Tag Archives: dolls

Larger Vasilisa Comfort Dolls

I have been carving a series of dolls that are intended to bring comfort, inspiration and delight.

I call them, Vasilisa Comfort Dolls. They began as very small dolls but the series has branched out in several directions:

Small Vasillisa Comfort Dolls LINK

Vasilisa Comfort Dolls: Great Mother Series: LINK

Vasilisa Comfort Dolls that are Lucet Cord makers: LINK

These Vasilisa Comfort dolls are larger than the original ones….

This photo gives a sense of the size difference:

ARCH SHAPE VASILISA COMFORT DOLLS

HELPING HANDS:

In gratitude for all ways that people help one another. 3 1/2 inches/9 cm tall

THE BLESSING CUP: SOLD

about 3 inches/ 8 cm tall

“Being a Mother and Being a Daughter”

about 3 inches/ 8 cm tall

SWEET DREAMS:

about 5 inches/12.5 cm tall

A BLESSING FOR THE CHILD

about 5 inches/12.5 cm tall

AND THIS GROUP OF LARGE VASILISA COMFORT DOLLS HAVE JOINTED ARMS:

“Sunflower Song” We’ll never see Sunflowers in the same way again, will we? Praying for Peace in Ukraine and an end to the invasion

about 5 inches/12.5 cm tall

ROSIE:

about 5 inches/12.5 cm tall

BUTTERFLY DREAMS

I did the tatting, using shuttles that I carved myself. She’s about 5 inches/12.5 cm tall

DREAM CHILD

about 5 inches/12.5 cm tall (GLASS BACKGROUND NOT INCLUDED)

SURPRISE and her BABY

Surprise was a fascinating doll to create…. she kept taking me in new directions…. including wanting a baby…..

With her hat, Surprise is almost 8 inches/20 cm tall

IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN PURCHASING ONE OR MORE OF THESE DOLLS, PLEASE LEAVE ME A NOTE IN THE COMMENTS (IT WON’T BE PUBLISHED) AND I WILL GET BACK TO YOU ASAP

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Vasilisa Comfort Dolls: Great Mother Series

The Great Mother series of my one of a kind hand carved Vasilisa Comfort Dolls have their roots in my feelings of connection to the Feminine Divine.

I am influenced by images of the Goddess in all her ways of Being, as well as the Black Madonna, and by my dreams, drawings and tapestries, as well as my love of Sacred Geometry. I have a passion for flowers, especially the wild roses that bloom so freely here in Western Canada, so they are an important element in my work- for their connection to the Feminine Divine and for how they symbolize how I am rooted to the land I gratefully live on.

Each of these Great Mother Vasilisa Comfort Dolls is an expression of healing energy and of all the ways that LOVE unfolds in us and around us. My intention is to create one of a kind dolls that will lift the heart of the person who interacts with them.

I also see these dolls as a way of connecting our Present Self to our Future Self, and also to the Inner Child that still lives inside of each of us.

They are lovely to hold in the palm of your hand, but also to have in a special place like an altar or on a shelf with other treasured objects of contemplation, meditation and prayer.

I use all kinds of wood to carve them. I love using upcycled wood (including pieces of old pianos that have come to the end of their playing life, so our friend, a piano tuner, passes pieces of wood from the dead pianos to wood carvers and furniture makers to ensure that the wood is re-created into something lovely).

We are often given logs or pieces of trees from our neighborhood to burn in our wood burning stove.

But, we don’t want to just burn these precious trees that have lived long and lovely lives and then died.

So, my husband has built a sawmill from an old bandsaw, and he cuts slabs of wood from the pieces of log so we can make art with the wood, giving new life to the trees.

Here’s one of the Great Mother Dolls on one of the slabs (I carved her from another one of the slabs):

The chainsaw marks were really hard to sand out! Luckily, Jim’s sawmill now cuts us much smoother pieces of wood! This tree was a maple, so the wood is very hard.

The average height of the Great Mother dolls is about 4 inches, but it does vary with some of the dolls.

If you wish to purchase one of the Great Mother dolls, please post a note in the comments and I will get back to you asap.

GREAT MOTHER: DREAMING OF PEACE (MOTHER AND CHILD)

GREAT MOTHER: HOSPITALITY:

Vasilisa Comfort Doll: Great Mother- “Grace”
Can you see how my tapestries influence the way I carve?

Vasilisa Comfort Doll: Great Mother- Holding Close

Vasilisa Comfort Doll: Great Mother- Water of Life

Vasilisa Comfort Doll: Great Mother- Dream of Greening

Vasilisa Comfort Doll: Great Mother- Rose Child

I have placed her on a fused glass piece that I recently designed and made, that is not for sale as it is going to become part of a larger piece.

Vasilisa Comfort Doll: Great Mother- Paradox

It can be challenging to live with paradox….

Vasilisa Comfort Doll: Great Mother- Forgive

The Vasilisa Comfort Doll: Great Mother Series has subsets –

One of the groupings that has emerged is the ‘Sisters and Aunties’

Here are the first 3…. Singing Together:

I love how they work together. I drew their shapes on the wood all at the same time, so it makes sense to me that they would form such a good trio.

The Vasilisa Comfort Doll: Great Mother Series – ‘Sisters and Aunties’

Great Mother Series – ‘Sisters and Aunties’ Bending, Not Broken

Great Mother Series – ‘Sisters and Aunties’ Courage

Great Mother Series – ‘Sisters and Aunties’ Dreams of Roses and Greening

GREAT MOTHER: Courage (Dreaming and Waking) 

MORE Vasilisa Comfort dolls that are available can be seen at LINK

and at  LINK

To see the larger Vasilisa Comfort Dolls, please click on LINK

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Carved Wooden Vasilisa Dolls by Noreen Crone-Findlay

(UPDATE: Many of the dolls in this post have sold. To see which of the Vasilisa Comfort Dolls are available,

please go to LINK 1 and LINK 2)

To see the larger Vasilisa Comfort Dolls, please click on LINK

I have been carving wooden dolls non-stop for the past year.

I’ve been working on several series of dolls.

One of the series that has brought me great joy is my ‘Vasilisa Comfort Dolls’ group.

I call them this because of the Russian folktale, Vasilisa the Brave. Vasilisa’s mother knows that she is dying, so she makes her darling daughter a doll that embodies all the mother love in her heart.

The little doll acts as a guide and comfort for Vasilisa throughout the story.

My Vasilisa dolls are also an embodiment of love, and even though they look very simple, they are deeply heartfelt, contemplative, meditative and powerfully healing.

I have used all kinds of wood- some it is from old pianos that died and the wood was given to me, some of it is from trees that were pruned or felled because of old age, some is from old furniture or planks of upcycled wood in other forms. There is a very small amount of new bought wood, as I prefer to plant trees, rather than use them up. Upcycling soothes me.

I have separated the Vasilisa Dolls into different categories.

Many of them are meant to be held in the palm of your hand or carried in a pouch (carrying them in a pocket with coins, keys, pebbles etc is not recommended, but on their own in a pocket is fine).

The Vasilisa dolls are all about 2 1/2 inches tall.
Just perfect to be embraced in your hand…. and held to your heart!

Here are the ‘Square Body’ Vasilisa’s dolls

Some of them have cords, because they are necklaces.

Some have dear little wooden legs that turn them into lucets, so they can make cords.

Some of them have brass nail antennae that also allow them to be used as lucets.

Some of them have lucet cord arms that allow them to hug your finger, thumb or house plant.

Here are the ‘Heart Shape’ body Vasilisa dolls:

Here are the Round Shape Body Vasilisa Dolls:

The group of Vasilisa dolls in the photo below all have pins on their backs so they can be worn as brooches.

The group in the next photo are necklaces and I realize that some of these should have been in the Goddess photo, too, but, you know… keeping everything straight…..

The group in the photo below are all Lucets (and I’ll send a pdf on how to use them as well as links to 8 video tutorials on lucet cord making with these Vasilisa dolls)

These are the Finger Hugging Vasilisa Dolls:

These Vasilisa dolls are based on Goddess energy and inspired by Goddess imagery:

The Vasilisa dolls are great for storytelling…..

I couldn’t resist making one little Vasilisa Snowlady ūüôā

They are for sale and range in price from $25 to $95 +shipping, just send me a message or note.

Not all of them are still available.

I am quite emotional about posting them, as they have been such a source of healing for me through the pandemic…. I hope that you can feel all the love in them, too. ‚̧

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Teneriffe Lace Weave Along Fairy Hair

In my last post, I showed how to make a Teneriffe Lace Fairy.

The video got so long that I decided to make the ‘Hair making’ video separately.

And, so, here’s the video showing how to make the hair for the Teneriffe Lace Fairies ūüôā

The links for all the videos in the Teneriffe Lace Weave Along is   L I N K

 

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6th Sense One of a Kind Art Dolls

For many months, I have been working really hard on new mixed media fiber art sculptures.

The 6th Sense is intuition/inspiration/imagination.

These one of a kind art dolls are based on dreams, memories, meditations and contemplations and are an invitation to embrace creativity, healing and wholeness.

They are a combination of tapestry weaving, narrow band weaving, lucet cords, tatting, knitting, wood work wire work and leather work.

Here’s a slide show video of my 6th Sense One of a Kind Art dolls.

Most of the 6th Sense One of a Kind Art Dolls in the video are for sale, but some of them have already sold and gone to live in their new homes.

 

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Wooden and Woven Dolls for Christmas

Recently, I had a lovely conversation with my darlin’ grandson.

He said to me: ‘Nanma, I LOVE your dolls. ¬†Will you make me one for Christmas?’

I was thrilled that he is pleased with my work and that he wanted me to make him a doll for Christmas.

What an awesome 7 year old he is!

I asked him if he wanted a wooden one or a woven one, and I was convinced that he said, ‘Wooden’….

So, I stayed up very, very late one night, and got up early, to carve him a wooden doll:

wooden-james-doll-xmas-2016

I used a birch branch from our son’s neighbour’s tree. ¬†It’s been drying for a year and a half and is lovely to carve.

wooden-james-doll-xmas-2016-3

Tottie Tomato cheered me on as I carved.

She comforted the new doll, because she knows that the knives, chisels and sandpaper are very uncomfortable, and that paint brushes tickle….

wooden-james-doll-xmas-2016-2

After he was done, and I had knitted his sweater and jeans, Tottie Tomato and New Boy went to hang a few ornaments on the tree in the village.

Something was feeling not quite right….

I thought: I have to check and see if Grandson actually said that he wanted a wooden doll…..

So, I asked him which dolls he loved?

Wooden or the woven art dolls?

We were out at a concert of his Grampa’s music, so I sketched the shape of the 6th Sense art dolls in the air.

YES! he said, firmly!

THOSE are the ones I love!

Oh oh….

I asked him to draw in the air and show me what shape he had in mind.

Yup….. Woven Women 6th Sense art dolls, and NOT 6 inch tall wooden dolls….

oops.

He specified that he wanted it soft to cuddle and that it had to wear black shoes.

I asked him to draw exactly what he wanted…..

wooden-james-doll-xmas-2016-4

He held his hands up in the air and showed me the size.

So…………………………

I have been weaving up a storm……………. ¬†well, a doll, along with a few other things……

I used the tapestry weaving technique to weave the body front, and plain weave for the back.

I did a clasped warp technique for the arms and legs to make the color changes work for the arms and legs.

wooden-james-doll-xmas-2016-5

I hope that he approves of how I interpreted his design!

I hadn’t thought of making him a doll for Christmas, so I am incredibly grateful that he asked.

And, because I didn’t get the brief right first time around, our little sweetheart gets TWO dolls, not one!

wooden-james-doll-xmas-2016-6

For now, they are chilling out by the Village Christmas tree, enjoying themselves in knitted armchairs that I designed for Findlay and Flora Bear.

The pattern for the chairs is in my etsy shop:

LINK

wooden-james-doll-xmas-2016-7

I can’t bear to wrap them until the last moment, so I will have a chance to enjoy them, too!

Merry Christmas, Happy Channukah, Happy Solstice, Happy Yule, Happy EVERYTHING to you and yours!

Love and blessings all round.

May 2017 bring Peace, Wisdom and Compassion!

 

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6th Sense One of a Kind Art Doll- Tree Mother

Last month, when there was a spectacular Super Moon, we stepped outside to admire it.

The gigantic moon looked like it was suspended in the huge trees that line our street.

The image of the Great Tree Mother, rocking the Moon in her arms, rose up in my mind….

and I knew that I had to build one of my 6th Sense one of a kind art dolls.

Here she is:

Great Tree Mother Rocked The Moon in Her Arms:

6th-sense-tree-mother-rocked-the-moon-in-her-arms-1-c

While I was contemplating how to build the Great Tree Mother piece, my husband and our daughter took the dogs for a walk one morning.

Chloe came home with a wonderfully gnarly branch that had been pruned from someone’s tree and tossed into the alley.

She just knew I needed it…. even though, at that point, I hadn’t told her what I was mulling about ūüôā

We have a very deep connection!

It is perfect.

So’s our daughter….

Anyhow…

The faces….

Years ago, my dear friend found a moose antler that had been shed and she asked me if I could use it.

I cut 3 faces from it, and carved them and painted them.

Two of them became part of this piece:

6th-sense-tree-mother-rocked-the-moon-in-her-arms-2-c

Tree Mother’s face.

She also has a ‘Hidden Face’ that is hidden inside the piece and will never be revealed.

Too bad I didn’t photograph it! ¬†Oops…

Here is Moon’s face:

6th-sense-tree-mother-rocked-the-moon-in-her-arms-3-c

I carved the hand from wood.

I wove the bands on 2 different looms and knitted the grey hand spun cloth of her robe.

6th-sense-tree-mother-rocked-the-moon-in-her-arms-4-c

All of the 6th Sense Woven Women have 6 pennies incorporated into them, as a metaphor for coming to our senses, and embracing intuition, intelligence and inspiration.

6th-sense-tree-mother-rocked-the-moon-in-her-arms-5-c

She is 29 inches/72.5 cm  tall and the branch spreads out to 15 inches/37.5 cm wide.

She is not for sale.

By the way, she is also a celebration of creative adaptive re-use and upcycling.  I love that.

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Wooden Doll Pauline meets a London Goose

Yesterday, Miranda, ¬†Siobhan, Coco and Thallie were wondering about their friend Pauline, who has moved to London with her Human…..

coco-at-the-blue-chair-6

They were thrilled when Pauline’s ¬†Person kindly ¬†sent photos of Pauline’s¬†outing¬†in one of the parks in London.

Pauline began with a little exploring:

pauline-goes-to-london-4-cpauline-goes-to-london-5-c

pauline-goes-to-london-6-c

and then ambled off to the pond, where she caught the eye of a Canada Goose:

pauline-goes-to-london-7-c

Hmmm… Small Person, do you have food?

pauline-goes-to-london-8-c

Are you potentially a meal?

pauline-goes-to-london-9-c

Neither.   You are a disappointment to me.

All Pauline photographs are copyright Kennie Wittebrood and are used with her permission.

 

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A Very Tiny Doll Celebrates Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving from very snowy and cold Western Canada.

Last night, we were heading out to our son and daughter-in-law’s home to join with many family and friends in celebrating Thanksgiving.

There were sounds of protest from the Wall Doll House in my studio.

thallie-at-thanksgiving-dinner-1-c

The smallest (less than an inch tall) wooden Story Door Doll, who used to be known as ‘Itty’, until she declared her name is actually, ‘Thallie’ was sitting in her armchair.

She’s thrilled that she finally has a new dress, and declared that it was important to her to go out to dinner to show it off.

I ¬†protested that I don’t like taking her out of the house, for fear of loosing her.

She ‘pshawed’ me, and reminded me that I am perfectly capable of loosing MUCH larger things than her INSIDE the house.

Oh. Right…

She hopped into the Thumbelina traveling tin:

thallie-at-thanksgiving-dinner-1a-c

But I was planning on taking along the ~very last~ bit of weaving for the big tapestry that I am weaving, and not Thumbelina.

So, Thallie hopped into my seashell necklace, along with her friend, Inch Faery Bear, who is the same petite size as her.  This makes them the best of friends, as they enjoy hanging out with someone who understands the world in miniature.

thallie-at-thanksgiving-dinner-2-c

And, off we went.

After the toasts were ‘clink clinked’, Thallie was convinced that there were Similar Sized¬†People as her and Inch Faery Bear hiding in the corks…. so we shall have to see.

The corks came home in my pocket, so it will be interesting to see if there are little people in them or, as my daughter suggested, little faery mushrooms…. who knows?

thallie-at-thanksgiving-dinner-3-c

After the corks were filed in my pocket, I put Thallie back into the Seashell necklace….

and…. palm to forehead….

did not take even one more photo of the whole evening.

Oh my…..

Which I wish I had, as a beloved member of the family is on her way to London, England.

She’s moving there, so it’s going to be quite some time before we are all around the same dinner table.

We wish her the greatest of joy in her big adventure!

Pauline is accompanying her in her travels, and posed for a very Canadian moment before dealing with airports etc:

pauline-goes-to-london-3-c

Pauline’s Human took a moment from enjoying her last ‘Timmie’ time to share a pic of this special moment.

(Only Canadians will understand this reference, I think?)

Anyhow, all the little wooden folk who live in the studio join my in wishing you a joyous Thanksgiving, even if you live somewhere else in the world. ¬†There is so much to say thank you for….

Thank you~~ ‚̧

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Little wooden doll heads to London

I am so excited… One of the little wooden Story Door Dolls that I carved has been adopted and is on her way to England.

Pauline is ready for adventure in London!

Pauline is ready for adventure in London!

Before she left, she posed for a slightly ‘Alice in Wonderland’ photo under a mushroom that popped up on the lawn.

Pauline looks forward to exploring Nature in the parks of London.

Pauline looks forward to exploring Nature in the parks of London.

We wish the greatest joy to Pauline and her Human.

May they have splendid adventures and happy, happy times in London.

Hmmmm… ¬† I think we may have to go visit them someday…..

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