Kewanee Arrow Craft

Archery is the sport, practice, or skill of using a bow to shoot arrows. The word comes from the Latin arcus, meaning bow. Historically, archery has been used for hunting and combat. In modern times, it is mainly a competitive sport and recreational activity.(Wikipedia)

When Kewanee picks up her long bow she feels connected to her ancestors. For this reason, she enjoys target shooting and competing with her brother NIKAN to see who can get the most points. Together the set up targets, cans or apples to see if they can aim well enough to knock them off the platform where they were set. Kewanee and NIKAN always make sure they are practicing in an area set up for target practice to ensure they don’t hurt anyone and their arrows are not sharp but have a foam tip so they can only knock things over.

This arrow craft can be made with things you can easily find around the house or get at your local craft store. It is easy enough for kindergarten aged children, but it is important to supervise play.

The images below are the front and back of the Arrow Craft included with Kewanee’s Forest outfit shown below. You can get this outfit for a limited time at: https://via-e.com/collections/clothing-activity-sets/products/forest-limited-edition-sketch-pad-design

Use the Foam Arrow Trace pattern to make the foam arrowhead.
Use the color thread to secure the arrowhead and ends of the feather to the chopstick (cut the chopstick to any size. I like a size of 6 1/2 inches.) As you wrap the thread cover the area so the thread becomes the decoration. Use super glue to tack the end of the thread when you are done winding it around the arrow.

Mary of the Middle East™ Dollfriend® –Her Story

Mary of the Middle East™ Dollfriend® is the newest Advance Production Adventure™ from Via E. Advanced Production Adventures™ are the winning formula for the creation of Dollfriends®. Through these adventures, the Via E community participates in the design and development of each and every Dollfriend® character. It starts with viewing the first sculps, suggesting changes, voting to approve the design, viewing the prototype, discussing and voting on the meet outfit and ending with the delivery of the character being featured. For those who join before the box artwork is printed, each will be invited to have their name printed on the outer box to document their participation.

So far, we have received four design awards using this process. Other companies monitor their competitor’s products to get their new product ideas…we don’t. The only inspiration needed comes from within our own community.

Mary has lived as a dream of mine for three years now. Patiently waiting for her turn, I can’t think of a better month to begin her journey, December of 2021.

Who is Mary?
Mary is a girl who has an infinite ability to love and accept those around her. Her official birthday is July 26th (this does not reflect the delivery date, rather is a detail in her backstory.) Mary is home schooled by her mother, Hannah and is an only child. She has a grace about her that can turn even a stranger into a loyal friend. Her father, Joachim, came from a wealthy family, but instead of using that wealth for riches, Joachim travels to the poorest of regions where money can help to build the things most needed for others. Perhaps this is why we can see tenderness and love in Mary’s eyes, she has her father’s eyes.

Mary hopes someday to become an ambassador, crossing the boarders of the Middle East in an effort to build a more unified people and help to end conflict. Mary has a natural ability to learn new languages and enjoys reading. But don’t think Mary is too delicate…she is always up for a new adventure and stomping around in even the most challenging of climates.

I’m going to love getting to know Mary. I hope you will too.

During 2022, we will learn more about Mary as we craft her into our next Dollfriend®. Help support her production by joining her Advanced Production Adventure™ early! Find out more at: https://via-e.com/collections/dollfriends/products/mary-of-the-middle-east-advanced-production-adventure

Mary with have brown wavy hair, blue-green eyes, and joints at the elbows, knees and wrists. Her all vinyl body will be strung with elastic allowing for water play. Like all Dollfriends®, she will have 22 points of realism including French manicures and pedicures and toes that can wear flip-flop sandals. Through Mary, we will all learn a little bit about the Middle Eastern culture and people.

Kewanee’s Potawatomi Pucker-toe Moccasin Pattern

Let’s make authentic Potawatomi pucker-toe moccasins for Kewanee.  Use this pattern and follow the instructions.  If you get stuck, email Ellen@Via-E.com and yell for help!

Design Elena’s First Outfit

Your design will make you famous!

Create the winning design for Elena’s first meet outfit and your name will be added to Elena’s box as the fashion designer. You will also receive a first production Elena Dollfriend® for FREE!  Winner will be selected by Facebook Friends vote.  Submit a drawing or sew a fashion and take a picture of it and post it on the ViaE.Dollfriends Facebook #Elenasfirstoutfit page by May 31st, 2016.

Use the picture below to draw an outfit or use your Alexis or Tatiana Dollfriend® as a model to sew a new outfit for Elena. No purchased required to win. All ages invited to enter.  You can learn more about the making of Elena at: http://www.via-e.com/elena.html

Elana Marie Engel Meet Outfit

Elena Dollfriend and Via E are trademarks of Via E, Inc.  Image of Elena is Copyright© Via E, Inc.  All rights reserved.

Braiding Tatiana’s Hair in Micro Braids and Beads—Helpful Hints

  1. Work in small sections.IMG_5414
  2. Use a spray bottle with detangling solution to help brush out each section and split it into three smaller sections for braiding. Only brush out the section of hair that will be braided. Consider the size of the opening of the beads you are using when determining how much hair each section will contain.
  3. First, braid the hair around the face, braiding it in the direction you would like it to hang. Start the braiding close to the scalp but don’t make the braids tight. (This is the only place where you will start the braids close to the scalp.)
  4. Next, braid the top of the head. Make sure you cover the scalp of the head by carefully selecting each section’s hair. (You may need to play a little and cross hair from one section to the other to cover the scalp. There is not only one way to do this.  Do what looks good to you.) Start the braiding away from the scalp to ensure good coverage of hair over the scalp.
  5. Once you have completed the top of the head, continue using the same method, working your way down. Take extra care at the base of the neck if you plan on doing up-dos. You will want to make sure that you cross hair over to cover the scalp so when you pull the hair up, scalp does not show.
  6. Do not be in a hurry to complete the braiding. Micro braiding takes time, but is easy to care for and lasts a very long time.  You will be able to do many fun styles with a head full of micro braids.  The look in the picture has 60 braids.
  7. Use a bead threaded to help pull the beads on to the ends and secure with a matching rubber band that is non-damaging.
  8. Brush the ends around your finger to give them a uniformed curl. You may need to trim the ends.

Here are some simple braiding instructions for the first time braider:

BraidInstructions

Live Inspired.

Every moment that you give, more will be returned to you.  But you have to be still and allow the gifts to embrace you.  Gifts of money, notoriety, success are fleeting. The gifts that quiet the hunger of the sole are only found through others, through appreciation of what we have a peace that is found when you touch the maker.

This TED Conference video was passed on to me as a thank you for time I had donated.  I believed this gift of beauty is greater than anything I could contribute to your day.

https://www.ted.com/talks/louie_schwartzberg_nature_beauty_gratitude?language=en

RianforestWhy do I design dolls?  Why do I write children’s books?  Why have I chosen to live with less for the chance to leave a smile behind?

In this video Louie Schwartzberg said it best, “We protect what we fall in love with.”

I’m in love with the innocence of children.  I’m in love with the way a doll captures and preserves the warmest of memories from our pasts.  I’m in love with reflecting the beauty of diversity.  I’m in love with the potential of every mind, every heart. But most of all, I’m in love with you.  I love every post, every picture, every family and every girl or boy.

TatianaBeach2I want to protect innocence.  I hope to preserve and cherish your childhood memories or rewrite them if need be to erase pain.  I want to celebrate diversity in such a way that we are enhanced and elated by our differences.  I hope to encourage each to reach for their greatest dream, to love learning and exploring.  And if you are lonely, I want to provide a family where you know you are loved.

Via E is not a toy company…it is a family where dreams are the steps to the best that life can offer.

I hope for you to live inspired.  Inspiration is all around…and you are my inspiration.

From my heart to yours,

Ellen

 

My Curly Hair Adventure

The world of curls is so very wonderful! Like all things of wonder, these beautiful curls have their own set of care requirements.  Understand these, the reward is a multitude of hair styles and fun!

Since I was not born with the gift of curls, I have had to research how to take care and manage curly hair so Tatiana Dollfriend® families can keep Tatiana’s curly hair beautiful.  I have tried several combs, brushes, hair products…even fabric softener (Tatiana’s hair is synthetic.)  I came to my own conclusions but realized what I should do is ask the experts–curly hair girls.

What I found was a fun world of hair styles, and set routines that were followed.  Many of these tips confirmed what I discovered while playing with Tatiana’s hair, but it was so much more fun learning from others.  Here is a set of Tatiana hair care suggestions:

What you will need:  A spray bottle and a large WetBrush (I found combs to pull and break hair too easily.  (WetBrush hairbrush product’s bristles flex so they don’t break or pull out the hair.)

 

Dry brushing curly hair will cause it to expand and  tangle easier.  Instead dampen the hair to help manage. (Remember, Dollfriends® can get wet.)

  1. Using a spray bottle, dampen the hair. Add a product that lubricates the synthetic hair into your spray bottle.  This can be fabric softener, a natural products hair conditioner or detangler solution.  (avoid products with paraben)
  2. Use your fingers to separate the hair strands and remove any large tangles.
  3. Next, section the hair into smaller sections and brush the wet hair starting at the tips and working upward toward the head.
  4. Once you have brushed through all of Tatiana’s hair, rinse it with warm water to remove any product on the hair. (Keep water away from Tatiana’s eyes and be sure to blow out any water that ends up in her eyes.)
  5. Using a towel, pat dry Tatiana’s hair and then use a scrunching motion to encourage the curls to reform.  Trim off any loose hair to finish.

During playtime, use a large hair clip or hair scrunchy to help keep Tatiana’s hair from tangling. There are several hair styles that will help keep Tatiana’s hair in good shape while also providing a lot of fashion fun! While dressing and undressing Tatiana, remember to always lift Tatiana’s hair away while putting on or taking off clothing that uses Velcro.  (The Velcro male side has small hooks that can capture hair.)

One of my goals in making Dollfriends® is to help girls learn about each other and appreciate the amazing differences that make life so wonderful.  My curly hair adventure was very fun.  I learn a lot more than just how to care for curly hair, but also about girls of mixed race and their challenges.  Life is not without challenges for any of us.  But by learning about the challenges of others, we realize that we are not alone in our own challenges.  AND our compassion and understanding of others makes us better people and better friends.

Here are a few of my favorite videos.  The girls in these videos each have unique personalities and styles, and each made me smile and applaud their creativity and desire to help others.  I hope you enjoy them too!

NOTE:  NEVER use blow dryers on Dollfriend® hair.  The videos below are instructions for real girl hair.  Have fun!

How to Take Care of Curly Hair || Curly Hair Routine
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sVE2_9P6-_E

BIGGEST Curly Hair Mistakes! (Curly Penny)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sv5Dx9xe49o

20 Curly Hairstyles
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dOP-eqTaCqo

Curly Hair Weekly Routine – 3b/3c hair
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ezcrTrPKQvE