Thursday, November 26, 2009

Announcing the Boop Challenge!

What would Betty look like if she were booping around in 2010?
Let's find out!
This challenge is intended to make us stretch our imagination. Take an old familiar cartoon character and find out what she will look like when you make her. Who is the 'Real Betty' anyway? Will she even look like Betty? I think my doll needs to wear some clothes. I'm going to teach her a lesson!

Use a vintage sewing pattern to make a 19" Betty. Interpret her as you wish. I have never made this pattern before but I cannot wait to try it.... and I really want to see how other people do!

The pattern, dates, and RSVP information are available on my FACEBOOK PAGE.
Please join the challenge, and Boop Boop be-Doop!
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Rivkah in Wonderland

I am blessed to live about two blocks from a beautiful lake. Early just about every morning, rain or shine, I walk there . The best part is, since the time of year is right and I go so early, it isn't unusual for me to have the entire place to myself. I often let my imagination go completely wild.
Look at what I found today.... magic mushrooms! These mushies are so big, they must be at least a foot tall.
What I'm wondering is... where are all the fairies?!
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Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Make a "Splash" with Doll Photography

I sometimes take pictures of my dolls in my bathtub!

  • The background is perfectly white with no wrinkles (which usually happens when I drape fabric in the background.)
  • No "seams lines" between the floor and the wall, either.
Using a floor lamp, I direct light on the opposite side of the tub for reflectance.
I set a desk lamp on the sink and direct light to the doll.
Silly as it may sound, it works great. I have to admit it's a bit of a challenge to get the camera in position, though.... but I'm creative so I deal with it.
Rub a Dub Dub!

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Tuesday, November 24, 2009

I came across a very wise and helpful article about "quitting your day job" for full time artistry. This past September, I quit my job. It wasn't because I was such a successful artist (at least not financially successful). I was miserable at my job for a long time and I have a supporting husband.
One day there was a straw that broke the camel's back, so quitting just sort of happened. It felt good, but the plunge into the world of art plus schedules and money making ideas has not been peaches and creme. But I think this article really hits home. Wouldn't it be nice if we could all be artsy fartsians and make a great living doing what we love? I'm trying ^*^

Leave a comment if you are living the dream!

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Sunday, November 22, 2009

Custom Dolls SALE

Would you like a custom doll to give yourself or a friend as a gift?
Send me a photo and I will make something real cute for you for a great price. Order now for the holidays! Please visit my Etsy Shop for more information!
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Saturday, November 21, 2009

Dolls with Soul

I recently came across a quote that I love:
"Doll Artists aim to produce dolls which are the mirror of their souls. A doll produced with this intention is never a cold and lifeless object. It may show mistakes and defects in proportion and workmanship, but it "lives."
~ Hildegard Gunzel
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Friday, November 20, 2009

Hey Boobie!

I'm getting very annoyed by Facebook's big boobie ad on my fan page and everywhere else I go. Am I the only one seeing it? It's an ad for a game with 5 million thousand players, and the game has big boobies. If I want big boobies I'll put them on a doll and get a laugh. I say facebook should take that big boobie ad and put it where the sun don't shine!

Tee hee!!!!!!!!!!
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Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Iris Map

Here is a sneak peek at a new doll pattern that's almost at the finish line.
It's a map of how to shade the iris of the eye......
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Sunday, November 15, 2009

Show off Dolls

Just showing off my student's work....These dollies are from a private "FUNdamentals of Cloth Dollmaking" class, and are a first try for two of the ladies who participated in the group. They are not quite done yet... but they are definitely ready to be shown off, don't you think? Bravo!
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Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Lily Bean

Lily Bean DesignsYou may have noticed that I have a new twitter page with a customized background. I am as pleased as punch. If you tweet, you know that custom backgrounds can be for the birds if you don't know how.
To my great fortune, I found a delightful shop on Etsy created by a delightful and talented graphic designer named Dana. Her shop is Lily Bean Designs.
Dana created a perfect background with my logo on it (something absolutely mysterious to me) and her price was so reasonable even a doll artist could afford it ;-) She also created my new Etsy Doll Shop Banner. It was such a treat, I tell ya.
If you need graphic design help, contact my new friend Dana. You'll be glad you did!
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Sunday, November 08, 2009

How to make a cloth body look like it's sculpted from clay

Here's a great tip to take your cloth dolls to the next level: Make it into a true sculpture by filling in the seams.


1) Assembled Cloth Body
2) Paperclay
3) Water
4) A stiff brush
5) Fabric Glue
6) Gesso
7) Paint (skin color)
8) fine sandpaper

1) apply glue to area that you want to fill with paperclay.
For example, where the arms / legs are attached to the torso, or any needle sculpted areas where you want to hide puckering and stitches. The glue makes the paperclay stick. Otherwise, it can fall off.

2) Shape the paperclay between your fingers and put it into the area you are filling. You'll want to add paperclay wherever you have an asymmetrical imperfection or where something doesn't look quite right. For me, this is particularly helpful on the feet.

3) Dip your brush into the water and go over the paperclay until it is nice and smooth. Allow to dry.

4) Paint the doll with at least 2 layers of gesso, sanding in between.
5) Paint the doll with acrylic paint.

Hint: You can try this technique on the doll's head. If your needle sculpting is wanting, or you want to define the nose or raise the cheekbones, go for it. You'll be glad you did!
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Friday, November 06, 2009

Get it while you can!

Suprise! Just found out that my favorite fabric (PIMATEX PARFAIT by ROBERT KAUFMAN) is permanently discontinued. This fabric is fabulous for cloth doll bodies. Love the color, love the weave, love it love it love it. Time to start stocking up! If you love this fabric as much as I do, better get it while it lasts.
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Thursday, November 05, 2009

Helping Hand from Heaven

This morning a friend from Israel shared a photo of a sunset from last night. It looks like a hand coming down from Heaven. The photo was taken in the city of Tzfat, where I used to live.
I think this is so beautiful, I just had to share it. It calms me, and it's so warm and fuzzy, you know... I needed that hand today. It gave me the inspiration to move forward on a doll project that I just kept blocking myself from even starting. I'll get right to work!
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Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Hoffman Challenge 2010

Each year, doll makers and quilters enter the wonderful Hoffman Challenge. The rules are pretty simple: Use the designated fabric and have fun!
Here is the fabric for 2010:
Here are this year's winners (click on the photos to enlarge):

Arley Berryhill

Deanna Hogan (love her!)

Wendy Oxman

Simply wonderful dolls!

And here are the Challenge details.

Are you up for the challenge? I'm going to try!
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Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Jewelry for dolls (and people)

I deviated a little. I made a charm bracelet for my sweetheart daughter Khassy. It was an experiment of sorts, and great fun. Click on the images to enlarge.
To make the bracelet, I cut glass and put some metal leaf with a print-out of a word on the surface of one square, let it dry, and sandwiched it together with sterling silver solder (pronounced 'sotter.') I made my own "links" with sterling silver wire that has copper inside.

These are the tools I used:
GLASS (Not shown. I just used ordinary glass. Next time you break a glass, you might be able to use it!)


TOOL TO BREAK OUT GLASS (after scoring with glass cutter)
FLUX (This goes on the copper tape or the solder will not stick.)
JEWELRY WIRE sterling silver with copper inside- to make links
JUMP RINGS to connect the charms (and a clasp, not shown)
DIAMOND FILES (for grinding sharp glass edges and finishing the silver solder. These are awesome tools. One is square and the other is round, and they are very strong. Much better than any kind of sandpaper!)

A WHOLE LOT OF PATIENCE (each one of these charms takes me about an hour to make.)

I had a good time deviating from sewing, painting and sculpting. It felt good to play with a different medium, especially something like silver. As I mentioned, each charm was very time consuming, so I don't think I will keep making bracelets... only one special bracelet for my special daughter. But I will try using these charms as a centerpiece for an art doll. I can almost see it now. I think it's a great idea!

If you would like me to make customized charms for you, I will be happy to. The Diamond files are hard to find, and I will offer them as well. I'll post this up on my Etsy shop later today.

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Sunday, November 01, 2009

Incredible Doll Story

Check out this "ball" hosted by one of the wonderful doll groups I belong to- Art Dolls Only.
There was a quarterly challenge calling for Halloween - inspired dolls. I didn't make one, but I was thoroughly impressed with what this group did with all the pictures of the dolls.
Check it out here. Isn't it awesome?
Just look at what fun a bit of teamwork can do!
I definitely hope to participate in the next challenge.
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