her long braided hair. We sell leather and leather cord to make her moccasins.

By Bonnie B. Lewis

When I was a young mother with 8 children we didn't have a lot of money. I took each child into my bedroom and we planned what they would give each other for Christmas. Sometimes it was coupon books (good for 1 clean kitchen, good for 1 free babysitting, etc.) Sometimes it was stories they wrote and illustrated. But most often it was the joy of learning to make something special with their mom.

In today's hurried, busy world, too often parents don't have the time to spend a lot of time creating something special with their children. It is easy to go to the store and buy things made by others. I decided this year that I would give all my grandchildren (ages 5 and up) a gift of a day with Grandma where they would make gifts for their family. They usually come the night before, spend the night, and then bright and early the next morning we begin. I ask each child for their ideas of what to make for their siblings and parents. Often they don't have a clue. Sometimes they only want to make things for themselves. That is where the grandma book of ideas come in handy.

I collected a series of gift ideas from my many craft books and doll magazines. Often the children would have other ideas they wanted to try. A great resource was We printed out directions for magic kits, juggling kits, puppets, etc. and included everything needed to perform the tricks, including vegetable-shaped bean bags (filled with plastic pellets so they could be washed.)

Some ideas we have made so far include: felt, rod and stick puppets, a puppet theater, magic kits, science kits, juggling kits, cookie and soup mix in a jar, jewelry, sock dolls, paper dolls, paper airplane and origami kits, puzzles (we pasted pictures of dolls from magazine ads on different colors of cardboard, laminated them, and cut them out in different shapes and put them in Ziploc bags – these were suitable for age 2 on up.) Currently I am working with my 11-year old grandson making paper dolls, arctic seals and penguins, stress buster frogs and butterflies (don't ask!) and before the day is done who knows what else we will create! We print gift cards out from the computer, they wrap each gift, and it is really fun to bring each child home with an armful of gifts they have made all by themselves (sometimes with a little or lot of help from Grandma!) I am including a recipe for Cowboy Cookies that can be layered in either a quart and pint jar or in a 1-1/2 quart jar. Directions are attached to the jar, the lid is decorated with a ribbon and flowers, and a circle of fabric is sandwiched between the lid and the ring.

I hope some of you are able to make a special memory with a child this year by helping them realize the joys of giving and not just receiving. Have a wonderful holiday season !

JUST FOR FUN – Cowboy Cookies in a Jar

Cowboy Cookie Mix in a Jar (Bonnie Lewis)

Layer these ingredients in order in a quart jar:
1-1/2 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
1-1/3 cups all-purpose flour mixed with:
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt

Instructions to attach to jar:

Cowboy Cookie Mix in a Jar
In a large mixing bowl mix together:
1/2 cup butter or margarine softened at room temperature
1 egg, slightly beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla
Stir in entire contents of cookie mix from the jar. Mix until completely blended. You may need to use your hands to finish mixing. Shape into walnut sized balls and place 2 inches apart on prepared (greased) cookie sheet. Bake at 350° F. for 11 to 13 minutes. Transfer from cookie sheets to cool on wire racks. Makes 3 dozen cookies.

INTERESTING WEBSITE - The Century in Shoes

"The magic of Dorothy's ruby slippers ... the hip-swinging appeal of Elvis's blue suede shoes ... the unadulterated excess of Imelda's footwear collection," are prime examples of how the story of the
twentieth century can be told from the feet up, or rather, forward! Solemates presents a unique history through a decade-by-decade tour of footwear, documented by illustrations, news items, fashion highlights, advertisements from the period, accompanied by appropriate music of the era. Here's your opportunity to understand "how shoes, an item of such practical purpose, have come to reflect the changing passions, perspectives, and ideals of our culture. We can either hide them or flaunt them, but they will always say something about who we are, what we do, where we've been, and where we're going." Put your best foot forward as you step through the Century in Shoes!


Mermaid and Merwomen in Black Folklore Art Doll and Art Quilt Opportunity
February 20 – March 31, 2009
You can get all the details here -

2009 All Dolled Up: Beaded Art Doll Competition
Due date: August 31, 2009
Theme: Earthen Mother
Official rules posted here:


December 3-6, 2008 – Dazzling Daze with Patti Culea
San Diego, California
Private workshop with room and board included.
For more information about the workshop go to or contact Patti at

April 30 – May 3, 2009 – Artistic Figures in Cloth
Columbus, Ohio
For information go to

June 11 – 14, 2009 - Figurative Artists Consortium Conference
Ottawa, Ontario
Check out their website at

July 11-14, 2009 - National Doll Festival
Atlanta, Georgia
Holiday Inn Select Capitol Conference Center
Free shuttle bus to Marriott Marquis
Email for further information

July 2009 – UFDC (United Federation of Doll Clubs) National Convention
Atlanta, Georgia
Marriott Marquis in downtown Atlanta

July 2009 – ODACA (Original Doll Artists Council of America) National Convention
Atlanta, Georgia
Marriott Marquis in downtown Atlanta

July 2009 – NIADA (National Institute of American Doll Artists) National Convention
Atlanta, Georgia

To save yourself time and energy, get all the details on upcoming doll related events at CLOTH DOLL CONNECTION:


"Judy Bee", a whimsical lady bee is a free doll pin pattern created by Connie McBride Johnson.

Free rag doll pattern

Free Snow People pattern from Deanna Hogan (also free fairy and angel pattern)
Go to http:// and click on free pattern (on right side of page)


Come meet the delightful new character from the fertile imagination of New Zealand’s JILL MAAS – the one and only “Frumpy Grumps.” She’s known as a gentle soul with a strong disposition. We think you’re going to love her as much as we do.

JANE HOUCK has just released the most amazing fairy pattern called “Willow.” With an incredible array of mix and match body parts and wings, the posing possibilities are endless!

The ANN CLEMENS patterns we have been waiting for –“Blossom,” “Wattle Nymph” and “Dream Keeper” are finally back in stock along with PATTI-ANN STANLEY’S “Adam & Edie” and “The Tinys.”

SHELLEY HAWKEY must never sleep, she just keeps imagining marvelous characters for your creative enjoyment. We are thrilled to have her 3 newest - "Duet" the sewing fairy, "Alissa" the sweet pixie and the incredibly adorable "Baby Bedbug." Why not treat yourself to one!

Our Down Under Designers are just as busy. From SUZETTE RUGOLO we have her magnificent "Mr. Hare & His Tortoise"
and MICHELLE MUNZONE treats us to some really charming Christmas Ornaments called "Jingles.

If you are looking to make some extremely quick and easy holiday gifts check out BUNNY GOODE'S "The Winters" and "Penny & Sonny." (Both are on sale, too!) We also have her beautiful "Pansy" with a decoupaged body.

PATTI LA VALLEY has retired one of her most popular classes "Best Friends" and turned it into a delightful pattern with tons of great construction

Who doesn't know a "Crazy Quilter!" JULIE MC CULLOUGH has updated and re-released one of her earlier patterns for your creative enjoyment.

Every little girl (young or old) deserves a "Pretty Princess & Charming Frog" and LESLIE MOLEN treats us to an especially lovely one.

If you are looking for a quick and easy gift to make from your favorite scraps then GEORGIA MANNING LEWIS' "Mug Bucket" is just the ticket. Turn a standard coffee mug into a perfect organizer.

The pages of “Making Gourd Dolls and Spirit Figures” by GINGER SUMMIT and JIM WIDESS are just overflowing with inspiration. You will be amazed, intrigued and delighted by the fabulous creations within.

MIRIAM GOURLEY's “Making Dolls for the First Time” is the perfect book for new dollmakers as the beautiful step-by-step photographs illustrate a variety of important dollmaking techniques.

We are delighted to have DEANNA HOGAN’S beautiful “Verity” and as always, her instructions are exquisitely detailed with an abundance of photos.

SHERRY GOSHON has just released a charming holiday doll named “Celyn.” Click here to find out what the name means.

You can also see pictures of Jackie Earwood's version of Sherry Goshen's new Christmas pattern, Celyn at


Barb Keeling shared the following: I found a neat book called "Life's Little Instruction Book". It is full of "thoughts worth thinking about" and "thoughtful thoughts". Here are a couple:

"Every so often push your luck"
"Commit yourself to quality"
"Be willing to lose a battle in order to win the war"

Sounds like this book would make a great gift!


Customer Billie Mahaney is the president of her local UFDC (United Federation of Doll Clubs) chapter. She backed pieces of fine batiste fabric with the iron-on Freezer Paper Sheets - and printed out the lovely “My Big Dolly’s Dolly” as gifts for the members of her club. What a great idea! Thanks for sharing, Billie.

If you have any ideas to share we’d love to hear them! Just drop Bonnie a line at


TIBETAN LAMB - We've just added two yummy new colors of Tibetan Lamb - Mauve and a gorgeous shade of Green - and we're happy to report that we are now fully stocked with our best selling Pale Blonde and Light Auburn.

CURLY HAIR - The Black and Lemon Ash Curly Hair are back in stock, too.


Bonnie's home is overflowing with family and friends. She is busy doing Santa's Workshops with her grandchildren, helping a friend who just underwent hip replacement surgery, her brother-in-law came for two weeks from Utah, her daughter-in-law and granddaughter stayed for a week, and 35 people are coming for Thanksgiving. Sorry the newsletter is so late, but sometimes life just gets in the way. She did go to G Street Fabrics Doll Club. In October she taught them how to use Paverpol. In November she took a class from Judi Ward who showed everyone how to make wonderful fairy chairs out of wire, strips of fabric, and lots of imagination. She actually finished two of them. Currently she is finishing 25 ornaments for church using our free pattern "Lil Christmas Ornament" by Sherry Goshon (

Last week Mary Ann journeyed to a wonderful area of Virginia called the Northern Neck and had a ball teaching two days of classes at The Material Girl Quilt Shop. She’s been told that there are only two traffic lights in the entire county! On the first day the students learned classic millinery techniques through the construction of fabulous red doll hats. The second day was devoted to basic shoe making techniques. Best of all Mary Ann was able to stay with her dear friend Joy Young in the exquisite retirement home Joy and her husband Bob built on the river. This week Mak and Jim will travel north to New Jersey to spend the Thanksgiving Holiday with her family and they want to wish everyone a safe and happy holiday weekend.


Want to sell your dolls? is free where you can buy, list and sell dolls.
There is a similar website for teddy bears called

We’d love to hear your thoughts about our Customer Connection newsletter.

Contact the editor Bonnie B. Lewis at with any comments, suggestions, etc.
Please feel free to pass this newsletter on to any of your friends. Help us spread the word about Dollmaker’s Journey! All we ask is that you forward it intact, with all the subscription information included. Thanks!

(By the way, you might want to print this out and put it into a binder to keep for reference….) To subscribe to Dollmaker’s Journey Customer Connection, go to:

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