Ciela, Girl of the Autumn Sky 23″ Handmade Doll by Inviting Play

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We’ve come round to fall again.  The weather is turning.  The skies this time of year are mesmerizing and inspiring.  I often feel a surge of hope and happiness and inspiration and wonder just by opening the door and gazing upward.  So, under the blue blue skies of September, Ciela was born.  20160930_083730Oh she took her sweet time.

She was supposed to be complete by last Dollectable Day but then time marches on and now she lives under October Skies.

20161013_144409Ciela has the Inviting Play armature system; Buried deep inside her woolly tissue is a muscular skeletal system that allows her legs and arms and neck to bend slightly and hold gentle poses.  Although floppy at the shoulders and hips, she is very firm and feels just like a wool doll without armature.

20161014_120046Ciela has long black hair made from commercially wefted yak fiber.  She wears it down, or in braids, or in messy buns.  It grows really fast.  I can’t tell you how many times Ive had to trim her bangs!

20161013_144108I took her to a place you can look down at the Mississippi river and see the leaves turning on the bluffs.  I said, “look you can see the leaves all different colors and the cold waters of the Mississippi”.  And she said, “look at the sky”

20161013_143940I will tell you a story now.  Ciela isn’t the first sky inspired doll I’ve made.  She has a brother made several years ago now… many years ago…Cielo.  He was a boy of the autumn skies.  I’m telling you:  “there is something about how the sky looks this time of year.”  But anyway I will show you wee Cielo.  He is living example of how my dolls used to look many years ago.   Can you tell Ciela and Cielo were both made by me?

Cielo, aptly named, is a watcher of the skies. You'll often find him cloud or star gazing.
Cielo, aptly named, is a watcher of the skies. You’ll often find him cloud or star gazing.
Cielo, watcher of the skies, is an 8 inch Inviting Play Forest child. He is a traditional waldorf boy
Cielo, watcher of the skies, is an 8 inch Inviting Play child.

Back to Ciela.  She is the largest doll I make.  Very tall, quite big. “The bigger the better”, she says.

20161013_144628Ciela wears a light blue long sleeved t-shirt,  and green linen pants.  She wears striped socks, cotton undies and wooley slippers.  Her dress is another linen.  I bought this particular piece of linen to make a top for myself – but I half knew I never would.  If I did, I would have made a top like Ciela’s, something comfortable and baggy, with some asymmetrical things and wooden buttons.  Ciela also has a cozy soft woolen hand knit cap.

20161013_144313 I usually make something else for my dolls before I ship them.  I’m not sure what it will be for Ciela.  Earlier she wanted blue jeans and a warmer layer (brrrrrr its getting cold!).20161014_115526

 

Ciela is not a children’s toy.  She was designed to be played with by adults.

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Thank you for supporting handmade dolls, doll artists, and Inviting Play.  It is only with your support, that I am able to bring these wool souls into the world.  Thank you.
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Purchase Ciela Here !  A Buy Now paypal button will be added in this box at approximately 7pm Saturday Oct. 15, 2016

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23″ Ciela, Girl of the Autumn Sky by Inviting Play. Ciela’s price is $850 plus shipping. Please select a shipping option (USA (adds $40) or international (adds$75)). Shipping overages exceeding $1 will be refunded.

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Jasper age 11 in wool and cotton with cardboard weapon 23″ handmade doll

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After some colleagues and I completed our Minime Colaboration (May 2015), we discussed future collaborations and this idea of an all boy doll exhibit arose out of our discussions.  Boys.  we all know them, we birthed some of them either in the flesh or in our imaginations.  We love them as friends and brothers, dads, sons and lovers.
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Yet as dolls, boys are more rare.  So often we have pressure to make the next pretty face, the next beautiful girl.  But what is a cherished boy if not beautiful?  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lt3IOdDE5iA
And so, this exhibit is in honor of the boys we love in our dreams, imaginations, and in our homes.  My first son who is eleven, is Jasper and he was my muse for this doll.
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This is a recent picture of him taken after a long day of playing outside.
 And, in fact, my son was also a co-collaborator on this project as well.  He served as the doll’s mind and thoughts and wrote his penpal a letter on parchment paper that he made himself.
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He designed his sword and armor and he made them with cardboard, wood, tape, a bit of leather, and school glue and water.  There is an original dragon sketch on the chest plate that my son thought would bring dignity and courage to the look.
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 In addition, and importantly, I often ask my son for advice on colors and style.  He has always been a maker from the time he was a baby and usually has a really definitive idea of what he likes and doesn’t like.  He chose the old tarp fabric I used to make the doll’s cargo shorts from several choices I was toying with.
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Jasper the doll has the Inviting Play armature system; buried deep inside his woolly muscles is an armature that allows his legs and arms and neck to bend and hold gentle poses.  He is firm and feels just like a wool doll without armature.  He’s also perhaps the biggest and oldest (has the longest most mature proportions) doll that I have ever made.
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 His hair is made from alpaca fiber and has been dyed in a variety of natural shades of strawberry blonde.  It is a boyish mess of curls and strands and defies the comb and brush.  Jasper likes to sweep aside the too long strands from his eyes with his hand.jasper close up
Jasper the doll is a anatomically correct made to represent a prepubescent boy.
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Jasper will come with cotton boxer briefs, socks sewn from real socks that my son’s Oma knitted for him, wool and leather hiking shoes that fasten with a bit of elastic over wooden buttons, weathered cargo shorts with an overlarge collecting pocket and a loop for hanging swords, knives, or wands; a soft cotton blue t-shirt, a hand-knit hat made from soft alpaca yarn, and a couple other goodies and layers.
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Jasper the doll will be for sale in the Slugs and snails Hyena Cart store on May 26, 2016 at 8:05pm Eastern time:  http://hyenacart.com/penpals2016/st/8306/93867/Jasper-age-11-in-wool-and-cotton-with-cardboard-weapon-
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JennyB Enigmatic Soul

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inviting play weird closeup

Let me in!  Show me who you are?  are you shy?

inviting play sitting with face3

are you just lost in imagination?

inviting play cute stander 2

I can see there is confidence in there.  Be bold!

inviting play closeup hand

you will have to reach out sometimes – be the one to offer your hand first

Inviting Play Jennyb in the morning2

Its ok to sit alone don’t let people tell you it isn’t

inviting play jenny can pose

inviting play standing side

I watch you struggle to process something for which there are not words and I think: “JennyB,  you are enigmatic.”

inviting play linen dress closeup

I started working on JennyB many weeks ago.  At first I was working under the assumption that she would be one thing.  Something, an idea, that was stuck in my head, running thru my idyl thoughts, a memory from school days and I couldn’t get the name or the person out of my head.  Well, and then the weeks pass and the stitches mount and it turns out the hair you thought would be perfect is all wrong.  And SO, she is who she is and nothing more and always hard to define.   And JennyB is she.  Enigmatic.

With JennyB, I am once again experimenting with some mild pose-ability.  Buried deep in her muscular skeleton structure she has armature that allows her arms, legs, and neck to bend and hold their position.  The armature does not extend through her shoulders and hips so she can not hold her arms up or out but she can bend them around something.  The armature is not a 100% natural material.  However, by weight, JennyB is still mostly made of wool and cotton, and she feels just like my other dolls to the touch.  JennyB can stand against a wall and sit on her own.  and she is large (23″ tall) and hug-able.

It is no secret that blue and grey are the colors I gravitate toward and always want to use for my dolls.  So JennyB has comfortable cotton jeans and a blue cotton t-shirt and a snuggly warm wool vest in really yummy Madelinetosh yarn that I crocheted with a raised diamond stitch. (Its red wooden buttons made JennyB very happy! ) Of course she has cotton undies and socks.  Her dress is an organic Japanese linen that I just love and her boots are leather, lined with linen, and fastened with  etched metal buttons.

JennyB will be auctioned in the Dollectable shop on Sunday, March 1, 2015 at 7pm Eastern and 6pm here in Minnesota.  Her auction is SHORT – just 15 minutes.  The link for her auction is here:  http://hyenacart.com/dollectable/st/6830/13240/JennyB-an-enigmatic-Inviting-Play-girl-23-tall

 

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Memories of Harold Hubert

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Its hard to know exactly what to write about this duo;

inviting play holding hands 8

this pair separated by a generation and connected by love, eyes, memories, and scraps of fabric.

 

heater and dad2

inviting play standing suspenders

He so strong and steady

 

 

Heather's dad 5

Handsome.

inviting play close up of dad

his love was accessible

heathers's dad 5How I remember you

inviting play shorts face on

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Hold me close

 

inviting play shorts with fish and fishing pole

Tell me your stories

inviting play dad with hand outstretchex

 

your arms calling us to you – well perhaps you were motioning the dog to come for your secret ice-cream rendezvous –  but your arms were open to us anyhow

 

inviting play his shoe

now I try to walk in your footsteps

 

heather red boots2

and me….

inviting play heather's undies

of course with the rainbow pants

inviting play heather standing

just a little girl….Made strong by your being

inviting play heather and dad15

You gave me your heart

inviting play suspenders 4

now I have my memories and your heart

inviting play dad

In memory of Harold Hubert

 

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Merry Amité the search begins (part 4!)

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It felt so good to run away from Lady Davenport.  I kind of wanted to just keep running and running and running. I would just keep imagining that I was back home in the grasses.

inviting play merry in the shade

Running and running with no cares.  However, we were getting hungry and our hunger brought us back to reality.  We needed food and we needed to find our parents – or at least figure out how to contact them. We had a little money so we decided to find the train depot.

invitintg play alone in the street2

Right outside the station, as I was scanning headlines on newspapers.  I saw something I really can not speak about.  All I had to do was point it out to Thekla and Noortje.  My world came crashing down.  It was something unspeakably awful that the newspapers were showing.  And it seemed we were right in the center of it.  Our train ride idea vanished and we were running again.

inviting play side view satchel

running running running.  later the running was walking.  Sometimes we’d walk alone and sometimes in pairs and sometimes all together.  we had to be very careful as the authorities had been alerted and were on the watch for us.  We needed to hide in plain sight.

inviting play alone on a bench

Noortje and Thekla were very worried about me – it seems I stopped talking.  I let them make all the plans.  I withdrew to my imagination.

inviting play standing on the rail3

We ate what we could.

oh those apples would be so nice
oh those apples would be so nice

 

It was beginning to be cold.
inviting play bag lady 3

Eventually, we realized our goal was to find permanent homes and families.  We all took turns questing alone. I enjoyed my time alone.  I really did ok for myself.  I know I’m too trusting, too naive.  But, people like me and they want to help me.  Thekla and Noortje were much more proactive about their wanderings.  They looked at maps.  They planned.  They adventured in an organized way.  They had fun together.  They found temporary homes in Europe with dollmakers and … I found one too – back home.  I managed to fall under the gaze of the right wealthy family at a playground, and they helped me find my doll maker.

inviting play writing letters 4

Once in my home I began to open up a bit about the tragic death of my parents.  I wrote and received lots of postcards to and from Thekla and Noortje.  It seems they share my strong desire to find a new permanent home.

inviting play writing letters 5

In just 1 day, tomorrow, on Friday. September 26, 2014. At 8:30pm EASTERN and 7:30pm Central time – I will begin looking for my new home.   Here is the link to my auction:  http://hyenacart.com/amitegirls/st/7694/91693/Merry-Amit-22-Inviting-Play-doll- I have so many questions about what will happen and who will love me.  I know for certain that wherever I go, I will keep a very strong connection with my friends Thekla and Noortje.  We were born as soul sisters in separate lands but lived some significant days together.

Merry, Thekla, and Noortje.  The Amité soul sisters
Merry, Thekla, and Noortje. The Amité soul sisters

 

To read part 4 of Thekla’s story:  http://vergissmeinnichtkuss.blogspot.com/2014/09/thekla-amite-new-beginnings.html

To read part 4 of Noortje’s story:http://www.liefmonster.com/

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Merry Amite – Broader Horizons (or part 2)

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inviting play book5

My mom was a highly connected, thoughtful, intellectual and always had invitations and opportunities of one kind or another.  Institutions, associations, organizations, and busy people asked her to join in projects, committees, boards and foundations. One day she came home with the exciting news that she was asked to go on a very big, long term adventure and we were to go too. She was asked to help start-up a big new company in a far away city in a very unknown part of the world.  And I was essentially asked to start a new life.

Although I pleaded and begged to go along on the early reconnaissance trip that would set up our permanent stay,  my parents decided against it because it would be too dangerous before everything was figured out and at the very least they needed to have a house rented before I could join them.  Instead, I would be going to stay in the care of a lovely woman called Lady Davenport. And so, my parents arranged for  Lady Davenport to take care of me for a few months until they could have everything ready in our new home, in our new place in our new life.  Then, they would return to collect me.  Don’t worry, they promised, they would mail many letters and make many phone calls.  I would expand my horizons.  I would leave the hollows of my childhood. 

Finally the day came.  My parents left, and as they were boarding their flight, I was meeting Lady Davenport.  Just hours after that I also met two other girls, Thekla and Noortje.  Thekla ‘s and Noortje’s parents were following the same business opportunity as mine and it seemed they were sent on the same horizon expanding adventure as  me.  We were all left  in the care of Lady Davenport.

inviting play coat selection

I was very relieved to get to know Thekla and Noortje.  Each day I felt a sense of gratitude that I had them.  Somehow, it lessened or at least dulled the pain I felt with my parents leaving.  I would come to depend on them enormously as we all came to understand that Lady Davenport was not the nice trustworthy caretaker my parents promised she’d be……

To be continued.

To read whats going on with Thelka:  http://vergissmeinnichtkuss.blogspot.com/

To read what’s going on with Noortje:  http://www.liefmonster.com/

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Free Spirit Addie

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This is Addie.
This is Addie.

Addie is a 12″ girl with long curly hair dyed to a golden brown and borrowed from a yak. (wefted yak hair).

She has her own colorful style
She has her own colorful style

She is wearing a sea glass heart necklace her parents gave her for her 5th birthday.

Addie has always had her own style. She loves long and flouncy and colorful and vibrant.

Bohemian style maxi dress with straps that just simply tie in the back
Bohemian style maxi dress with straps that just simply tie in the back

Addie had been longing to have a long flowing free colorful dress so I made her a bohemian, hippie, maxi – dress that just simply ties in the back.

Addie shines in the sun
Addie shines in the sun

You will often find Addie outside soaking up rays. She shines in the sun. Here she is wearing a beautiful flouncy blouse made from “shot” cotton. Shot cotton is cotton woven with a thread of another color so it kind of shimmers; just like Addie’s spirit.

She also has some little pants to wear when she isn't wearing her dress
She also has some little pants to wear when she isn’t wearing her dress
She'd been asking for moccasins for some time
She’d been asking for moccasins for some time

When Addie goes outside, she always wants to wear her moccasins. She can feel the ground through the leather and she feels closer to the earth.

Addie stripped down to her essentials.
Addie stripped down to her essentials.

Here she is in her essentials. As you can see, she’s full of love and spirit and its catching when you spend time with her.

off to catch some more rays
off to catch some more rays

Can you catch her spirit?

Addie will be ready to purchase on Saturday, November 2nd, 2013 at 7pm EST in the Dollectable Congo Hyenacart shop : http://hyenacart.com/stores/dollectable/

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