От Diyan Rusev

Handmade Rag Dolls and Monsters

Our guest today is Zdravka Varbanova. She creates handmade accessories, jewelry, dolls and various decorations. She is an artist and an enthusiast, who breathes life into old clothes or even random pieces of fabrics using her witty creativity. She is now going to share with us her methods and her motivation to do what she has been doing.

Creating Miracles out of Nothing

I produce all kinds of handcrafted treasures and jewelry. I mainly use and reuse all kinds of rags, bed sheets, clothes etc. This way there is less garbage and I can work more environmentally friendly. I love creating things out of nothing. I make many baby accessories and greeting cards. I am also a graphic designer, so some of the cards’ designs are mine. A friend and I are making edible ‘greeting cards’ which are a perfect decoration for the cakes she bakes in her bakery. Last but not least, I create hairy monsters and various kinds of dolls.

The Handcraft Itself

I started producing paper by myself ever since I was a student at the Clothing High School in Rousse, Bulgaria. And I have always loved it if I can give people something I created myself. Handcraft brings me so much pleasure. That is what motivated me to begin sewing, making jewelry out of fabrics and trying new things.

Sometimes I fall into some kind of a trance while I work. It brings me such a wonderful delight, I don’t even feel how the time passes.


The Inspiration

Inspiration is around me all the time. Everywhere. Without exceptions. I love shopping in second-hand stores and when I see a plaid shirt or some colorful piece of clothing, I immediately have the image of what it’s going to turn into. I know exactly how many dolls, bags or earrings I can make out of it. I get inspired by literally everything.

The Monsters

Lately I’ve been making a lot of monsters – they are hairy, one-eyed, very funny and colorful. They in fact have the mission to protect children while they sleep. I give them names, but their new owners also choose them names by themselves. People really love one of my monsters – Bubblegum (Davka) – it is made of bright pink cloth and I have already made around four Bubblegums.


International Markets

I am not cooperating with anybody at the moment. In the near future, though, I’m planning to become a part of a certain campaign or to become partners with somebody in the recycling industry. I’m looking forward to improve in that area. Also, I put my focus on making an online shop in Etsy. That’s interesting, because it’s going to be international and I really hope that the things I’m creating are going to be well accepted outside Bulgaria as well.

Holidays in the Countryside

I love being in nature with friends and to take long walks with my children. I mostly enjoy visiting different villages. But my favorite village will always remain the one I grew up in, named Bosilkovtsi. I had a wonderful childhood there. Every summer me, my sister and my cousins were there and maybe that’s where I got inspired to do what I do now. My grandma used to somehow do everything we asked her for – she was always making skirts and dresses for us and shopping bags out of something.  The time I spent in my village left an always-living mark in my mind and somehow helped me become the person I am now.

Zdravka’s Message for Us

I wish people to dare doing what makes them happy. I believe that we can feel happier and more complete only when we do what we love.

The Gift

For the team of Ambicia I would make one big monster – Smartie. However, I’m still going to need some time to clear the picture of it in my head.

Share with friends

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on email

Articles in this issue