Monday, March 30, 2009

Developemental issues

Here are the four 'boys' I worked up for the school arts day. I wanted to show how a patterned could be modified. This is the pattern for the 'old ladies'. They are purposely unfinished. (After all, aren't all kids 'unfinished' ?) They will be 'fully developed', eventually, I may present them as a group. (Fifth Grade Boys Club? Neighborhood Kids?) click picture for large view.

Friday, March 27, 2009

A Bird House

For a change of pace, I made a fabric birdhouse, awhile back. As you can see, it is an album of 64 bird pictures that I gleaned form various sites on the internet. Mostly This was a fun project, and I may try the idea again with variations. It is on display at the shop, and getting some nice comments. It is about 3 inches square and 5 inches tall. It is fabric inside and outside, bonded to heavy interfacing and satin stitched all around. The pages are made of cardstock, all handcut. Photos I printed and hand trimmed.

Back to School Day

The Arts Day presentation at Southside Elementary School here in Versailles went very well. There were 28 artists or groups each set up in a separate classroom, presenting all different kinds of 'the arts', from basket weaving to music, drama, woodworking, painting, and fabric arts. And more. Random classes were selected to visit each presentation. I had 6 groups come to mine, from kindergarteners to 5th graders. They listened well and had lots of good questions. I had scrambled for a couple days to make up the parts for several variations of each of two different patterns, so they could have a little hands on, experimenting with color combinations, etc. Each group only had a few minutes for my presentation, and questions and answers. My assigned helper for the day was Ashley, and she was a very good hostess. She is in the 5th grade. Everyone was friendly and appreciative, I enjoyed the day, and would do it again next year.
Now, to return the dolls to the store, that I took from there (I took a lot to show a variety of styles) and then to tidy up my neglected house. Yardwork was the first priority earlier in the week. (Check out the photos blog, link at bottom of page).

Friday, March 13, 2009


These little fairies (more rightly spelled Faeries) were fun to make. They are about 6-1/2 inches tall, seated. Fairies= ferries= Maryhill Ferry. Hence, Merryhill fairies were given names slightly reminiscent of family names of the Maryhill area. (Washington State). 

The fellows

Wilson is a gambler, I think. Or maybe he is an owner of one of the entries in today's races. Wilson is about 12 inches tall, and is all dressed up in his pin-stripe suit and tie. His lined jacket and pants, and handmade shoes and sox! re removeable. The jockeys are are about 17 inches, and dressed in the 'silks' of the owners of the horse they are riding in the next race.

Robbie is a fine tall young man, who has acquired a white felt stetson since the picture was taken. He is 18inches tall, ready to go to work for you.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Re: Older posts

Since the newest additions to a blog like this are always shown at the top, the initial introduction is at the bottom of the list, which now is on another 'page'. Be sure to scroll to the bottom of this page, and click on 'Older Posts', to see the 'good stuff'. Or, at left, click 'Cloth Dolls and Me..'



This is Claudette, one classy lady. Arley Berryhill, designer of this doll ('Madame') describes her as "A 21-inch asymmetrical shaped stump doll with body and dress sewn as one". Her gown is of charmeus satin, with rhinestone jeweled trim . She has 'wired' arms and hands, and her head turns, making her very pose-able. Her elegant fur-trimmed leopard print sheer coat is removable, and has snaps at the front for wearing it closed. Matching turban trimmed with jeweled broach. Dangling earrings match the trim on her gown, and she has a ring and a fine manicure. Her natural toned skin is knit 'dollskin', her features are needle-sculpted and hand painted. I named her Claudette in honor of Claudette Colbert, art-deco era actress..

I made one other doll from this pattern. Her name is Lana, and she has been sold, but here she is, anyway. I thought you'd like to see her.

Shopping with Aunt Connie

Constance and her niece, Courtney, love to go shopping at the mall.
This pair, with their elegantly simple style, are about 14-15 inches tall, have sand in the bottom to help them stay on their feet all day. Their stature was 'suggested' by the size and shape of the fabric of their dresses. Needless to say, they are one-of-a-kind. They have wired fingers to hold their matching handbags. Needle-sculpted, hand painted features. Constant companions.

A whole lot of fun with these old ladies

I have probably had more fun with this pattern than any other I ever worked with. Of course this is by my favorite doll artist, Jill Maas. (Mildred and Flossie, aging angels) I first purchased this pattern about 5 years ago, and have made many variations on it. Several were members of the Red Hat Society, one group reminded me of my mother and her 5 sisters, one had a boyfriend (Dapper Dan), and all really made me and everyone who saw them, smile. Of this group, only Hilda, Gladys, Madison, and Musa are available.

Dolls to hang around with

All of this group are wall-hanging dolls. Shirley, Suzanne, and Sandra are a Judy Skeel design (Wally Mamas). They are 16 in. tall. I thought of them as the three muses. Shirley has been sold. They have a loop on the back, for hanging.

Judy and Jackie also have loops for hanging, though they are shown here with a stand (not included). They are 16 inches, design (I-Love-NY) by Karen Cunagin. Judi is made of knit dollskin fabric with satin tights, and Jackie is muslin. Both have painted shoes. Slightly needle-sculpted faces with painted features. Novelty yarn hair, sequin costume trims.

The six-inch ornament dolls which I called 'Sisters', are Nancy Palomino's "Personality Pins", but I made them up with loops for hanging instead of pinbacks. Only a couple of these left, but I will eventually make some more. Be careful what you leave hanging around, I might make something out of it.
Tyla and Tyona, and Tiffany are re-cycled men's ties, lightly stuffed, with wired arms and hands. Tiffany has glass bead fringe at bottom and shoulders. Lightly needlesculpted, painted features on cotton muslin heads. Tyla and her mama Tyona are a set, and have chenile yarn hair, and Tiffany's is burgundy-dyed angora wool. They are about 17 inches tall, have loops for hanging.

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

These three divas are really putting their whole heart into this performance. Created from a design by Jill Maas (High Octave Hester), they stand about 11 inches tall.
Syrhanna is oh, so dramatic, Georgianna so plaintive, and Odessa seems quite serene.
They make a perfect trio,  or soloists.

Faewyck is also made from a pattern, (Elfshot, by Allison Marano). He is 15 inches, head to toe, sits and dreams of things he might hunt with his brand new sling shot. He is made of doesuede fabric, has a weighted 'bottom' so he sits securely on a log or shelf, wears a wooly fun-fur tunic. Needlesculpted and painted face.

Ah, the wonder and joy of motherhood! Think ahead to Mothers Day. One of these happy young ladies with her newborn infant would make a great gift for any Mom. The are my own design, each unique in dress and family background. 15 inches tall. 

Friday, March 6, 2009

Juana Charleston and Shy Guy

This senior couple seem to be dreaming of the days when they could really cut a rug. Juana's fringed flapper outfit is a bit tight these days, and so are Guy's knickers, but they are still young at heart. They would love to share their 50th wedding anniversary with you! I modified the pattern 'Floppy Floozy' from Dollmaker's Journey, to create this pair, using my own head design for Guy. They are twelve inches tall, seated, or about 22 inches, head to bare toes. All cloth, polyester filled, weighted with sand in their 'bottoms'. A great anniversary or wedding shower gift, they are offered as a pair.  SOLD

Wednesday, March 4, 2009


 Cecelia is one of my all-time favorites. I made her of knit 'dollskin' in a very smooth, lovely skin tone. Her delicate features are needle sculpted and hand painted. Her hair is a novelty 'yarn' in shades of teal. Her tail has a woven net-like design and quilted fin. She has wired arms and hands. Bead trimmings and jewelery. She is 20 inches tall, my redition of a design by Arley Berryhill (Minerva, the Princess Mermaid). The shimmery stuffed moon is my addition. I love her dreamy quality.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Cloth dolls and me...

Here are a few of my more recent creations. Each one is handmade, many of them are my own original designs, one of a kind. Some are made from other doll artist's readily-available patterns. But no two ever turn out exactly alike, each artist lending her own touch and interpretation of the idea. I hope you enjoy meeting my 'little people'. They are currently sold exclusively at
Truly Bluegrass
Kentucky Crafted Gifts & Collectibles
173 N. Main St., Versailles, KY 40383
phone: 859-873-2583
Please email either of us regarding current availability and shipping options.

This is my Gypsy Girl, selling her chains of gold. She stands about 12 inches tall. Made of doe suede, tightly stuffed with polyester fiberfill, she has wired arms and fingers, bare feet, rooted wool hair, and handmade jewelry. Needlesculpted and painted features. One of a kind, a Vada Dolph original.

Callie is definitely a California Girl, off to the beach or shopping for the day. She is a simple onepiece body, with wire armateur for pose-ablilty. Her knit dress and big cotton hat set off her lovely painted face and blonde mohair waves. She has ribbon-tied sandals and a handbag to match her dress, and I think she's had a successful shopping day because her bag is filled with fabrics. Do you suppose she's a dollmaker, too?
One of a kind, a Vada Dolph original. SOLD

Tyece is very tall (26inches) and very elegant. Her gown and turban are made from a man's silk tie in front and a plain black silk back. Her stump body is cotton, weighted with sand at the bottom and firmly stuffed with polyester fiberfill. She has wired arms and fingers for flexible expressive posing. Her features are painted and lightly needle sculpted on a 'flat' silk face. One of a kind, SOLD

Not all of my 'dolls' have only two legs. These 5-inch Horse pin-dolls (or button dolls, if you perfer) are the quintessential emblem of the Bluegrass Country region of central Kentucky, thoroughbred capital of the world. Fabric covered head and bodies, bead or chain legs, jute or hemp mane and tail. Lively eyes, lots of fun, they're just 'Horsing Around!'. Various colors and beaded legs available.