Monthly Archives: January 2014

Maplelea Boots!


So, I finally got around to making Saila’s boots (kamiik) into a pattern for you.  Maplelea doll feet are about the same as Karito kids, which means they’re too long and thin to fit most AG shoes.

Now you can make her some like these!

Download kamiik pattern here (yes, 1/4″ seams are included)

Also, in other news, the fleecy fun resizing is complete and you can get the pattern here.  Although it wasn’t my original intent when I first conceived it, it actually turned out to be quite a nice unisex pattern that works great for boy clothes too:



Thanks to everyone who participated, we had a winner in the “Where’s Jasmine?” contest VERY quickly!  I know not everyone uses FB, but I did it as a facebook contest so all the entries would have the same “time stamp.”  Sometimes when I send things from one email  to another (like forward things from work to home) there’s a lag of several minutes, and I wanted to make sure it was fair to everyone.  Also, you can see immediately what other people guessed.  The winner will be getting a shirt like this:

And everyone gets the pattern for it here

I have the embroidery in .pes format, just email if you want it.  Note that there are a LOT of little strings to cut but it’s still WAY faster than doing it the “real” way.

I’m so happy with my new Jasmine!  The universe must have seen the issues I was having lately with Saila and Henrietta and finally smiled on me.  Not only did I get Jasmine, I also got an Adora Kayla, and look what they got me for my bday.  (Thank you, Bday Fairy!)

AND best of all, they had no stains, scratches, shiny spots and are very nice quality dolls for the price.  They are not quite the same size as AG/Maplelea, as they are a little thinner and shorter, with shorter limbs.  You can see the difference a little in the photo with Jasmine and Saila above.

Too cold where you live to think about making that blouse?  Check out what Elisana did with the Halloween pattern:

See more on her blog here:

Where’s Jasmine?


Ok gals, time for the first installment of “Where’s Jasmine?”  She’s my new doll from Adora, and I love that her looks are ambiguous.  If you think about the world’s population, her looks (brown eyes, brown hair, medium skin) are typical of a large portion of people on the planet (Asia, the Middle East, Central and South America, the Arctic, etc.)  I’ve read comments that she might be intended to be from Southeast Asia, but honestly I feel she looks like could be from lots of other places too, which is great because lots of girls will be able to identify with her.

If you were a kid with a computer in the mid 1980s you might remember the game “Where is Carmen Sandiego?”  You had to figure out from the clues they gave where she was, but in the dark days before the internet, the game actually came with books you had to look stuff up in.  Hard to believe we even survived such primitive times 🙂

In the age of google, I’m making this trickier…The pic below was taken in that country (image is in public domain)

Here’s your clues:

It’s warm and humid all year

The country has had to gain independence twice, from two different countries

The country uses their own coinage, but US dollars as currency

The capital city has the same name as the country

Think you know the answer?  Go here: and post your guess as a comment under the “Where’s Jasmine?” post.  First person to guess correctly gets a doll shirt (based on traditional ones from that country) like the one Jasmine’s wearing.  No, you can’t see it yet, because it’s a pretty recognizable style and that would make it too easy.  🙂  I’ll post the pix and pattern here as soon as we have a winner.  [standard disclaimer – if you’re a kid, an adult must enter for you]  Good luck!

There were some requests for comparison photos of Saila, so on my flickr page there are a bunch that cover pretty much all the dolls you see on this blog as well as a measurement chart.  Not the world’s best photos, but they give a good size comparison.

(L-R) AG, Maplelea, journey girl (toys r us), magic attic, kidz n cats, Kruse Elea, Trendon Sasha, Hearts for Hearts, Corolle cheries

Click photo to go to flickr and see more.

More Maplelea stuff…


So Saila “said” she needed a sled.  In Inuktitut these are called qamutiik.   I have seen some amazing antique ones made out of caribou antlers and bones, but nowadays most are made of wood.  They are made to be pulled by dogs/snowmobiles, and probably by kids having fun. 🙂

Amazingly, these sturdy sleds are lashed together, not nailed or glued.  Historically, nails would have to be imported, and glue even now needs certain temperatures to cure and might not hold up in snow/wet/subzero temperatures.  Lashing the qamutiik together with cords means you can make it in any weather with materials you have at hand and make repairs easily, even if you’re far from home out on the tundra.  It’s a pretty amazing sled!

So, Maplelea makes a qamutiik for Saila, but it has holders on it to keep her sitting up straight, which I didn’t see much of while researching real ones.  I made one that looks more authentic.  It’s slightly less useful than the Maplelea one, since she will tip if you try to pull her around on it, but as a prop it’s pretty cute and easy to make.

Download sled pattern here  and Download snowshoes here and her boots (kamiik) are also coming soon!

I’m getting around to a body comparison post, but Maplelea and AG do differ a bit in body type and size.  Fitted AG pants look baggy and too short on Maplelea dolls, so I drafted some just for Saila.

The pattern is on etsy here

I also put together a toasty winter wardrobe with cutting lines for AG and Maplelea.  For shirts and baggy/stretchy pants, it works to just extend the hems to accommodate Maplelea’s longer limbs.  I called it “fleecy fun”

It includes leggings, looser pants with a contrasting panel,  a colorblock top and a zip front top.  The tops can easily be turned into vests by leaving off the sleeves.  You can get it here  Yes, it will include slim pattern pieces in the next week or two.  They’re done, I just need to make final versions and take some cute pictures.  If you already bought it, you should be able to download the smaller size pieces from etsy when they’re available! 

Last but not least… Facebook.  I had made it a new year’s resolution to get better with moderating comments on the blog.  I do read and value ALL of them (even from the mean people who complain about what I haven’t done, rather than thanking me for what I have done) but I usually end up responding individually, and I would like to make things more interactive and see pictures of what you’re making.  SO I started a FB page here:  Right now all that’s on it are some Kidz n Cats pictures my husband took last year, but I would LOVE to make it a forum for you to share your doll/sewing/crafting thoughts and pictures of your creations.  Also remember you’re welcome to sell things you make from Wren*Feathers patterns and you can put links to those on the FB page too!

Since I’m apparently in charge of ordering my own birthday presents, I’m getting an Adora Jasmine next week:

I was supposed to get a Kidz n Cats Henrietta, and I did, but she arrived severely damaged.  (I’m having bad luck with that lately, so keep your fingers crossed Jasmine is ok!)  KnC wanted us to mail her to Germany for them to try to repair her, since she was a limited edition and couldn’t be replaced, but honestly, when I’m paying THAT much for a doll, I see no reason she should not come out of her box in PERFECT condition.   I refuse to pay overseas postage and wait a month or so to end up with a re-worked,  second-quality doll, so Henrietta went back.  I’m bummed, because the KnC are so poseable I LOVE photographing them, but I’m kind of excited for Jasmine, because she looks so ambiguous there are lots of interesting ethnic outfits in my sketchbook for her right now.  Look for her to appear (maybe in a Carmen Sandiego-type contest on Facebook?) soon!

Make doll snowshoes!


Happy New Year!

So, Santa brought me a Maplelea Saila!  Sadly, Christmas morning was ruined by the shiny spots on her face probably due to the box lid rubbing on her during shipping:

Maplelea nicely offered to exchange her, but the cost and annoyance of international shipping, plus awful past experiences with exchanging damaged dolls made me think twice.  And I learned a valuable new thing:  30-40 mins of gentle rubbing with steel wool is fabulous for removing shiny spots from vinyl dolls like Maplelea and AG!  In fact, DH practiced on a thrift store AG and really made her look a lot better!   After recovering from her “plastic surgery”, Saila wanted to get out in the snow, so I made her some snowshoes: (and jeans, boots and parka)

Yeah, we do have snow, but it’s blowing past the house at 30mph, so I had to take the pix inside. 😦

Download the snowshoe pattern here

And then I was making this vest for myself from handwoven fabric and the colors made me think of the arctic, so I made a tiny one for her too, from the scraps:

If you’re a weaver and want to know, it was Harrisville shetland and “Paint box” brand yarns (similar to Noro Kureyon) in the warp sett at 9 epi and just the shetland in the weft at 9ppi.  The human size pattern is the “kimono” vest from Paw Prints pattern company.  It’s a very easy pattern that goes together quickly and fits well, as long as you make a smaller size than you normally wear.  I changed the shape a little to make it fit a doll’s body better.

Download the vest pattern here

Coming soon:  A sled for Saila, jeans and boots made especially to fit Maplelea, a set of toasty mix-match fleece garments, and possibly the parka in the snowshoe pic (I know it doesn’t look like it, but that parka pattern was SO hard to figure out…even harder than Lederhosen and overalls which previously tied for the title of “hardest thing I ever drafted”)

Stay warm!