Sunday, September 28, 2008

Playing With Dolls

I used to say, "I don't collect dolls, I just have a few that I really like." But recently, I counted my dolls, and I think it is safe to say that a grown woman with 25+ dolls, is a doll collector! My recent doll obsession, (besides sculpting them) is BJDs or Ball Jointed Dolls. I mentioned in my last post that next weekend I will be attending a BJD Artist Workshop and Retreat. I could not be more excited about that! I am also looking forward to the arrival of my very first purchased BJD. Modern ball-jointed dolls are a unique collectible in that they are completely customizable. They are hand cast resin, and are often made in Asia (which is why they are sometimes called Asian BJDs). A collector chooses the sculpt, the hairstyle and color, eye color, clothing, and the face-up (how the face is painted). Many collectors will even do the face-up themselves. The other thing that makes BJDs so wonderful is, of course, the jointing. They have ball joints at the neck, shoulders, elbows, wrists, hips, knees, ankles, and sometimes at the waist too, making them able to pose in very lifelike ways. As soon as I saw them, I knew I wanted to add one to my collection (yes, to my doll collection) But which one? There are so many choices of companies and sculpts-- and that is even before you begin to think about customizing!
I finally decided on Ange Ai Gaby from Custom House in Korea. I love her sweet face and small size. I also knew I wanted a child doll. Here is the picture of Gaby from their website.

When my little doll arrives home, she will look very little like that photo. She will be bald, naked, and unpainted. She will also have some random eye color which the company chose (which could even be purple--not my taste) But she won't be like that for long! I have purchased a wig and some eyes for her, and have the materials necessary for giving her a "face up". I also purchased some clothing patterns and an adorable pair of tiny leather shoes.

I have been very busy making bears for orders, and I have a show coming up soon, but today, I gave myself permission to "play with dolls". I think my doll will be arriving near the middle of next month, so I made a Halloween themed dress/outfit for her. The shoes I got have a cute black cat face on them and I fell in love with them, so I based the outfit design on the little cat face. I made a drawing of how I wanted it to look. I purchase a Bitty Bethany Pattern because the measurements seemed similar to Ange Ai, and made some simple alterations.I think the outfit turned out too cute! I hope it will fit her. The jumper is black velveteen and I made the Kitty applique from very thin leather to match the kitty on her shoes.

This will be her Halloween outfit, since I hope to display her with my Halloween bears and other decorations. I will have to make other outfits for other occassions.
I'll be sure to post her pictures when she comes!
Now back to Teddy Bears!


Ellen said...

Hi Tami!
You have fallen for the BJD's as well??? I have several of them now and I really have never been a doll collector in my life, I never even liked dolls, but I am extremely attracted to the bjd's, especially the childlike smaller bjd's...Big sigh...they are so addictive.
I love your halloween outfit and the drawing you made is amazing!!!You are very talented!
I love the shoes! I think it's very brave to want to do the face-up yourself. I have been thinking about that too, but will hold off for a while. I just started sewing my first clothes ever, so one of my bjd's now has an Ellen original It was not as straightforward as I had expected, but it's a lot of fun!
Many hugs

Tami Eveslage said...

Nice to hear from you Ellen. Aren't the tinies sweet? I've been admiring yours on your blog as well! I'm goon go there now and see if you've posted a picture of your doll's dress.

Shelli said...

You MADE that outfit? Wow! I'm totally impressed, Tami. And it looks so cute on her, too.

I bow to you. :)