Sunday, September 23, 2007

Finally My Ethiopian Queen

In my last post, I left off with having another doll completed. Well, I finally got around to getting a few photos. I don't think this doll wanted to be photographed. I say that because I took several photos at different times of the day and somehow the lighting was always wrong. I finally gave up a kept the best ones out of the bunch. That's what took me so long to post her. Well even though she didn't want to be photographed, she was a delight to make. She's a pattern designed by Kookie Davis in the May 2005 issue of the Soft Dolls and Animals Magazine. I used the quilters strip piecing method on a muslin base to make the body and robe. I used a paperclay face mask which I painted to suit the costume. The mask used was designed by Sandy Pine and used for her Miranda the Mermaid pattern. It had the expression I wanted so it went perfectly after painting it. The staff was made from a twig found in my own backyard. It had already dried out so all I had to do is sand it a little and give it a coat of varnish. Once it dried I wrapped a portion of the staff with suede laces and added a few beads to embellish. This doll looks more complicated than it is to make. As for her name. I didn't get the chance to name her. She actually had one of my friend's name her. I was told by a friend who saw her photo, her name is FuWenne' (Fu-way-nay). So Fuwenne' it is!
I have a couple things in the works right now and I'm doing a little experimenting. I hope to come back with something interesting. So until then..........

Saturday, September 8, 2007

What I've Been Up To

It's been a while since I last posted and I have to admit I have been slacking off with the updates. I just haven't been in the mood to be at the computer. I'm at the computer all day at work so sometimes I just don't feel like it at home. Well, I'm back and since my last post I attended a function call A Day With Dolls hosted by Diane Kearney of Parsippany New Jersey. It turned out to a beautiful day. The weather was great and so were the people. Fifty some odd doll makers showed up for the event. I cannot remember the names of everyone I met at this time but there were a lot of familiar doll makers in attendance. Most of us brought dolls we've made to be put on display for the neighborhood residents to stop in and see. The photos shown throughout the post are just a sample of the dolls on display. Unfortunately I don't have the names to go with the dolls. There were also several demonstrations throughout the day. One had to to do with how to make and wrap a wire armature which was demonstrated by Kathy Hoffer. It was my first time doing an armature and I found it pretty interesting. It's a technique I will probably incorporate in my some of my future doll making once I learn a little more about it. There was another demonstration which had to do with the technique of using cloth over clay using air drying clay. This was demonstrated by someone named Colleen. I can't remember her last name but I think she belongs to a group called So So Dolls. This is a technique I've wanted to learn and now that I've seen it done, I can now practice to incorporate it in some of my own doll making. There were also demonstrations on dying laces, needle felting and there was also a demonstration of how to make fabric wrapped dolls with chenille stems by the ladies of the Mt Vernon doll club. Two other demonstrations were given by MaryAnn & Bonnie of Dollmaker's Journey. They showed us how the new product being used in doll making called Paverpol is done and what the results look like. What you get is a cloth doll that can be made into a "statue" which can be displayed outdoors. Not only does the paverpol make the doll rock hard, it also becomes weather proof. Imagine that! They also showed us another new product which is used for dying fabric and lace by using these "crayons " which are water activated to color the fabric or lace you want to use. Or, you can break off a small piece of the crayon put it into a baggie with a little water; swish it around in the bag with your fabric or lace and dye it that way. You can also mix the crayons to to make other colors. How easy is that?! They also brought products from there company for us doll makers to purchase while we were there. It was definitely a fun fill day with plenty food and drink and a lot of wonderful creative people. The day definitely got the creative juices flowing which brings me to what I've done since then.

Since that day I must say I was on a roll. I've made a couple of dolls I am very pleased with. The one I'll tell you about now is a pattern designed by Shirley Shaw she calls Charmed Cobra. I've been looking at this pattern for a while and each time I saw it I said I have to make this doll. I remembered a piece of fabric I bought a while back that would be perfect for this doll. I ordered the pattern and while waiting for it, started searching through my stash for the fabric and the embellishments. The pattern arrived and I went to work. This is what she looks like. I named her SSsssselena. The fabric is a faux snake skin, perfect for this doll and yes that's a baby snake she's holding in her hands! I love how this doll turned out. She is definitely one of my favorites. There is another doll I finished but I will post it another time. I'm not done the photos. Be back soon!