Looks like 2018 was the year of the handmade toy for me!

I love making things for my daughter. There is nothing quite like seeing Claudia wear something I’ve made just for her, but as nice as handmade clothes are, it’s the toys that really get her attention! I’d definitely feel like I was letting her down if I didn’t make something for her birthday (it can be an ugly-crying snotty mess when mummy guilt and lofty ideals collide over a Pinterest board of dreams!).

I never really know what toy is going to be a hit (like Snuggle Rainbow, who is now a bedtime essential) or just a momentary distraction (like poor old Kenny the duck), but the crochet dolly I made for Claudia’s birthday seems to have fallen somewhere between the two extremes.

Her name is Violet (for obvious reasons!) and I started with Princess Sophie Doll pattern by Kali Dahle but didn’t feel a princess doll was quite right for Claudia.

I swapped the crown for a headband with insect-like antennas and customised the dress with some beautiful butterfly wings, and voila! Not so much a princess or flower fairy, as a cheeky little bug dolly, flying in to mischief and adventure! Much more Claudia’s cup of tea.

Violet has been on a few adventures, including hiding out at my sister’s house for a heart-stopping couple of weeks, but she hasn’t been quite the travelling companion that Molly was.

Molly went everywhere with Claudia for a solid year and a half, and was much admired by everyone (except that one woman who can’t have been wearing her glasses. Molly looks NOTHING like a monkey!) So it didn’t take long before the suggestion to make more dollies for other people started to pop up.

I’ve made a couple now for the children of friends (and another one is waiting for her dress before going to her new owner). I even started looking into CE mark testing so I could make more to sell, but finding the time is proving challenging!

November and December passed in a frenzy of crochet in my now annual attempt to make all of my family’s presents.

Most got an amigurumi Christmas tree, but my brother got the Flying Spaghetti Monster that he’d requested years ago (after I made him an amigurumi Cthulu), and my mum got an angel to hang on her tree. Inspired by their roles in their nativity plays, I also made a Roman soldier and an angel for my friend’s children.

With Claudia’s present, I cheated a little. I’d started making all the animals from Mick Inkpen’s book The Great Pet Sale over the summer, but I stalled after making the rat, terrapin, turtle, tortoise, gecko, skink, salamander and ant-eater.

I’d intended to do the dozen or so other animals in time for Christmas, but it never happened, so they are still on my to do list. Claudia was thrilled with the ones I have finished, and loves hearing the story with all the toys as props!

I needed a little break from amigurumi after Christmas, so my current projects are a couple of crochet blankets, and a knitted scarf for my best friend. I’m ignoring my purple fluffy jumper for the time being as I can’t face dealing with the dropped stitches in the sleeve! I’m hoping I’ll have better luck with it when the days are longer and the light is brighter!

I wonder which of my many projects I’ll finish this year!



4 thoughts on “Looks like 2018 was the year of the handmade toy for me!

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