Category: Blanket-Heads!

It’s a blanket…with a head!

Ruby’s Bunnies

8″x10″ acrylic on canvas, 2013.
These two bunny blankets were given to Ruby at birth, but rabbits do tend to multiply and she ultimately ended up with six of them before ultimately giving them all up a few weeks ago. Ruby is almost three, and the family had been preparing Ruby for quite a while for the moment when the bunnies would be taken away around Christmastime by Santa Claus’ liaison “Sparkles the Elf” (on the shelf.) Ruby’s parents assured her that the toys would be cleaned up and passed on to a new baby to comfort. You see, “cleaned up” is the operative term here. Ruby slept with all six bunnies every night and sucked on the tips of their ears to soothe herself. The situation became unhygienic, to say the least! Although the planned bunny surrender was to take place around Ruby’s birthday in December, a nasty red mark on Ruby’s face resulting from sleeping against their dirty ears caused Ruby herself to abruptly give them up several weeks ago. She looked in the mirror and said, “No more bunnies Mommy. Have daddy call Santa to come and get them.” Sparkles arrived that night and left a new teddy bear and some candy in the bunnies’ place and they have not been mentioned since! Ruby’s mom, Marla, commissioned this painting of the two original bunnies to hang in Ruby’s new bedroom (the family has just moved) in honor of the very important toys. It will be given as a Christmas gift along with a note from Santa assuring Ruby that the bunnies are safe, happy, and watching over her from the North Pole.

Patrick’s Bunny

5″x7″ acrylic, 2013.
It makes me so happy when past customers come back to me with new projects! Over the summer I painted a portrait of Sharon’s family as Fisher-Price Little People. Now that her son Patrick is about to turn six, Sharon suspects that his deep attachment to his bunny blanket might be on the wane. “I’d like to remember how much he loves to sleep with him now and worries when he is missing at bedtime,” says Sharon. I hope that this portrait will properly honor what a significant place he holds in Patrick’s young life! This is a particularly well-desined bunny blanket, in my opinion… I love that it’s plush on one side and smooth cotton on the other, and that it has defined “hands” and “feet” while still retaining its floppy blanket-ness.

Bunny/Nappy/Foo Foo

5″x7″ acrylic on canvas, 2013. Amy’s little girl is turning one this coming November, and as a birthday gift Amy decided to honor the stuffed bunny blanket that has brought her daughter so much comfort throughout her first year. The bunny is known alternately as “Bunny,” “Nappy” (due to his magical sleep-encouraging powers,) and “Foo Foo” (as in the pursuer of field mice, I assume.) The baby chews on his ears to fall asleep, and when she learned to crawl, she made her way to the nursery, pulled herself up at the crib, and reached through the slats to grab him! By my count this is the tenth pink bunny blanket-head” I’ve painted!

Kaci’s Bunny

8″x10″ acrylic, 2013. It’s a beautiful and rare thing when a child appreciates a gift in equal proportion to its significance! In this case, “appreciates” would be an understatement. Kaci’s mother Karen received this bunny blanket at her baby shower in 2003 from a dear, lifelong family friend. The bunny was placed in the crib and baby Kaci immediately became attached to it. Karen tells me that bunny is present in nearly every photograph of Kaci ever taken! The bunny is now so worn that any snuggling at all would cause it’s head to detach, so a backup “Bunny 2” was purchased to sleep with Kaci while Bunny sits close by on the nightstand. This portrait will be given to Kaci on her upcoming 10th birthday.


8″x10″ acrylic, 2013. A couple of years ago, I painted a white stuffed tiger for Jen’s then-two-year-old daughter Samantha. Now that Samantha’s baby brother Jack is old enough to have made his allegiance clear to a particular beloved toy, Jen commissioned a portrait of Jack’s monkey blanket-head “Woobie!” Jen asked me to be sure to include the worn white tag attached to the blanket, which, as you might be aware, is the most important part of the toy. When he is falling asleep, Jack rubs the tag against his face (or has one of his parents perform this soothing ritual.) As I’ve mentioned in many other posts, the phenomenon of baby tag obsession is quite familiar to everyone in our household!

Genie (Day and Night Dolly Version 2)

8″x10″ acrylic, 2012. This one might look familiar! I originally painted this reversible blanket-head toy in 2010 — it was known as “Day and Night Dolly” to little Dylan, as it is sprinkled with crecent moons on its blue side and a bright sun motif on its yellow side. A new portrait of the toy was commissioned by Robert for his twin granddaughters. They each sleep with this same doll, which they call “Genie.” He wasn’t able to sneak photos of the girls’ actual toys, so he asked me to make a new painting from my original source photos for the Day and Night Dolly portrait. It was fun to revisit this sweet-faced, whimsical doll, and an interesting excercise as an artist! The portrait will be a Christmas gift for Robert’s granddaughters.

Old and New Bunnies

8″x10″ acrylic, 2012.

Two generations, two beloved bunny blanket-heads! When Chelsea was little, there were several toys which earned the moniker “Lovie,” but this flat, funny-faced bunny was the last and best. She has had him since the age of three and he now resides safely in a cabinet next to the shoes Chelsea wore at her wedding. Her husband sometimes teases her about it, but she is quick to point out the Lovie has been around a lot longer than he has! When their son Bix was born, a family friend gave him a bunny blanket of his own in honor of Chelsea’s own cherished toy. Bix adores his bunny too, and so Chelsea thought it only natural that the two toys be immortalized side-by-side in a portrait! The blanket-head phenomenon seems to be fairly recent (and ubiquitous!), so I’m always excited to see a “vintage” blanket animal. (Here’s another one!) Chelsea won this custom painting in a giveaway kindly hosted by Mamatoga this spring.


5″x7″ acrylic, 2011. Sometimes I feel like I’ve seen it all in the way of the blanket-head, that clever amalgam of stuffed animal and flatness… but this froggy blanket is new to me. I love her polka-dots, her bow, and the sweet expression on her face. Stephanie ordered this little painting as a Christmas gift for her daughter Lily, whose Nana purchased this frog because she couldn’t resist its name: “Lily-Mae.” It did turn out to be a fateful match, because Lily adored it from the age of about 4 months. There are several back-up Lily-Maes, but SO FAR Lily is not interested in them (we’ll see how long that lasts!). For Lily’s first birthday, Stephanie created a Lily-Mae the Frog themed party. As a little baby, Lily insisted on falling asleep with the frog’s blanket over her face, much to the terror of her mother. Even now at 20 months, Lilly sleeps with it tucked firmly under her arm all night. Lily-Mae is no longer allowed out of the house, after a couple of scary times when she was lost. Stephanie tells me that, upon seeing this portrait on Christmas morning, Lily kissed it and said “Awww!” This was one of a handful of local holiday orders that I had this year… There was a wonderful afternoon just before Christmas in which Stephanie and several others all came to pick up their portraits, and their excitement made me feel a bit like Santa Claus!

Blue Dog and Lamb

5″x7″ acrylic, 2011. As I head into the final stretch of my busy holiday season, I am listening to lots of stand-up comedy on Youtube to stay sane while painting. And so this little portrait of a stuffed dog and lamb will forever conjure Margaret Cho for me, as she happened to be keeping me company while I made it! This is one of two portraits commissioned by Michelle for her grandchildren. Interestingly, the two kids each have the same sort of floppy blue dog, but Sophia, who is five, also has this fabulous lamb blanket-head. I adore the mixed patterns of the flowered blanket and checked scarf on the lamb!

Tito and Tito The Other One

5″x7″ acrylic, 2011. When five-year-old Elsie was born, she was given an Angel Dear giraffe blanket-head by her grandmother. At least it started as only one giraffe, and he was named “Milton” by Elsie’s father. Elsie is now five, and of course she has discovered and claimed Milton’s “back-up.” Also, Elsie has rejected the “Milton” moniker in favor of the fantastic “Tito” and “Tito The Other One.” Check out Elsie’s little sister Kit’s monkey blankets called “Fritters” and “Fritters The Other One” here, and another portrait of an Angel Dear giraffe here.