Valentine Girl

Just a quick post to introduce my next 18 inch doll.  These bigger dolls do take more work, but they are so worth it! I love the bigger size since it enables me to work  in greater detail on face and clothing.

I found a lovely piece of fabric to up cycle- a sheet really. It’s 800 thread count Egyptian cotton, and such a nice shade of brown, I had to get it.  I wanted to try some more African American dolls, but I think this one turned out looking more Native American.

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The dress is another original design, in a cheery red color, since Valentine’s is just around the corner.  The white details are done in couching, which is a method using yarn, or in this case, thin strips of cotton jersey. You trace a pattern and tack down the ‘yarn’ at regular intervals.  It’s really easy and fun!

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I also wove some buttons into her hair, just for something a little different than braids with bows on the end.

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What do you think?

Back to Business

Well, it’s been a struggle getting back in the saddle, business wise. Maybe something to do with Christmas and travel and jet lag and pregnancy and home school and well, that’s seems to be enough to be getting on with. I have had second thoughts about reopening my shop at all, since there will be a new baby thrown into the mix in a few months. But after all the work it took getting things off the ground, I hate to let it go entirely. Besides which, I already have a few new orders and I wanted to show you my newest doll!

She may not seem all that different, since her face and hair are pretty much the same, but she is actually a much larger doll. There are small details as well, like the fact that her hands actually have fingers!DSCF0978

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Since her clothing is larger, I am able to do more Alabama Chanin-esque detail work on it as well. DSCF0988

I even decided it was time to play around with something other than dresses for this girl.
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I got a lot of feedback about my dolls over the holidays, but one thing I heard several times was that the dolls I had made were smaller than anticipated. Apparently it was difficult to tell the size of the doll from the pictures. I advertised them as twelve inches, but I admit they are a very petite 12 inches. So sorry if you were misled! My new doll is 18 inches and a big boned 18 inches at that. I decided to make a twin doll in the old size for comparison’s sake, with a measuring tape, so you can get a better idea.
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It was funny making this new doll. She just seemed so overly enormous, after the delicate girls I had been working with for so long, but I like how she turned out in the end. She is quite comparable to an American Girl doll in size.

And here are a few more shots of them together- Big sister and little sister, if you will.
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So there we are, back in business! I am playing around with pricing still, so if you have any questions, let me know!

Closing up shop

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Well folks, just a quick note to let you know the shop is officially closed for the season. After my last post on the subject, I didn’t get any orders for a week, and thought I may have scared people off with my ultimatum. I expected a lot from black friday, but nothing came that weekend, so I was pondering some kind of a giveaway, just to get a few more orders.
But lo and behold, on Monday I got slammed with seven orders, so now it’s crunch time. By the time I get them finished, it will be vacation, and then the New Year. So stay tuned for updates on my shop, but not ’til 2014.
In the meantime, I hope to post some fun holiday happenings, and maybe a few tasty recipes as well. And again, thank you all for your support of this little endeavor! Happy Holidays!

Last Call

Just a quick little post to let folks know (in case you haven’t noticed ) that Thanksgiving is next week!

I ran out of the stock I had of doll blanks last week, but am working on a dozen more for any of you who were still hoping to get one before the holidays.

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But seeing as time is running short, it takes me some time to make the dolls, and shipping is slower come December, I am asking that all orders be placed before the end of November if possible.

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We are also going to be on vacation in just a few weeks, and I cannot take my shop with me! So if you know of anyone who wanted a doll, (or a horse or rabbit) spread the word.

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If you have already placed an order, or aren’t interested in dolls per se, stick around. I am hoping to use my vacation as time to come up with some new ideas for my shop!
P.S. There may be squirrels and hippos involved.

Photos, thanks and thoughts

Oh, the blog is suffering. At it’s inception, I somehow had the energy to post three, maybe four posts a week. And now, here I am sneaking in a short one one Saturday night, just to say I posted twice this week. There are many reasons for this. Number one of course being that first trimester pregnancy drains all my energy and creative thought. And second, I have had so many orders that I have hardly had time to think about how tired I am. It’s great!
Thanks to my friends and family, my etsy ratings have gone up and more and more complete strangers are buying from me. I have had orders from unknown people in California, Colorado, Michigan, and even New York city. Three separate orders have come from Canada. They seem to love my horses up there! And with all of those orders combined, we were able to purchase six plane tickets for Christmas, and even have some left over for Christmas presents! So thank you. God provides!
Here are a couple of dolls that I just finished for a good friend.

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20131116-211319.jpgThe blue skirt design is new, so if you are interested, let me know.

And I love the green eyes on this young lady.

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If I had the time, I would love to start branching out a little more in my options. Maybe after the holidays, and once I am into my second trimester, I can start thinking of new stuff. I have had requests for different kinds of animals, especially foxes. Foxes are so hot right now. (name that movie) But it’s always tricky finding just the right pattern. I would maybe like to try a larger doll as well. Any other requests?

I have also been playing around with different skin tones on the dolls, and I found a lovely cotton in a pale brown that I thought would be nice. I wasn’t sure what ethnicity I was aiming for, but I cut it out, sewed and stuffed it and started in on the hair and eyes. By the time I was finished, I was less than pleased. Somehow, the brownish cotton had morphed into a gray- green color, reminiscent of a corpse.

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So if anyone is interested in a doll of this deathly hue, let me know. Maybe I could market her as a vampire or a zombie doll.
I’ve noticed also that the undead are so hot right now.

Commissioned for Christmas

Just wanted to share this fun little Christmas doll a good friend designed for her grand daughter. She chose red hair with brown eyes, and I love how it turned out.

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She also wanted the snowflake motif, on the dark blue dress I designed, switched out with the holly cluster.

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And the beret and cape, along with red shoes to enhance the festive appearance. I love doing custom orders!

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The horses have been quite popular as well. I ran out of red wool, so I am hunting around for more, but I did stumble upon this fun purple wool, which I am working up for a few people. This guy isn’t quite finished, but if you wanted what a purple horse looks like, there you go!

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Matching

Well this was a fun little project- a little more time consuming than usual, but fun nonetheless. Someone finally wanted to buy my little blue paisley tunic/ dress- the dress that got this whole thing started.
Actually, she wasn’t the first one interested. The whole international side of etsy has been an adventure. I had one lady trying to purchase the blue dress, but English was obviously not her first language. We went emailing back and forth, trying to figure out just exactly what she wanted. I couldn’t figure out what size her baby was, and asked her as many ways as I could think, until she finally made it clear that she wanted me to make it in an adult size for her! I thought about doing it, since I hate turning down an order, but decided it would be too complicated and time consuming at this juncture.
So when someone else asked me for the dress (in a baby size) and to make a matching one for a doll, I thought I might be able to handle that a little better. She even ordered two, so I did one in nice plummy purple as well.

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I also wanted to thank all of you who have supported me in this little enterprise, either by purchasing something, sharing me on facebook or telling your friends. We are well on our way to getting our Christmas tickets and I think we will make the rest easily, so thank you! I am going to keep taking Christmas orders ’til the end of November unless it gets too crazy before then. I’ll let you know.
God bless!

Christmas is coming….

I am just realizing that we are more than half way through October, and I am still a long way from my “6 plane tickets for Christmas” goal. So I spent some time this week designing some christmas themed dresses, just to remind myself to keep on working, and maybe just remind you folks that the holidays really are just around the corner ; ). I thought to myself, “How do I like to decorate my house for Christmas?” The first thing that came to mind was of course a Christmas tree, so I designed a christmas tree dress.

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It’s pretty simple, but if I have time, I’d like to add some beads or sequins or something to make it a little more festive.

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Here’s a view from the back if you’re interested.

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My next favorite holiday decoration is probably holly, so I went for a very simple skirt and blouse so the sprig of holly could stand out.

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I thought it would go well with my red wool horse, but I already sold that one, so I’ll have to make another.

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And last, but not least, even though we hardly ever have white Christmases around here, you’ve gotta have snowflakes.

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Embroidering these little snowflakes made me think that she might need something to keep her warm, so I added a little cape and beret, ’cause I’m a sucker for capes and berets.

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So there we are, all ready for the holidays! What are your favorite Christmas decorations?

Dolly’s closet

Several of you have asked if I sell extra dresses for my dolls, so as to provide a change of clothing. I just posted several doll dresses on my shop. Most of them are dresses you have already seen, but here are a few new ones. I am trying to branch out a bit, you know, away from dresses and into something totally different, like skirts and blouses…

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Or sweet little pink, school girl jumpers.

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I just posted this little lady on my shop as well. I think she’s pretty cute.

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So there we are. Again, feel free to request any style of dress in a different color. I’m hoping to start in on hats and jackets for the upcoming winter.

The girl with the Titian hair

I have always had a fascination with red hair. I wished I had red hair as a child, and even contemplated dying it once or twice when I got older, but I never had the guts. And I could never understand why Anne of Green Gables hated her hair. She claimed it gave her a bad temper, and I guess if people called me “Carrots” all day……

Anywhooo, all that to say, I have been meaning to make a doll with red hair for a while now and I finally finished her!

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Her hair is rather vivid, but I am not sure if it is red or auburn. What’s the difference anyways? And I am totally in love with the scalloped edge on this ribbon.

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I contemplated a sprinkling of freckles on her cheeks, but was not sure how to accomplish it without her looking like Raggedy Ann.

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So there she is. I had a lot of fun with the embroidery on her dress, and I can’t decide if I like red or blue shoes best. I think the blue will win out here.

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Also I am working on changing a few things on my Etsy shop, but hopefully it won’t cause any problems if, you know, browsing turned to buying ; )