Upcycled Doll Project handmade dolls

Mandy Haakenson is a local Twickenham mum who splits her time between working in the tourism industry (her day job) and creating lovely and useful things. In her hometown of Seattle, USA, she sold a selection of items to local children stores. An avid knitter and sewer, she also has a passion for ‘upcyled’ crafts… the art of re-purposing old things into something new. Most recently, she has been upcycling second-hand dolls into wonderful new handmade dolls, and would be happy to make a very special creation for your child.

Upcycled Doll Project handmade dollsWhen Mandy saw an article about a woman in Australia who was restoring old, unwanted dolls into new, sweet and lovable characters, she admired them immediately. Mandy attempted to purchase one of the Aussie originals for her daughter’s birthday, but due to intense demand and lack of inventory, it was unfortunately not possible. However, upon noticing that the artist was encouraging others to try upcycling dolls for themselves, this is just what the creative mum decided to do.

Upcycled Doll Project handmade dollsMandy found the process extremely rewarding. Not only was she more than happy with the finished products, but the true pleasure came in seeing her daughters’ delighted reactions to the dolls. The girls seem to prefer playing with dolls that had a natural look and to which they could easily relate. From a parent’s perspective, Mandy also found these to be the kind of dolls she would prefer her daughters to play with. She thought other local children (and their parents) might feel the same, so she decided to offer her services to make dolls similar to the ones photographed here.

Each doll is unique and comes with a hand-knitted jumper and skirt (or knitted dress) and handmade welly boots or shoes. Currently, orders will be on a first-come, first-serve basis and prices will range from £15.00-£25,00 per doll depending on what exactly is involved. For more information, or to place an order, you can contact Mandy at knighthaak@live.com.


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