Today's post was going to be on a completely different subject... until I went up to the attic to find some fabric. I did not find the blue and pink striped material I was searching for in the many bins stashed beneath the eaves. What I did find was something that had been buried in my attic for nearly 15 years. An appropriately rediscovered treasure box for an
Autumn day such as this.
A box full of corn husk dolls I had made so many years ago.
Poor little dollies were in quite a state of neglect and disrepair.
Evidence of savaging mice was reflected in the missing locks of corn-silk hair and the cracked, tattered and torn sleeves and skirts of my little ladies.
The state of one particular farm maiden was quite shocking... nearly all her hair gone AND her bonnet in shreds; her apron full of corn had fallen past her knees in brittle defiance and she, being sprinkled in dust, with tiny cobwebs stretched across the pleats of her once flouncy skirt.
Poor "Mother Nature" was completely bald, having once had a glorious mane of blond flax. I suspect wee mice babes spent cozy evenings nestled in a woven bed of her stolen locks.
The pathetic little garden gal still had mud on her face, but her hair and hat were long gone.
The one hopeful thing all the dollies did have in common, was the sweet smile each lady wore upon her corn husk face, despite her bedraggled appearance. This brought to mind a long forgotten memory. As a child, I had a Raggedy Andy book in which one page showed Andy lying all alone on the attic floor, his stuffing strewn across the floor as bits of cotton fluff. Being a sensitive little girl, I used to skip that page, because it frightened me; but Andy was wearing the same happy smile across his face as my cornhusk dolls wore on this day.
I was delighted, amongst the dolls to find, (well preserved in a thick plastic bag), dozens of little faces I had painted.... for dolls I never completed.
Silly little faces!
This set of "Potted Ladies" was in the best condition of all, and I only needed to re-glue a flowery hat of petals upon the "Zinnias" head.
The straight pins hold everything in place as it dries.
For hair I used Sophia's lovely wool (she is a Lincoln-Finn sheep), flax, dark wool roving and bits of dyed cornsilk.. It took all day to repair the dolls, but the results were quite nice.
New bonnets were needed for all ladies.
The "Peace-maker"is quite contented with her new woolen hair and a fresh new bonnet.
Her hand-painted "quilt" was a bit chipped here and there, but easily refreshed with acrylic paint.
The little garden gal got new sleeves, apron, bonnet and flax braids. She required the most repair work.
I am very fond of her somewhat 'homely" face.
My cheerful farm maiden has gathered all the corn back into her new apron.
I was able to re-use her red cornsilk hair, I really liked it's darling frizz.
This lovely lady is still a bit crackly here and there, but otherwise is in good shape and only needs her "quilt" to be painted.
This piece was entitled "Windy Wash Day".
(It seems a wasp has landed on the "blowing" quilt..)
I will hand-paint the quilt blocks directly upon the corn husk with acrylic paint.
"Mother Nature" has returned in all her glory with a mane of hair made from my Sophia sheep's curly silver wool.
Ah... that's better!
Now everyone really does have something to smile about.
That was fun! I just might have to make some more of these.
If you would like to make a corn husk doll, I am sure Youtube has lots of directions. This is especially fun for little girls. Have you ever made one before? I will look for that article I wrote, and when I find it, I'll add the instructions to this post.