07 Mar

Meet the Red Nose Day Dolls

Ros Badger and Emma Mitchell are on a handmade mission for Comic Relief raising money with the Red Nose Day Dolls

When jewellery designer Emma Mitchell and knitter Ros Badger decided they wanted to raise money for Comic Relief, they came up with this ingenious little idea for the Red Nose Day Dolls. The idea is simple - create a doll and sell it by auction on Ebay, with the proceeds going to the charity.

One turned into four, and plenty of other crafty designers contributed little accessories to their dollies, so that each one comes with its own treasure trunk of goodies. Two are knitted, two are sewn and the accessories span all kinds of crafts!

We took time for a little chat with the duo, about the lovely project.


Tell us about the dolls..
There are 4 dolls. Mac & Blossom are knitted by Ros' company Little Badger. Maisie is made by Jodie Carleton, who writes the blog Vintage Ric Rac in Melbourne, Australia and Poppy is made from a pattern also by Jodie. They are handmade and completely unique.


What do you aim to achieve?
To raise as much money for Comic Relief as possible & to promote the art of hand making.


Where did the idea for the dolls come from?
I contacted Ros via Twitter last Autumn about collaborating on a project. When we eventually spoke on the phone the idea for a doll was born - it was a way for other designers to contribute by making a range of miniature items, from jewelllery to fishing baskets. 1 doll very quickly became 4.

Why did you choose to raise money for Comic Relief?
I took part on a craft auction for Sport Relief in 2012 and it was such a rewarding experience that she wanted to develop a way to work with my network of craft bloggers and artists to do more fundraising. Emma Freud has been very supportive of both us as a customer and promoter of their work so it seemed relevant to do something for Comic Relief.


What did you personally create for the project?
Ros created the 2 knitted dolls Mac & Blossom, Mac's jumper, socks & pants and Blossom’s dress. She also made Poppy from Jodie Carleton’s paper pattern.I made tiaras and tiny necklaces for each of the girl dolls and necklaces for each of their new owners too.


How have other designers been getting involved?
We invited a few of our favourite makers to contribute and then as the project grew others volunteered. Eventually a team of twenty designer makers were working on the project.

How much do you hope to raise?
We do hope for at least £1000. If all 23 contributors’ hours were logged as well as the cost of materials, £1000 would be a conservative estimate.

Which is your personal favourite accessory that has been sent in for the dolls?
My favourites are the tiny crochet blankets made by Lucy O’Regan of the blog Attic24, the little books made by Celia Hart and the tiny versions of The Empty Stocking made by its illustrator Rebecca Cobb.
Ros’s favourite is Emma Herian of Sew Recycled's felted dogs Salty & Chip and also Karen Boatwright's film of Mac Camping.

What has been the best part of the experience of raising money through the RNDs so far?
The enthusiasm of all the contributors to make and donate not only their skills but their time too. It has been a very uplifting experience.


Will you be sad to say goodbye to the dolls?
Yes, as they have evolved they have also acquired identities through their various acquisitions, which seems to have given them individual characteristics.


The Red Nose Day Dolls go on sale from today, keep an eye on their Facebook page for more information and links to the eBay auctions in which you can bid to win and raise money for Comic Relief!

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