3&3 Handmade Shop provided me with product in exchange for my post. All thoughts and opinions reflected are 100% my own.
When I was little I had a stuffed monkey that was my favourite toy. I carried that monkey everywhere with me, his arms and legs dangling throughout all of our adventures. I still have that monkey tucked away for Brynn. In his old age he’s pretty fragile, so I am waiting until she is older. But I am so greatly looking forward to passing that monkey down to her. He’s just a brown monkey with yarn for eyes. Simple and soft for ultimate huggability, he reminds me of the heirloom dolls that are booming in popularity right now.
Well made, classic in design, often made of vintage materials. Heirloom dolls are either vintage or made to look vintage. They’re the kind of doll your child has for life, and passes down to their children. They aren’t at all like the poorly made, low quality dolls you’d find at Walmart. The dolls that get a child through a phase before inevitably falling apart. They are like dolls should be – made by a doll maker, with love and care, like they were in “the good old days”.
I find myself growing more and more disappointed with all of the character toys and merchandise available to little ones lately. I don’t love having these things in my home because they don’t offer anything for my child when it comes to nourishing her senses or inspiring her imagination. The flashier a toy is, the less room a child has for their own creativity and imagination to take over. Do I buy Brynn toys based on her current favourite characters? Yeah, sometimes, because they make her happy. But I don’t expect to see them in her room a year from now because the phase will have ended, or the toy will have broken.
When I came across 3 & 3 Handmade Shop I knew I wanted a 3 & 3 friend for B to grow up with. I got to know Brenda, the doll maker and shop owner, and I loved her story. She loves her family, and supporting other small shops – even doll makers who could be seen as competition. All of her priorities and values were similar to mine – love for family, classic toys, and supporting others in their growth. I knew I had to share her shop and her story with all of you.
Brenda’s dolls are so beautiful that it’s nearly impossible to decide which is perfect for you. She offers a range of her own designs created from original patterns, and she offers the ability to customize your doll. When she showed me the owl I knew immediately that she was the one. Mike and I both love owls and Brynn’s nursery had owl decals on the walls. She has an owl puppet, and owl figurines are sprinkled throughout our home. They are an animal that holds significant meaning in our family which made her perfect to be Brynn’s new forever friend.
B’s owl doll’s floral beak and wings give her the most lovely touch of femininity, and her lace skirt is a sweet and delicate pop of colour. Her eyes are lovingly hand-stitched, with long, enviable lashes. She is simply stunning. When I look at her I can imagine the adventures she will go on with B as she grows – picnics, tea parties, soaring through the sky. Cuddles, holidays, sleepovers, and road trips. It makes me smile just to imagine it, and remember that I shared all of those adventures with my monkey when I was young.
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Learn more about Brenda and 3and3 Handmade Shop below:
I’m Brenda – the girl behind 3and3 Handmade Shop where I create one-of-a-kind heirloom dolls and softies. I am a stay at home mother of four under 4. I am a passionate maker and lover of all things handmade, old-fashioned, natural, and overall beautiful!
I was born a creative. I love using my imagination and creativity giving birth to new ideas and using my hands to give them life. I design my own patterns from scratch, I collect vintage fabric, trims, and materials to give each doll it’s unique character. I absolutely love being able to offer something genuinely unique and special.
One of the things that set my dolls apart form other doll makers is the way I hand-stitch their hair. It is a long process that requires love and patience. And although they look delicate and intricate, they’re made to play and be loved for generations to come.
One of the biggest challenges as a stay at home, homeschooling, mother of four, and handmade business owner is time management. Balancing time to care for my family and all their little daily needs, maintaining the house clean and finding ways to also keep them engaged while I work is very difficult. With all of that, I also believe is important to take some time each day and nurture my passion for doll making.
I aspire to inspire others. I’m a firm believer of community over competition. There are thousands of other makers out there, and a thousand more wonderful ideas just waiting to be born. I hope I can motivate my followers to shine, let those ideas come to life, and stay true to yourselves by creating things that are genuine and unique. Bringing our personalities into each creation and sharing a bit of our hearts with the world is something that keeps this handmade community growing and blooming.
Let’s create something!!