This past weekend my club hosted Sherry Goshon for a class in costuming. Sherry teaches the Illusion of Costuming - meaning that the clothes are NOT constructed as proper outfits that will come off. I always love to see how different we all think and how we interpret a concept ...
Sherry had an illustration of a woman in an outfit from the late 1890s/early 1900s - a two layer skirt with a Gibson Girl style blouse. That was what we worked from for all our outfits and here is a picture that shows how we gave it our own twist. It's too wide of a photo to put on the blog so you'll need to click on the link. The majority of the girls used Arley Berryhill's Le Femme pattern for their body. It's nice and big for this type of work. The little one in the middle of the table is a wooden mannequin with a face mold - wonderful idea! Here's another one, the orange doll is made by Sarah - who is 14 years old. She's been coming to our classes for a couple of years now - she's always the first one done too!
This is my gal - all the pieces were rectangles of some sort. The sleeves are two parts - not connected to each other or anything else for that matter. Shashi should recognize the fuchsia material - she bought it for me in India! This isn't done. I don't think I'm going to keep the black ribbon on the bodice and she said she doesn't like her hat - she wants a really huge one. Not to mention that there is no embellishment at all. So lots more work to be done!
This was such a great class! Sherry is a wonderful teacher and everyone just loved her! We are already plotting how to get her to come back here.
Oh my - I didn't realize just how much I've missed having someone to share dolls and just artsy stuff with. I'm having a lot of fun with Sherry. On Friday we made collages on canvas - using paint, paper, images, embellishments, whatever we could think of - they came out really cool. Today we had the first day of class and I'm learning a ton! Tonight we played with some epoxy putty from the hardware store that seems to work the same as the Aves Epoxy Sculpt - except it smells like old perm solution. STINKY! Then Sherry got into my boneyard and put together the funniest little creature. As soon as things slow down and I have some computer time I'll take some photos.
Sherry Goshon is here to teach a doll costuming class to my club this weekend. We're really looking forward to it. Thought we were going to do some sightseeing today but it is 40 degrees below zero so I think we'll just stay in and have a play day instead! I've been wanting a costuming class for ages - it's really a big hole in my skills. Stay tuned for photos!
Fifth in the series .... I just love this one, of course, I love all of them, LOL. This is the first time I've used a model for inspiration - if you call a picture of an anime character a model. I make these for sale on eBay. This one was even more fiddly than the last one. I used fabric for the pupils and had a hard time getting the backing paper off something that tiny. Next time I'll take the paper off before I cut out the shape!
Months and months ago I sent out my doll to participate in an around-the-world round robin project. She recently went to India with her English hostess. This is the first time I've seen photos of Bella Donna since she left here. She seems to have gained legs, stockings and shoes. She lost her corset top and someone seems to have given her gigantic breasts. Absolutely humongous. Poor thing - she'll need back surgery when she gets home from hauling those things around! Shashi posted lots of pictures recording Bella's adventure in India at her blog.
Remember the doll that was in the oven? He's all dressed and ready to go now! You can see him here!
There is something just so wrong about this ....
At least the stove is electric and not gas .. then I'd feel even worse! But you know, it has been about 40 degrees below zero here lately, maybe she just wanted to warm up. Hey - if I had the broiler on I could just say it's a dolly tanning booth!
Made another one of my funky face cards. I really enjoy these except they make a huge mess. Lots of tiny little pieces floating everywhere and they are hard to corral to use or throw away. As usual with art - sometimes the first piece just doesn't work out - so I might make a few eyes or lips. Then I also have all the tiny pieces of backing paper to contend with. Luckily Zach doesn't come in the studio anymore so I don't have to worry about him eating the pieces that fall to the floor! I have the card up for sale on eBay if you're interested.
Finished up the angel heart project. Even have it up on eBay now! You can see it here.
Nothing like being lazy, eh?
I have been sketching things that I can make (and hopefully sell) for Valentine's Day. This one got a bit out of hand - I meant to make a small heart with angel wings. The wings on this are 18" long - a bit bigger than I was thinking. It's not done - I just laid the pieces on the floor to take the photo. Still have to sew it all together. The heart is stuffed and the wings are quilted with a layer of batting. Kind of odd, eh?
Finished up another Raggedy doll today. My friend commissioned me to make one for a medical worker who has been really nice to her. Really caring, over and above. The woman is a mammogram technician so I tried to work some pink into the outfit, as requested by my friend. This material has pinkish stripes with blue hearts. It really took the aging process well - the dress looks old, old, old.
I also painted stripes on the legs and gave her painted shoes. Didn't do that on the last one. One nice touch is the red edged lace. My friend gave it to me years ago, it's from something of her grandmother's. I'm thinking it was a tablecloth because there are a lot of curves in the lace. It used to be white, LOL.
Oh - used a low thread count muslin and had no problem sewing after everything had been coffee stained. I did stain the body parts before stuffing this time too - after sewing, but before stuffing. I learned a lot last time and made changes in this one that make it much easier to work with.
I made another fabric collage art card today .. it's up on eBay now. Sure is hard to place all those little tiny pieces of fabric .. it's fiddly as can be. But it's fun ... here's the link for the auction and here's the card:
This one is much prettier than the last one I made. The contest in Quilting Arts magazine sure got me going .. this is the third one of these I've made!
Remember I said that I had made some hand carved stamps? They are pretty primitive looking because I tried to get rid of the negative space around the design. These are pretty easy to do and you can make much cleaner stamps if all you do is carve out your lines and leave the background. I made some like that at our doll club meeting this past Monday. If you want to try this yourself just get a Speedball Linoleum Cutter kit (I don't think they are really expensive) and a couple of erasers or the linoleum specially made for carving. The erasers are good for practice but they can crumble around the edges of your lines. Then draw your design - remember that the image will be mirrored when you stamp it on something. Also be aware of the positive/negative aspects of your design - for instance if you are going to stamp in black on a white paper - do you want your image to be white on a black background (carve only the lines of the design) or black on a white background (carve around the lines - take out all of the background). That's how I did these stamps - carved out the background and left the design raised.
You can make all sorts of stamps and use them with fabric paints to make unique fabric for your dolls. You could make a border for a dress or just stamp right on the body itself. Lots of uses for these. Plus it's just plain fun.
Oh my - another primitive doll has stolen my heart. Funny to think I used to hate these - thought they were incredibly ugly. It's taken me a couple of years to come around to liking them but now I've fallen big time, LOL. They are definitely a 180 degree change from what I've been making. I hope you like her as much as I do ... so .. drum roll please ...
Say hello to Odessa. She sure looks worried, doesn't she. Her dream was to fly to the moon and now that she's there she's a bit scared. She is a pattern from Dirty Crow Inn - an E-pattern (sent by email) - instant gratification, I like that! She is painted with acrylics instead of coffee stained like the last prim. Her proportions aren't off in the picture - she is supposed to look like this. Big head, little legs. This pattern called for doing all the painting before you attached all the body parts. The arms and legs were easy, the head was a bitch. I don't know if it's because I'm still using a high thread count fabric instead of a muslin but I don't know anyone who makes prims so I can't ask. Had to use hemostats to pull the needle through the fabric to put the head on the neck. My fingers are sore! I still have to make her display - she will sit on a paper box. But I have to go buy one. I think I will put her up at my Etsy store when I'm done. I have to learn to let go of my little creations - I tend to get attached to them, LOL.
I decided that I needed to get all of my swaps out of the way so I can concentrate on dolls for a while. One of the swaps I am involved in is a postcard one - it's the second round of my Posta L'arte fabric postcard group. I made these over the course of two days, which is pretty good for me as I tend to get distracted really easily.
I used the leftover pieces from my daughter's quilt for most of them and I fused, fused, fused. I took strips of fabrics that looked great together and ironed them next to each other on Wonder-Under double sided fusible web. That gave me good background pieces - then I took a bright tropical piece that had big flowers on it and fused that to some WU. Cut out some flowers and fused them down on top on the background pieces. Did some free motion embroidery over the top of everything and .. voila .. done. On some of the others I took leftover pieces that had been strip pieced and used that for the background - then I just fused some contrasting material on top and free motioned over that. The final pieces that you see on the far right .. well, those are a BIG cheat! About a year ago I started a project from the Cloth,Paper, Scissors magazine - but never finished it. It's a big piece of felt with strips of material fused down (also strips of dictionary definitions - paper) and it has tons of stitching on top. I just cut it up into postcard sized pieces and .. ah ha .. ready made cards. Oh, I'm bad! But, hey, it got the job done and done fast!
My webmaster (my wonderful brother) migrated all his websites to a new server and somehow I got lost in the shuffle. My blog had been down since Friday - so that's 4 days all told. I was surprised at how disconnected I felt without it. What did I do while the blog was down? 21 fabric postcards, made some hand carved stamps, worked on some decos, and even started a new prim (primitive) cloth doll. Keep watching, I'm going to get the camera out ...
Betty had been looking at photos of an elinor peace bailey class I took a few years ago and she asked what I did with the head that elinor drew for me. This is one of the neat things about taking a class with epb .. she will draw your face for you if you want. In the end though I decided to make another head with my own face painting for the doll I made in the class. I wanted it to be ALL my own work. So this is what I did with the epb head ...
Just a mini dress form and a scrunchie ...
One more thing .. it's amazing how fast she can whip these out. Didn't take her more than a couple of minutes. She used Fabricmate fabric markers and crayons. Neat, huh!
She's done! I'm going to have a hard time giving this one away because I think she's adorable. I love making dolls that make me smile every time I look at them and this Raggedy Ann certainly does that!
What to add to my last entry? The clothes went together well although I had to really visualize what was what from the pattern. The written directions were hard to figure out. For instance for the bodice it said - cut fabric on doubled folded fabric and sew 1/4 edge, sew 2 inches then sew neck. Huh? I'm not very good at clothes and it took me a while to figure it out. Finally I just looked at the pieces and figured out what to sew on my own.
Oh - the embroidery was easy even if the fabric wasn't as soft as it used to be. I was surfing the net and found that the Raggedy Ann doll makers refer to their girls as 'crunchy' or 'crusty' - so I guess the Raggedy IS supposed to feel like it does.
Another new thing was to use a stencil brush to blush the cheeks. Supposed to use the dry brush technique but I guess I didn't get enough paint off for the first cheek - the second one came out better. I'll know for next time.
This is another of my Hope dolls - she has two strands of beads hanging from the middle flower on her dress. One strand says Hope and the other says Courage. It's for a friend with breast cancer. My hope for this year is that I don't have to make any more of these dolls - it's the third one in a year.