Saint Anne Studio: Sanctifying Childhood Play {Giveaway!}



When I was a little girl, I never really paid attention to what was going on at Mass, but neither was I bored. I was most definitely occupied. I memorized the details of the statuary and stained glass. I paged through the hymnal and picked out favorite songs. And sometimes, I would admire the beautiful brown and blue tiles that tempted me to touch with their shiny, smooth surface. I was small and those tiles were not very far away. My fingers would itch to stroke them and I would find a spot on my leg to scratch so that I could reach just a little further... to touch the tiles.

All of my childhood memories of the faith are similar. Sensory memories. Full of color and smells and sounds and images of beautiful and surprising things. As I grew older, I rejected the faith in ignorance and defiance, but when I was invited back, the first thing my heart returned to was those memories; so strong I could almost touch them. When I recently paid a visit to that beautiful church of my childhood, among the first things I did was to touch that floor.

Jennifer at Saint Anne Studio understands these things about children and designs toys that will add that sensory joy to a child's journey of faith. Her work is beautiful, detailed, and attentive to the spiritual and temporal needs of children. When I first saw her peg dolls, I felt my 6-year old self take a sharp breath of delight... and I longed to touch.

So what drives a busy homeschooling mother of 5 to make time in her schedule to create? She writes:

God has blessed me with many talents and I wish to share them in order to help people have a closer relationship with Him, Christ Jesus, His Son, and His helpers the saints and angels. 

I love making things and will try my hand at almost anything. I put a lot of detail into my little dolls. Because of this they take me quite a while to do and, as I have five children and homeschool, my time is very precious. 
I want children to turn to their saint and guardian angel for help and guidance. I love to make these little dolls for children so they have something of these great people. Childhood experiences are so vibrant and stay with us our entire lives. God created children to learn and grow through "play". In essence "playing" is a child's work and should not be taken as idleness or subpar to "real" work. So, let these experiences be divinized and raise the chilren toward sanctity. 

God has blessed me with many talents and I wish to share them in order to help people have a closer relationship with Him, Christ Jesus, His Son, and His helpers the saints and angels. 


To aid in the quest for virtue and sanctity, childhood should be filled with sweet stories of innocence and goodness. My little fairy and storybook dolls have been created with this in mind. 



I hope to glorify God in all that I do. One of my favorite quotes is from St. Faustina's Divine Mercy in My Soul, "Only love has meaning; it raises up our smallest actions into infinity". Do all you do for God - only He can make it worthwhile.



St. Faustina Peg Doll
I love sewing, painting, embroidering, singing, reading Catholic spiritual works like the Bible and "Divine Mercy in My Soul", attending Eucharistic Adoration when I can, having tea parties with my kids, and taking walks through our lovely countryside. So, as time permits I mean to turn my abilities into unique works of faith-inspiring art. 

Jennifer recently added a new addition to her shop; fabric doll kits for little (or big) hands to stitch together themselves. The cloth features her original artwork of the Immaculate Heart of Mary or the Christ Child, and becomes a huggable work of art under the guidance of loving hands.

Jennifer recently sent me a kit to pass on to my children and after a happy and successful assembly, we can now enthusiastically recommend it to you! AND... give one kit away to a reader.

The package arrived on my front door wrapped prettily, ready to give to my little Button.


The assembly is easy enough for a beginner and the directions very clear. If you would like to add embroidery before stitching together, the design is suited perfectly. We left it plain, since Button's intention was to give it to her baby sister. That also means that this pretty doll is washable... so Peaches is free to drool and love on it to her heart's content... because mama can always make it fresh again!


On the front of the doll is an image of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. The Hail Mary is printed on the back. The above photo was taken of the unassembled doll shortly after I opened the package.



The directions are simple and clear but Button and I were having so much fun taking pictures, that we made the seam allowance too wide. (I should have called this blog "Distracted Crafter") Guess what? She still turned out beautifully! You can see the difference between our doll (below) and Jennifer's (at the top of the post). Besides the fact that her photo shows the colors much better than mine, you can see the that her doll is larger. I don't think Peaches minds at all!



I would love to pair one of these fabric dolls with some basic sewing supplies for a Christmas or birthday gift. It would also make a perfect stocking stuffer or name day gift. I like the idea that, unassembled, it is compact and would travel nicely through the mail to a godchild.

Please visit Saint Anne Studio to browse and shop her absolutely gorgeous selection of work. It has been a great privilege getting to know her a little more and to share her talent and work with you. By the way, she is newly expecting baby #6... would you send up an Ave for her and her little one?

NOW FOR THE GIVEAWAY!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
One more thing...

If you purchase any item from Saint Anne Studio before Thanksgiving, drop me a line here in the comments or via email and I'll add your name to my Surprise Giveaway hopper. After Thanksgiving, I'll draw a name and the winner will receive a fun package from ME. I say "surprise" because I don't know what will be in it yet... but I promise you'll love it... just in time for Advent. 


Posted on October 28, 2013 and filed under "Catholic toys", "fabric doll", "giveaway", "saint anne studio".