Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Make a Santos Cage Doll

To summarize a description from
They were originally started as copies of 17th century carvings by priests.   Santos were first created for use as in-home altars.  They were needed in small villages that did not have a priest, as well as for when it was not possible to travel to church, such as during times of war. Their development flourished in Europe in the 1700’s and 1800’s, primarily due to these wars.  Santos dolls are closely related to the Crèche figures, which were implemented in Italy by St Francis of Assisi, during the 13th century.   Santos, particularly the females, exhibit a most loving expression that is also complex and thoughtful. Their shape is often rustic in nature, yet with delicate details.  Some dolls are basic and rustic, and others are refined and dainty.
They can be male or female, with or without wings or crowns, but either way I think they're beautiful and have a really interesting, rich history.  Here are some of my favorites.

Courtney at French Nest Market, has some beautiful photos of her Santos Cage Dolls.

I have found reproductions for anywhere between $150-$250, and
I saw an original Santos Cage Doll from the late 19th century selling for as high as $3200.
Some people think they are creepy, but if you give them a chance, they grow on you!
I think I could make one and I'd really like to try!


fromhousetohome said...

I still think they are CREEPY!!!!!

SantosCageDoll said...

Thank you for the mention! I have also heard people say they are creepy, but once they hear the story of them, they are usually charmed! Hiding photos,mementos, poems, bibles and keepsakes within the cage, dressing up doll for the occasion, and carrying them in funeral or wedding processions is quite a beautiful thought. :) Jennifer

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