TWO New Book Releases from Hawthorn Press

Posted under Nature and Animal Crafts


New Book Releases from Hawthorn Press


making peg dolls and more

Introducing “Making Peg Dolls and More”

By Margaret Bloom

A few years ago, I stumbled across a delightful blog called “We Bloom Here”, written by an American lady Margaret Bloom. Margaret had just started making some very cute wooden peg dolls, and I was lucky enough to win one in a giveaway. (This little thing with a crocheted hat still sits in my toy room to this day!)  Margaret also ran a few Peg Doll ‘swaps’ and I joined in to make some peg doll angels one year. I simply love peg dolls and I was excited to see some of Margaret’s creations, and through this love, we became online friends!

A little while later, Margaret was invited to write a craft book and share her love of sweet peg dolls and her designs.  So popular this book was, that Hawthorn Press invited her to make a second edition, and just recently, this book arrived on my door step.

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I”ve been sharing it with our Rainbow Bridge Family Day Care educators, and we all agree- this book is simply superb. Chock full of grand designs and whimsical interpretations of birds, fireflies, rabbits, fairies and more. Margaret also takes a few step further than her last book and interprets the peg doll idea into cake toppers, holiday ornaments, toys, marionettes, a few sewing projects AND my favourite- zipper pulls. Oh my!


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The photos are a helpful guide to those wanting to use Margaret’s idea as a template but the illustrations are even more beautiful if that is possible.  Simple but truly delightful.

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One of my favourite designs are these Christmas angels. I’ve used this as inspiration and I’ve made some too.  I’ll be sharing the crafty-how to tomorrow!

This book needs to go on the wish list of all Waldorf-inspired parents and early childhood educators, as well as anyone who just loves to craft cute things. This book is FULL of cute things!  It’s a winner and I’m so proud of my friend for what she has created here.

Buy it here.


PS:  You can also find Margaret’s first book, Making Peg Dolls, here.



Introducing “Making Woodland Crafts”

By Patrick Harrison


Over the years of working in a Steiner kindergarten, surrounded by the most beautiful hand crafts we’d made, and also purchased time and again from local and international fellow craftspeople, there’s one thing I’ve noticed. The older I get, the more I want to craft with really simple and basic materials found in nature.  I want to simplify, strip back, and work with the beauty of things I find around me, rather than spend big bucks on ready-made creativity-limiting goods. Sometimes it is true that the imagination is fired up with less, rather than more.


So, this book by Patrick Harrison came at the perfect time. It is stuffed full of ideas from how to tie a knot or lashing, how to choose the wood you will use, and simple frames and structures for lanterns, toys, puppets and seats.


This triangle lantern uses the same principles as the ones we’ve been making using dowel in winter festival workshops for the past few years but this one uses natural timbers. I can do this!

But unfortunately, the only downside to this book of tricks is that some of the timbers and branches he uses are simply not available in Australia that readily, as my friend Melissa, a keen gardener and outdoors type, recently told me.

I’m inclined to say that little piece of information did not deter me too much as I would just tend to use what I found locally and adapt it. I’m sure there are things here that would suffice but I’d need to go on a big bushwalking exploration to find them.

But definitely, this book is filled with inspiration for those who, like me, are kind of organically and unintentionally heading back into that ‘forest kindergarten’ style of teaching where making out of nature is the best kind of crafting.


If you’d like a copy of Making Woodland Crafts for your library, you can < a href=””>buy it here.

Perhaps, you might have an idea about woods or branches to use in Australia ?

Please do drop me a line with your branch and wood ideas or suggestions so we can share them here.

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