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Thursday, September 18, 2008

Gypsy Challenge Doll

Well my doll is finished and will be getting sent off tomorrow. She turned out great I think. I fashioned her after a vintage post card I found on the net while researching Gypsies. According to my mother, there were Gypsies in our family somewhere along the way. I have no way of finding that out for sure, but I'll go with the idea that there were. My doll is named after my grandmother, Franziska. She came from Czechoslovakia, now the Czech Republic, many years ago. She had a difficult life as most did in the early 1900's. She fled Czechoslovakia into Austria where she settled and had her family, but again, a hard life. This doll is made with her in mind, but from the point of view of it being a positive thing for her to leave and start anew.

This is the image I used to create Franziska. It is a vintage postcard image from 1906, that I found on the net and for whatever reason, the young girl had an effect on me. Perhaps its the smile.

1906 on the Road larger

This is my interpretation of her. I didn't have the off the shoulder blouse and I did take some artistic license by adding some jewelry bits. While the doll body is a design by Mary Tressler, the costuming is designed entirely by me based on the image above, including the shoes. She even has undies and a slip. I have no idea what she actually had on her feet, but my doll is prepared for all weather. The skirt fabric and the gold trims are what I received in the kit from Treasures of the Gypsy and those had to be used along with whatever else you wanted.



I made her basket to include  linens, fruits and flowers, her crystal ball (what Gypsy would be without that). I made a set of Tarot cards because Gypsies will always want to tell you your future and maybe fortunes to. I also made a tambourine as Gypsies love to dance and play music. Her pouch holds her coins and keys.



Like every contest that comes along, this was yet another challenge for me. I love to create and see what happens in the process. Now it's up to Franziska to dazzle the judges and here's hoping. Good luck to everyone who enters this contest.


  1. Romona, I love Franziska, you've done a great job once again.
    She really looks like the girl in the post card and I love all the detail you've added, the tarot cards and the tambourine, every gypsy needs one, good luck in the challenge I'm sure you will do extremely well.
    Hugs, Michelle

  2. Romona I have to say that this is one of the best dolls I have ever seen of yours! her face and expression are wonderful. I think the colours, textures and details are wonderful. You are wonderful. Way to go!

  3. Thank you Colleen and Michelle, Coming from two very talented doll designers/teachers/makers, that means so much. I will keep you posted... ;o) Romona

  4. Romona,

    What a wonderful tribute to your Grandmother. Franziska is a beautiful doll. What a special and lovely creation.

    Have a terrific day.


  5. Hi Linda, Thank you so much. I'm so inspired with this doll. I hope to start designing some of my own dolls shortly. I have more confidence now... ;o) Romona

  6. Your dolls just keep getting better and better, Ro. Franziska is absolutely beautiful and I love all her little accessories. It's easy to see that you put so much love and attention into each of your dolls and I can't wait to see your future creations. :)

  7. Hi Serena, I'm inching ever closer to creating my own patterns...not far away I don't think.. ;o) Thanks so much for the vote of confidence.. Ro

  8. Excellent detailing and execution. Your gypsy is magnificent Romona. I give it four stars!

  9. Hi Connie,
    Thank you so much, I hope the judges feel the same way... ;o) Hope all is well with you, Romona



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