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Sunday, March 1, 2015

Very Small Dolls are Fun, Too:

I had four different projects to finish for a show at our co-op gallery's latest show, "Barely Human." It's a celebration of the human form, so it's a little more "edgy" than most of our shows. I didn't take photos of the projects yet, but when I do, I'll post them here.

In the meantime, I ran across a couple small dolls I'd started last month:
I will finish these soon, I hope!!
Here's another one:
Covering her rather "evil-looking" face actually made me happy. I don't mind if some of my dolls look sad, but I definitely DON'T want them to look evil!!!
This is the other side of the head just above:
This cat face was cut from a Laurel Burtch fabric. I'm so glad Laurel's children are carrying on her business, as I love her art SO much.
I love making small dolls, too, as they are a lot of fun and inexpensive to make as they use up scraps left over from larger projects.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

A Recycling Challenge, IF You're Game

I picked up a baby crib bumper and brought it home the other day. No, I have no baby at my house and if I did, I wouldn't be using this bumper, anyway. Baby bumpers are not in vogue now, due to safety concerns; advisors are saying they are not safe and don't advise their use in cribs (http://www.parenting.com/article/sids-prevention).

SO! That leaves a lot of used bumpers with no place to go. Taking this particular one apart (I HAVE took other bumpers apart), I found it had a LOT of batting inside. Not only was it thick, but it had been doubled. So I took it out, unfolded it and then pulled it apart so it wasn't so thick. It was about 2" thick before I split it, and would have been too thick for many of my imagined uses.

My challenge, IF you want to play, is to buy a used bumper, take it apart, wash it, and repurpose it into other things. See how many things you can make for it. You might want to post an estimate of the number in the comments section. Then send me pictures and I will post them here.

I am thinking I can make at least ten things from the bumper I have. Here is the first thing I made from it:
It's a dress for my Little Girl Root-haired! Since she's not done, the dress isn't done either, but it will be soon, I hope. I'm going to make fairy ears like this on her:
My dolls have to be very patient as I love to make heads, as I've said before, but sometimes I am not very excited to make the bodies. Still, I will finish this one first, probably, because she is "farther along."
Stay tuned!! Winter is a great time for projects like this, although the weather has been so mild in the PacNW, that our grass is starting to grow.

Friday, February 6, 2015

Hey, Gang!! We have EARS!!!

I don't like making ears much. However, perhaps I am turning into an adult because instead of putting off making ears on these four, I did them all in the same evening. Once I made ears on two of the heads, the other two seemed much easier.

However, I changed my mind about the green-haired lass and decided that she SHOULD be a fairy, just like my friend Karla always says. I decided I was "in the mood" to make some really cool wings for her, wide and lacy and beautiful. How? I don't know, but something will come to me if I listen for it.

 I've already changed one of her ears to be a fairy ear, but then got worried because I really wasn't sure what fairy ears looked like. So I looked online for pictures of fairy ears (Google image search, "fairy ears"), and there were lots of fairies but only a few good pictures of the ears. (Did you know you can BUY ear extensions to make your OWN ears look like fairy ears??!! Now I'm thinking about next Halloween already!!)

Anyway, I found that the ear I'd fixed for Miss Green Eyes, looked just fine, so all I need to do now is make her another one. I've got a feeling the other three are going to demand to be fairies, too, and have fairy ears, of course. Believe it or not, my dolls, even when they're only a head, DO make their wishes known to me, and I try to listen respectfully. Maybe it's my muse talking, and not the dolls, but whatever, they usually get what they want.  

Doll Artist Arley Berryhill thinks this is all nonsense, and that dolls do NOT communicate with their makers, however he's a man, and maybe dolls (or muses) just don't communicate with MEN makers!! What does HE know about women and their dolls?!! (Sorry Arley, I gotta tell it like it IS, man!!)

Well, it just turned midnight and outside the wind is blowing and the rain is pouring down, perhaps sideways--I can't tell, it's DARK out there!!We are on Round One of a three or four part "Pineapple Express," which weather people characterize as a giant fire hose aimed at the west coast.

When another one of these hit on January 5 of this year, we got 7.26 inches of rain from 3 pm Sunday to 2 pm Monday and several houses slide into their streets due to mudslides, and one lady was trapped when a hill slide down on top of her house. Miraculously, no one died and we were very grateful for that.

Our town was again isolated from the outside world, as the bluff  along the highway at the entrance to our town slid for the first time in about 20 years.:

A California company stabilized it in 1991, I think. and we all doubted it would keep the bluff from sliding. We were all wrong--it worked for all of that 20 years. We just got way too much rain for even our spongy soil to soak up.

 So some of us are a little worried that if we get as much rain as some are predicting, things may become unstable again. We will see. If our house was close to a bluff or at the foot of one, I think I'd check into the hotel for the night and bring my pets.

G'night for now. I know some of YOU are buried in snow!! Stay warm and stay tuned. Barb


Saturday, January 17, 2015

Progress Continues on Latest Root-Haired Doll

Well, as usual, my progress is neither steady nor speedy, but somehow, I made some on this latest root-haired lady. Her face is painted and I will be making her a body and some limbs soon.
I like her face a lot, and she will need beautiful clothing to wear, too. None of this shabby-chic stuff for her. I am not particularly good at fancy finery, but I will do my best. I have some of  James Christensen's work http://www.jameschristensenart.com/, which is wonderful, and his characters are outfitted in great style; I will do as my friend Nancy does (one out of all my Nancy friends) and let James help me outfit this doll.
I also fiddled around with a little head/torso I'd made out of a scrap of fabric last month or the one before. I love making small dolls out of what I call "Nothing!" as they can be made from such tiny scraps that most (sane) people would not even keep them. So I have mine and also some from the sane people I know who save them for me. They consider this "recycling" without hardly any effort, so I feel good to get them and they feel good to get rid of them, in a "green way," no less!! Win-win!!
Here she is, nestled in my palm. I really love her little serene face. If someone had ASKED me to draw a serene face, I probably wouldn't have been able to do it, but my dolls' faces are all about happy accidents, more or less. I consider making dolls "playing," and so I don't over-think when I make them. That would make the process too much like real work!! Why would I want to do THAT?!?!?!  I don't.
And so the winter goes, with January over half over already!! Western Washington (state) is "enjoying" it's usual wet weather and dark days; that's what winter looks like here and we can either like it or not, but that doesn't change it.  So we choose to like it. It's a very good time for spending time indoors, working on indoor projects. The grass is sleeping, the garden is asleep, too, even the three dogs do their share of extra sleeping, and enjoying the warmth of the fireplace.

The Seattle Seahawks are playing the Green Bay Packers tomorrow in the NFL playoffs. We are 110 miles from Seattle, but the Blue-Green Fever spreads a lot farther than that!! So we are a little caught up in it as well. We'll be watching tomorrow, along with probably 75% of the country.
I am always glad when the Hawks make the playoffs, not only for the team but also for all the small businesses that are near Century Link Field ("the clink" in NW jargon) and those people that work inside selling, cleaning, and whatever else individuals are employed to do in there. Between those jobs and folks who work in the hotel industry, many families  benefit when the Seahawks play post-season games at home.
Stay tuned on progress on my dolls.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Fourth RootHair in Progress

I SHOULD put the tee shirt skin on my doll's face before I allow myself to draw on it, but I can't help it. I MUST find out what she's going to look like and I've already had to wait four or five days for her head to dry.!! I can't STAND waiting!! But I love the hair on this one, and I think she'll wear a fancy outfit. Maybe she'll have a bird nest in her hair!!  Isn't there a poem about a woman who has a bird nest in her hair?

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Three Root-Hairs in Progress

Here are the three dolls that are "in progress," although right now I am ignoring them in order to concentrate on holiday things.

As you can see, they each have their "own look" and so will end up looking quite different from each other.

Another doll I've made recently is this one:

 This is a small doll, about 9 1/2 inches tall. She has a skirt added to her Awake Side and will have hair, of course.
That's about all that's new in my doll world. Stay tuned.