SFM Cloth Dolls with Attitude! NZ

Monday, May 16, 2016

Just finished this doorstop doll for someone and am quite pleased with how it has turned out!

One of the longest parts of doll making for me is finding the right fabric in my stash! Luckily this time I found an umbrella skirt! Thought it would come in handy some day! Already circular and stitched, so trimmed off the pointed ends and decided to use them as is to make ruffles further up the skirt! So easy! I didn't have to hem it either! the bodice took a bit of doing, because it is a little fiddly being shaped, but I have to say it is a very effective style!

And the hat! A straw hat. Topped with polyester stretch velvet, then a tube with the hem (It was previously a top!), and gathered at the other end. This is inserted in the hat with the hem rolling out over it all! Hand stitched on, add some plumage and a big bow - two hat pins and - all done!

The brief was for a Victorian Lady in a black dress, but I added a hint of red overlayed with a lace panel, to keep it subtle. I really should have given her a burgundy choker, for better colour balance, but only found that after I had done this. Accented with burgundy roses. I wondered if she needed something around her shoulder- neckline? She is rather exposed for one in a hat I thought?

This doll was made from my pattern Hello Dolly, and you can find it on my Etsy page, Designer Doll Patterns, Dollmakers Journey, Fabric Addictions or Craftsy! She is a Door Stop Doll and not that difficult to make - once you decide on your fabric! hah! She has a plastic milk container for her lower body, so no legs to deal with!
Both of these dolls are going to live in the same house!  

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Dwrfbred - eco warrior!

 I love a play on words, and when I found an illustration of this little warrior, I just had to have a go and see if I could replicate him! 
 I felt I had succeeded pretty well and enjoyed the problem solving of - how to make his forehead high enough to actually fit the helmet on.
- how to make the body rotund, yet wide enough/tall enough to fit all his gear on.
- how to make the 'bread' out of cloth
- howto make the feet/boots
- how to make the horns from fabric
 He's an eco warrior, because so much of him is recycled. I used an old pair of leather sandals & embellishments in his helmet and belt, leather scraps and strips given by other people, strap off someone's handbag around the helmet edge, the sealing tops off pill containers for the horn holders, painted with paints I was given, and boots made from sweatshirt scraps. His hair - offcuts that someone gave me! Even his armature was an old wire coat-hanger!
 The Bread is made from Quilters muslin.
I love that he stands so upright and filmy on his feet.  I felt this design is well balanced and I have almost finished making the pattern for him!
This doll sold within a week of being made!

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Matchsticks on Strike!

Not everyone is on Facebook, and some of my dollmakers saw this first piece that I made and were a bit  - ahem - bemused, by it, and so I thought you might like to see how it all ended up!  

While I had mixed feelings about reactions to it, I felt I couldn't waste it because I knew it would have some appeal to some people, so I ploughed ahead- a little bit defiantly!  Ha! 

I was taken by the illustration and the story about the life of matches, from a Hans Christen Anderson story, told by the ugly duckling, who grew up and turned into a swan! 

 One of the illustrations looked like the Major from "It aint 'alf hot mum!'  I decided to see if I could emulate parts of the illustration in cloth.  


 The first one looked a bit - funny - so to speak, but with them assembled all together it becomes a novelty ornament that will amuse someone!


  My enjoyment from making this came from problem solving, and the process - how to do it, what to do to it to make it 3D and how to set it up and make it look amusing. I love a play on words!  

Meet‬ the Major Matchsticks!
They're standing for their right!
They reckon they are too old to burn,
 and so have gone on strike!

Majority rules and all that,
Harrumph!

Says Major Horrified, Major Frown, and Major Laugh!

Ha! Sometimes you have to do something novel, just for fun. I learned a few more things in the process.

Hope you enjoy them!

Saturday, May 7, 2016

Percival Ponce on show!

I am proud to present this doll made by Sandi Reid, a wonderful cloth dollmaker from Canada, made from my pattern Percival Ponce!  I love the way she has done his face! Sandi put him in her doll club presentation at the local Quilt Guild Show!  Well done Sandi!

Percival is instantly recognisable and you can find him in my Etsy, at the side of this page!

For the first time, our doll group OCDC, is going to present our dolls at the local Quilters & Patchworkers Show here is Oamaru!  So excited!

Thursday, March 31, 2016

Queen Victoria!

 It starts out looking like misshapen cloth!  You have no idea if it will work, but you keep going, just in case it will!  Sculpting and stuffing at the same time till the features look something like it!
Then, what to use for hair?  Her hair was flat and close to her head.  Why not use this mesh?  The colour is right.

Her Imperial Majesty, Queen Victoria.  Exaggerated.

But from the side..

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Another Makeover for March!


What fun I have had makeing over these dolls!

I had no idea what to do with them to make them work better than they were. 


Then someone gave me a bag of scraps - and inspiration flowed!  Steampunk them!  This one is wearing improbable clothing!  More like a collage!  Now she's an art Doll!


The originals were unsatisfying, in that their heads wobbled and thy were not very stable, so off went the heads and stripped off their outer clothing, undid the body and unstuffed,  Made a better base and weighted it with lead sinkers!  Restuffed and redressed!

I kept the glasses, gave her different hair - white streaked down the back.

 added leather and lace, a top hat.  

And a wire brace up her back  - to support her neck!  Now she's very stable and very funky!

Saturday, March 5, 2016

Humpty Dumpty, character of the times!

How do you make a doll with just a head, arms and legs? You make Suzette Glastonbury Rugulo's Humpty Dumpty!  

Of course you can make it your own way, as I did, but the pattern is great! I have had it for years and promised myself I would make it one day, and just recently I found a picture that really appealed to me, so I used it as my inspiration for doing this face! 

The eyes and mouth fascinated me, so I had to try it! 
Do you ever do that?




Such a fun pattern and Suzette is one of my favourite designers, who still challenges me!

I did want to give him a swing, but that was too problematical! Love it!