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Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Porcelain Dolls

About 25 years ago I took a couple of classes to learn how porcelain dolls were made. This was long before I knew anything about making soft cloth dolls and I never actually made anymore dolls until a few years ago. The lady that taught the classes did them out of her home, she had the whole basement set up for this, had the supplies, kiln, everything. These are the dolls I made.

First up is Elizabeth. She is a full newborn weight and the only porcelain parts are the head and hands.
We used molds and had to clean up the surface of bits and pieces, sanding and general cleaning of the heads and hands to make them smooth and ready for painting.

It required going back a few times as the heads and hands had to fired a few times after each session of cleaning and painting. I really enjoyed the process though because it taught me so much.

The rest of the doll is stuffed with fill, I think we used plastic pellets, can’t quite remember. I made a whole Christening outfit for her. The rattle in her hand is an antique ( which really needs a good cleaning with silver polish). The dress is made with Swiss Batiste and lace, the underskirt is made with Satin and lace. Her stockings and shoes are purchased and I made her bloomers. We learned how to insert eyes, eyelashes and how to paint the faces and add colour details to the lips etc.

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I have two more dolls, and both badly need their clothes washed as well as I need to remove their wigs, wash them and braid the hair again. I mention these dolls because we have Colleen Babcock coming to teach in April, and one of the classes is Drafting Doll Clothes.

We are to bring an undressed doll to the class and an idea of what we want to dress them in. Instead of trying to make a doll for that, I am going to bring one of these dolls and learn to make outfits for them. Poor things are so patient waiting for new clothes, but not to much longer. Originally I used patterns to make their clothes, but it will be nice to learn how to design and make custom clothes…


1 comment:

  1. Those dolls are lovely. Oh the undies are lovely. Have fun with Colleen.



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