It was a beautiful warm sunny day for the first time all week, and the forsythia were finally starting to bloom, so I thought I'd try take some photos of Cuprit in her new Spring Goddess costume. The outfit is already spoken for, but I still want to try take some more "mood shots".
Took Layla and Miki out in my latest two new fairy outfits for photography in the scillas. The flowers were not as nice as last weekend but I did manage a few nice shots. I'm pleased with the look of the new fairy line, and will eventually make more, but for now I'm rather tired of fairy outfits and it's time to do something else for the larger dolls for awhile. Maybe it's time to tackle 'Christine'..... or a Rococo gown..... or finish the Celtic Maiden outfits.
It's taken me more than six months, but today I finally finished my online album of photos from our West Coast Totem Pole Hunt from last September and October. It's never taken me so long to finish a trip album before, but then a trip album has never had to compete with my doll costuming before either. It was our second trip taking a doll along, and there were some amazing doll photo opportunities - see 'Ruby Mushrooms', 'Arwyn's Adventures', and 'Ruby and the Egg' in the Favourite Photos 2010 Gallery. I was so thrilled with the doll photos, that they made it up on my website almost immediately! The rest of the trip took a lot longer - until today.
If you are interested in seeing the rest of the trip photos, just go to West Coast 2010.
Here's a few of my favourites.
Do you recognize this last one? It's sunset at our campsite at the Icefields Center in Jasper National Park where the top photo of Arwyn was taken the following morning.
I spent much of the Easter weekend working on repurposing an old baby dress of mine which my Mom had saved for me. I wore that dress when I was almost 3 1/2. My Mom was expecting my baby brother any day so she couldn't go to her younger brother's wedding - so my Dad took me.
The dress was of the softest sheer cotton with red chickies and bees embroidered along the edges. The fabric was so soft that it felt like I was sewing single-ply 'Kleenex'. The original dress was sleeveless, but I decided to add tiny puffed sleeves. The skirt of the original dress needed to be made a lot shorter, so I used the extra fabric from the top to make a bow for her hair. The ruffle across the bodice also had to be cut shorter, and it didn't look quite right, so I embroidered a red line at the top of the ruffle.
It was interesting that I didn't have any problems cutting up the dress considering how sentimental it was to me. I had originally intended for Layla to wear it, but I preferred how it looked on Miki. My husband thinks it's a great idea to repurpose my collection of old baby clothes - it's a nice way to get some use out of the old baby dresses which will never be worn again and have spent the last few decades packed in boxes in the basement - and then my dolls will also always have something to wear when all their 'for sale outfits' are gone.
Took several dolls and went to take photographs in the blue scilla field today, and just had to share one. Of the dolls that went, Layla and Miki were the easiest (and most fun) to pose.
I finished one of my commissioned fairy outfits and the first prototype for my new flower fairy series and took Layla and Miki out into the garden for some photos. There's still not much happening in the garden, but a few lungwort were blooming. We had made some stands this morning out of coated wire and metal barbeque skewers, and they do a great job of holding the dolls up in the garden so they don't fall over. I took photos of the steps involved and will make a tutorial for the stands.
Anyway, I love these two little girls together.
Layla arrived this morning! That sure was fast considering she just left California on Friday. I knew she was on her way and had plans for a new wig and dress for her but she came faster than expected, so I had to make do. I didn't like the eyes that came with Layla, so gave her some purple acrylic ones temporarily. I'd eventually like to get some light blue or lavender eyes for her. I see Lalya as being light blonde most of the time, but my one blonde mohair wig is currently in use, styled to go with a pink fairy outfit, so I ended up using a pure white wig instead - however the incandescent light today gave her hair a more blonde glow.
Here is her first photo....
Today I started a new fairy outfit. It's intended to be an easier to make, less expensive design, inspired by Cecily Barker's Flower Fairies. The first prototype will be yellow and orange with a green bodice - to go with the spring daffodils and dandelions. There is going to be just one ragged-edged skirt, and one set of wings for this design. I was originally going to use flower petals on the skirt, but decided to sew fabric petals instead.
I should be working on some new fancy outfits for my larger dolls, but I'm in the mood to make more outfits for Miki, and Layla, who spent a mere 6 minutes in Customs today and is on her way. And it's always better to give in to inspiration that to try and fight it and end up frustrated with nothing done. I'm sure I'll be inspired to tackle the bigger costumes eventually.
I think it's also time to remake one of my old baby dresses. I went through my boxes of sentimental baby clothes and chose several that would work very nicely.
Well, I finished Cuprit's Spring Goddess outfit (no photos yet) and finished painting the wings for two fairy outfits today. Went to Fabricland this evening "just to look", and came home with some yellow Chinese silk brocade, a cheerful pale green with cherry print, and a soft white cotton and silk blend with a lace edge that is destined to become a white sundress for someone, and a shirt for my Tedros who came back earlier this week. I also picked up two hairpieces at the dollar store with the intent to make another wig-making tutorial - this time for a large doll.
And best news of all - I received the shipping notice for my fair Layla this evening. After more than four months waiting, she's finally on her way! I ordered her way back in early December with the intent that she would be my birthday present, and considering mail from the US takes just over a week, she could even arrive right on the actual date!
I'm right back into working on the outfits that were under construction before I left. My Soom Spring Goddess is almost finished. I had thought the sleeves would have been way too wide, so cut some of the fabric off the sides, but then they ended up not wide enough to overlap for snaps - so I had to insert eyelets for lacing after all. I wasn't happy with the light green ribbon lacing from top to bottom with the ends dangling off the wrists, then thought of changing the ribbon colour and lacing from wrist to armpit instead. Looks much better! Now to make a wreath for her hair, and then she'll be done for whenever the woods are far enough along for some nice spring photos.
I've also started a new commission - two versions actually. I had run out of one of the fabrics needed for the version originally requested, so we settled on a new combination. But since then I have found a new fabric to substitute for the one that had run out, so now I'm making both versions, and the client can choose which one she likes best - which will leave the second one available for sale.
Martha Boers is an award-winning Canadian doll maker and costumer specializing in fantasy and historical-style costumes.