Today we have torrential rain – blogging weather – so I will tell you about the diversion I have taken this week from knitting and the miniature projects.
It began with operation Freya’s Christmas present. Or perhaps it began a long time ago…
For a number of years, when my children were still children, we lived in London and sometimes, on the way home from school, we would visit a most marvellous toy shop in South Kensington called Tridias (which I believe closed some time ago). The toys were of exceptional quality and (in those days at least) were often not to be found elsewhere. The dolls, in particular, were beautiful and one of the most beautiful was a vanilla scented baby doll that came in a basket with a number of accessories. We took her home for my younger daughter’s birthday and she called her Lottie.
So what I really wanted to find for Freya, now she is one, was a baby doll just like Lottie.
After much searching, I decided on this doll. She is 30cm (12″), so not too heavy and is recommended from 18 months. She has the Corolle signature vanilla scent and, if you press her tummy, she says Mama and Dada, laughs, makes an odd noise which I think is meant to sound like a kiss and plays thee tunes. She is not as pretty as Lottie but Freya loves music and dances with her teddies so I think this little doll will be just right for her.
I have been trying to make her a carry cot but it’s not going well. The box prototype was ok but I tried repurposing an old caravan and I should have used Soft and Stable or something. I will think about how to get it to keep its shape for a day or two and, unless I come up with something both effective and baby proof, I think I will just abandon the hood :(
Edited to add: I hope the carrycot is ok now. I stab stitched the the outer and inner sections together through their seams, undid the binding and pushed in a layer of soft and stable (then re-did the binding) and it’s far from perfect but I think it’s looking much better…
Meanwhile, I will introduce you to Katie.
During my search for the baby doll, I came across Petalina and I was immediately transported back in time to those days in Tridias. I’ve always thought it better to have one good quality doll than a large number of unremarkable ones and, should you happen to want to research a wide array good quality dolls (with suggestions of age suitability etc), then Petalina is the perfect place to start.
It was there that I discovered the Gotz Happy Kidz range.
Gotz is a family business and you can see their range of dolls here or learn about their history and see how they make their dolls in this youtube video.
And that brings me to Katie.
Katie is a Gotz Happy Kidz doll, which means she is a 50cm (19 1/2″) tall, she can stand by herself and she has nine joints (shoulders, elbows, hips, knees and neck) making her quite poseable. She also has shampoo-able and styleable hair and is safe from three years, though recommended for playing from about five.
I bought her from KR Bears and Dolls, which had the friendliest customer service I’ve come across in years and very speedy shipping.
As to why I bought her, I don’t really have any good explanation. I was just enchanted by all those dolls I looked at and, in another life, I would love to be a doll maker, or more precisely, a costumier for dolls. And after all the miniature things I’ve worked on lately, I feel it would just be nice to work with something a bit bigger and not so fiddly and, unless I actually do become a costumier for dolls in this life, it is only a few years before Freya can have her. So I selected the Happy Kidz range for size and poseability and the fact that they are toys, rather than a collectors items. And I chose Katie for her eyes, which are the same blue as mine and Freya’s. After having five children all with brown eyes, I am amazed to have a granddaughter with eyes just like mine so why not a doll as well? I also love her boots and hat!
I really dislike her clothes, though, and I do think it’s a shame she doesn’t look a bit happier…perhaps a new outfit will cheer her up.
I have been calling her Katie in this post because that is her boxed name and someone may chance to come by who would be interested to see her otherwise than with the stock images and description, which I kept seeing when I was trying to investigate these dolls. I should have liked to have come across a post like this whilst I was deciding.
Next time you see her, I think she will be called something else :)
Janine @ Rainbow Hare