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Thursday, July 03, 2014

Crafty Mother Fail

People think because I knit and crochet and attempt to sew that I am crafty. I am not. I like to think I can be sometimes, but it usually doesn't turn out well. Fortunately, Rich is incredibly artistic and crafty, so our children get that from him. Is it going to get me in trouble to admit that for art in our school, I cover art history with the kids, then put Alexander (who is incredibly artistic and naturally skilled at art) in charge of all art projects? He is their art teacher.

Anyway. I like to modify Along the Alphabet Path for our kindergarten and first grade work, substituting pre-schism saints and so on to make it more fitting for our family. Part of her suggested ideas includes making felt saints for the children to look at and play a little - give the child something tangible to help solidify the story and lesson about the saint, and another way to remember the person. Sounds good, right? Remember what I wrote above.

In the tutorial for the Alphabet Path, she mentioned that you might want to paint peg dolls like Jessica did here. Jessica said that she wasn't very good at painting or drawing, but that she was able to make them reasonably well, and did them over a weekend. I thought to myself, "Well, I am reasonably skilled with my hands, and I can get acrylic paints." I found another post with some suggestions, so I bought some spray acrylic clear coat to seal the paint on when I finished. How hard could this be?

In the meantime, I found that there were some shops with some exquisite examples of these painted peg saints (there are lots of other shops on etsy selling similar items, some soft dolls which would be great for an infant at church, too). They were beautiful work, but I couldn't afford to get 52+ of them at the prices they were. It wasn't that I didn't think their work was worth it, it was just out of our budget. So, off to work I went.

First of all, it took me a whole weekend to make these:

Angel of God

Saint Anne with the Blessed Virgin Mary as a child

I got quick enough at them to make these in one day:

Saint Barbara

Check out Saint Barbara's hair! No wonder she had suitors lined up for her!

Saint Benedict

But I never even finished poor Saints Christopher and Saint Catherine of Alexandria. I never even started them except for getting out their pegs:

I figured with the time I put into making them, the paints, the peg dolls, the brushes, the sealant, I easily surpassed the cost of the dolls in the stores. And mine didn't even look as nice as the non-crafty mom versions I saw online. I still have hopes to finish the set. Because I am an eternal optimist, even in the face of all opposition and reality. I have not only Saints Christopher and Catherine of Alexandria to finish, but also a male and female saint from the letter D to the letter Z. That's 48 for those of you keeping score at home. And it takes me about a day to complete two.

My friend Katherine's daughter Emily made these:

Myrrh Bearers

At the Empty Tomb

She is setting up an etsy shop, and as soon as she has a link, I will pass it on to you.

Here is another way to make these peg saints, using felt. These were also beautiful. Perhaps you can do this better than I. Please share if you have.

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I think they are pretty good. And...just imagine, but the time you do your 30th one, it will probably be both faster and look better.
Thank you! I don't think they look terrible, it was just a little discouraging how long it took to make them and then to see how mine looked compared to others made by people who say they are not that artsy. I shouldn't compare, though, and Yasmina has enjoyed them.
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