The Wee Peeple Newsletter

January 2016                                                                         Issue  107



 The Story of Grandfather Frost

...actually starts a few years ago, when 

the Dollmaker was collecting Images for a little study of her own on

the "Phenomena of Personification"...

(...that would be... to bestow upon an inanimate object- human qualities...)

 ...when she chanced upon a Russian Personification....

one similar to "Old Man Winter"...



...and they called him...


"Grandfather" Frost

It all started with this picture

on the World Wide Web:




"Grandfather Frost"

by definition:

"A Slavic fictional character

 similar to that of Father Christmas:

 "Ded Moroz" (Russian: diminutive Dedushka Moroz)

Literal translation: "Old man Frost,"

often translated as

"Grandfather Frost"

Ded Moroz brings presents to children on New Year's Eve."




Grandfather Frost...

jokingly classified by researchers as one of the:

"Santa Guys"



Well, it's a small small World
Wide Web
and before you could shake an ice pick scepter

 this particular Image had settled into the popular imagination and was bristling
to be constructed...




The Dollmaker's fate was then discovered to be inextricably entwined with this Image,

 as she was enthusiastically and recurrently Notified of it's opulent Magnificence...

and Haunted by it's cryptic symbology ...

 her attention returning over and over again to

this one Santa Guy...


To illustrate the point:

NOT ONE of these pictures of the Russian Grandfather Frost

was ever sent to the Dollmaker:

...only this guy:







Ok... so...

well, alright... his outfit...

admittedly there's a party going on THERE...

a galaxy of twirling, swirling, exotic presumably symbolic embroidered embellishment...

 juxtaposed against a rainbow-striped extravaganza of dangling icicle beads

encircled by mythological white fur trim


...IS pretty snazzy for a guy....

even a Santa Guy...

and is that a Snowy Yak perched upon each shoulder? ... geeze!


But, really, it's the

 HAT with the HORNS

 that the Dollmaker thought was so...

so... "over the top"!




Whoa- HOld on there! Back up!


What's a Santa guy doing with Horns?



Even the well-known Russian affinity for Tall (often wooly) Hats

does not account for


The Dollmaker simply could not get around this detail.

She had to know. What's with the Horns?


...which led to...

A most delightfully bewildering investigation into

Russian Head-Wear...



Countless examples of an extraordinary style of head attire known as

The Kokoshnik

(a bejeweled high tiara)

distracted the Dollmaker for hours...

but once back on topic, the question remained...


Where were the "Horned Hats?"



Ok, there were these:

But these Horned Hats were intended for ceremonial use!

These Horned Hats belonged to Shamen!


"Horned Kichka Headdress, scarves, belts and sacred embroidery..."

Elder women had real horns, later replaced by the textile version of the "kichka",

the crown is called "soroka"



And these Shamen were Women!


Horned Kichko, Russian Ancient Horned Headdress from Slavic Shamanic Cultures

"These headdresses are very ancient from woman's shamanic leadership,

when actual horns were attached to the headdress denoting the elder."



so...the older the Shaman was, the bigger her horns...

(perhaps leading to the invention of  "the neck brace"...)


...they are also called...



 In Russia, the Deer of Choice would usually be the Reindeer...



the Dollmaker still wanted to know...


Why put antlers on your head in the first place?

What does THAT mean?



Her horns adorned altars and the heads of shamanic priestesses

 and her image was etched into standing stones, woven into ceremonial clothing, cast in jewelry and painted on drums.


 The Deer Goddess

The Dollmaker's Research reveals that

During the Clan of the Cave Bear Times

throughout the British Isles, Scandinavia, Russia, Siberia, the land bridge of the Bering Strait and into the Americas,

 the female reindeer

was venerated as

 the ‘Life-Giving Mother’


so this imagery traces back to

The Deer Goddess

“carrying the sun in her horns”

Now, the male reindeer (the Stag) has no antlers in winter: he sheds them.

 It is the Doe- the Deer Mother- who shows up on the darkest day of Winter

with Horns intact

(that would be Solstice-eve)

offering the "Return of the Light" to the World.

So the Horned Hats are about the Female Reindeer!

The Deer Goddess

“carrying the sun in her horns”

celebrating a pivotal point in the Seasonal Cycle: "The Return of the Light"

Makes sense...

So there you have it...

So... this guy really is...

A Masculinized version of

The Deer Mother

(He must be pretty old too,

 judging by the size of the horns...)



the more the Dollmaker stared at the central design on the dress
which at first seemed like a random decoration...
the more it looked like it could be a stylized reindeer head...

under a sun.



ok so...

As long as we are on the subject...


Shamanic Reindeer flew.





In Siberia, female shamans
wore red and
(spotted white) costumes
trimmed with fur,

horned headdresses (or red felt hats)

and practiced the tradition of

shamanic flight.

And most likely it is

their winter solstice celebration

of the Deer Mother,

 that brought us the stories of flying horned reindeer

who take to the sky on the longest night of the year.



Rarely depicted running on land, the reindeer was seen leaping or flying through the air

 with neck outstretched and legs flung out fore and aft.

 Often carrying the cosmos, the sun, moon and stars in her horns,

 her antlers were the tree of life, depicting the lower, middle and upper worlds.






 Those wild and crazy Slavic Shaman Women!

Flying with the Reindeer


In Siberian legends the reindeer took flight each winter

after ingesting the hallucinogenic Amanita Muscaria mushroom,

the archetypal red toadstool with white spots.


Shamans would join them on a vision quest,

by taking the mushrooms themselves and then,

 climbing the tree of life they would take flight like a bird into other realms.


(Don't try this at home folks.)




The experts talk about Flying Reindeer...



...the Phenomena of Flying Reindeer, folks!!

ah, but the Dollmaker digresses...


 So...basically this fellow represents

 another jolly old personification of

 a seasonal phenomena...

 the proverbial

 "merry olde soul-stice"



So the strange Horned Hat meant:

"carrying the Sun in her Horns"

(the updated version..."The Grandfather".

..clears away those pesky gender issues)

His Horns... now.  


And at this point, the Dollmaker

 re-enters the story

Still preferring the term: Antlers...

Inevitably though, once she got started on the concept of

"carrying the Sun in the Horns"...


 "Antler Crowns"

and their progeny... dominated the work and

the project became "inclusive" far beyond the original vision...


Though the "Antler Crowns"

seemed often to have grown tentacle-like appendages and

 frequently deviated far (too interestingly) from the mark


the studies continue....

and one day...this unique horned Santa guy will fully emerge as a Doll Construction...

although the Dollmaker is certain that her version will be a wretched scathingly vile imitation

of the resplendence of the original...


but she's workin' on it...









While all this research was underway on

Curved cut-out cardboard-construction Crowns....

the Dollmaker was simultaneously grappling with hand construction...




well... why not? to boldly go where cardboard was not expected to go before...


The hands by themselves looked like mimes...

...starting out innocently enough...

but this project is like a runaway train...

Where on earth could THIS be leading?




Inspired by the Grandeur of it All... and last year's Quilt Show..

The Dollmaker got it in her head to enter a quilt this year.

(should be fun...)



and then...

Inspired by the planes, angles and entryways of Barnacle Home Construction...

the Dollmaker started another painting....


Inquiring minds may wonder how a stationary creature like a barnacle can reproduce...







And inspiration also came from daughter, Shannon,

who reminded the Dollmaker that she had- uh oh!

NOTHING in her ETSY shop....






Five new listings! Alrighty then!





"In each knot or difficulty that entangles us

 there is a spirit trying to communicate.

The "spirit of the time".


-The I Ching

(Stephen Karcher translation)




'Til Next Time...



The story of
Waldo the Wonder Rat


The story of
Vasilisa the Brave



The Story of
Lady Nevermind


"What people really need and demand from life

is not wealth, comfort, or esteem,

 but games worth playing,"

-Thomas Szasz











"like music drifting through the air-
invisible but everywhere" 

-Jack Skellington


Follow Your Bliss


cultivate amused patience

Art using Recycled Materials


Steampunk Page




   512-332-6680    cell phone

Smithville, TX  78957






 In October and November

Check out the

Wee Peeple Doll Shoppe

at the

Shoppe #145


Roman Bacchanalia Weekend

Dollmaker Learns Swordplay


Mermaid Page






Wee Peeple Newsletter Topics


The Story of the
Three Dresses


Stacking Stones


Holey Stones


Sacred Geometry

Concentric Circles


 Cat Peeple Dolls

 The Smile of the

Cheshire Cat



Bottle Doll



A Shelling Adventure




Giant Lizard Battle


Dollmakers of Mexico





Bev Taylor
Woodworker Extraordinaire


The Bogman Coat


Mold Making



The Bottle Hunt

Sacred Datura



"Become the heroine

of your own stories,

 not the sacrifice."

-Sarah Ban Breathnach

from her book:

Something More




The Peabody Ducks


Bling Art Doll Gallery



Happy Birthday  Shannon!

and Joyce!


 Thanks goes out to:



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