Today we wanted to tell you about another talented crafter. Mikaela Kate has been hand-stitching for years. Not only does she sew practical items from which she earns her living but she also enjoys expressing her love and creativity in the crafting of beautiful dolls. Her dolls are hand sewn, often made from fabric with some special association for the person for whom the doll is crafted.
“I began sewing cotton menstrual pads while my oldest sat next to me playing. A conscious act, a symbol of giving my child MY presence. I refused to spend time on the phone or on a computer when they were formulating their own thoughts. … As a mother, I spent that precious time of childhood just BEING with my kids. I created my own attachment parenting style by attempting a lifestyle that would inspire them to grow up in a world where we create what we want from what we have. … Hand stitching (and music) kept the soul of my family alive and showed me a passion that can bring in income now as my mothering slows down and MY life continues. I do notice, as the world turns and my kids are jumping into their own fast stream, that when they don’t find peace in the world, we all know home is where they are headed!”
Mikaela discovered Etsy.com and felt she had found the perfect solution, a venue that allowed her and her family to continue the off the grid lifestyle she had chosen, but that gave her an opportunity to help supplement their income by selling the pieces she stitched . In addition to the other items she sews she is able to display and offer her beautifully detailed hand-made dolls.
“Dolls have this uncanny way of speaking to us. Specially those of us who listen to the magical. To sit quietly, stitching, somedays for hours, is so nourishing to my own soul. After years of devotion to passionate family life, and now the nest is flown, all is quiet. Sometimes, I can hear so clearly that still voice telling me how to evolve a dolls personality through my own life experience. If my experience is painful or full of adversity and lessons, I have so much fun (when I am through releasing anything that comes up and out) … then turning it into a positive trait for the doll.”
Her custom made dolls are a joint creation, as she explains on the pages of her Etsy shop:
“I make custom dolls for life affirmation. You choose at least 4 12″ x12″ scraps of materials that have influenced your life..baby clothes, an old torn dress that has some fabric in tact, some fabric of your mothers, beads and little icons that have traveled in your life, and some thoughts about what kind of personality you would like this doll to have, or some key words so that I can have fun intuitively making up a personality for her with you in mind. I will send a doll back to you within a month. This is a joyful meditation for me and I’m thankful for the opportunity to hand-stitch my dreams and your positive thoughts.”
One example of a custom doll is “Momma”:
“This Momma Heirloom Doll was custom made for a mom of 2 boys very close in age. She carried her boys devotedly in her sling made from strong woven cotton from Guatemala until they crawled away from her.
The doll is made of this sling. I am honored to have been trusted with such a feat. Buddha sings through this doll. She stands about 11″ tall. The sling and two babies can be removed and played with.”
For other dolls Mikaela draws on her own sources of inspiration to craft dolls that embody household spirits, or remind us of strong women who forged their own paths in times when this was an even greater challenge than it is today.
Some examples of these dolls are:
The Irish Kitchen Witch:
“My dear, I was created for you in the most magical of ways, with many beloved influences. I am a rebel. I enjoy being beautiful and have not one wart and I never curse anyone. I was given a heart rock by two girls in the garden, now I can make stone soup. My other pocket is filled right now with Chamomile, horehound and feverfew. You can change this anytime. … I heal anyone who sits at my hearth with an open heart. I sweep the way clean binding all unwanted forces to their own truth leaving me to fly free. … Enjoy the company in the kitchen. I love you. Kitchen Witch.”
“Howdy, My name is Annie Oakley and I lived in the early 1900’s. Even tho I was taught to be a lady and an expert seamstress and embroiderer, my passion was guns. Especially the one my father used. I got to use that gun way before my time, for my father died when I was young. I was able to pay the mortgage on my mothers farm by shooting small game for the local grocery. I didn’t think of myself as a “feminist” tho I didn’t let anyone tell me what to do… I was a real lady, a sharp shootin one at that.”
“It is the act of sitting quietly, the meditation of handy creation and dreaming of good things while my fingers move. All these years steeped in the art of pondering life while hand stitching has brought peace to mySelf and my children.”
We hope you have enjoyed meeting Mikaela and her unique dolls!
To learn more about her and see other examples of her work please visit: