I took a workshop in sculpting a fimo doll with Cat Wingler. The most important thing she emphasized was that the oven fire clays would get too soft to sculpt the face. The way we got around this was to pre-fire some of the head. First you buy or make the eyeballs and bake them. Next you roll an egg shape to the proper size for the head and halfway down the egg push the eyeballs in until they are buried halfway. Then you bake it. Now you can add more clay for the forehead, cheeks, chin, neck etc. and sculpt the features on the hard base.
Sunbonnet for log cabin ladies: Go here: http://www.uvm.edu/~hag/godey/fashion/di.html and scroll down to the "September, 1857: Sun-Bonnet" entry. If you click on the images, you will get larger ones. The pattern gives you both full pattern pieces and half pattern pieces (for placing on folds, presumably), and that's a total of six pieces. Only use the three full pieces. You will have to use the illustration of the finished bonnet as a guide for putting it together, as there are rather cryptic instructions, really meant for making a full-size bonnet in 1857, given at the bottom. To scale the pattern page down appropriately, the image print size should be about 2" wide by 3" high. You can do this in MS Word (by importing the image and scaling it to those proportions) or any image editor (by setting the print size). I would do a paper mockup first, and then use heavy paper to reinforce the front of the bonnet when I made it (instead of the cording, unless you want to be very, very precise!). Alternately, instead of paper, use heavyweight stitch witch to bond the outer and lining fabric together for the front, as that will stiffen it enough that it will hold its shape and not ravel. The crown and cape need to be gathered slightly to fit, which can be done while you are gluing if you are using a quick-drying fabric glue. I'd actually cut the cape a bit fuller than is shown so that it can be draped a bit more prettily, but I don't know how utilitarian your ladies are! :) I really love this page for its patterns. I've used them for dolls and some for full-size costume reproductions as well
Sculpy doll push mold: Rather than baking with the pipe cleaner already inserted, you can make holes through the limbs and insert pipe cleaners or wire after they are baked. Then your limbs are moveable.
Sculpy doll push mold: The push moulds are very easy to use. My husband gave me the full set for Christmas last year. I recommend a light dusting of talcum powder on the mould first to stop the clay from sticking .Then take a ball of clay the size of the head you want to form & take a third away from this .Using this third flatten it out but leave a small cone in the center to push into the nose. Push this all into the form then carefully ease it out. this can then be smoothed back onto the two thirds of clay remaining. Any joins need to be smoothed out ,I use a moistened cotton bud for this .Remember to make a hole in the neck to take a pipe cleaner. Then just bake. The faces can be sculpted & changed slightly i.e. cut the mouth open to change the lips or show teeth. If you use the moulds with a full amount of clay you may find them a little out of scale
Harry Potter doll...why bother making one, there is a great resin cast one that is put out as an ornament, just unscrew the little deal at the top of his head...he's holding two chemistry class flasks...that's not the scientific name for them, they look kinda like wine decanters...you can tell I didn't pay attention in my science classes! It's not the ornament where he's attached to a book...have one of those, too, but can't figure out how to separate his body from the book without losing part of his feet.
Twinfirs Dolls: Joy was very easy to work with. Please be sure and look at her site if you haven't yet. http://www.twinfirsdolls.co.uk/
Jane in Arkansas
Books: Hampstead House Books in Thornhill, Ontario, Canada has 2 wonderful books right now. They can be ordered on-line at www.hhbooks.com or by phone 905.881.0607. If you are ordering by phone, these two books are from the catalogue FE2, which just came out.
The two books are:
And if you're into web design and you like to hoard floral backgrounds, they have a great cd rom + Book (windows and mac format) of copyright free floral designs. "Floral Patterns" is the title of the book and cd rom. Item # is 118661 and the price is $12.99CDN.
Joy in Pointe Claire
Boarding House: How about a young couple with a baby? The room crisscrossed with clotheslines, the harried mother trying to iron while the baby is trying to climb out of the crib, and poor Dad searching the want ads for a job. The traveling salesmen is a great idea, too. How about a pulp fiction writer hammering away on his old typewriter?
Boarding House: A boarding house sounds so incredibly ambitious! The first thing that came to my mind is a young lady that as come from a small town to work in an office while she dreams of getting married. Don't know why that struck me but I could just visualize her sitting on the edge of her bed looking at bridal magazines while some photographs of her family and the farm are on the desk. Her country clothes could be draped over a chair or hanging in the closet while some shopping bags or boxes would spill out her new city work clothes. Another guest could be a recent immigrant. Books or records on learning to speak the English language, a passport, travel posters of home on the wall.
Boarding House: Don't forget the neighborhood snoop / gossip who doesn't have a life of her own so spends her time on the telephone with binoculars in hand (behind the drapes), still in her own bathrobe with clock reading 12:45. There should be a soap opera scene on the t.v. set which has an old wire coat hanger for an antenna (remember that?). Since her time is pretty well taken up with other peoples lives, her sink is running over with dishes. The trash can, however, never overflows because she makes frequent trips there to see what So-and-so threw out. The uncleared table from breakfast will quite obviously be set for one. I can say that this snoop MUST be a woman without being a sexist pig. If it were a man, snoop gossip would more likely be presumed to be some sort of perverted voyeur which would NOT be an amusing miniature subject
Boarding House: How about an old gunslinger? I do historical research on the old west and some of these old guys lived into the 1930s. Wyatt Earp didn't die until 1929. There could be all kinds of old cowboy things, wanted posters, guns, badges, and a very elderly man living in the past.
Boarding House: I thought the suggestion of a young woman was great - I had been thinking of a movie I saw recently (I tried to find the name & couldn't) of a young woman at the turn of the century who moves to Boston to be one of the very first female "typists" - she winds up in a boarding house of the strangest oddballs (it's a requirement to live there!). Besides herself (a woman with a job!) there's a man writing a dictionary and an inventor. Also, I think, a songwriter and a painter (I only remember them because they have a routine of buying one another's latest works, so the money just keeps making a circle through the house). Here in Haverhill they used to be famous for their shoe factories, and the working-class girls who came to work in them were housed in strictly chaperoned boarding houses. Maybe a couple such girls sharing a room? And the lady of the house might be a single (widowed?) mother, so her child(ren) would also need a room!
Boarding House: How about a pair of bank robbers, just returning from a heist, stuffing the mattress with money? Or a chemist, quickly recovering from some sort of miscalculation, trying to remove the green hair now growing on the floor and the sofa? Then there's the fortune teller, polishing her crystal ball. There could be an old man sitting on the front steps, spinning tales for the neighborhood children . . . and why not a miniaturist, surrounded by materials, staring cross eyed at the tiny object she's trying to paint?
American Girl/size of mini dolls....they are definitely not 1scale...finally measured and they're 6, but still wonderful...and just got the new catalogue, they've added Kit, the newest doll to the miniature series, so I'll be sending away....was thinking of how they could be used if one were truly energetic....how about in a shadow box frame, surrounded by 1miniature pieces of furniture, clothing, accessories, etc of the era they represent...good way to show case artisans and/or use pieces you don't otherwise have room for, plus gives you on a whole new mission at your local shop or next show!!!! Not that we've ever needed an excuse to spend money when it comes to our habit .
Costumes: I've just found a fantastic costume site! It has links to patterns for period costume which are easily adaptable to 1/12th scale, and it has some lovely illustrations. I've just spent an hour there, and I'm not done yet! It has every kind of costume, from medieval to twentieth century, so all you dollmakers, go and enjoy! http://www.costumegallery.com/
dh smasher: Maybe you and any other dh smashers should make yourselves a DAMMIT doll. Here's the URL for the directions: THE DAMMIT DOLL: http://huskins.com/strega/dammit.html Lots cheaper than stomping your dh kits. LOL!
Shrink Plastic Sheets: I use the plastic sheets of the clear Shrink It plastic sheets for the wings of my Indian fairies. I used the clear glitter paint for the design and let dry, then put Modge Podge over it so it wasn't sticky. I also make my bear wings from the clear sheets. I tape the pattern to the plastic and colored them with permanent magic markers. You can use paint or colored pencils to color with, but you have to sand the plastic first. I use small rectangle pieces of the plastic for the windows in the front of my tiny room with a view bags. The sheets can also be used for templates. I trace the patterns onto the plastic, cut them out, trace the pattern onto the fur or the fabric. I make tags for my teddy bears, by using a rubber stamp on the sanded plastic. After it's stamped onto the plastic, I sign my name and it let dry, then punch a hole in it. The ink for rubber stamps won't set after the tags are baked, so I carefully coat it with Modge Podge after its cooled. The design is about 2" long, but after it's baked, the tags are only about 1/2" long, but you can still see the design and my signature. After I'm done with my bears, whether they are my miniature bears or my big bears, I take one of the tags and sew it onto the bear. I also make business card key chains out of the white sheets. Enlarge the business card, so its about 4" x 6", cut it out, then tape it to the sheet. Use a fine permanent marker and trace the design and the words. Punch a hole in the corner and bake it. When it comes out, it's the size of a business card and add one of chains that has the balls on it and you have a key chain. I can only find the Aleene's plastic at Hobby Lobby. Michaels has the Shrinky Dinks plastic sheets. They come in Bright White, white, and white sheets that have already been sanded.
1/4 doll sculpting: I took a workshop in sculpting a fimo doll with Cat Wingler. The most important thing she emphasized was that the oven fire clays would get too soft to sculpt the face. The way we got around this was to pre-fire some of the head.
First you buy or make the eyeballs and bake them. Next you roll an egg shape to the proper size for the head and halfway down the egg push the eyeballs in until they are buried halfway. Then you bake it. Now you can add more clay for the forehead, cheeks, chin, neck etc. and sculpt the features on the hard base.
|p>Wigging a Heidi Ott doll: Julia wanted to know what kind of glue to use to wig a Heidi Ott doll. I use plain old "Elmer's" white glue - it works on porcelain and plastic dolls, dries clear, cleans up with water. Let a little puddle set til it's tacky and then apply it with the end of a large needle. Wigging will stick to it immediately.|
Paulette in IN
Gollywogs: I was just looking around on some mold suppliers and found that Mystic Molds has a mini Jolly Golly Golly Wog mold but no picture. You can check it our at: www.mysticmolds.com Just a bit of information for those into porcelain dolls/molds
Rhonda in Fl
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