Sunday, June 30, 2013

Dolly Makeover

   Two years ago my sister-in-law started teaching preschool in a Waldorf-type classroom.  Everything in the room was expected to be made from natural materials, and homemade items were very much encouraged.  Plastic was a total no-no.  Most of the classroom items she had collected over the years were, indeed, plastic, so she was kind of starting over.  To help her build a new collection, I made these dolls for her four year olds to play with:

   As you can see, they have no facial features other than eyes, and their clothes are very plain.  The idea is to leave as much as possible to the children's imaginations.

   Fast forward two years, and my sister-in-law is no longer going to be working in the same setting.  We went to pick up her personal items, and her dolls were, shall we say, well loved.  The boy was stark naked and much of his hair was half off his head.  The girl had been hugged to the point of looking like she had a serious eating disorder.  Her dress was a crumpled mess, although she, at least, had a dress!  I wish I had taken pictures of them, but I fell down on the job there.

   Next year my niece will be teaching in a more traditional first grade classroom, which I'm helping her set up.  It occurred to me that her mother's dolls could be made over to be reading buddies for her students.  Let's just say a sewing vortex came upon me!  In one day they went from a mess to this:

   The girl got added stuffing, and both got new clothes and actual faces.  I have to admit that much as I think there's a lot to be said for Waldorf programs, I like the refurbished dollies much better.  As for the icky green dress, it's now a Christmas dress.  Just add ribbon and lace, and poof! 

The color in this pic is pretty gross, but you get the idea.


Designed by Lena Graphics by Melany