craft, Doll, pullip, Uncategorized

My hands and Edna

It’s much easier for me to be inspired to write about what I’m currently working on than to write about what I have finished.

“I never look back, it distracts from the NOW”– Edna Mode.

But there is so much I have made while not writing that I’d like to figure out a way to harness the excitement of the now to that which has passed.

So, let’s try this. We’ll got on the journey of my day or my current endeavors and then endcap it all with at least one finished project. Perhaps the two things will relate…perhaps they won’t.

Today

It’s summer vacation but I had some school-related work today.

This week I go to Jr High schools in the mornings to assist students with English speech contest practice. Today turned out to be a light work-load. We worked with one student in the morning until 9:20 and then had to wait for a second student at 11AM. Between these time slots the English teacher I worked with and I made sample recordings of me reading various speeches for students to use for practicing.

Recording didn’t take long. The English teacher I was working with and I sat and talked until 11AM.

We ended up talking a bit about ADHD. I disclosed I had it and she, having read up on it a lot, had asked questions to try to understand why some of her students with ADHD DO the things they do…one example was a student who tries to cut their nails with craft scissors while class is in session. Which made PERFECT sense to my mind.

Like people on the autism spectrum, folks with ADHD often stim. Stimming is any repetitive actions that help a person self-stimulate their senses: auditory, visual, tactile, and even olfactory. Stimming behaviors relieve boredom/anxiety or distract from pain / discomfort while also burning off excess energy.

The urge to stim is NOT going to go away with a teacher or parent telling a child to stop the behavior. The underlying anxiety, boredom pain or discomfort that is triggering the need to stim hasn’t gone away. Stopping the coping mechanism may actually elevate the anxiety. Even if it doesn’t, the absence of the stimming will make the underlying discomfort hit even harder.

I’ve always fidgeted with my hands. It wasn’t strange for me, from elementary school through high school, to have art projects WITH me at my desk. Finger knitting. Origami. Drawing. Filing hard wax rings for lost wax casting. Building wax figures. Using needle nose pliers to manipulate wire into 3-d objects.

Really.

Because of the specific public schools I went to this the reaction to this varied. I was occasionally seen as a problem in elementary school (depending on the teacher), it helped mark me as a bad student all through middle school, and was tolerated in high school because I could quickly demonstrate my understanding of the class topic when challenged…and my high school cared about art. It wasn’t an issue in college because I went to an art school where I was either making things or taking liberal arts classes I had a genuine interest in.

My schools were NOT Japanese schools

I know how strict Japanese schools are about students not having objects unrelated to class out on desks or in hands. I’ve seen how quickly stimming that bothers others (humming, tapping the desk, clicking pens) gets shut down (although that’s the same in America). Often students only have the option of stimming with hands, bodies (quietly) or staring at a particular object or thing in motion.

So what’s with the cutting nails in class?

Take my hands. I didn’t need to be told to frequently massage my surgery scar to help break up the scar tissue and aid in mobility. That scar is on my hand and I can feel it

To stim I tend mindlessly rub the pad of my thumbs over the fingertips and nails of the same hand. If my hands and fingernails are smooth, no hangnails or scabs or jagged nails or chipping nail polish, it’s possible to focus on something else while my fingers and hands do what they need to do. When that smooth surface is compromised OH BOY.



The interruption of my hand movements by an unfamiliar or unpleasant sensation can quickly change my stimming to an intense fixation. That jagged nail is now the center of my world.

ADHD people are not deficient in attention. We’ve got SO MUCH energy to pour at things. We have a deficit in the ability to regulate where and how our attention is focused.


A jagged nail interrupts the motion that was alleviating my anxiety/boredom ( and allowing me to focus on the task I needed to tend to). As that stim is removed, and the underlying mental noise pours in, that jagged nail presents as the thing to intensely fixate on. If I didn’t have ADHD I could simply note that I’ll have to clip my nails later….but I have ADHD. I can’t quickly and quietly regulate my focus back onto the task at hand.

Now that I’m on Strattera (a selective norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor that helps me with my dopamine levels) I can better recognize that I an fixating on something and work at how to redirect that focus.

Even on Straterra I sometimes will not be able to refocus without first removing/dealing with the new fixation issue. I might automatically surreptitiously try and rip that jagged edge with a fingernail. During a dull meeting I WILL have to fight the urge to dip my hand into my desk and grab some scissors even though I know how socially unacceptable it is and how ineffective a tool craft scissors are for the task.

I’m an adult on medication. The average neurotypical child is going to have a worse time fighting impulses. The average child with ADHD? Even one on medication (which is hard being dosages and medication have to be adjusted as they grow) that is helping with the larger issues will have a very VERY difficult time refocusing until the fixation is eliminated.

And that’s why the craft scissors are out, in class, going for that nail. That child knows that until the issue is dealt with they will be emotionally and physically unable to do anything else. They might also know they’ll be in trouble but that won’t stop them, it’ll simply make them try and hide it…and they’ll feel like a failure if they are caught and chastized. Knowing the consequences isn’t enough to stop all impulses.

That’s why.

That’s my dance everyday. The tango of temptations with an ever changing irregular rhythm of regulation thrumming under it all.

Finished Project:

Little Pullip to Edna Mode.

If you can’t link Edna Mode to the speaking habits, intense focus, delight in a new challenge and ever gesticulating personality of someone with Impulsive/Hyperactive type of ADHD…that is on YOU.

The basics

  • removed wig and makeup
  • replaced stock Little Pullip body with a more posable 11cm Obitsu body.
  • scultpted onto face with apoxie scupt.
  • repainted face
  • Doll wig from Parabox.
  • Shrinky-dink glasses
  • sewed outfit with black cloth, black ribbon, and pink ribbon.
  • bought tiny tights and shoes from Azone.
  • enjoyed.

Simple, elegant, yet BOLD

Standard
craft, Doll, pullip, Uncategorized

Flower Girl.

In late 2018 I picked up a damaged Pullip …as I do.

img_2992

Her eye-mech was destroyed, she had no wink bars, and she had half of her original face paint. I detailed the damage and fixing up here.

Then she sat in a box until last December.

Inspired by Instagram makeup, I decided to go for both over-the-top make-up and to try an asymetrical design. Here I am including her in some after-gig glamour shots after I’d returned home from my last restaurant gigs of the season.

img_0814

Here’s her final closeup before I rebodied her.

img_1232

I knit her a top ( Pullip Off-the-shoulder free knitting Sweater pattern by Megan Nordyke) and sewed her a skirt (no pattern used for the skirt) and repainted some Barbie shoes (not shown).

img_1233

This is why I went to Dollyteria for the wig lucky-bags…and scored!

img_1261

I love her. Just love her.

19f492e7-2203-41fc-b05b-026b04da2163

A friend asked me if she”s supposed to be me. Not intentionally and my mom’s the one with green eyes.

 

Standard
barbie, blythe, craft, Doll, pullip, sewing, Uncategorized

Work the book: First Coordinates

Here I am working my way through a doll-clothing book from cover to cover.

The book is はじめてのドール•コーディネイト•レシピ  (First doll coordinates how-to) by Dolly Dolly books. ISBN978-4-7661-1982-4 (1,500¥ new)

img_1511

The projects are: a dress, medium length shorts, pleated skirt,blouse, tank top (for knits),  bloomers, socks (for knits), tote bag,  and  tailored jacket.

 

img_1513

 

Included with the book are all the patterns  in five different sizes and which model doll they were specifically designed for:

  • 11cm doll (Poochi Blythe)
  • 20cm doll (Odeko and Nikki ), 22cm (Blythe)
  • 27cm (momoko doll)
  • 42cm (Unoa Quluts Doll)

there are also specific charts for various dolls indicating which size of the pattern works best for them.

The one below is for Dal (Groove). It shows that she’ll wear the the dress in size 20cm but will need a 2cm adjustment. The waist for the 22cm skirt will be a bit to large and so on…

img_1515

The other dolls with specific charts like this: Licca, JENNY, Unoa Quluts Light, Tiny Betsy McCall, DAL, nano Haruka, and MISAKI.

The books are full of step by step guides like this. This one is for tracing patterns to fabric. This book takes the odd step of tracing the outline of a photocopyof the pattern and then cutting away the seam-allowance from that photocopy and trace again.

I do not have the time or the desire to waste paper like that. I’m tracing the patterns onto clear plastic, like that used for folders, to make a reusable pattern. I’m sketching  in the seam allowance lines in thin chalk after tracing the pattern onto the fabric.

img_1512

Here is another example of how detailed the instructions are. This shows the type of closure used on the dress (there are how-to on making the loops) and then covers how to assemble a variation of the dress top that includes darting.
img_1517

Projects finished so far:

The dress:

In my first version I added a twice folded hem to give the skirt more volume. The stitching isn’t perfect so if I have a doll for this I’ll add trim at the waste to hide that stitch line.

My second version, with the spooky bats, is much cleaner and better assembled.

Shorts:

These I felt I nailed on my first try. The Preppy shorts were made first. Then I shortened the length, made in denim, and added yellow-stitched details.

img_1430

Skirt:

The detail notes were correct, the waist is a bit large for a DAL or Picconeemo. If I do this regularly for DAL I’ll draft my own waistband.

img_1429

Shirt:

For the love of GOD is this difficult. It’s also a project I made before. I went straight to this pattern when I first bought the book for my Agretsuko Blythe could have a shirt two summers ago.

img_0132

This time I’ve made it twice so far, each version getting cleaner. 7a8aafa2-bc6b-438f-b8c4-769be7637ba0

With this I’ve achieved a looser collar. I know how to remedy this (where to fold so the collar “button” flaps overlap correctly) but I rather like it as-is on the tiny-print fabric version.

Tank top with trim:

I gotta be me. So far I have NOT yet made the tiny socks and bloomers. I might just make them from the same fabric for a comfy rocker pj outfit. I did most of this by hand instead of machine sew.

pssssstt. Making tiny socks scares me.

Tote Bag:

I didn’t have matching thread but I made it anyways. When I have matching thread I’ll finish the handles but it looks CUTE.

img_1432

So what do I have left? Socks….Bloomers and the dreaded:

img_1523

Standard
craft, Doll, pullip, sewing, Uncategorized

Lucky Bag Inspiration: Classical Style

With the New Year came my first trip into Tokyo for Fukubukuro!

LUCKY BAGS!

The concept is simple: With the New Year stores put together items from the store into bags you can’t see into. The idea is that the contents of the bag are “worth” (priced individually) more than what you’ll pay for the bag.  Generally you’ll have an idea of what sort of items will be in the bag but not exactly WHICH items.

I’m not a huge fan BUT Dollyterria had USED DOLL WIG BAGS. So for 4,000 yen I knew I’d be getting 6 wigs of X size. I love the random game of “what do I have and how will that inform what I make next…”

 

img_1128

That’s 5 wigs, you say.

There’s another, but she’s already on a doll.

There’s more than just wigs, you say.

Of course I bought a naked doll in a baggie. I’m me.

74cb219d-def2-4d10-b74f-6444884337d5

There’s a body! You say.

Of course. sometimes you need another body for the naked dolls at home. They demand sacrifices.

I love the wigs… but now I also had this lovely doll who I decided NOT to rewig or change her face on. I figured out who she was. Zuora, a Pullip from 2006.

img_1125

She looks like she knows how to have a great time. Alas, her outfit was missing in action.

I fixed up a damaged dress I had in my used stash. I repaired split seams and added black lace  and ribbon accents.

img_1131

I also took a cape I’d made previously (using a pattern from a book about sewing for dolls with felt but rendered in a suede.

Those buttons actually button and unbutton through tiny button holes. INSANE.

And I made it.

INSANE. So tiny.

I ordered a book with patterns I thought might suit her better. “Classical Style” by Dolly Dolly. I have many Dolly Dolly books about doll patterns. The felt book was a used find at a book-off. I scour used book stores for their Doll magazines (which include patterns) and the doll-specific sewing books. Not rare to find, which shows you how doll-focused some percentage of Japan is.

img_1289

I often just jump to whatever pattern I want to make and just do that. It can be frustrating because my sewing skill set is more HUMAN SIZED, interior decor, and hand detailing. Sewing doll clothing is a skill that takes practice. The seam allowance (space between the needle/sewing line and the edge of the fabric) is often 5mm or less. That means very little room for error and ….your sewing machine bobin hole wants to eat your fabric.

The more fabric you join together the bulkier an outfit is. This matters very little when you’re 164cm tall but very much when you are 22cm.

There are ways you construct doll clothing that you’d never use in human clothing .

I have a friend I’ve been sending some of the latest tiny outfit photos to. He replies with emojis indicating that this is something the would NOT want to try and make. He’s a third generation bespoke suit tailor in Ginza.

I decided to use these books the way many of them are intended…working my way through the order of projects as written so that I’m doing the easier skill-building ones first with step by step photos before I tackle the harder ones. It would also allow me to blog.

And…this was the wrong book to start that idea with. Everything is lined. That means that every garment has any raw seams hidden between the outer fabric and lining fabric. This increases the bulk but makes for a more stable end product.

That wouldn’t be bad in and of itself but these are FRILLY FROCKS with lots of gathers.
Patterns have SO much gathering of fabric going on that sometimes I found that I’d make it once and then alter the pattern slightly to reduce bulk (but still finishing  seams properly)

Like this insane all-in-one bloomer set. I’m using scraps so I am making some outfits I’m not sure I’ll ever have a use for. This is my second, altered, version.

img_1312

This is the book version:

img_1567

 

Below you can see how much bulk is created when you have lined and gathered bloomers attached to heavily gathered skirt (with two layers of fabric) and an extra gathered waist ruffle) …and that’s before you sandwich it between the layers of the top.

img_1313

going in order  as written I have completed the following, including the above.

From left to right:

Undarted lined dress. Two tops (one with making ribbon bows for extra frill). Dress lined dress with darts. Ribbon bustle and hip ruffles for apron or hip bustles.

And it inspired me to take a break from this SO RUFFLED book, as it’s not my general aesthetic, and work my way through a simpler Dolly Dolly book I’ve used before but haven’t done everything from (show below)

This is going much smoother with less swearing. I’ll be writing it about it, and showing more of what gems these books are, next time.

Standard
craft, Doll, monster high, Uncategorized

Bi-Little Pony, for Caty.

I wasn’t a pony girl.

My childhood room was not edged with realistic horse replicas nor did My Little Pony (the first 80’s round which was square aimed at girls my age) ping my interest. Nor did the new wave of My Little Pony Friendship is Magic capture my attention.

I’ve seen an episode, while obsesively brushing out tangled pony hair, at my friend’s house in Madison…because her son is a fan…but I didn’t go back to Japan and watch any more.

Then, at the end of 2018 a My Little Pony Equestria Girl Rainbow Dash 11 inch fashion doll came into my home via a box of random gifts.

img_1192

Do I understand what is going on with this doll? No, I don’t.

I don’t know how the horses became horse/girls on two legs other than the fact that fashion dolls sell. Or maybe horse dolls got tired of carrying passengers (because that’s NOT the kinda pony My Little are) and decided “I AM THE ONE WHO RIDES. ”

Then came muse Caty. Last seen as a Byul.

img_7199

Her instagram looks are a place I cruise when I’m looking for doll inspiration because she’s talented and ‘effing adorbs. She usually does a series of LGBTQ inspired looks for gay pride and that’s when I knew.

Bi-Little Pony.

But I’m getting ahead of myself. First there was the “reroot or fix up” question.  Rainbow Dash has rainbow hair. Pride. Keep. Boil perm.

img_1191

Boil perms are still hit or miss for me. Each one gets a little better…I hope.

Inspiration.

img_1455

At this point I took Bi-Little Pony off my media posts. It’s common for my work in progress to vanish at times…but this time it wasn’t just my inability to focus.

Caty’s family suffered a terrible loss.

I wanted this doll to go to Caty as a small “Hey, people are thinking about you and you are loved” but I didn’t want her to have any hint of what I might be sending from Japan.

I knit a dress using crochet thread, size 0 needles and this on-line pattern. You drop a stitch on these and it’s nearly impossible to recover. Kinda hellish. That’s why I ended with a fluffy yarn skirt with leftover yarn from…oh, I never updated that project here so I guess I’ll do that next.

Then I finished the face, embellished the dress, found a tiny jacket in my stash and painted her boots.

And now Bi-Little Pony lives with Bi-MUA-Caty in America.

c021f4ec-2a74-42e2-88c0-8463cdee1e5e

Standard
Doll, pullip, Uncategorized

Caty is a doll.

Today is one of those days where I realize how much I haven’t posted.

I sat down to type up a post about a finished project I named Bi-Little Pony. The project involves a person serving as an inspiration who I have Dolled before so I went back to find those posts and found…only one post. I’d never posted the final product.

In May of 2018 I’d recently returned to Japan from a trip to America with some Barbie Made-to-move bodies in my luggage. The curvier MTM body inspired me to buy a used Byul doll I’d seen with matching skin tone.

54488e2a-51cc-47da-8431-15aabf232451.jpg

I had a model for the doll, my friend Caty. Caty is an amazing MUA on instagram. Go check her out NOW. Caty had done a look inspired by one of my dolls. I then decided to do a doll based on one of her looks.

I wrote upa whole post detailing how I put the Byul head on a MTM curvy body…but failed to follow up after that. The last time I featured her here she looked like this. She had a new body and a temporary outfit and wig but I hadn’t remade her face or found the right wig for her. There might be some more photos of her here and there in the blog, but if there are I haven’t properly tagged Byul.

img_5534

So, what has happened to Caty Byul since?

New face! This was the midway point.img_5778

Then I got her a new wig at Mandarake (I usually buy used wigs but Caty was sporting a her own wig in a color I wasn’t likely to find used quickly) and new eye chips by BeBeBlythe on Etsy. It was getting closer but she was still sitting around in a random outfit.

img_6160

I found a pattern for the Curvy Barbie Fasionistas by DGRequiem on Etsy and some suitably bright fabric. I swiped some insane stockings from my stash as well.

img_7199

And, as a final tribute I made her a simple felt beret…seen here with an almost matching fuzzy backpack.

img_0744

And that should catch me up on enough Caty-Inspired posts to start writing about..Bi-Little Pony

 

 

Standard
Doll, living dead doll, pullip, sewing, Uncategorized

Here I am. Little Me.

It was about a year ago I brought home a Living Dead Doll, Hush, from my local Hobby Off and opened her baggie to be assaulted with the stench of nicotine. I wrote about scrubbing and scrubbing to remove the nicotine stains.

bcb18592-b72a-4a33-a768-8af7adea5155

Eventually I got her down to an ivory white. She’d never be the same pink as her unexposed vinyl but it was good enough…then I waited for inspiration. She came to me in the form of Little Miss Muffet.

 

img_8213

Little Miss Muffet was never actually made by Mezco Toyz, unlike Little Bo Creep. What struck me about her was that she was dressed like me. Maybe not the make-up and the tiny tie but everything else looked like it could have come from my closet.

I decided to make me.

Hush’s hair was string and smelled. It had to go. I started re-rooting her with strands of red and brown 100¥ shop acrylic yarn until I had a version of my bangs/fringe and ponytail.

f443652a-a008-4ac6-b8b3-c2bc079801e3

In the last year I have discovered the wonder of buying glasses on-line. I’ve worn glasses since third-grade and needed them even earlier than that. Contacts aren’t easy for me to wear. Hard/semi-permeable contacts can handle my stigmatism but have caused scratches and pains in the past. Two week disposables can mostly handle my stigmatism but not perfectly and my eyes get itchy..I wear them for dance performances and little else.

For years buying good frames with the latest “as thin and humanly possible” lenses mean spending high hundreds of dollars…so I’d stick with the same frames for 4-6 years. Now for the first time I have one “safe/formal” pair of lenses that looks like my last pair (but with updated prescription) and two rather cartoonish over-sized frames…like the ones pictured above. My me would need glasses.

I had seen some doll sized glasses in a gochagocha machine a few months back and went to Akihabara and on Mercari to score some being resold.

Now, my doll has three pairs to choose from as well. the arms of the frames were too long so I had to snip them, drill to insert wire into the ends of the arms, and create newer “ear loops” with Apoxi sculpt….which I don’t appear to have photographed.

img_1586

I’m glad I found oversized frames for her. I’ve drawn a cartoon version of myself with over-sized lenses since mid-college. Without the frames her face looks a little too sweet.

That’s one of the huge takeaways I’ve had with this. Remove the make-up from your average Living Dead Doll sculpt and it’s a very traditional looking base.

Face almost finished it was time to dress me up!

Someone in a doll customizing group suggested that 1/6 Yo-SD shoes would work for LDD dolls. So when I found these…which are nearly identical to a pair I wore in late college (except mine had a pink nose and pink inner ears) I bought them

img_1590

Clothes!

img_1588

I found a free pattern on Ravelry for “Raglan Sleeve Doll Sweater for 10″ Ann Estelle” which worked for LDD dolls and knit two sweaters, one in black and one in burgundy.

I found a free sewing pattern for a simple a-line (reversable) dress on-line.

Last I made her a skull skirt (no pattern because I had to pleat to the specifics of the fabric print I was using) and modified a houndsouth skirt I had in my stash to fit her.

Ta-Da!

Transformation achieved!
ace32878-a3a8-4f76-9167-c36a709ba617

I know it was a success because when I sent my friend the above photo, without context on what I was going for, I received back a string of shocked LINE sticker and “It’s YOU!”

She even has a hedgehog!

img_0258

And, last, here we are posing together…with the other oversized frames I bought.

So now I have two me-like dolls. Little Me and my first Pullip face-up.

img_0709

And I suspect when singing Anna from Frozen 2 starts showing up in thrift markets…I shall make another me.

03d56039-f51b-4d88-ac41-b9ec18ddae37

Standard
craft, Doll, monster high, pullip, sewing, Uncategorized

Acrylic Yarn: Squeeky self-care.

I’ve written before about how handy-work can be quite an effective form of meditation for those of us with minds that sometimes fight meditation.

The repetition of movement, the precision needed, and the concentration used helps clear my head. It’s not that I don’t think while doing this, I do, but it’s a quieter thinking. I don’t have the time to chase strong emotions or berate myself. With my hands busy a strong emotion may easily be noted and pass and I won’t be tempted to chase down its cause right then and there.

Let us now sing praise for 100¥ acrylic yarn…here for me at my time of need.

Without too many details, it’s been an unwelcome revisiting  of the end of May 2019.

Vague story vague: within days two distinct circles of friends in different locations were revealed to contain two different types of horrible predators…and a lot of nasty information poured out of each. This week one of those two cases came to a settlement that involves only probation, no jail time, for a person who has torn through lives.

Cue the unwelcome few days of time travel none of us asked for.

And this brings me to the acrylic yarn. It’s not ALL the self-care but it is some of it.

I’m not the first woman in my family to find comfort in acrylic yarn.

My paternal Grandma Leah used to use the cheapest, squeekiest, most eye-hurtingest colors of acrylic yarn to knit and crochet hand scrubbers, sturdy foot “booties” and hard to explain dolls and toys…for cash or family.

Preferably craft-stall cash.

She lived with my father and step-family for years. We, family, all had these booties in inexplicable colors. Well, semi-explicable; they were the cheapest yarns for the best return on her investment of supplies. I also used to have a yellow and blue clown down with two distinctly different length legs where she’d just run out of yarn and ended.

Grandma Leah had a huge stash of different sources of patterns but it seems like the booties came from a hand-written letter from a neighbor. I have some of the letter but no more of the booties.

img_0177

Dear Leah;

Once before I had to show someone how to make the slippers. It takes a long time to do it. I can’t read a pattern. I’ve never had one for the slipper. Thelma showed me how. I only know one way to show you.

I start with each step. I just hope your friend can follow the directions. They go fast. 1 3 1/2 oz of yarn will make a pair. They sell real fast at x-mas time. You can make a pair in an evening and more if you’re fast. They get $5.00$ a pair….

What I do to cheap acrylic yarn is a transformation in the opposite direction. Knitting builds up form. I take acrylic yarn and attack until it is broken down into thin synthetic fibers. This is time consuming.

931761a1-a724-4c78-b500-7450189442a3

What am I looking at?

  • Upper left hand corner: Acrylic yarn.
  • Upper right hand corner: Acrylic yarn that has been tethered to something and then brushed with a wire pet brush until it gives up hope. After this step comes using a flat-iron for hair set at 140.
  • Lower left hand corner: the yarn fuzz after ironing, being cut free, lined up, and attached at one end with glue to create hair wefts.
  • Lower right hand corner: building a wig from this insanity.

What doll is that and when did you make it?

Oh, yeah, I’ve been away from the blog. This is where I show you some of what I’ve been working on.

8533c829-ddef-41a7-b903-d02f25a48329

Googling tells me this Monster High doll is Twyla. She is a freshman student at Monster High and is a boogeyman, daughter of the Boogey Man, she lives in the Boogey Mansion. This specific Twyla is the “Coffin Bean” coffee shop release.

But to me, she’s one of the many used dolls I bought off a girl in America using a charity shop go-between.

Let’s check out what I did with her.

She’s loosely inspired by the aesthetics of Disney’s Haunted mansion.

I used the Rococo Hime Lolita dress pattern to create this outfit. If you’re thinking of using easy fraying fabric like I did….don’t. headaches.

img_0388

I sanded off the “spirit swirls” or whatnot on her legs and used chalk pastels and acrylic to create a bat motif.

img_0458

I created this wig with exhausted acrylic fiber, a syrofoam egg, a homemade wigcap, and a handful of things from the 100¥ shop.

img_0492

Then it was time to repaint her face.

0e7f6bc3-b735-4753-8085-ecc97a602b25

I repainted her shoes and added accents. Again, solid nod to 100¥ shops.

5360edf1-cdf0-4b22-a417-9b69b1f139d2

And finally, some earrings:

img_0181

As for me, tonight I’ll be brushing, brushing, and brushing yarn and slowly creating wefts…allowing the feelings to come and they must…and focusing on what is really a low-stakes unessential and beautifully absurd addition to the strange world of things I make.

Stefon.

 

a4d54e85-903d-4596-ab32-6dd7057a492f

Because…this world has EVERYTHING.

Standard
costuming, craft, Doll, monster high, sewing, Uncategorized

Little Dead Riding Wolf

One of my finished projects this summer was Little Dead Riding Wolf.

You may have noticed that I never show concept sketches. It’s not how I work. It’s never been. With dolls as with creating dance costumes I start with a very hazy concept, maybe gather some inspiration, and let the tools take me where they will.

I’m not proud of this. It’s just what I’m comfortable with.

In art school I’d just tackle large sheets of paper and see where the drawings took me. I think in my fine arts classes, because I drew (worked in dry and thus relatively fast materials) and i wasn’t majoring in illustration with need to think of a client, it was encouraged.

When I started dancing I was more comfortable soloing improvisationally than I was confident in making choreography…but in grappling with how to learn AND create choreography I’ve become a better dancer overall.  In this new-to-me art I think some pre-planing and concept sketches would save time AND help me be more productive overall. I just need to figure out how to start that journey.

I’m getting that out here so I can think on it.

Little Dead Riding Wolf started out hazy.

The concept was part of the original doll’s name…I had one from the 20 doll haul.

img_0301And I knew that I wanted to do 1). more experimentation with Goth/Fantasy concepts on darker skinned dolls 2). unraveled yarn to create kinkier textured hair.

I bought red and brown acrylic yarn at the 100¥ shop. I unraveled it and re-rooted her head.

I covered her hair to spray her with a few priming layers of Mr. Superclear and got to coloring with chalk pastels, water color pencils and acrylics.

Next came how to redress her. I decided that Little Dead Wolf would want to warn possible grandchildren she met in the forest NOT to mess with her. I set to making a skull from Apoxie Sculpt. Nothing says “nope” like the skull of your vanquished enemies.

I drafted the cape myself. The red/black velvet is left over from a dance costume I made for myself.

redvelvet

The making of that and the lace beading can be found on my costume page.

For the rest of the outfit I turned to Requiem Art Designs. Etsy: DGRequiem is THE source to turn to when you wanna make doll outfits but don’t want to make your own pattern AND are willing to pay another artist. I went with her Rococo Lolita pattern.

roccoco.jpg

And I took a trip to Nippori (our fabric street) for remnant scraps.

Let me tell you, it took me two tries to get the brocade to behave. I have a less than perfect version I’ll find a use for.

Then I made a short skirt using her pattern AND a longer skirt by free-styling it.

The awesome belt came off one of the other MH dolls from my haul.
I layered those two skirts. I’m a huge fan of the idea that you just layer fabrics until they look expensive and fabulous.

For a final touch I painted those horrible purple boots to match her new outfit.

img_0385

I’ll need to make her a basket soon but for now I love her.

388ce6c2-5bae-4c35-a640-b49063b9a4b4

Standard
craft, Doll, monster high, Uncategorized

Every Day is Wednesday.

WEDNESDAY

img_5498

 

There are updates on the job front…mainly that I have a new one but some down time before it’s in full swing. that means DOLLS.

Let’s take a look at Wednesday’s journey.

She started as on of three used dolls my stepmother included in my Christmas pack. This one was an Ever After High Raven Queen.

img_2609

That started me on a journey learning about NASTY SKULL AND HAIR GLUE SEEPAGE.

  • The washing didn’t work.
  • The powdering didn’t work.
  • I scraped out her head.
  • I rerooted everything, making mistakes along the way.
  • Her first repaint got dark and muddy right quick.
  • I started over on the face.

f6414194-30e1-42df-a1f8-57bdc68ea12d

The second repaint is more painterly than I’d planned but I went with it.d8ff69dd-52f9-4a94-ab3e-dc86a6b0883aOMG NAKED DOLL POSTED WITHOUT ANY WARNINGS!

Eyes glossed

img_5467

Tonight I made a pattern and sewed her her dress. It was fiddly and there’s some stray marks but I’m ok with it.

She’s still without shoes but I ordered a 16 pack of shoes from Mercari yesterday.

7ae3766b-e0ad-485c-9b1b-197855891ce4

And it’s only Monday….

Standard