Last week I came across Feel Better Friends in my Facebook news feed that one of my yarn pages that I follow linked to. When I saw the picture of all the kids with their special dolls (shown above), it just struck a chord with me, and I fell in love with this organization. After watching my sister go through her own cancer battle, it makes me empathize with other families dealing with tough illnesses. Even though my sister was 20 when she went through her treatments, she was often scared and needed a stuffed “friend” to help her face chemo or procedures. Many friends and family gave her stuffed animals to help bring some comfort and she loved them and decorated her hospital room with them. I can only imagine how much more a younger child needs a special “friend” to make it through hard times too.
The next day I signed up to be a volunteer crocheter, and I got my instructions for making a test doll to show my skills (original doll by FBF creator shown above). Even though I’ve been crocheting for over 17 years and have made numerous crocheted toys and dolls, this was my first time making a doll to look like someone specific. For my test doll I used a picture of my own little girl to match, and I decided I wanted to use her Halloween costume picture as Minnie Mouse. My little girl has been showing a love of dolls and stuffed animals lately, so the finished doll will be for her first birthday in a few months.
It took me two days to make the doll and all the extras. Usually I try to stay away from intricate, fiddly embroidery/finishing work as much as possible, but with this project I really enjoyed it, especially making the eyes with embroidery floss and sewing on the individual polka dots on the skirt. I think the fact that I had to match my work to a picture made it challenging and fun.
After submitting my test doll, I was approved, and I am officially a doll maker for Feel Better Friends. I received my first assignment today, and I am so excited to get started! If you would like more information on how to donate or be a part of this amazing group or to submit a request to get your own Feel Better Friend for a child with an illness, visit their website here: http://FBFdolls.org