The is no difference in creating heads for stick horses and making glamorous pageant wear for little girls. The passion of the creator — Misti Houk of Cushing — is the same.
Children who play in the Children’s Museum of Will Rogers Memorial Museum in Claremore will reap the benefits of Houk’s creativity and generosity with new stick horses added to the “Theatre” in the area devoted especially for children.
She and her son, Ethan “Spazz” Houk, made the presentation recently after Tom Egbert, Will Rogers Roper-docent, had introduced her to Will Rogers and the Museum in the fall of 2018 when she was doing a craft show.
After many years of sewing the fancy dresses for little girls, she made rag dolls, but beneath all the creative juices was the desire to inspire children to “play like we did” and to paraphrase Mr. Rogers of TV fame, “play is often talked about as if it were a relief from serious learning. But for children play is serious learning.”
She said it was after “prayer for inspiration and guidance,” she woke in the early morning hours with the idea for stick ponies.
Since her first craft show with the ponies they have been her bestseller and inspiration for a new nickname, “The Stick Pony Lady.”
Most of the fabric in her stick pony collections is “finding a new life” such as family denim, left over fabrics from 20 years of sewing and fabrics she received from others. Mane yarns are left over from knitting projects. Occasionally she buys fabrics that “speak to me.” Each pony head “has a story to tell,” she said and children can conjure up their own story as they play rodeo or ride off into the sunset in the Children’s Museum.