Tuesday, December 29, 2009

My final Doll for 2009

Ok, this is Rita. She is the 'work in progress' with the green vest, in the previous post. The blue vest tied in better with the colors of her skirt. Her blouse is made of two curtain fabric samples. She is an interior decorator, she and came prepared for her next project, with a textured curtain fabric sample and an 'art' piece for the wall. She measures 17-1/2 inches tall. Her hair is a shaggy 'fun fur'.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Two finished, and work in progress

In anticipation of the January Challenge project, I have been accumulating some new patterns, and did a 'trial run' on a couple, that I will make another of, in January. I'm posting these today, so everyone will know that these were made in December, not as part of the 30 for January. At left, the tall colorful one is my version of Celeste, an online freeby offered by My Sister Kate. Thanks to her for that pattern. I LOVE her. What fun to make her. Designed with clay feet and hands, but I made them in fabric.

The second one is Jill Maas' newest pattern, City Girls, and well, she has done it again!! Wonderful pattern, makes up easily. These two are definitely one-day projects.

The tall darkhaired one is simply a skirt I bought at Good Will for the beautiful fabric. It's just tied to a makeshift stand, a head from my 'spare parts' pinned on, and a handfull of yarn. I'm thinking I will make her in January, and she may or may not look anything like this. ;^)

The fourth one is a work in progress, which I will finish in a day or so. Her entire costume is made from decorator sample-book pieces. She also has hands and an unfinished head from the 'parts' stash. (Click picture for larger view.)

At right is HorseFeathers!. I made up this design and sold both finished dolls and the printed pattern a few years ago. This and a few other of my 'old' patterns are still available. I also made this up with cow and bunny heads. She is all dressed up in her jumpsuit, anticipating the World Equestrian Games to be held here (in Lexington, that is) fall 2010.

I will probably do one of these next month, too.

This 14-inch Naval Cadet is a special order of a proud mother, a surprise gift for her daughter.

I started with a body I had made up earlier, and just 'winged it'. She is properly dressed in respectable undies, a button-front shirt, and trousers, which cannot be removed. But her lined, fitted blazer, with real button-holes can be taken off. Unable to find small enough buttons, I bought a card of brass buttons with anchor design, scanned and printed them and glued them onto smaller ones. A dab of clear acrylic gave them an nice sheen. The insignia were done in similar fashion, from online images. The shoes are boydoll dress shoes. The cap and the uniform are made of a lightweight, dark blue denim. Then I learned the Navy Dress Blues are actually black. Oh, well. The customer was happy with it.

And last, but not least, today, is this picture of my "assistant". Or rather, INsistant helper. She's helping with the armature for the fingers. She just loves chenile strips and little stuffed parts, like hands. Occasionally I have to make a second pair, because she helped a little too much.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Reponses to Challenge

To read the responses to the January Doll-A-Day Challenge, scroll to the bottom of the Challenge Anyone posting and click on 'Comments'.

Thanks to all who have commented on this, and joined in the fun!

Have a very Merry Christmas, and a great New Year!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Happy Holly-days!

This is Holly. She started out to be a Santa, but turned out to be his grand-daughter !! Tried several heads, and liked this cheerful little young lady, so 'took it from there....'
And so it is, you never know who will show up. :-)
* * * * *
I'd better make more heads, instead of using them up, so I will have plenty to work with in January, huh? Quicky projects can somehow take longer than anticipated, and need all the help they can get. Especially if one gets sidetracked re-arranging the craft room and building a new sewing machine table. I needed a better, bigger, flat sewing surface, with easy conversion to the 'open arm', so finally got around to making it. (Only way to get what you want, is to make it yourself, huh?) It needs a little sanding, and maybe some paint, but it's use-able, and I'm looking forward to making use of it.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Challenge, anyone?

I'm thinking of tossing out a challenge project for anyone who'd like to join in.

We often hear about the days when people worked hard for a dollar a day. And most crafters/doll-makers know they still don't really make much more than that. (It's a labor of love, after all!) Hmmm, dollar a day....doll a day..... I am constantly amazed by not only the quality, but the sheer volume of work turned out by many doll-makers.

So here it is: A January Winter-Blahs After-the-Holidays Doll-A-Day Challenge.
Make 30 dolls is 30 days. (Ok, so January has 31 days, so you get a 'day of grace'. Hmm, remember that term, it may be useful or inspiring.)

Any style of doll: Artisan, sculpted, prim, ormament, wall doll, pin doll, etc.
Any medium: Cloth, Clay, mixed media, etc.
Any size: large, small, mini, etc.

Bearing in mind that you might want to spend several days on just one doll, and few of us could actually work on them every single day, working up a batch of some 'quickies' could compensate the time. Pin-dolls and ornies are my favorites in that catagory. Paper dolls can be very interesting and unique, too.

Any complete, individual doll would count. Re-dressing an existing doll would count, as long as you have a doll for each outfit.

If anyone is interested, post a comment here, or email me at vada428@windstream.net.
I will keep a list, and post here, photos or links to all entries submitted, in early Feb.

Didn't complete 30? How many did you do? Remember, this is meant to be more of a challenge to oneself than a competition as there are no prizes, other than the satisfaction of meeting the challenge, and sharing the fun. Something to get the creative juices flowing again after the holidays are over.

P.S. Re: 'day of grace, above': Any doll created on January 31 is elligible to be named Grace.

Something different, for a change of pace

Not a very good picture, but .....
I bought one of these little fabric origami kimono onaments recently from a friend, to get the pattern dimensions, and thought I'd try a batch of them. Just raided my stash for likely fabrics, and made these up according to the size of the fabric pieces. They are easy to scale to any size. I hung them each on a fishline from the skewer hanger. A chop stick works great for the larger size. These run from 3-1/2 to 7 inches tall. Ellen had made some up much larger, for a nice wall hanging.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Aura DeLaVina

Well, with spare parts .....you can't just let them lie around......
Another white-tissue-decoupaged wine bottle, a spare head, and a little piece of shimmery fabric, and it's time to try a little artsy drapery. ;-)

These of course, are not finished dolls, but they do get the creative juices flowing.
Comments are appreciated.

Trim-a-tree time

This is Sweet Treesa. I saw this idea online somewhere, and have wanted to play around with it. It was my Sunday-afternoon project. Her tree-shaped gown and sleeves are inserted into a wine bottle, as is her neck. There is a hoop to flare her skirt, gold beads for ornaments, a string of lights. I love her sweet face.

Only 37 more days till Christmas! Even the jockeys are starting to prepare for the 'big day'.
I made a few cards, featuring last year's santa dolls. All of these dolls have been sold.
And here's a bahh-humbug card with two different santas.
And here's Mrs. Browne, who is working on her crazy quilt, hoping to have it finished in time for Christmas. It is meant to be a special gift for her very best friend.
And when that's finished, she'll be all set to start a new project, with all those fat quarters she has in her sewing basket. She's going to be working on those, down there at the Bluegrass Gifts and Collectibles Shop. She'll be happy to greet everyone, and show them all how to do those fancy stitches.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Cassie's own book

Cassie, the MerryHill Faeire now has her very own story, done up in a 12 page handmade book. It has 11 pictures, too. I've had this story in mind for a while, but it took the making of Cassie, a special order, to inspire me to put it on paper. The book features this particular faerie, but includes all of them, so though the very first copy was done to accompany this doll, the book is a good companion piece for any of the faerie dolls, or will stand alone. It is on sale at Truly Bluegrass shop, or directly from me.

I have also made up an assortment of greeting cards, now at the shop. A couple of Christmas cards, a Halloween card, and a few 'everyday' greetings. Also a bunch of the whimsical Kentucky Yard-stick cards, that I had a few years ago.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

What, another quilter?

(Vicky is Sold)
This is Vicky. She is 24 inches tall, and her long hair could be styled in an updo with a big 'clip'. Her enormous sewing basket contains all the usual quilter's stuff: magazines, bolts of muslin, 18 mini 'fat quarters', threads, needles, pins, tape measure. She also has a quilting hoop, scissors, wrist pin cushion, her current project that she's ready to hand-quilt, and she has not forgotten her rotary cutter or her glasses! She's definitely a happy camper.

I have another started; she will be different, but will have a skirt of this brown pieced 'fabric'.
But, first, some Santa ornaments for the shop. And a little fairy for a special order. All these and more, sandwiched in between the normal errands and some yard work, etc. Busy, busy!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Ok, Let's party!

In response to a special request, I have created these two charming ladies.
Ella was made using the Arley Berryhill pattern that I also used for Claudia and Lana. She is 21 inches tall. Felicia is my original, one-of-a-kind design, 19 inches tall. I love her mischievious, rather flirty expression. I never know how they will turn out when I "put the pen to the blank face". Sometimes I get a nice surprise. I'm very happy with these two. Both have wired arms and hands, and heads that turn, and their pose can be changed to suit your mood, or theirs.
Ella is already sold. Felicia will be available at the Truly Bluegrass shop .

The two dolls were made from the same fabric, a polyester faux suede, Ella using the reverse side of the fabric, which is darker than the right side, and darkened slightly more with the spray used to smooth the skin and control the slight nap. Ella's hair is lightweight wool fabric, fringed and stitched on in a continuous strip, controlled with hair spray. Felicia's hair is rabbit fir, glued on. Faux suede is difficult to hand sew, but has the right amount of 'give' to stuff and sculpt well. Features are hand drawn , painted, and needle sculpted.

Monday, September 7, 2009

More little ladies

Drew a dozen little faces, scanned and printed them on fabric. (You can print on fabric in your inkjet printer by ironing the fabric onto freezer paper, and cutting it to page size.) Painted the faces, sewed them to backing, inserted cardboard and stuffing. Then the hair and hat, etc, is sewed and/or glued on, and a pinback and label on the back. These tedious little ladies take more time than they should, but are fun to make. So this dozen was taken to the shop on Friday.

As usual, Sabrina got tired of being shoved out of the way, and took a nap close by. Here are some of the little heads I've worked on, too. Kind of eerie, them all watching me like that. Ha! They are supposed to be designing their own bodies for me.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The Sage

This fellow just looks like a rather wize old man. He could be an 'Old-World Santa', or a wizard, or one of the Wise Men. I did not want to take the time to make two more, for the three wise men, a set. He is about 14 inches tall. He is on display at the Truly Bluegrass shop. He will be joined soon by a 'Jolly Old St. Nick' style Santa, and small santa ornaments, as soon as I can get them made up.

I am also adding a little line of greeting cards made up with my own pictures. For a trial run, I have created a series of 8 different cards, featuring the 'old ladies' dolls, all with name beginning with 'M'.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Summer's Creations

This is Stella. Stella Werken, that is. And there she is a few years ago! My how time takes it's toll.

Shoes found at a yard sale seemed to spark my imagination. I'm working on several ideas. Shoes really make a statement, you know, and they 'make the outfit'. Stepping Out is one idea, not yet finished, or decided on.

I started working on a Santa, using a pattern for a rather pudgy fellow whose supposed to be headed to the beach for the basic body. He was not turning out to look any too 'jolly', and not necessarily old, the fabric I had for his coat looked more like a smoking jacket. Hence, the wording on the puzzling note he's found. He looks like he's just gotten up from a nap and needs that coffee.

For some smaller items for the shop, I made a whole litter of these little kitties and their mouse buddies. We take what we get for relatives, but we choose our friends. Allowing customers to exchange or choose the 'friend' has been a big hit. The Horsing Around pins are popular, too. I will have to be making more of them, soon.

Both quilting ladies have sold, now, as well as the Senior Couple-Juana Charleston and Shy Guy, and Tyece, the tall, dark lady, among others. Thanks to all my customers.

The Jockey in Team Valor's green and red 'silks' is enjoying some travel. He was part of a display at the Versailles Chamber of Commerce office for the month of July. Those folks requested his presence in the Woodford County display at the Kentucky State Fair in Louisville, later this month, along with some other items from the Truly Bluegrass shop.

I was invited to display four dolls in a special Woodford County Artists gallery at the Francisco's Farm Art Festival in Midway (KY) in late June. All these events are great free exposure, and have brought more sales to me, and the shop. Many thanks to all for those opportunities.