The twins have arrived!

Our precious little twins arrived last Sunday at 33 weeks gestation. After a quick and safe double breach birth our little ladies are going well and will spend the next several weeks in hospital growing and learning to feed. We praise God for answered prayer and the amazing blessing of two new little girls to add to our family.

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Wooden bead and pipecleaner peg dolls for dollhouses

queen and baby IMG_8224After making our new dolls house furniture and our shoe box dolls houses, we needed some dolls to enjoy them. These examples are cheap and very easy to make and with a few simple materials, you can put together a whole family in a very short time. A glue gun really is necessary to ensure that the beads do not slide off again, although you may find a craft glue that would do the job.yellow mum and baby IMG_8226

For one doll you will need:

  • 1 long pipecleaner (or 2 regular pipecleaners)
  • 2 small beads for the hands and 2 larger beads for the feet
  • 1 large wooden bead for the head
  • hair of some kind (wool, lamp shade trim – see pic above)
  • scraps of fabric, felt, lace and other bibs and bobs for clothes

how to make a man IMG_8235Method:

  1. Cut your extra long pipe cleaner into 2 pieces; with a ratio of approximately one third to two thirds.
  2. Bend the smaller piece in half and twist the centre to secure. The centre becomes the neck so leave enough to glue the head onto later.
  3. Bend the larger piece in half and slide the neck of the smaller piece through the centre and twist to secure – this should give you a headless pipecleaner man shape (See pipecleaners above.) Give the body a few gentle twists and leave the legs free and open.mum and green baby IMG_8229
  4. Decide on your clothing. For men I folded the felt in half and cut wide pants, leaving the top joined with only a small hole to poke the pipecleaner body through. Shirts are made the same way – fold a piece of felt in half and cut the sleeves and shirt shape, leaving the top attached. Bend over to snip a small hole just big enough for the neck of the pipecleaners to stick through. mums and babies all IMG_8231
  5. For the ladies, I cut a full circle with a tiny hole in the middle for skirts and a V-shaped top with a small hole for the neck, leaving it joined along the top (As for the men’s shirts.)
  6. Put the pipe cleaner bodies into your clothes and hot glue them on.
  7. Glue on the bead hands, feet and heads.
  8. Add hair and any other fashion accessories you desire!

making babies all bits IMG_8222

I found the idea for the babies here. They are made using a similar method, with a small piece of wadding needed to stuff the sleeping bags. The head beads need to be the kind that are only partly drilled – that is the hole does not go all the way through. Otherwise, you will need to give your baby a beanie or something similar to cover the hole!

  1. Bend a short piece of pipecleaner in half and twist for the neck.
  2. Fold a piece of felt in half and cut the shoulders and sleeping bag shape, leaving the top joined.
  3. Cut a small hole to slide the neck of the pipecleaner through.
  4. Glue on the head and hand beads and down the sides of the sleeping bag, leaving an opening to stuff it with.
  5. Push the stuffing inside and glue the hole shut. Of course, you could sew these if you prefer. men on couch IMG_8266

You could make the dolls without faces to allow greater imaginative play scope (they are not stuck being “happy” all the time!) but my girls were adamant they wanted faces and in the end I gave in! I find that they are not constrained by the face I have drawn anyway.

Wooden clothes-peg dolls house furniture

people around peg table IMG_8254I have had a great time creating a set of wooden clothes-peg furniture for a child’s dolls house this week. After searching the web for designs I combined pegs, popsicle sticks (coffee stirrers), large popsticks (tongue depressors), wooden blocks from a Jenga game and some colourful felt to create the furniture in these pictures. A hot glue gun made the job super fast and my 10-year-old son even made the table and helped with a couple of the other items.table chair back IMG_8258

I have included back and side view photos to make it easier to copy the designs if you would like to. table chairs upside down IMG_8257

Two pictures I used for the designs are here and here.men on couch IMG_8266

Felt doesn’t fray so I just cut the edges with pinking shears to make it look nice and glued it on as cushions and mattresses, plus a couple of extra blankets for the beds and rugs for the floor.couch back IMG_8269The cot (below) was the only piece that required any cutting for the green edges. A Stanley knife did the job but I wouldn’t want to cut a lot that way. A mini hacksaw or something similar would be better if you plan to cut a lot. My designs specifically revolved around not having to do any trimming to make them quick and easy.beds 1 IMG_8261

Hot glue guns are not very forgiving so some of the furniture is a little wonky! White wood glue would probably be better but I was after speed and convenience!bed bottoms IMG_8262

With a collection of basic craft equipment and a pattern to follow or an idea in mind, you could have a set of these done in a couple of hours tops. Enough to make any little girl happy. (And if my younger son’s reaction is anything to go by, they might keep your boys happy too!)bed ends IMG_8265

I’ll be posting in the next little while about how to make a dolls house in a box, as well as how to make a family of peg dolls. I’d love to hear your ideas – I could always add on to the set!

Asher Michael has arrived!

Asher Michael has made his way into the world on Thursday 22nd March at 5:18pm, weighing in at 8 pounds 1 ounce and 6 days overdue. All of our prayers have been answered for a great birth and his safe and healthy arrival. We are home with his very excited brothers and sisters and will be taking some time to recover, relax and get to know our precious little boy.