Saturday, October 22, 2011

Happy Halloween Time!

Here are some great antique photos I found online:

I especially loved this "Bat Costume"  Awesome detail.  Look at her shoes too!

This was a photo from a Masquarade Ball

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Thursday, October 6, 2011

New Monthly Special October 2011

Limited Quantity - Victoria - Painted Doll Kit of the Month
$45.00 - Includes Painted Porcelain, Half Arms & Half Legs with heels

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Tuesday, June 14, 2011

The Portrait Sisters are Finished!

Stephanie & Jocelyn are finally finished!  It has taken awhile to get them done in between all of the other things I had going on! 



In the future when I create portrait dolls I will only be doing them in polymer clay.  It is very difficult to do the dolls in porcelain.  It is unforgiving.  You cannot go back and change anything in the sculpture once it is fired.  I see things I would change now, but I cannot.  All in all they are cute little girls that stand between 3" & 4" tall.  Very tiny girls!

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Saturday, June 4, 2011

♥ Portrait Sisters ♥ Collar, Cuffs & Fun Stuff!

Now the costuming get to be a bit fun.  I love the small details as they add realism to the tiny dolls.

  • Fine White  Cotton Fabric
  • Wonder Under Fusible Webbing
  • Aileen's Tacky Glue
  • Sharp Scissors
  • Red Silk Ribbon & Silk Cord
  • Hard lead pencil
  • Needle Tool
I had to hand dye the silk cord trim & silk ribbon as I didn't have any in red.  I also dyed some antique trim but as you can see in the photo, it came out a muted shade of red.  It will be perfect for another project, but not this one.

I used Jacquard Acid Dye, it is perfect for silk and feathers. You can see my Feather Dying Tutorial here: Feather Dying Tutorial

Following the directions for the fusible webbing, fuse 2 pieces of fine cotton batiste together.  This will add rigidity to the fabric as well as keep it from fraying.  Do not skip this step.

In this next photo you can see how to trace around the pattern with a hard lead pencil

Carefully cut around the pencil lines as smoothly as possible.  Be sure to cut inside the lines so there won't be any pencil marks on the actual collar.  Sharp scissors are a must!

Here you can see the cut out collar.  Notice the smooth clean edges and no pencil marks. Because the fabric has been fused together it will not fray.  Super helpful in maintaining  a clean and flat look that will add to the realism of this small scale.

*DON"T throw away the piece that you cut from the center of the collar, it is perfect for making the inset yoke under the collar.

Using the Tacky Glue and a needle tool, carefully apply a very thin bead of glue to the outside edge of the collar only!  Slowly lay the red silk cording on the glue along the edge.  Try to keep it as straight as possible.  Repeat this on the edges for a second row of red trim trying to keep the cord equally spaced on all sides.  Add 2 rows of red silk cording to the top of the yoke as well.  When the collar is dry, you will want to turn the neck edge under so there are no raw seams visible.

Now the magic really starts to happen!  I love this part!
Carefully glue the yoke to the open "V" area of the neckline.  Notice how nicely the fusible webbing keeps the edges clean and from fraying.

Ahhhh!  Look at little Jocelyn now!  She is really coming to life!  Red silk ribbon is tied in a tiny knot and added to the bottom of the collar in the front.  You can see how neat and clean the collar is on the top side as well as underneath!

You can see that tiny matching cuffs have been added to the edges of the puff sleeves.  This was done by cutting long this strips of fused fabric and adding the 2 red stripes of red silk cord.  I used the photos of the girls as my guide in how they should look.
NEXT:  The girls will get their socks & shoes and final hair styling & hair decorations and be off to their new home!
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Friday, June 3, 2011

♥ Portrait Sisters ♥ - Almost Dressed!

Here are Stephanie & Jocelyn  Almost dressed.

They still need their fancy red trimmed collars and cuffs as well as knee socks and leather Mary Jane's.  The poor girls will also need their hair combed out and restyled.

I had to make some alterations to the original pattern. When working is such a small scale, sometimes illusion wins out over reality and different techniques must be used to keep things n scale.  The original dresses are very simple and translate to a rather plain finished dress in miniature.  I decided to add some small gathers to give the skirt a nice shape without bulk rather than add the original "tucks" that were eased into the skirt to fit the bodice.  The dress hangs nicely with a nice soft look to the folds rather than looking stiff like it did with the original drafted pattern.
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Thursday, June 2, 2011

♥ Portrait Sisters ♥ - Cutting Out The Dress!

Now it is time to use the patterns and cut them from fabric.
You will need:
  • Aileen's "STOP Fray" or "Tacky Glue"
  • Needle Tool
  • Extra Sharp Scissors
  • Hot iron to press fabric
  • Hard lead pencil 

The Fabric Parts above  have each been carefully sealed with Aileen's "Stop Fray"
  1. Be sure to press your fabric so it is perfectly smooth and wrinkle free
  2. Use a hard lead pencil to carefully trace around the pattern onto the wrong side of the fabric.
  3. You can double or quadruple the layers of fabric if you need to cut out more than one piece of the same pattern. This way you are only cutting it out one time.
  4. Use VERY sharp scissors to carefully cut just inside the line of fabric.  This is done to keep any pencil lines off of the cut out pieces.
  5. Use Aileen's "STOP Fray" or Tacky Glue to seal the edges of each piece.  I use a needle tool dipped in the product and go around each edge very carefully. 
  6. Lay the sealed pieces on wax paper to dry.
  7. Don't skip this step.  It is super important if you want to have a very neat & clean finished costume.

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Wednesday, June 1, 2011

♥ Portrait Sisters♥ Costuming - Drafting The Dress Pattern

Stephanie Gets Her Sailor Dress!

The first step is to make a simple pattern for the sailor dress.  I use normal paper to make the initial pattern and then transfer it to card stock to make it sturdy and easy to trace around.

I start by studying the dress in the photo. It is a simple classic & timeless sailor type dress.  It consists of a yoke, slight puff sleeves, a collar & flare skirt that according to the customer is above the knee.  There will also be embellishments of white cuffs on the sleeves, a white insert in the yoke and a red "tie' and red trim.  The Collar will also be white trimmed in red.

You can either lay the doll down on paper and trace around her to get an approximate size and shape of the pattern or you can fold a small piece of paper in half and just "eyeball" the pattern.
I initially make the pattern without the seam allowances and add them in later in the final draft.  You can see in the photo that the length is also longer than needed, but that is not important at this time.

Here you can see that I have altered the pattern to fit Stephanie.  I lowered the "V" in the neckline and added the seam allowances I think I will need.

I have come up with basic patterns for the dress that I think will work.
Pictured from Left to Right:
Bodice back, Bodice front, Collar, Skirt & Sleeve.

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Tuesday, May 24, 2011

♥ Portrait Sisters ♥ Costuming - PART 1

Stephanie & Jocelyn Get Their Pretty Underthings.

Finally the poor gals have gotten their underthings.  I feel it is so important to make sure the dolls are properly attired from the bottom up so to speak.  Attention to every detail is of utmost importance.  I remember when I would do doll shows and the first thing people would do was turn the dolls upside down and look under their clothing.

Here is a photo of the underclothing that Stephanie & Jocelyn we costumed in.  They each have embroidered cotton undershirts with rows of vintage cotton lace ruffles. 

This way when someone looks under their little dresses they will see lovely cotton ruffles.  So nice & girly!

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Monday, May 23, 2011

Stephanie & Jocelyn Need Clothes!

Hey all,
Sorry for the delay.  I had to get more orders out.  Still shipping some as I type this. 

It is now time for Stephanie & Jocelyn to be costumed.  Each girl will be dressed in matching tiny blue & white pinstripe  sailor dresses with white & red trim.  They will also have white knee socks & leather Mary Jane type shoes.

I was lucky to find a very fine cotton pinstripe that will be perfect for their tiny dresses:

That's little Stephanie hiding under the fabric ☺

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Friday, April 29, 2011


I only have 3 Lily Kits left at the Monthly Special price.  After next week they will be moved to my in stock page at the normal price. 
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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Working on orders right now!

Hey all,
Thanks so much for your continued interest and for visiting my blog and leaving such lovely comments.  I am currently working on finishing up all of the Lily special of the month doll kits as well as a few other orders.  The portrait sisters will resume soon. Next they will be getting their undergarments!
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Monday, April 25, 2011

♥ Portrait Sisters ♥ Jocelyn & Stephanie get hair - Part 2

Here's the girls all wigged! They are really starting to come to life now!

Here you can see how Jocelyn's hair progressed.  Stephanie's hair was finished the same way.  Their hair still needs a good final styling and clean up, but that won't be done until the very end after they are dressed.  Notice the tiny fringe hairs around the hair line.  They help to add realism to the dolls.  They will also be refined at the end.
(Click on the photos for a larger view)  

One last look at Stephanie's cute little face!

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Thursday, April 21, 2011

♥ Portrait Sisters ♥ Jocelyn Gets Some Hair - Part 1

Here is a photo showing how I begin wigging for a 2 ponytail style.  The hair is really more brown than it looks in the photo. Both girls will have side parts in their hair.
Click on the photo for a larger view!

  • Photo 1 - Run a seam of glue off center and lay 1 strip of hair along glue.  Let set up and repeat for other side of part.
  • Photo 2 - Run a seam of glue down 1 side in front around ear to base of skull.
  • Photo 3 - Lay 1 strip of hair along this glue line.  Let set up and flip hair up away  from ear.
  • Photo 4 - Repeat step 2 on other side of dolls head
  • Photo 5 - Repeat step 3 on other side of doll's head.
  •  (Not pictured) - Run a bead down back of dolls head to base of skull.  Lay a strip of hair over this glue, let it set up, repeat for opposite side of hair.  Let hair dry Completely!
  • Photo 6 - Jocelyn has a mound of flowing hair which will soon be pulled into 2 ponytails!
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Portrait Sisters - Wigging 101

Here is a photo of prepping the viscose to be applied to the dolls.  I will start with Jocelyn and then wig Stephanie.  Each girl has a medium brown color hair in 2 ponytails (pigtails without the braids).  I chose to blend the hair colors as their color was in between 2 colors and also I feel it adds realism to the finished doll, especially with portrait dolls.  I will be posting step by step photos of the hairstyle as it progresses.

The hair on the left has been blended from the colors on the right.  It is actually more brown that it seems in the photos.  You can see the realism that is achieved by blending the colors.  It has more depth.

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Tuesday, April 19, 2011

♥ Portrait Sisters ♥

Here are some early photos of the 2 portrait sisters I am currently working on.  They are all grown up now!  I think Jocelyn & Stephanie are coming along nicely.  They look a little odd with bald heads, but I have been in the process of wigging them so I will take more photos once they have their hair.  I won't post their actual human photographs until they are completely finished!

Click on the photos for a larger image.

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Monday, April 18, 2011

Portrait Doll Sisters

I have been working on 2 portrait doll sisters.  My dear customer has been waiting a very long time for these dolls.  I am really not making portrait dolls anymore for orders, just creating them when I get an urge to do a particular person.  I will be posting photos of them soon.  They are little cuties dressed in identical sailor dresses.
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Wednesday, April 13, 2011

MONTHLY SPECIALS are available again!

I am pleased to announce that I am once again offering monthly specials on a selected doll kit each month.  The price is amazing and the doll kits are beautiful!  It is a great way to stock up if you make dolls to resell, etc.  There is a limited amount of kits available each month and the special will be ended when that limit is reached.  Please go the "Monthly Doll Kit Specials" page to see which dolls are available!
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Monday, April 11, 2011

Welcome to My Blog!

I have been trying to get this blog up for some time now.  I hope to keep everyone updated on dolls, kits, supplies, etc.  I think this will be a much easier way to stay in touch with everyone!

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