Ever since I painted my first peg doll family I have been pretty much in love with these cute little wooden people. I've painted several more and even taught a little class on how to do it! A couple of months ago I saw this peg doll nativity on Pinterest, and I was so inspired I knew I had to make my own! This nativity might just be my favorite peg doll project of all.
I decided that I'd have each figure carrying something symbolic. Mary has a heart because she gave the gift of God's love to the world. Joseph has a lantern because he was the protector and guide for baby Jesus.
Probably my favorite part, though, is the three wise men and their camels! When I was at Hobby Lobby looking for the flat-bottomed knobs for the sheep and donkey, I found these flat-bottomed egg shapes (which I think are for some kind of Japanese wooden doll) and I immediately thought my wise men were going to have to have camels. I definitely spent the longest of all trying to figure out how to do their robes and treasures and those darn camel faces.
A project like this might seem a little intimidating, but these little dolls are so fun, and you can really make them as simple or as detailed as you like. I started by doodling how I wanted each doll to look in my ever-present doodling notebook. I googled things like "nativity" and "three wise men" and "camel face" to get some inspiration for the colors and designs of the different dolls and took inspiration from many different nativity sets and paintings. It was so much fun that I am hoping to list some in my etsy shop next Christmas!
P.S. I bought my peg dolls at www.CraftParts.com. All the "adult" dolls are about 3 1/2" tall. I found the stable at Target in the dollar section for $2.50. So perfect!