Practice

People send me a child’s hand-drawn and coloured drawing and I custom make
a soft toy (softie) based on the drawing. I am inspired by the child’s
drawing for many reasons, ranging from the artful simplicity in the design, to the challenge of making it turn out well, and finally, to the knowledge that creating a softie based on her own design is the coolest thing for a child to behold (and hold).

My favourite softie is always the last one I did. I work on one softie
project at a time. There is usually only one drawing on the wall in front
of me, and I focus on that project. The first thing I do is sketch a rough pattern, mostly for sizing. I pick out fabrics, in my studio or at the nearby fabric store. I still can’t predict what it will look like in the end, and I patiently watch the softie grow under my hands. It’s an intuitive process. Sometimes, when the project is not going right, I will rip the stitches and rework it. It can be very laborious and the day flies by as I work in my studio.

For me, it’s a rewarding craft or art form. I don’t spend much time looking
over past projects (I don’t have the time!), but each project’s problems
and solutions get stored in my brain, so, as long as I fill my days with this work, I am still learning and getting better, as is the case for any craft.

by Leilani, 4

for Alexia's friend

 

by Lila, 3

 

by Emmeline, age 5

 

by Flora, age 4

 

by Lucas, age 7

 

by Orin, age 5

 

by Harry, age 4

 

by Annabelle, age 7

I am fully booked with orders for the rest of 2013.  Check out the Softiemaker Showcase, a directory of independent softie-makers around the world who offer the service of making soft toys from children’s drawings.