Wednesday, February 9, 2011

The Little Mermaid and her missing hair...

At the end of last year I participated in the Southern Hemisphere Seasonal Exchange. 

I made the below little mermaid and felted a little playscape for my swap partner. I was very excited to post my little treasure all the way off to New Zealand to my swap partner, hoping she would be loved and happy in her new home. 

A week or so later I found out that New Zealand customs had confiscated my parcel and advised my swap partner that it would be destroyed as it contained 'seeds' which were not permitted into NZ. (Hmmm..... must have been the English Leicester hair) 

My swap partner kindly spend some time communicating with customs who eventually conceded that the mermaid may be allowed into NZ, only without her hair!

My swap partner sweetly promised me that she would restore my dear little mermaid to her former self. And she certainly did that! Thank you Helena, you have done such a wonderful job!

Here are some pictures and words from Helena.......

I bet you're rather curious to know what has been happening over here....

Well....It turns out I couldn't find any Leicester other than rainbow dyed, which I thought had far too much blue, red and purple in it for pretty hair, so I had to look for alternatives. The best I could find was some raw mohair on the  auction sites.

So finally bought some of that, then waited over xmas for arrival - during which time your little mermaid's hair problem was forgotten by A, and she was fully embraced into the fold of little dollies to be taken around in her pram! 

Anyway, first the rather smelly mohair needed a wash - that was a whole new learning process to prevent it from felting etc...Then I needed to dye it blonde. I thought I would use some food colour with vinegar to set it. It came out really nice, then it needed another wash...Finally I could wait for it to dry. Then I did nothing for well over a week (!) then I sorted out the fleece and sewed it on as best I could to make it look as good as your picture. Wow that took some time! Very fiddly. 

She has been in the car on a few trips, and in the pram, and when she is not on an outing I like to return her to her little ocean you so beautifully crafted on our nature table at night ready for another day... So who would have thought there would be so much involved in sending or receiving gifts?

So there you go. The little mermaid looking as lovely as ever in her new home. What an ordeal! 


  1. Oh Wow - what a lovely story. I am so pleased. Helena did an extraordinary job on her restoration and learnt some handy new skills on the way. (I might have a go at that myself). Yay for happy endings.

  2. I *do* love a happy ending! And I've been totally waiting for that happy ending after that poor mermaid's ordeal.

  3. yes, a happy ending indeed...she is just so sweet, too:)

  4. She's so cute, I'm glad her hair has "grown" Back!

  5. Oh my! What an ordeal. Beautiful doll, though. One of those instances when natural materials aren't so loved, LOL.

  6. I just read your post from December about your confiscated package. I have linked to that post & this post as a warning for the swap I am hosting on my blog. I hope you don't mind that I have linked... And thank you for sharing this frustrating little tale of your poor wayward mermaid!



Thanks for your sharing your thoughts. I love hearing from you and will respond to any questions in the comments sections. Natalie

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