A few years later, in the mid-1970s, the soft Holly Hobbie doll was my sister's favorite. I envied Holly's gingham patch dress and blue sunbonnet. She didn't talk, but she didn't need to. You carried her tucked under your arm while wearing your peasant-style dress and watching "Little House on the Prairie" or making a dried-flower arrangement with your mom.
I'm sure there are plenty of must-have dolls today with TV or commercial tie-ins like we had when I was a kid. But I'm happy that the handmade plushie craze has returned to offer lots of alternatives to mass-marketed dolls.
I love it when my son makes up a story about the adventures of a stuffed animal I've made for him, rather than repeating a story that is already "programmed" into the doll. Last week we learned about Hercules, a bunny whose parents had to give him up to live under a thicket, where he was befriended by Frederick the Mouse who brought him cheese.
I sewed the plushie pictured here using Nini Makes' Sunny Bunny pattern. The pattern was a real pleasure to stitch--no gusset to wrestle with! The felted cashmere is so soft and cuddlable, and my son immediately requested one of his own. He understands that we're sending this Sunny Bunny to Japan for a child whose toys were lost to the earthquake and tsunami. Crafters have already pledged more than 430 bunnies as part of Operation Bunny Drop, which runs until May 13.
**Please check out Makiko, Sonia's (cozy homemaking) sweet offering, and Margie's (Resurrection fern) rainbow herd of bunnies, which will bring comfort to children in Japan in much need of it. The Crafts With Purpose, Because Love Heals Facebook page has many pictures of handmade bunnies ready for donation. Thank you, Liz Minnick Valentin, for the inspired idea. I'm sure you will be inundated with a flood of cute bunnies.
I'd love to hear what favorite toy(s) you played with as a child (or still!).
Hope you have a playful, creative week.