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The caraco jacket doll is done!

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After two days of working on a hat and a stand for the 18th century jointed doll, she is finished. I love her hat! I have to come up with a hatpin that will keep it on securely.
She slightly resembles Claire from Outlander, but I think that might be the result of me looking at MANY pictures of Claire and her costumes, which are all gorgeous. But altered for modern  tastes. Why does she never wear a cap, for instance?
I think my next doll will be a Waldorf. I want to keep my hand in. Plus, I have seen some charming dolls lately that have inspired me to make some knitted garments.

Another 18th century doll

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I have been looking at MANY images of women in 18th century dresses and am still captivated. As are a lot of other people in the world, apparently! What a wealth of inspiration there is on the internet! I was inspired to make a jointed shoulder in my next boudoir type doll by looking at the work of art_doll_com, a Russian dollmaker whose work is on Instagram. That necessitated more research and I was delighted to see some tutorials from other Russian dollmakers telling me how to do it.

This image shows the ball joint for the arm of the doll. It rests in the socket created in the breastplate. This doll is strung with elastic so that the head moves, as well as the shoulders. The arms are jointed at the elbow as well. This doll's hips also have disc joints, and the lower legs are jointed at the knees. For this doll I made the elastic much stronger. My first doll has a rather wobbly head.















Even though they will not show, I like to make the shift and stays as true to period as I can. I ju…

The Outlander inspired boudoir doll

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I finished the boudoir doll and am fairly happy with this first attempt. She is proportioned rather strangely, and her bodice ended up higher than it should be, but I had a very interesting time researching her costume, and I think it looks pretty good.
I have always shied away from 18th century dresses because their construction is so complex. However, I sent away for The American Duchess Guide to 18th century Dressmaking and it is thorough and easy to follow, so I decided to be brave and give it a try. I have already researched and constructed an Elizabethan costume. There isn't a lot of difference in the bodice construction. Fashion changed very slowly before industrialization. I was also inspired by the blog youtube posts of Angela Clayton, Fashion Through History, a young woman who makes historical costumes and tapes her progress. She has made a couple of dresses inspired by Outlander and documented everything. I just followed her lead, on a much smaller scale!


I did most of th…

So many dolls!

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I have been making dolls and looking at dolls online and thinking about dolls, and still I can't get enough! I finished the Elizabethan male doll, I call him Piers. It took a lot of research to get his sword and carrier correct. I'm so glad to live in the age of the internet. So many images, with so much material to explain them.

Here he is, ready for anything.












I promised images of the Waldorf-style doll I made with fairly successful hip joints, and here they are:

As well, here are some images of other little Waldorf dolls:




Now I am trying out the making of a boudoir-type doll. That is, one that has a stuffed body, upper arms and legs, with air dry clay head, breastplate, forearms and hands and lower legs and feet. For now, only the head is movable. It has a ball joint at the neck. Here is a picture of the work in progress:

Back to art dolls

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After a frenzy of making little Waldorf-style dolls for the Etsy Made In Canada Showcase at the end of September, I am back to working to finish a posed fine art doll that I began earlier. It uses a head I created for another project and I am pretty happy with the body. I thought it was going to be dressed in Italian Renaissance costume, however it just seemed to resist that idea. I googled renaissance men's clothing and was struck by an image of Clive Owen striding along a corridor in the movie Elizabeth: The Golden Years. That was it!! Every doll I make is unique. It is not the same size as any other doll, so I have to design the pattern individually for each, which is time consuming, but interesting. Long ago, all dressmaking/tailoring was done on the individual, so I am following in the footsteps of those creators. Just so much smaller!



The long hot summer

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It has been far too long since I posted my doings here. Where to start? I am showing three of my dolls in the co-operative gallery where I am a member- Kawartha Artists' Gallery and Studio here in Peterborough. Two dolls are in the banner for my Etsy store and one is the Snow Queen that I created for a readers' challenge in Somerset Studio magazine. I also submitted an article on me and my dolls to the local newspaper, which brought me some (modest) fame and a patron who now owns two of my dolls. One (actually two) is the doll that is in Art Doll Quarterly, The Little Match Girl. I'm glad they are moving on to other homes. They need to be out in the world.
At the beginning of August I took part in a Waldorf-style dollmaking workshop given by Fabiola Perez-Sitko, who divides her year between Terrace Bay on Lake Superior and her home town in Mexico. It was held in the Toronto studio of Monika Aebischer, who runs The Olive Sparrow and also is a Waldorf dollmaker. We worked at …

More on Waldorf Dolls

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My inspiration was burning brightly and I carried on right away making a new Waldorf doll to learn from some new mistakes/learning opportunities. Meanwhile, I heard from Art Doll Quarterly that my submission of The Little Match Girl has been accepted for the August issue!!! I am thrilled, and have been to Chapters to let them know that my friends will be in to buy it and they had better get more in. They are seeing whether that can be managed, as most decisions are made at head office. 
No word on the Snow Queen for Somerset Studio. I will check the July issue to see whether I made it in.
For my second WD (that's how I will now refer to the Waldorf Dolls) I spent a lot of time adjusting and altering the body and legs, once again trying to get my doll to stand on its own. I used muslin fabric for the legs, reasoning that the unyielding fabric would stand up to some seriously firm stuffing. I tried a method for making a flat footed fabric leg that came from directions in Alice's B…