So, Part I left off with painting the basic design of the dress and still working on getting the colors juuuust right. Once I was satisfied with the basics of the dress I moved on to the branches.
The branches... Oh, the branches. I was so afraid to start these for fear of ruining the dress, but they actually turned out pretty good. I'm still a little worried they may look more like roots than branches, but I've come to accept that.
The branches all stem from the strap over the shoulder which is just a small piece of ribbon painted to match and then glued into place. They stretch from the ribbon all the down and peek into the light blue of the skirt. You can kind of see it started in the picture to the right.
Also, speaking of the bottom light blue portion, you see those slightly curved indents? Those were a completely spur of the moment idea while painting. They're created by using a toothpick while the paint is still slightly wet. I think they add a nice texture and flow to it.
While I assumed the branches would be the hardest part to do, it was actually the hair. The hair took the longest amount of time and that's not even including the time it spent scouring the internet for ideas. I attempted several styles before I finally settled on this messy up do...
that I found on a beauty blog.
There's even a video tutorial! which can be found HERE.
The hair is actually just styled embroidery floss, nothing too fancy.
Packaged doll hair is too heavy.
So, I started by cutting the floss into lengths and then gluing them onto the head, starting on one side and working around to the other and layering up. I also added a slightly lighter shade of brown under the top layer to give it a more natural color. It is then brushed out so I can work with each individual thread.
The style I picked calls for curled hair, normally I curl the hair before I glue it onto the doll, it's easier that way, but since it was already attached, well this is what happened ...
Toothpicks and hair gel! I'm thinking it could be a new style, right? Right? No? Ok...
After curling the hair it was twisted and pinned into place like it shows in the video except I used sewing pins and Elmer's glue instead of bobby pins. I know you're all just lining up for me to style your hair!
Once the hair was finished it was time for putting her in her pose and adding the finishing touches.
In order to put her in a pose I had to run wire through her arms. You'll notice in the picture on the left she no longer has the strap. I had to remove it because the wire didn't want to thread through the arms easily. Stupid wire. Once the arms were positioned how I wanted them the wire was snipped, bent and wrapped in hemp cord to look like fists.
I don't have a picture of the process, but the finished doll is actually holding a cross necklace, sort of like a rosary I suppose. It's sewing thread, beads, and a cross from a bracelet that fell apart years ago, (I'm a pack-rat, but it comes in handy in the craft department). I draped the necklace over her hands so it looks like she's clutching it to her chest.
And every doll gets a bow around their waste. I decided hers should be a striking white to match the title on the cover of the book. It's the same ribbon used for the shoulder strap, this time painted white. I really suck at tying bows, so it's actually assembled out of three separate pieces, hence the sewing pins.
And here is the finished product! Beautiful, no?
What do you think?
Also I have a bell or two left, what character(s),
book or random idea do you think should be next?