Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Project Post: Custom forest faerie with birds in her hair.

greetings all,
as promised i'm bringing you a post with pics this week!  this was a custom piece i did for a little girl for her ninth birthday. after seeing my dolls at a festival, her mother contacted me for a custom piece. 
apparently she had quite a conversation with her mom about what kind of doll she would make if she made one herself. (this custom piece was a surprise) here is the list her mom sent via email (posted with permission, of course):

The creature would rescue creatures who had been bullied

She would have the power to change the seasons and the weather so that if someone was being mean to another, she would cause it to snow on the bad person so they couldn't move.

The creature would be a girl with brown skin, dark brown eyes, black curly hair down to her hips and the hair would be able to be used as a nest for injured birds

She would wear leggings in the summer and then over them she would wear a furry skirt in the winter

She would have different colors of shirts (red, green, brown)

She would have soft faerie shoes and her feet might be hooved

She would have wings to fly throughout the forest where she would live

this was so much fun to make!  i tried to incorporate as many of her ideas as possible, but i did have to compromise a little for simplicity's sake (she has shoes, but no hooves, and only one shirt- although it's removable so she could add her own if she wanted to)

here is a pic of her back, with wings attached and you can see the back of her simple shirt.

here is her wristlet before it was sewn on.  i embroidered little symbols that i thought would be good to represent her powers to control the weather: lightning bolt, raindrop, sun, snowflake, and tornado

and in these three photos you see the final placement of the symbols

here you can see her shoes and leggings.  both of which were completely sewn on.  sorry for the funky depth of field in this shot. i know it makes the shoes harder to see :/

i made some tiny birds out of felt and attached bobby pins to them so they could roost in her hair.
as well as in a pocket in her wrap around skirt.

it's a little hard to see in these photos (black hair and fur is really hard to photograph well!)  but she has little nest shaped buns on top of her head to help those injured birds.

so here she is with her leggings
and now with her skirt.

i can't tell you how much fun it was to help a little girl's idea come to life. the rich imagination kids have is so astonishing.  i'll be back next week with tales of cooking for nine and holiday craziness, in the meantime i wish my american readers a happy thanksgiving.  safe travels, good company, and good eats to all,

thanks so much for taking your time to read today! 


Tuesday, November 13, 2012

it can't be mid november already?!?!

greetings all!
well, i'm back.  had a blast pulling out an old costume for halloween, yet somehow managed to miss taking pictures! d'oh!  i'll have to don the outfit here soon and force my hubby to photograph me.... oh, what he does for me :D
let's see here, i'm in the middle of a bunch of projects now (what else is new?) but it also just occurred to me just how little time i have until the winter holiday season!  eep!  this really snuck up on me this year, i mean next week is thanksgiving!  i usually try to do a mostly handmade holiday, but we will see how far i get this year. 
i've started yet another jack skellington hat for myself this year.  this will be jack number three in twice as many years.  i somehow lost my first one.  it just disappeared.  i have no idea where i left it.  none at all.  the second one somehow got mixed up in all the stuff we sent off to goodwill this summer during some minor purging. *sob* well, i hope he went to a good home.  i wore the heck out of those hats!  the previous two i crocheted.  this one is no exception, but i'm going to try and line it in fleece.  winters get cold up here in minnesota!
i'm also starting a fourth doctor scarf,  and i'm knitting it!  this is quite the feat for me (14 feet to be exact ;) i'm not a very accomplished knitter.  i can knit, and purl, and increase and decrease on the sides, but that's about it.  i'm also very s-l-o-w so we shall see how long this project takes.  i'm doing the season 15 version, all in vanna's choice, the pattern and colors can be found here for those interested.
also, i wanted to say that i'm truly amazed at all the positive response to my weeping angel barbie tutorial, and would like to welcome all of the new readers.

well, that may be all i have for now.  i promise to get a post with some pics in here soon!
happy crafting!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

update and halloween

well, here i am, emerging from another long silence.  working two jobs and trying to find time to make things and juggle the rest of life left me no time for blogging!  i've now turned those two jobs into one job, and i hope to give more time to this medium. i hope to bring more posts, and some that aren't just project posts.  also i want to say thank you to the amazing phenomenon that is pinterest.  i've been seeing a lot of new faces that have come here because of my weeping angel barbie tutorial.  welcome!  and thanks for stopping by!

it's now my absolute favorite time of year, autumn, and halloween!  i love every part of now, but, as one might guess, making and putting together costumes is my favorite.   the nice thing about being obsessive about costuming for oneself is the backlog of costumes that i've acquired over the years.  this year, for the first time in over a decade, i'll be working on halloween.  we are encouraged to dress up, and it is sure to be a lot of fun!  i didn't have the time this year to make something new, so i went through my backlog to find something comfortable enough to work in.  i'm resurrecting an old faerie costume i made about ten years ago.  i'll post pics later if i remember to get a shot tomorrow, but it's pretty cool if i do say so myself.  it's a skirt and top made entirely of giant fabric oak leaves.  how giant?  i have long sleeves, each made of one leaf a piece. topped with an acorn hat made out of felt.  i ended up making each of the leaves individually, then sewing them together the best way i could see in order to make the outfit as if the faerie just found a bunch of leaves and made her outfit out of them.  looking back, i see the seeds of the ideas i brought to my first faerie dolls, and have applied to many of them ever since.  it's funny how you don't realize at the time that this is something linked, but everything you've done before informs what you do now, whether overtly or not. 

well, i think this is all for tonight,
happy haunting!

Thursday, March 22, 2012


just a quickie to let you readers know that i've got three faerie dolls on mt etsy site here: http://www.etsy.com/shop/fayeven  for $15 off their regular price.  it's spring cleaning for my shop and i need to make room for new product!

tanks for looking and have a fantastic day!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

who loo

it all started with a dalek.  

some years ago i crocheted a dalek and then decided it needed to be a toilet paper holder....  i got the pattern from this lovely site PDF here 

here you can see the inside where i reinforced it with plastic canvas and felt.

we used it for a while, but it seemed so out of place in our otherwise normal and fairly organic bathroom.  it was done in greens and browns, with a matchstick window shade and twiggy baskets and a leafy print shower curtain complete with leaf hooks.  the poor dalek looked so incongruous there.  when it came time to renovate the room i knew what my inspiration piece would be for the new decor. 
we did a lot of work in this room before the decorating as there were lots of repairs to do.  we put in a new subfloor, new linoleum, new shower surround, new sink, new cabinets,new mirror, new toilet roll holder, new towel holders..... about the only things we kept to the original were the tub, the toilet and the window.  you see, due to some old water damage, we had to take down the tile.  all of the tile.  the room was tiled on all four walls up about 4 feet in a sickly pinkish beige that i never, ever could stomach.  these tiles also included built in towel racks and TP roll holder.
because the walls were so damaged from removing the tile we opted for wainscoting instead of paint. and yes there were many references to this monty python sketch   when we put it up.

here you can see the cool tub detail.  our house was built in 1947 and the tub is original.  i liked these lines a lot and tried to echo them in the fixtures we found.  also, note the blood red chenille rugs.  when thinking about remodeling my husband and i were playing bio shock 2, a game with a vintage sci fi look.  i used a color scheme that felt this way to me, it also goes with the older house as well as the whoniverse.


i picked this light fixture because it reminded me of a vintage rocket ship.

 and for the last bit of boring non-whoniverse related stuff, the sink.  just a little pedestal we found with some similar lines.  of course i needed the classic retro porcelain taps.


and now onto the fun stuff!
this is the cutting of her grandfather that Jabe Ceth Ceth Jafe from the forest of cheem gifts to the doctor and rose in the dr. who episode  the end of the world.  pictured in the lower left hand corner of this still.  i made this from a twig i cut and re glued together, some faux leaves, and a peat pot that i sealed with mod podge to protect it from moisture. 

i couldn't find a whoniverse themed shower curtain.... and while searching i fell in love with this little beauty from thinkgeek.com.

i realized then that in order to be consistent i needed to pull from the scariest parts of the whoniverse, especially including pieces from dr. who's darker, deadlier, more grown up cousin, torchwood.

which brings me to this.
the  bottle from the torchwood episode from out of the rain. i still really need to track down an old film canister to place behind this to complete the effect.  i couldn't find the proper shaped container and am not quite happy with the finished product so i may actually redo this at some point.   this was a glass vinegar bottle i painted.  the raised detail is polymer clay painted the same as the bottle. in real life this actually looks much more metallic.  i used a metallic paint after all.  also at some point i need to get my hands on an old metal film canister to place behind it.

 a gas mask from the doctor who episodes the empty child and the doctor dances.  no i didn't make this.  it's something we've had in our costume bin for years.  my husband picked it up at a military surplus store when he was still in high school.  in digging it out of storage for use here i realized, not for the first time, that we probably aren't your average couple.  it's not many times when you can hear yourself calling, in a cheerful voice, "hon, have you seen the gas mask?"

 the weeping angel, originally from the doctor who episode blink that i posted about here

and here's how i've 'trapped' her with mirrors....

in that last photo you can see the TARDIS quilt covering the window.  here it is during the day.  the windows only have one layer of fabric and no batting so the sun comes through  just like the lights in the 'real' TARDIS. 

some detail shots here.  i used cording to outline the recesses in the wood and bias tape for the separation line between the doors.  also, to add more dimensionality, i omitted the batting in the recessed rectangles, although it's hard to see here.

quilting details added to mimic wood grain.

the lettering is just some iron ons i found at the craft store.

and this is all i have so far.  i have a couple more project ideas in the wings, like jack's wrist strap and possibly something really creepy... my husband half-jokingly suggested a face of bo toilet seat cover.  there's something so wrong and so right about that idea i just might have to do it.  if and when that happens you bet i'll post about it!

as always, thank you so much for looking!  hope you have a great day,


Friday, January 27, 2012

sun and moon masks: yule 2011

this yule i made some masks for a winter solstice ritual celebrating the return of the sun.  i'm still a novice at mask making, but i felt much more confident with the process this time.  i'm definitely pleased with the results and impressed that these seemed to fit well even though i made them without measuring or molding the faces of the people that wore them.  that is the benefit of using model magic i think.  it remains slightly flexible even after it's cured. 

here's the sun god mask ready to dry.  i sculpted these both out of crayola model magic, just like the henry killinger mask.  again, it's hard to get a smooth surface (as is obvious here. it looks like the sun god has some severe acne scars ;) i didn't care too much this time because i knew i was going to  add glitter and several coats of varnish.

 the masks were built on top of some styrofoam wig stands i picked up at a thrift store for cheap.  i covered them with aluminum foil to prevent the clay from sticking to the foam.

 here's both of them drying in my studio.  i used the leftover black model magic from the killinger mask on the moon goddess.  that's why she looks weird here. yes, model magic comes in a bunch of colors. 
 here they are after priming and the base color was added.  you can see the surfaces are still rough, but it will get better.

unfortunately i didn't take any in-process shots of building the rest of the god mask, but here he is.  the mask is coated in a couple different types of glitter.  i used mod podge to glue it on.  there's finer gold around his eyes and mouth, coarser for the rest of the face.  to create the rays i cut apart a bunch of super glittery "christmas floral" stems in varying colors i found at the craft store.  he's almost a sun green man in that way.  the rays are all hot glued on.  (i love my high temp hot glue gun!)

here's the moon goddess after her glitter treatment.

 she is a half mask because she needed to vocalize during the ritual.  the asymmetry was supposed to be indicative of a crescent moon.  i'm not sure how successful that was, but i think she's still pretty.

 and here she is with her flora attached (yep.  these are supposed to be "christmas floral" pieces as well)  i loved these pieces because they reminded me of ice as well as silvery moon things.
 after the look was completed i proceeded to cover the masks in several layers of mod podge and spray varnish.  these puppies DO NOT spread glitter everywhere, thank you very much! 

here are two pics of me wearing the completed masks.  i wanted to show off how the eyes look through them since the photos of the people in the ritual don't show that.  i was going to cover the eye holes with black see through fabric, but decided against it.  i really like seeing the eyes.

 and here are the photos of the goddess and god in full costume.  she's covered in silver body paint.  it's subtle, but it worked really nicely.
 he put this costume together himself.  just fantastic!  and holy safety pins batman!

thanks so much for looking!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Huldra 2

happy new year readers! 
ok, that might be a little late. i realize that it's almost february, but i've finally worked out the kinks in my system of uploading photos and i can now blog in comfort on my wonderful laptop and not on the big computer that lives in the frozen minnesota basement!   
today i wanted to share with you a doll i made this december.  it was inspired by a doll i created just over a year before.  you can find that post here.  you see, there was a small girl taking a class in which the previous huldra was featured, and she decided that she wanted a huldra for christmas.  her mother, luckily, was able to contact me in time to make this happen!  it's such a delight to be able to fulfill the wishes of a child. 
it's always fascinating to me just how unique these dolls end up being.  yes, i change the colors a bit, change the outfit and such, but they always seem like such specific individuals before i've chosen much but the skin color.   right away i knew that this one would be traditional as well, but in an entirely different way than the previous huldra.


so i made her a bunad, a scandinavian folk costume. 

here you can see her tail as well as her removable apron.

i also added a little jingle in her step.  thinking of reindeer and red and that part of the world.

and here she is both with and without her apron.  i kept a similar hairstyle to the previous huldra, and of course, she needed the cowbell.  it is a part of her heritage after all.  :) 

here's a little close up portrait. note that i'm using different eyes now.  i think these are a wee bit more endearing than the 'pie-eyes' i used previously.  

thank you so much for looking!  i've got some exciting projects to post about, so i'll be back soon.
take care and have a great day!