Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Christmas gifts for Lexie and Jenny

These dresses were too big for the stockings by the fireplace, however Jenny and Lexie were very pleased to have Christmas dresses this year.

Lexie and Jenny in their Christmas dresses
I bought these lovely felt dress sets from a seller on ebay.  Clothes for these adorable girls by Heather Maciak come available so rarely and I was lucky enough to be the only bidder.  Each dress has a matching faux fur hat and long sleeved top.  Apparently they were made by Karen P.

Jenny and Lexie (and I) would like to wish all those who read this blog a Merry Christmas and a Happy 2014.

Saturday, 28 December 2013

Sasha Secret Santa Swap 2013

Once again I participated in Lorraine's Secret Santa Swap for Sasha dolls.

I was asked for the following:

My wish: I would like someone to sew for either my Sasha babies or Gregors. We live in Australia so summer wear would be great but the Gregors are happy to wear long pants. Maybe a romper for the baby. We are happy with surprise. Many thanks, Sonya

I asked what Sonya's boy dolls were called and their hair colour and she sent the following via Lorraine:

My red head boy is named after my red head son, Jacob. My blonde boy is twin to my blonde son, Ben. Rodney is my brunette boy named after my hubby and Caleb was named by trendon! My sexed baby boy is Jack.

I set to work at the sewing machine to make summer clothes and came up with the following:
  • (for Caleb) This dashiki with hat and summer shorts is made using traditional, genuine Shweshwe fabric from Cape Town, South Africa (made by Da Gama fabrics http://www.dagama.co.za/).  A dashiki is a colourful top from West Africa – see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dashiki.  It normally isn’t made with shweshwe, which is a South African fabric.  For the history of shweshwe see http://www.dagama.co.za/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=102&Itemid=164.  So this set is my own design based on African designs.  It could be worn by a girl or a boy.
  • The t-shirt, shorts and hat (for Rodney) and baby romper and hat (for Jack) I made too, using patterns from the three Ann’s book (though I adapted the t-shirt pattern slightly from a simple top).
  • (gift for Sonya) The beads are traditional African beads, Sasha dolls could wear them around their waists, in their hair or you could wear them as bracelets. 
Baby Leo models the romper and hat for Jack
Nicholas James in the elephant themed outfit 
Reuben in the Dashiki outfit
African beads
Reuben, Nicholas James, Leo and visiting baby Drake in the outfits I sewed during November 
I received the following message from Sonya when the parcel arrived in Australia:

I hope you do not mind, I asked Lorraine for your email so I could write to thank you so much for my beautiful Sasha gifts! I didn't wait for Santa before opening them. You have such creative talent! I wish i could sew. Only very basics for me! I do knit a bit. I love elephants so your choice of fabric for Rodney was brilliant! We have a spoilt dog in our house so I loved the doggy paws fabric for Jack too! Caleb is so handsome in his African outfit, they are sitting next to the Christmas tree looking very festive for our Aussie summer. Thank you so very much. God bless and merry Christmas
Love sonya
Rodney, Jack and Caleb in Australia wearing their summer outfits
I asked for any 3 of the following:
  • baby boy shoes (t-bar or lace ups, blue or white) for baby Leo
  • miniature book(s) for babies or Sasha/Gregor
  • miniature pencil crayons for Sasha/Gregor
  • boy dungarees for baby Leo (blond hair)
  • winter duffle coat for Laura (red hair)
On 23rd December I received the following from Kim in the USA (which we didn't open until Christmas day):
  • Khaki trousers and brown sweater for baby Leo
  • Beige Crochet shoes which fit Gregor/Sasha
  • Adorable sandals which fit baby Leo
  • A domed treasure chest made of wood
  • A crochet Christmas tree decoration
  • A straw angel Christmas tree decoration
  • A wooden nutcracker Christmas tree decoration
  • An 'Our Generation' dolls backpack with apple, water bottle and pen set (for 18" dolls but fits Sasha nicely)
  • A box of Christmas chocolates
  • A sparkly mini notebook
  • Christmas stickers
Thank you Kim - what a wonderful collection of goodies for the Sasha/Gregor dolls, they're going to provide a great deal of fun for my girls and me.

As it happens I had just made Baby Leo a pair of denim dungarees and Christmas fabric shirt which he wore on Christmas Day, so a different outfit from what I had requested was very welcome.  In the following photos baby Mabel helps Leo show off all the things we received (wearing her Christmas dress I made and new tights).

Leo wears his sweater, trousers, sandals and shows off the nutcracker
Mabel shows off the Christmas angel
Leo's sandals
The Our Generation backpack and accessories
Christmas stickers, domed chest, chocolates, crochet decoration,
sparkly notebook and beige slippers from Kim
Straw angel and wooden nutcracker from Kim
Mabel and Leo with the lovely swap gifts we received from Kim
Thank you Lorraine for organising the swap again - it was a lot of fun to participate (planning and receiving surprises).

Friday, 27 December 2013

Happy Christmas to the dolls

The dolls in our home had a small Christmas tree, a visit from Father Christmas and some lovely gifts for Christmas 2013.

Last year at the Sasha Festival in Stratford upon Avon, Laura in Devon won the American Cora and all her clothes and accessories.  She recently decided that one or two of the outfits were not being used by her doll family and mentioned them on the Sasha Mart.  She then contacted me privately to find out if I'd be interested in a particular outfit - to swap for one of my Garden Games sets.  I was very happy to do the swap and she included lots of additional doll sized items she no longer wanted, which was very generous of her.  Several of these items turned into Father Christmas presents for the dolls - thank you so much Laura.

On Christmas Eve I found a delightful little fireplace in a local charity shop. It has little hooks for hanging stockings and a tealight holder behind the fireplace which makes it 'come alive'.  Jenny and Lexie my Heather Maciak dolls laid claim to it as soon as it was set up. I made a couple of tiny felt stockings for them to hang up (rather hurriedly late that evening). I had bought them a pair of outfits via ebay a month before, so having the fireplace to set the scene was a bonus.

Lexie and Jenny await Father Christmas with their stockings
Our fireplace (temporary, work in progress) and Christmas gifts for the dolls
The cloth Advent calendar my girls have enjoyed for the past 9 years and the temporary fireplace
Laura with her wonderful Sasha Festival Raffle cowgirl outfit (thanks to the other Laura) - my younger daughter was delighted with it
Nicholas James with his Elliott Shirt and jeans (Passion for Sasha) - see http://absolutely-sasha.blogspot.co.uk/2013/11/the-elliott-shirt.html
Baby Leo unwraps his snowman suit (thank you Laura) 
Peter unwraps his trumpet (I've had this hidden in a drawer for 3 years)
Peter tries his new trumpet
Reuben was pleased with his new sweater (thank you Laura)
Matilda was thrilled with her cow glove puppet (thank you Laura)
Jayne received some new plimsolls (also lurking in a drawer for ages)
Harriet adores her teddy with a lilac flower (thank you Laura)
Samantha thought the tartan dog glove puppet was super fun (thank you Laura)
Florence was overwhelmed with her new
blush pink Ruth Hartley shoes (thank you Laura)
Miranda discovered a Hattie hat and white tights in her parcel (thank you Laura).
I had finished sewing her Christmas dress on Christmas Eve.
Baby Mabel received new Christmas tights (I bought these from Michelle at the Chat n Snap)
Baby Mabel in the Christmas dress I made from the classic yoke dress pattern
 in the 3 Anns book and her new tights
Belle received pink bunny slippers (thank you Laura)
Matroshka received some miniature pencils (found in a local Charity shop)
Anna received some miniature playing cards (thank you Laura)
In addition, my younger girl received a Sylvanian families mini food set in her Christmas stocking which had come from Laura as well.

I will blog separately about Jenny and Lexie and what they received (it was too big for their stockings).

Later on Christmas Day we went to my cousin for 2 days hence the delay in posting this. I also unwrapped my Secret Santa Sasha swap gifts which had arrived on 23rd December, however I haven't had an opportunity to photograph them yet.  I will soon blog about them and what I sent.



Monday, 23 December 2013

Decorating the Christmas tree

On Friday evening my family decorated our Christmas tree.  We always have a real cut tree rather than an artificial one, even though we inevitably get a bit of needle drop during the 2 weeks the tree is in the house, however the smell of the tree in the house is well worth a small amount of mess.

The whole Sasha family helped with hanging baubles on the tree, even the babies.  I took photos of them all, but only 2 were worth sharing.
Laura hangs the handmade decoration her young owner made
Florence hangs the violin decoration
I'm doing some Christmas sewing for some of the dolls, but not as presents (I don't want eleventh hour present wrapping as the past 2 years!).

Sunday, 15 December 2013

Sasha Festival raffle stay at home

Back in the summer I entered my name in one of the 'stay at home' raffle draws for the 2013 Sasha Doll Festival which were posted on the Sasha Mart and was lucky enough to win one.  It was a lovely knitted sweater made by Tricia from a pattern by Erica Mcleod and made in wool which Erica had sent to her friend in England.  Tricia asked for a donation to a children's charity, so I sent a donation to Save the Children and I also sent Tricia a dress I made - one of the two Union Jack dresses I made as copies of the one I made for Erica for the 2012 Christmas swap.

Tricia was very pleased with the dress (she doesn't sew) and a few weeks later I received an unexpected packet in the post, containing a fat quarter of some very pretty Mabel Lucie Attwell fabric from Tricia, for me to make a dress for baby Mabel.  I was delighted because at the time Mabel didn't have a dress and what better than a fabric named for her!

I completed the dress in time for the Chat n Snap in October and baby Mabel wore it to that event.  But it is only now that I've finally got down to writing about it properly.  The dress has matching underwear and today I have made a bonnet to complete the outfit.

The sweater is a lovely soft pink and I think it goes well over the pinafore I made for Florence.  Yesterday I made her a pair of tights out of some patterned socks.  So for the colder weather Florence has tights and long sleeves to go with her autumn pinafore.

Thank you Tricia for the lovely sweater and fabric, as you can see from the photos baby Mabel and Florence are very pleased with their new clothes.

Florence and baby Mabel in their new clothes 
Baby Mabel in her Mabel Lucie Attwell outfit
Florence wearing the Erica sweater knitted by Tricia in wool from New Zealand 
Florence's patterned tights
side view showing baby Mabel's bonnet 
close up of the smocking and baby Mabel's eyes



Sunday, 8 December 2013

Travelling baby Drake visits us

Earlier this year Ronny wanted to help the homeless and decided to set a baby Gregor, called Drake, on a journey to several temporary homes on his quest to find a forever home.  The idea was for each of the host families to give him a good time and give him a gift, then send him to the next person.  So the baby who started out with nothing would have several things to take with him to his permanent home when he is auctioned.

Baby Drake arrived from Dee of Sasha Village a couple of weeks ago.

I made him a romper with matching sun hat in the South African shweshwe fabric, a felt ball and 5 felt blocks with his name spelled on them.

Drake's felt name blocks
Drake wearing the summer outfit I made and his new toys
 Drakes last day with us (with thanks to my younger daughter who helped with this story):
Drake has been playing with his friends baby Mabel and baby Leo
They were having fun sharing toys
Leo and his rattle
Drake plays with his felt blocks and ball
Laura comes to tell the babies it is time to put the toys away as it is bed time
Laura puts the toy owl on the chest of drawers
Baby Drake collects all his blocks...
...while baby Leo and baby Mabel put toys in the cart
Baby Drake puts his blocks into his hat
Baby Leo likes the pig glove puppet
They all snuggle down to listen to Florence read about the Christmas donkey
The story is all about a little donkey who carries Mary to Bethlehem
Baby Drake likes the story
and wonders when he will be going on a journey to his new home
baby Mabel cries and baby Leo gets upset too as they don't want their friend to leave
So they all snuggle into the cot together for one last sleep before Drake's journey
We have enjoyed hosting baby Drake and hope that he finds his forever home soon.