Sunday, November 3, 2013

Tilly Tilda

Today it's my pleasure to introduce you to one of my favorite Waldorf on Etsy shops, Tilly Tilda, and welcome Tilly Tilda's artist and owner Suzy Mae to our blog!
 “The most effective kind of education is that a child should play amongst lovely things.” ~Plato 
I believe that all things emanate an energy. When I create I create with love and joy and I believe this comes through as a warmth.
I am a dreamer, poet, Mama to 5 girls, artist, maker of happy messes, fan of unmade beds. Inspired by sunlight and those still unkempt sacred wild places.  We are a family inspired by all things Waldorf. I fell in love with the traditional Waldorf crafted dolls and began to make them 6 years ago.  They have such a simple, soulful quality about them.
 The name "tillytilda" is a nickname of my little girl Matilda who is now 6 years old, and the biggest fan of my handmade dolls. I call her my little apprentice doll maker.
Since childhood I have always loved to make and create. I have fond childhood memories of hours spent sorting buttons, trims and scraps of fabric into dollies, teddies and outfits for them all. Waldorf dolls have simple facial features that do not overwhelm a child. A child may bring their own imagination to a doll. Their doll will become a dear and special friend, a keeper of stories and reminder of adventures taken together.
As I create, a story is being woven through my hands. That is why each and every doll is unique and their characters become so alive for me. I hope that this translates. Especially for the children who will play with them. I start every single piece from scratch. Simple fibres, that enliven and quicken my heart and ignite the embers of a dream.  "Amaya seemed happy enough in her lace trimmed lavender dress but looking into her deep brown eyes I knew there was more to this girl than simply lavender and lace lovely though it is.  As soon as she spied my fluffy, sky wisps of merino sparkling like sunlit water in the evening light I noticed her eyes light up." There's more to this story, visit TillyTilda's blog  to read more and see the accompanying pictures of Amaya.
And then there is the wrapping. I use eco friendly wrapping materials as much as possible.  I like to keep it simple, elegant and rustic. I want the wrapping to be part of the experience of receiving a tilly tilda doll or crown. I want it to be a warm "hello" and a gentle "shake of the hand." An introduction and a welcome.
One or two simple, lovingly crafted natural toys are the kind of toys a child will connect to, bond with, love and as the skin horse in the Velveteen Rabbit says " be loved real" in a child's mind and heart.
As they are made entirely of natural fabircs the dolls themselves have a wonderfully comforting feel to them. These dolls are perfect for snuggling under blankies with. They are also very easy to dress up, as their arms and legs are very flexible. Tillytilda dolls are made in the old German doll making tradition. In accordance with the Waldorf pedagogy they are made using natural materials which are safe, soft and hard wearing. Children will love to touch these dolls soft mohair yarn locks and hold their comforting carded fleece filled bodies.
 Almost all of my work has once been a dream. Not necessarily a sleeping dream, but something on the periphery of my vision in waking hours. Each creation seemed to me something that needed to become "real."  One part vision, one part whimsy, one part the child in my arms and the last part my own childhood heart. What I create is an essence of all these things fused together expressed in form. Every piece carries a little bit of story in it's fibres.
Vintage Paper Origami Butterflies
To see more of the beautiful creations of Suzy Mae please visit her Waldorf on Etsy shop Tilly Tilda
Visit TillyTilda's blog 
Visit Suzy Mae's parenting blog A Soulful Life
Like Tilly Tilda on Facebook
Follow her on Pinterest
Check her out on Red Bubble