Vintage Ledger doll

Happy New Year's Eve! I thought I would give you a sneak peek of my doll for the TDIPT Mercantile. She is made from vintage ledger pages. She does look a bit like Little Bo Peep...she lost her sheep!

And the winner is....

The winner of our multi-artist blog hop giveaway is...

Carol Stuck from Buttermilk Creek Farms!

Congratulations Carol, and thanks to everyone who participated! What fun!

Splenda, Sweet & Low or Equal?

Anyone out there addicted to this stuff?



Carly Smith from Boggy Bottom Bayou is hosting this event and I am so happy to be a part of it!
This blog hop will run from Monday, December 10th through Sunday, December 16th.
A winner will be picked Sunday night and announced on our blogs on Monday, December 17th!

Here are the rules to be entered to WIN!! Please follow all 3 rules!

1. You must visit each of the 7 blogs. (They are listed below.)

2. Once there, you must sign up to be a follower. If you already follow the blog, please say "I'm already a follower." in your comment to enter ... see Rule #3.

3. After you sign up to be a follower of the blog, you must leave a comment in the comment section (under this post) asking to be put into the giveaway.

That is it! We will enter your name in the giveaway. One lucky person wins it ALL!!

SO LET'S GET STARTED!!! ---- There are 7 Artist's participating. The above pictures are numbered according to the Artists listed below. They are:

1. Carly Smith (our Host) from Boggy Bottom Bayou - Carly is giving away a gorgeous set of vintage, mercury glass and lamp work bead ornaments. Oh so pretty and very vintage! As a BONUS ... (If she get's 20 new followers on her blog), Carly is giving away a 10" Santa in an adorable quilted outfit! (See middle picture #1) Love that Santa!!!
Click on the link below to go to Carly's blog.

2. LeeAnn Kress from Charmed Confections - LeeAnn is giving away a cute set of six Charmed Confections Cupcakes in a holiday tin, along with 2 candy cane ornaments and 2 lollipop ornaments. All handmade! (See bigger pictures below!)
Click on the link below to go to LeeAnn's blog

3. Jody Johnson from Sweet Bear Creek Whims - Jody is giving away a beautiful handmade reindeer pillow. Sooo cute! (LeeAnn (above) should know .. she has one!) Absolutely darling - You won't want to part with it!
Click on the link below to go to Jody's blog

4. Brenda Griffith from The Rusty Thimble - Brenda is giving away the sweetest snowman ornament that will grace your tree! We know ... You want him!
Click on the link below to go to Brenda's blog

5. Mary Bell from The Mary Bell - Mary's giveaway is a knitty bitty knit couture Santa sweater set. It comes with hanging hardware underneath that is a poseable wyreman made from recycled cat-5 wire. So cute! Santa needs one of these for his tiny elves!
Click on the link below to go to Mary's blog

6. Nicoletta Farrauto from Niky's Creations - Niky is giving away an incredible cross stitched pocket keep with a darling cross stitched reindeer and tree on it. So pretty! Love that you can put fresh herbs or sprigs of evergreen in it! It will smell so wonderful!
Click on the link below to go to Niky's blog

I'm giving away a tiny angel doll ornament. She's about 8" tall, made from vintage fabrics. So cute!

Here is a bigger picture of my offering!

Good luck to you all!

WooHoo! Huge Giveaway!!!!

Something exciting! I'm going to be participating in a multi-artist blog hop ornament giveaway starting on Monday, December 10th! If you are interested you'll need to come back and visit my blog on Monday to get all the rules and see which blogs you'll need to hop over to for entry in the giveaway!

The giveaway starts Monday, December 10th and runs until Sunday, December 16th at 5:00 pm pacific time. Then a winner will be picked and announced on my blog on Monday, December 17th! Some very talented artists are involved in this don't want to miss it! Now, I just need to decide what ornament I'll be giving away...

ahhhh, December

Well, as of 3:00 today, I'm done with all holiday shows! Hooray! As much fun as they can be, I'm very glad they are over. Now a little rest...then back to work - I've got a zillion gifts to make!

I have a new Santa listed at TDIPT on the link in the sidebar and go check him out! He's anxious to get to his new home before Christmas Eve!

I will have everything that I didn't sell at my shows for sale in my Etsy store...hopefully by Wednesday. There will be Day of the Dead, tree toppers and some ornaments. If you have something in mind that you don't see, contact me - I'd love to make something special for me!

Sugar Plum Bazaar!

I've been terribly busy getting ready for my first Holiday show of the year - The Sugar Plum Bazaar. This show is awesome...really fun and diverse! So, if you live in Colorado - you've just got to come! I'll be selling lots of cute doll ornaments and tree toppers, as well as my usual fare!

I probably won't have time to post to my blog before the show...but I'll be sure to take lots of fabulous pics of the show in case you miss it!

Goodbye October...

Goodness, time sure is flying by!

I apologize for being so slow to update my blog! October is absolutely crazy for me. I have my son's birthday, his school Halloween parties, then Halloween. It is exhausting!

October is also a bad month for dogs. I'm not sure why, but we always have two or three dog deaths in October. It is that way every year. This year we lost Simon, a 21 year old terrier. We rescued Simon from a county shelter about five years ago. He was blind when we got him, but he could fetch a tennis ball like no sighted dog I've ever had! He was amazing and lived a very LONG happy life. He died peacefully at home on his warm bed. I miss you sweetie.


We also lost our beloved Great Pyrenees, Truman. He was much more than a dog...he was our guardian. Brave, strong, loyal and beautiful. Truman was diagnosed with osteosarcoma (an aggressive bone cancer) in July. He was only 5 years old. We had him euthanized on November 1st, All Saints Day. I was determined not to lose another dog in October! Our wonderful vet Mary came to our house to do the euthanasia. The weather was beautiful and sunny - Truman was in his favorite spot in the yard and we fed him a last meal of steak. He went peacefully, but it is never easy to say goodbye.

I will miss you big guy, the sun just doesn't shine as brightly without you here. Godspeed and I hope you are running fast and free of all pain. Until we meet again.

Me and Truman

But, as we all know, life goes on even after such tragedy. We were blessed to have this little guy come live at our sanctuary.

His name is George. He is an old, tiny guy...rescued from a county shelter. It warms my heart to see him cozy and safe.

There is always much to be thankful for.

Book Doll Challenge

I'm sorry I have been gone for so long. I have to admit, I not very good at blogging. I just don't always have the time. I run a senior dog sanctuary out of my home, so I'm taking care of 16 oldies at the moment. Last week we lost our beloved Simon who was 21 years old! Also, one of our Great Pyrenees, Truman, has bone cancer and is nearing the end, so it has been very hard.

I also have a seven year old son who is turning eight next week! How did that happen??? We have his birthday party for friends, a family birthday party and then the school Halloween party and then Halloween! Whew!

But in the midst of all the sadness and chaos, I got the latest edition of Art Doll Quarterly in the mail! It features two of my dolls in the Book Character challenge!

Ma Joad from, "The Grapes of Wrath"

Hester Prynne from, "The Scarlet Letter"

I'm so honored and excited to be in this issue. I was also featured in the Fall issue of Art Doll Quarterly and Prims...feeling very blessed!

Day of the Dead...

Anyone else LOVE Day of the Dead?

So FUN to make!


Goodness, it is already October! Time is just flying by! I have a few updates for you!

First, check out my newest dolls at TDIPT Mercantile.

I have a Day of the Dead skeleton doll that is going to be in the "Dia De Los Muertos" show at Studio 12 Gallery in Denver. But guess what? I was in such a hurry to get things done I forgot to take a picture! I'll get on when the show opens on Friday and post it for you to see. I LOVE Day of the Dead, so I'm thrilled about this show.

I also got news that two of my dolls, "Ma Joad" and "Hester Prynne" have been chosen as winners in Art Doll Quarterly's book doll challenge! Hooray! The winter issue comes out November 1st! This is the third magazine my dolls have been in this year so I'm THRILLED!

Christmas already???

Sorry I've been away for so long! I have been making some holiday dolls for those holiday craft show applications!

Here is a sneak peek of some of what I've been working on...

These are little ornament dolls that I make for my holiday shows. They are really cute and sell really well. They are about 7" tall. I'm also making tree-toppers. Can you believe it is that time of year already???

And congratulations to Penny - she won the doll giveaway! She is a fellow dollmaker (and very talented artist). Check out her blog, Art Journey you won't be sorry!


This is my first giveaway, and I'm very excited! All you have to do is either leave a comment or become a follower and I'll randomly pick a winner. Make sure you have contact info in your post. I couldn't decide on one doll, so the winner can choose from three dolls.

This first doll I call "Waiting on a Friend." She is about 9" tall and sits on a vintage tea cup.

The second doll is primitive mixed media doll. She is 13" tall and holds a nest with some needle-felted eggs inside. Her body is made from a paper cone. She'd be a great tree topper!

The third doll is a birdcage doll. She has pink hair and wings!

If you have a blog of your own, please feel free to post about my giveway...the more the merrier! The contest will end on Saturday, September 15th.

Santa...and a little recycling

Well, it is my first Santa of the season!

I have this guy listed on Ebay starting be sure to check him out along with my other auctions (ebay seller: hoperayeldolls or click the link in the sidebar).

I've also been doing a little recycling...

This little gal has a glass bottle as a stand. Her dress is made from shredded plastic grocery bags.

This is my newspaper doll. She has a plastic 2 ltr bottle as a stand.

Some people do meditation to relax. Some do yoga. I glue thousands of little pieces of newspaper on fabric to make a dress.

On WEDNESDAY of this week I'm going to be doing my first giveaway!!! I'm really excited, so please stop by for your chance to win one of my dolls. Hope to see you Wednesday!


Tomorrow is the day! The Fall 2012 edition of Prims hits the stands! Even though I received an advanced copy of the magazine I'm pretty excited to go to the bookstore, grab the magazine and see my dolls inside!

There is something about seeing your creations in print that is so...well, magical! And Prims is one of my favorite magazines, so it is very special!

Next Friday is my birthday, so I couldn't think of a better gift. Well, except for maybe this...

Meet Peanut! He's the latest edition to my Little Old Dog Sanctuary and my birthday gift from my husband (I'll ALWAYS choose to rescue an old dog for my birthday!) Peanut's owner died and nobody in the family wanted him so he ended up at the county shelter. Not a great place for an old guy like this! But, he's here now - safe and cuddly! Happy Birthday to me!


Halloween always sneaks up on me. Especially in the crafting world where you start making Holiday-themed crafts several months before the actual holiday!

So, here are some witches I've been making. The first one has a dress made from paper. That is a time-consuming project but I always love the way it turns out!

The second witch is my favorite. She's sort of a Victorian, goth, high-society type witch! Her dress is made from a vintage nightgown. She's holding her book of spells.

I'm trying to make a primitive style witch, but for some reason this week everything I make comes out looking, well, not primitive! But, don't worry...come the first of September I will have some prim witches and other spooky treats to list on the Simply Primitive and TDIPT Mercantile sites. The two witches above will hopefully be in my Etsy shop before the end of the day (along with some really cool day of the dead skeleton dolls!)

Gone to the Dogs...

Just got some great news! My doll "Lost Dog" will be in the 4th Annual "Gone to the Dogs" juried show at Niza Knoll Gallery!

Here's a sneak peek of my doll...

Lost Dog

There is a sad/happy story attached to this doll. A few years ago, I thought I lost one of my dogs, Flora. She was this really old and sick Chihuahua...and just thinking I lost her was the most horrible thing ever - GUILT. At the time, my son was pretty young and thought he may have opened the front door but wasn't sure. So, we spent 24 hours thinking she was lost. We live in the mountains, so when she was gone overnight we were completely freaked out about two things. That she would freeze to death (she had Cushing's disease so she had hardly any fur at all) or that she would be eaten by a fox or a coyote or something. WORST NIGHT EVER. Next morning we found her hidden in a box down in our mudroom. We had been taking her picture (the one on the flyer) before she disappeared. Turns out she was deathly afraid of the flash on the camera and went and hid in the mudroom FOR 24 HOURS - and never made a sound. The flier on the doll is a tiny version of the actual lost dog flier we made and posted all over the mountain. Flora was fine and it was a happy ending. This doll is a snapshot of me and my desperation during that dreadful 24 hours.

If you happen to be in Denver, please stop by the opening on August 17th from 5-8, I'd love to see you!

Sculpture dolls

In addition to the regular dolls I make, I also love making these "sculpture" type art dolls. I've had several of these types of dolls in gallery shows around Denver and in California. I love the idea of taking a concept or emotion and bringing it to life.

Every year the Denver Handmade Alliance sponsors an event called "Art by Craft." The concept is to take something that is normally considered a "craft" and somehow convert it into "art." Here are the dolls I'm submitting for this year's show.


My Synthetic Joy or PROZAC


I won't give my explanations or go into detail of what I was thinking when I made them...I like everyone to form their own opinions about them.

Let me know what YOU think...

It's August...

Meet August!

He is our new addition - an 8 week old Great Pyrenees. As you may know, our older Great Pyrenees, Truman, was recently diagnosed with osteosarcoma. We decided to get August as Truman's predecessor.

I wouldn't say Truman loves August...tolerates might by a better word?

Puppy love!

To Dwell In Primitive Times...

More exciting news! Beginning August 1st, I'm going to be selling my dolls at TDIPT (To Dwell In Primitive Times) Mercantile. This is an awesome group of very talented artisans who have a love for making primitive style crafts. I'm really happy to be in such great company!

For August I'm listing two nature-themed dolls you won't want to miss! There are lots of goodies on the site, so grab a cup of coffee and browse the whole shop! I'll have new dolls listed on the 1st of each month, so be sure to mark your calendar and stop by often!

Good things really do come in threes!

I've had some exciting news that I've been wanting to share for a few months now. BUT on top of my super-exciting news I got some MORE super-exciting news!

Okay, the first thing is that I'm going to have a beautiful article in the Fall 2012 issue of "Prims" magazine (Stampington & Co.). It features three of my "tea cup" dolls. When I got the news I just about fainted! It has been a dream of mine to have my dolls in a magazine...and "Prims" is one of my personal favorites!

Second fabulous news is that I was accepted as one of the vendors in the Sugar Plum Bazaar which is an AWESOME holiday show in Denver. I was a vendor last year and had so much fun, so I'm super-excited to have gotten into the show this year.

Third thing!!! Yesterday my husband came in from getting the mail and called me and my son into the living room for a "family meeting." I thought something bad had happened, I was pretty worried. Then he handed me a copy of "Art Doll Quarterly" that had a sheet on top that said, "Congratulations on being published in "Art Doll Quarterly!" I have to tell you I about fainted (again)! I had two dolls chosen from their shelf-sitter challenge (see above). SO EXCITED! The issue comes out August 1st, so be sure to check it out.

My cup runeth over!

Sad news...something hopeful...

I'm sorry I've been away for so long! We got some very sad news several weeks ago and I think I'm still trying to come to terms with it. Our beloved Great Pyrenees, Truman, has been diagnosed with Osteosarcoma (bone cancer). It was quite a shock, he is only 5 years old. There isn't a cure, or really much of a treatment. He has only a few months to live. I will cherish every moment I have left with him, my sweet big boy.

The good news is that he is on pain medication, so he is feeling well and guarding the goats and chickens as usual. We had him groomed on is the before and after

Sometimes he escapes from the yard and comes home covered in black muck! I don't even think I want to know what it might be...

Beautiful!!!! He's like a cotton ball!

Because of my sadness over Truman I have been struggling to make dolls. I decided to try something new to see if it would spark my creativity at all. So, I embarked on a mixed media type doll.

Her upper half is a cloth doll and lower half is a paper cone. I embellished her with a lot of "this-and-that." She is currently on sale in my Esty shop. I'm not sure I'm a mixed-media kind of much glue, and scraps and mess! I don't know how you scrapbookers do it!

But something hopeful is on the horizon. We've been worrying about Truman's best friend, Lillie Mae (our Great Pyrenees mix). We know she will be very upset and depressed when Truman is gone. She is also much smaller than Truman and we were worried about her ability to provide protection for our other animals (and us) and protection for herself. So this little guy is in our future...

I'll keep you updated!

My Art Studio

So, I have been working on my Etsy shop and took some cute pictures of my art studio that I thought I would share here. I love being in my studio. It is so inspirational to me. It may look cluttered to some, but I like to think of it as cozy!

The theme was neutral on neutral...but a few "colored" items have made their way into the room.

These are shelves my hubby had made me for one of my craft shows. I love to have a lot of storage and places to put interesting and inspiring items!

Here are some dolls in various stages of completion.

This is an old chair I got at a garage sale. I got this vintage handkerchief box for Mother's Day. These old letters I got at an antique store several years ago. They are love letters from a long-distance love affair between two teenagers in the late 30s. So fun to read! My quest is to find a relative of these lovers and return the letters. They were engaged, but I never found out if they ever got married.

Ever feel like you're being watched?