One of the things I like most about having children in my life is that I have the perfect excuse to squee and gush and hug soft little things and generally act like a 2-year-old for a minute or two. It’s fun, you know.
Pretending to be adult and mature and beyond such things when faced with the unbearable cuteness of a fuzzy teddy bear is no fun at all.
Which probably explains why I rarely do it.
Instead, I see a little thing like a stuffed rabbit or a plush kitten and I let out the childish delight that remembers years of having more stuffed animals than people in my bed and loving every single one of them ever so much. It doesn’t take much – a soft wisp of fur, a nose turned up just so… in such little things hides a full-fledged burst of joy.
(It shouldn’t surprise you that I’ve always loved taking my kids to the toy store.)
A few years ago, I tried my hand at crocheting amiguri. It was fun, but not amazingly so, and I’ve only ever made a few amiguri as a result. Dolls, mostly, with an occaisional animal, though the animals have always left me vaguely dissatisfied as no matter how soft the yarn you choose, they just aren’t as fuzzy and warm and lovely as a regular store-bought teddy bear.
So I decided (as I decide such things – impulsively and largely based on the feel of a thing) that making toy animals was not for me.
And then B was going to be Lyra Belacque and she needed a polar bear and suddenly I was in love with the idea of making animals again… out of felt.
Lovely, soft, warm wool felt is a crafting material like no other. Like fabric, it can become anything it wants to be, with the added bonus that wool felt warms up as you hold on to it, absorbing heat from your own self and reflecting it right back to you.
When I decided I wanted to send a small gift for a wee boy to enjoy, I knew exactly what I wanted to make: A horse, of course.
A lovely, soft, warm woolen horse with the most amazing naturally curly mane and tail, stuffed with a little wool roving for good measure.
And new to my crafting this past year has been the addition of the most perfect little labels:
They’re printed on twill tape, custom designed just for me by the lovely Michelle of Inked Papers on Etsy.
The horse pattern, if you are interested, is a design by Natalie of Bear Dance Crafts in British Columbia, who is another lovely person to do business with.
And as for the little boy who received this little horse? I think he likes it.