Embroidered Vintage Fabric Doll

When the twins were younger, I made these vintage fabric dolls. They still sleep with them almost four years later. Yesterday I decided little E and I better make one for her to sleep with too. It was very cute working together. She chose some vintage necktie fabric I had lying around, and then we got to sewing. It’s a very simple pillow shape, …

Childhood Vintage Pull Toy

Here is one of my favorite toys from when I was a kid. My mom just found it in the attic. I can’t see any markings on it, but I just learned from my Facebook friends that it’s from Brio in Sweden. Such a great design! Very short movie below if you want to see it in action!

Baby Play Mat with Vintage Neil Bradburn Fabric

We got to spend all of last week at my mom’s house. Among the exciting fun with grandchildren, I got to spend some time with my mom too. We made this play mat for little E. I was lucky enough to somehow end up with this very cool strip of fabric from London that my mom bought in the late 60′s. It’s a fantastic elephant design by Neil …

Cedar Box Dollhouse and Art Books

I actually got to enjoy an afternoon alone this week. I decided to go look at art books and magazines. One of the shops had some empty cedar cigar boxes for a couple of dollars, so I got one to try out as a small dollhouse. I love the smell of the cedar, and it ended up looking pretty cool too. I also found a couple of vintage art books; one about abstract …

Guest Post | Let’s Get Crafty Like it’s 1978!

Greetings readers of Made By Joel. I hope everything is tickety-boo with you. I am over the moon to be writing this guest post for this most wonderful blog. My name is Harry (I’m a girl). I work for the London based children’s publishing company, Made in Me. We are the creators of The Land of Me an enchanting, digital world for young children …

Favorite Toys | Vintage Fabric Doll

A lot of people ask me what toys and craft projects end up being favorites in our house. One of the hits has been these vintage fabric dolls that I made a year and a half ago. My daughter really latched onto hers, and has slept with it every night since, taking it on vacations and all around town. It’s gone a little limp, but she won’t let …

Wooden Dolls Giveaway

My last giveaway was so fun I thought I’d do one more for the holidays. The prize this time is two of my wooden dolls, complete with vintage fabric doll clothes that I just sewed yesterday. The dolls are solid maple and finished with food grade beeswax. My kids, nieces and nephews have been playing with these doll sets for a couple of years now. …

Small Elephant Puzzle Giveaway

I recently received a great gift of some beautiful vintage birch plywood from my wife’s grandfather.  So to test the wood, I cut a smaller version of my elephant puzzle just for fun.  It turned out being so cute that I decided to make two of them so I could try doing a small giveaway.  So here it is.  If you want to be entered to “win” …

Wooden Marble Maze

The idea for this came into my head a couple of weeks ago.  I’m probably not the first one to do it, but it’s quite fun to play with.  Similar to a marble labyrinth, only much easier, which makes it great for younger kids.  Just set the marble on the small start hole, then get it to roll down the path all the way to the end, where it …

Vintage Wood Figures

I was digging around in my box of vintage wood scraps, and decided to make some little figures with a few of the small colorful pieces.  We used paint pens to draw on them, so it was an easy way to make a fun set of dolls to play with. And look at this great set that my son made.  He colored them with regular makers, then wanted to make playground …

Pop-Up Puppets

The kids and I just made some pop-up puppets this morning.  We had a great time picking out the fabrics and drilling holes for the dowel sticks.  When we were done, the kids were pretty surprised at how they came to life.  Below you can see a quick video.  (Including another one of my old songs.)

Marionette

A couple of days ago we took another short trip out to the countryside to visit my wife’s grandparents.  The kids love visiting their great-grandparents, and so do I, because they always seem to have some vintage gifts for me.  This time it was an old box of wooden odds and ends that they thought I’d like.  Looking inside that box I started …

Vintage Fabric Dolls

I just discovered a fantastic vintage fabric and craft supply store here in Portland, and made these simple pillow dolls with some of the fabric I found.  I embroidered the faces with my regular sewing machine, but it worked pretty well.  The twins love to pretend they are putting the dolls to bed.

Vintage Buttons!

My wife’s grandma just gave me her Tiffany Cigar box full of buttons during our visit last weekend. She said she was never going to use them, so I gratefully accepted the gift. The kids already love playing with them just in the box. Then I drew up some animals and pictures that they could place the buttons onto, which was a big hit also. I can’t …