Sunday, February 8, 2015

Hope's Dolly

                 Today I finished with this old fashioned painted head rag doll for a friend.  I started out not knowing how to paint the face, I never know how to paint the faces, but the doll cooperated with me and made my job easy. She was mild and meek and there was no argument about the eyes, the nose, the shape of the head, or the set of the mouth.  I gave her a small smile and then was careful not to take it away from her. In doll making, no matter if you stitch the face, or paint it, how to get the face is always a challenge, except in a few circumstances when things fall into place and everything is as you wanted it, like this doll for me. I hope my friend will enjoy her, enjoy making her clothes, enjoy passing by her around the house and stopping every once in a while to touch those soft big fingers, and always enjoy her little smile.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Angellis Revisited

I have posted about this doll before, but after quite a lot of labor on her I decided to take some more pictures, possibly to put her on ebay. The pictures show up everything beautiful,

 and everything you did wrong too. This little dress has been a pill,  it shouldn't have been, but I don't seem to be able to stop making stupid mistakes and then having to spend tons of time to fix them. I would have loved to make her a dress out of antique fabric, because I do have some, but because I might not get enough money for her, I was afraid to use the scarce material up. I wonder sometimes about my reasoning, whether or not it is sound and makes good sense, about the dolls. This outfit is very pretty though and does have very old rick rack on the collar, arms,  around the skirt, and on the bonnet too. I also made another small doll, and her dress is made out of antique fabric. I notice I need to do some more eye work. Pictures tell me the truth that I can't see myself. The smaller dolls are harder to paint and you don't see flaws as much until you blow them up bigger. While making doll clothes I have learned something else, which is the older you try to go, the more hand sewing it seems to take. Antique fabric in itself is fascinating. and it is truly pretty. Well, off to work on another doll, hopefully to make her some great mistake free clothes.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

New Doll named Izannah

I made a bunch of dolls, or started them awhile back about 3 months ago. Some have worked out pretty good and some failed,  this particular doll I named Izannah, because to me she is more like a Izannah Walker doll than a lot of the other dolls. I have noticed that some of the antique dolls had darker colors than others, the hair in particular was very dark and the eyes too. I saw a picture of a wonderful Izannah doll in a magazine and so set out to copy her, there are differences, but this doll does resemble the antique to a good degree. I don't have any clothes made for her yet, but borrowed the under ware from a different doll to make pictures. I do like this under ware a lot, even though it is not proper for a doll like this, but I used artist privilege to do what I wanted. I am going to make the dress as close to the antique's as possible and then will take some more pictures. I hope everyone is doing good and has lots of doll making plans for this year. We are busy doing the necessary things, but move ahead slowly with our doll making. This year I hope to do some different things, make some dolls I haven't tried  before, but the work to make a authentic Izannah antique reproduction doll will of course continue, but the good thing about this is, it applies to other types of antique dolls too, so I will atleast have that experience on my side to help me. I do like this girl so much and have  4 more heads like her to finish. It will be fun to see how close these other heads will be to this doll. Happy doll making to you all and I hope you enjoyed seeing this dolly.

Wednesday, December 31, 2014


Hi to every one and  happy new year. I finished Angellis and a few other things so I will post a few pictures. We are still forging ahead with our doll making, but it is slow. Angellis is about 23 or 24 inches tall and one of several I started several months ago. This coming year I hope to make some different kind of dolls and continue with the Izannah's too. I, along with probably quite a few people bought some of the composition kits of the Izannah dolls. They are nice, but very tiny. I mainly wanted them for study, but after a time I will go ahead and make them into dolls. They are very good copies of the original dolls, but it would have been good to have them in a larger size. I am glad to get them in any case, as they will help my cause to create more Izannah like dolls. Also,

 I put up a picture or two of a certain rag doll I made and a couple of the smaller dolls. It should be a great new year and I am looking forward to sharing and enjoying every ones doll making pictures.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014


We are back from the mountains. Last week mama, my brother, my husband and me went to Pigeon Forge, Tenn. It was a good week, but we are having to give it a few days rest to get back to normal, after eating, and walking around the sites all the days we were there. Pigeon Forge is a childs delight, but for older folks it is way to commercial for me. We did go to the Hatfields and Mocoys Christmas Dinner show, which was really cute. Lots of antique shops, but nothing of real interest for me there. I did happen to go to a certain store called I R cheap. I wasn't going to go in, but I saw in the window, a prim doll, and did go in. In there were true prims. I saw a cute Santa and some Civil war soldiers, so cute. I wanted to buy the Santa and the soldiers, but I knew my husband and my mama would have had something to say about it, so I took a few pictures to remind me of their cuteness and waited until I got home and wrote a lady who makes the patterns for those dolls and she put one on her etsy site for me, so now I am happy again and will make a few of these, mainly for myself and my brother in law. I did make lots of pictures of my trip, but the pictures aren't ready to get downloaded just yet, but when they are, I'll put them on. Since getting back home, I have been working on one of the large Izannah dolls to get her finished, no particular reason, except I just wanted to see her all dressed up. I was rewarded to see her decked out in her pretty yellow Civil war reproduction fabric dress and matching bonnet. I still have to do a touch up on her feet, but am proud of how she looks. She has a great big fat chest, plump ears, and is pretty much a chunky doll, nice size to hold though. Out of room again. I did put in a few more in progress, unfinished

 doll pictures.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Birthday Present

Happy birthday to me, Happy birthday to me, Happy birthday, Happy birthday, Happy birthday to me. HaHa.  Just having a little fun. If you have been pretty good you might get a super special present like the one I am showing today.  I love the fashion dolls and have wanted one for a long time and recently I saw one that I could get. This doll is 17 inches tall and has a fabulous figure and face. When you see an antique doll in a picture or on line, not seeing it in person, it is surprising sometime the actual size of it. I expected this doll to have a heftier body and a larger head and when she got here, I was saying her head is to little for that body, but actually it isn't. My thinking is that for a doll to be 17 inches tall it would just be bigger in it's over all size, because when I make a doll that is 17 inches tall it is a lot larger in body and head and the same height. Seeing the antique's up close really helps you understand what they actually look like and not what you think they will. This girl or Lady is truly a beauty. I also bought another treat. Before I saw this Fashion doll, I saw and ordered another French Fashion beauty in a plaster mold from NY Doll Co. She is Lady Stanhope. The mold is so big and heavy you can't hardly pick the thing up. She will make a 28 inch doll. Now this doll is really big. Her head is enormous, not a tiny head on a thin body with long legs. She is super hefty. Even I was surprised at her size. She is for spreading your wings in the future and making something extraordinary. I have a kiln, but no experience in making dolls with bisque heads, so that is something for the future to be sure, but I wanted the molds, because so many things are not available now,  that you used to be able to

get. My mama and husband and I went out to eat at Red Lobster for my birthday and that was a great present too. Yummy

Sunday, October 12, 2014

New Works in Progress

A long time ago, I wondered how to increase my chances of reaching potential people who might want an Izannah doll from me, but now I realize that I cannot make but so many, atleast at one time, so, with the help of my husband and my mother, we are quietly working and making the best dolls we can, and let them find homes for themselves. When I first started learning how to make these dolls, I was excited and certainly enjoyed the making, and more than that the connecting and sharing of ideas and techniques about these dolls. Finding new friends, seeing what others are doing and accomplishing is a daily treat for me. You see here some of the new works in progress. Some of the dolls are finished in their painting, some not. I think I will be going deeper into making these dolls in the future, trying to cull down to making a true reproduction of individual Izannah dolls, which should be fun and definitely a challenge, but I won't let go of the individual original ( usually happy accidents ) dolls that I manage to make because they are charming in their original faces and personalities. One of the dolls pictured here is a copy of a antique Izannah doll. She has darker hair and is a larger size, ( see if you can guess which one she is ). I am naming her Izannah, after the original maker of these antique dolls and because she gave all of us so much to enjoy both in having one of her dolls, or, all the pleasure of trying to make some like hers. Also pictured are a few of the primitive rag dolls with stitched faces. I just want to show some of the dresses they have. They are not completely finished either. Their fate is uncertain as they are not  ( In Vogue ) right now, but we love, and enjoy them. Their time will come to be wanted. In the future, we are planning to make some painting videos ( if we can learn to use the movie camera, and navigate the blog site to put a video on. Keep your fingers crossed whisper repeatedly ( Please help poor Martha to smarten up so she can enjoy us painting along with her). and some other fun stuff too.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

New Izannah Dolls and Primitive Rag Dolls

Here are a few pictures of some of the new Izannah Dolls and Primitive Rag Dolls we are making. During the last few months, we have been busy making quite a few new dolls, 6 new Izannah dolls in different sizes and 6 primitive rag dolls with the seed teeth, As usual atleast one of the Izannah dolls will have to go back to the drawing board for more work, but the 6 primitive dolls are getting their clothes. I had an old cutter quilt and we cut it up to make bonnets and now, a dress or two. I haven't had as much time to work on the dolls, as we are trying to clean out some buildings at mama's house for a sale in October, also she has several antique cars and they have to be worked on to get ready to sell later this year, but every available  minute I pop back to my work table to concentrate on the dolls. I have enjoyed making the primitive rag dolls the most because they are fun and I guess I just love these type of dolls. Hope you enjoy seeing these and if you have an old quilt that isn't good enough for a bed cover, consider that you can make dolls goodies with it. The bonnets are really pretty, and if you don't mind the task of separating the quilt top from the batting layer, you can make really pretty quilt top dresses. The Izannah's are about middle way through their painting and will change. It is interesting to see the changes and I will show you the difference antiquing makes in my next post.