In these challenging and stressful times, people are finding relief by reaching back in time to embrace and re-interpret vintage crafts. Yarn is one of the greatest sources of comfort imaginable, so it is natural for yarn lovers to find ways of soothing themselves, AND other people with their yarnworks. I have been mulling over some yarnie comforts lately…..
Yesterday, we had a very stressful day. We went to visit an old friend who is terribly ill in the hospital.
As we were leaving the hospital, talking quietly together about our friend, a young woman dashed into the elevator with us. We could hear her coming by her booming, angry voice. She shouted into her cellphone throughout the elevator ride, with her harsh voice bouncing off the glass walls. Her voice filled the rotunda of the hospital and many people were jolted and glared at her in response.
We felt like we’d been smacked sideways by her anger. As she dashed on ahead of us, it suddenly struck me that, yes, she was screaming in rage at the poor person on the other end of the connection, but there was so much more to it. What was really happening was that she was shouting to the whole world that she deserved to be loved, and that someone, somewhere, had told her that she didn’t deserve love and wouldn’t BE loved. Some part of her was yelling back, that she bally well had better be loved or there would be h*ll to pay.Yikes.
I had taken a crocheted comfort doll to our sick friend. She loved it, and clutched it in her hand.
It struck me that it would have been great to have had another comfort doll to give to the angry young woman, as a sign that, yes, someone did hear her, and that there are good things to hold onto, even in the darkest times.
I felt totally wiped out, so when we got home, I laid down, hoping for a nap. Instead, I kept thinking about how good it would have been to have had a small comfort doll to offer to the upset woman.
Sleep didn’t come, but inspiration did. What popped into my mind was this:
Old fashioned yarn babies:
I decided that it would be really good to make a bunch of them and have them in my bag. Then, if an opportunity presented itself when someone might need a little something, then, I would have these ‘Yarn Babies’ on hand.
Then, I thought… oh, it would be even better to have one pinned on my jacket, and then I wouldn’t have to rummage around in my bag. So, I decided to add a pin on their backs.
AND then… I had another thought….. it was about this bag of cheap and cheerful thread that my husband had bought for me in our fave 2nd hand store a few weeks ago:
There are great colors there, but the thread is totally hopeless to try to sew with. So, I have been having fun upcycling it.
I grabbed some tubes of it, and a stack of old business cards, and started wrapping around the 2 inch side of the cards:
When it felt like I had enough wraps for the doll, I cut a 6 inch long piece of the threads, and took them through the top.
I slipped the loops of thread off the card and tied a knot securely at the top.
Snip the loops at the lower edge open, smooth down the yarn ends, and wrap and tie securely around the neck:
Separate out 2 arms, and wrap and tie securely around the waist:
Wrap and tie the wrists, and trim the extra length off the ends of the arms. If you have access to oak trees, glue an acorn cap to her head.
Punch or cut out a heart and glue it to her chest.
Stitch or glue a pin on her back if you want to wear her on your lapel, bag or hat.
To turn the skirt into legs, divide the skirt in half and tie off ankles.
I now have a full rainbow of Olden Days Yarn Babies made with upcycled thread…. so, if I happen to feel that someone might just need a little comfort, then, I have a little bit of threadie goodness right close at hand……….
And, I have just thought of some friends and relatives who might like to find one in an envelope, so I think I had better go get wrapping…
Don’t forget that they make great angels when you add wings. If you want to hang them on a tree, then leave the yarn ends at the top of their heads loose and make a hanging loop with it.