When you hear that word, do you think of two loveable somebodies scuffling down a laneway, leaving a trail of dust in their wake? It's the image that comes to mind, right?
But did you know that Ragamuffins were also the first creative creation of our hero Crispina ffrench? She made her first Ragamuffin years ago, with a piece of handmade felt during an artist's workshop in college. She had been assigned to make a piece of felt and turn it into art in some way. And what a way she did! Her initial Ragamuffin was the spark that ignited the entire creative realm that she offers up today. After Ragamuffins, came blankets and then mittens. And now, well, hop on over to her Etsy shop to get a further taste of her marvelous creations.
There is real magic in making a toy. As toys are the springboard for imaginative play for kids, you add a dimension of originality when you have your child make their own toys. Crispina says, “When kids are allowed to create any kind of animal or person by hand and put that creature in a setting, a completely personal creative process unfolds. It's good for everyone!”
Art lovers may remember that the great sculptor Alexander Calder was required by his parents to make his own toys as a child and that practice grew into one of the great art careers of the 20th Century.
When I was a young, I used to make teddy bears and little stuffed rabbits and give them as gifts to friends. It was an arduous process, made especially vexing by the fuzz that would fly off the fake fur and land all over me. But the look on a person's face when they received their gift made all the trouble worthwhile. There is now a plethora of glorious handmade toys available on the ever wonderful Etsy – have a visit there and feast your eyes and heart. These sweeties below can be found there.
If you're interested in creating a wonderful handmade toy for someone you love, consider signing up for Crispina's upcoming Ragamuffin workshop upcoming in April. Not only will you have a great day and come away with a wonderful toy, you may get inspired to continue creating things you can't even imagine yet. Watch this site for registration details and grab your spot right away - these workshops fill quickly.