Saturday, January 3, 2015

Up For A Challenge?

A new year is here and I think it's time for a challenge. I'll start. I have a little project that I started a few years ago that is easy, fun and brings a smile to some pretty cute faces. Let me give you some background and some details.

As a crafter I usually find myself left with some extra yarn and or fabric when I finish one of my projects. Most of you who knit have tiny little balls of yarn stuck here and there that you can't bear to part with. You're just waiting for the right small project to come along. The same with those of us who sew. There are always little scraps of fabric left over that get folded up in the cabinet.

Well, I have a plan for all those leftovers.

I knit baby blankets and sweaters for charity and a few years ago when we delivered a box of them to a local hospital, the woman who accepted them asked if we had included any toys for the kids in the pediatric ward. I hadn't at the time but I started thinking about her request.

I bought a baby doll about 18inches long. Now is a good time to pick one up. After Christmas, prices often are low.
One day at a garage sale I found this wooden doll cradle and picked it up for $2.
Some scraps of fabric made a blanket for the cradle. I'm currently working on a wardrobe for this little babydoll and then she'll be donated either to a hospital or shelter. Some children away from their home for reasons out of their control can have a baby doll to cuddle and dress.
If you take the challenge I have some tips I've learned.
1. Use washable yarns and fabrics. Kids are messy. Save the $40 a skein imported wool for another project.
2.Kids are attracted to bright colors. If you usually work with beige and grey, add a little yellow or bright pink.
3. Whenever possible substitute velcro fasteners for buttons and zippers. They're easier for little hands.
I challenge you crafty ladies out there in Blogville to get a doll and dress it this year for a child in need. You'll be amazed how much fun it is and you'll put all those leftovers to good use. You'll be transported back to when you loved playing with dolls and let's face it, most of us secretly would like to go back to a simpler time occasionally.

You can also use a stuffed animal and make some neat outfits for it. Bears, dogs and bunnies all look sharp in handmade clothes. If you only have tiny bits of leftovers to spare and not enough time, consider dressing a Barbie doll. You can buy a basic one for a couple dollars or find one at a garage sale. The internet is full of free patterns, I can direct you to some.

There's no time limit and no great expenditure involved. Take a month, a year or whatever time it takes.  One item a month will add up to a nice wardrobe. Think of the benefits. You make a child or a whole hospital ward full of children happy. You use up some of that stash that's been hanging around for years and you get to go out and buy more to replace it. Win-win.
Who's up for a challenge?


Hailey and Zaphod and their Lady said...

Wish I was crafty as this is a great idea!

Bella Roxy & Macdui said...

That's a fantastic project. SHE used to reborn the dolls...but hasn't done it for a few years. Never made any clothes though.

Sam said...

Unfortunately no one at this house knits. Although we'll volunteer to lick the faces of the kids.

Foley Monster and Pocket said...

I am not a crafty lady but that is a very sweet thing to do.

Foley Monster and Pocket said...

I am not crafty but I think this is a tremendous thing that you are doing.

Mitch and Molly said...

Bless you, Miss Sue! What a fun project and one that will be appreciated for years and years!

Jeanne Pursell said...

What a wonderful gift! I am not in to knitting or crocheting...although I wish I could!! I am currently working on a project donating many things to our local humane society.

Lindsey Lewandowski said...

Sounds like a fun project! I need to learn how to knit. I only know how to crochet simple things like blankets.

Marjie said...

This is a very nice idea, and you will certainly make some children very happy playing with that doll. I have a baby blanket to make for my oldest daughter's college friend, whose baby shower (in Wyoming) is in March. I"m not going, but I'll send it with Shannon, and you've given me an idea for the extra yarn (because I bought 3 pounds, acrylic, of course, to avoid allergies and make it washable).

Nichole Burke said...

That is a wonderful idea and great charity craft project! Several years ago, I used to go to a 1-day knitting retreat where we had to bring along "dressed" teddy bears to donate... it was so much fun making teddy bear sweaters, ponchos, etc.