Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Orphaned Baby Dinosaurs

What's sweeter than baby dinosaurs? Baby dinosaurs that need your love, of course.
Meet Rose, Oliver, Pip, and Jane; four dinolets in search of a mom or dad.

They've got a nest to sleep and play in...

T-Rex went exploring, but wants a nap now.
All together. :)
and, as you might have noticed, they're named for some of literature's favorite orphans. ;)

The dinosaurs are roughly 6'' by 3'' (Jane being a bit smaller), and their nest measures 12'' by 10''. The entire playset is made from Eco-Fi felt. You can adopt them via The Toy Cove on Etsy.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Eco Fi Rainbow Felt

I thought I'd take a post to tell you all a little bit more about my favorite fabric: Eco-Fi Felt.

When I first started The Toy Cove, I'd never used felt for anything more than a super simple, pre-packaged craft project. I had a general understanding that you could make it from scraps of fabric or dryer lint, and that it was easy to glue. Basically, I didn't take felt seriously. So I started out using the fabrics I had always used before; broadcloth, calico, or whatever was on the discount rack (isn't that how rag dolls came to be in the first place?)

However, one of the main goals of The Toy Cove was to use US-made materials, and I very quickly realized how difficult those were to come by, especially in fabrics. After some searching, I came across some felt by a company called Kunin that claimed it was made from recycled plastic bottles. That I could believe, but I knew already that most supposedly US-made items were "finished," in the States, but made elsewhere. A little digging, however, showed that their factory (not just corporate headquarters) is actually in New Hampshire.

Turning Eco-Fi felt into owls
It sounded perfect. I had virtually no experience turning felt into stuffed animals, but I had to give it a try.

Felt Frogs, Assemble!
The first thing I found out was that felt, compared to the more traditional dress-making type fabrics, is a whole different animal, and trying to treat it as something else won't work. There was a bit of a learning curve, I'll admit, but once I got the hang of it, I absolutely loved it. It's so versatile, so pliable, so... colorful! It was love.

Currently, all of my non-doll toys are made from felt, and all of that is eco-friendly, US-manufactured, Eco-Fi Rainbow Felt. Check out the Etsy shop to see some!

Friday, February 1, 2013

Two New Plushies! Mama Frog and New Year's Snake

First of all, another thank you to everyone who participated in last month's giveaway. This sweet little guy has a new home now. :)

But as of today, it's February. And that means we're fast approaching Chinese New Year.
This year will be the Year of the Snake, so of course, I had to make a snake plushie to celebrate:

He's a very excitable snake, isn't he?

And no fangs. ;)

For the first time, I had the opportunity to use sparkle safety eyes, and I'm so glad I did. They're the perfect finishing touch.

I'm also very proud to present Mama Poison Dart Frog and her baby Tadpoles!

They give a new meaning to the term "mom mobile"

Poison dart frogs are amazing animal parents. The mama strawberry poison frog carries her babies on her back, while Dad watches out for them and keeps them hydrated.
The plush version has velcro hearts on her back that her tadpoles can attach to when it's time to travel.

Green Snake and Mama Poison Dart Frog are each available on Etsy.