Tag Archives: danita art

Happy Pi Day

And, that’s enough math for today.  Or any day, for that matter.  At least on this blog.  I know somewhere in the world it’s changing the future, but not here.  Now pie is a different story, but not today’s story.  We’re on diets in this neck of the woods.  Forget that almost all of the below photos involve eating, that’s diet wine there!

Right.

Anyway, I’m just moving right along through 2016.  2015 you say?

I say, look at these completed layouts!

Both of these layouts are 80% Currently Core Kit, 10% Ali Edwards kit for her Project Life Class, and 10% miscellaney – stuff leftover from Studio Calico kits, stickers, labels I cut with my teeny tiny die cutting machine.

And, speaking of Studio Calico, they’re having a huge sale on old kits today – $10 instead of the normal subscription fee (around $26/mo).   Get thee to Studio Calico and spend a multiple of $3.14 – there were go – some math!

With the PL’ing out of the way for the weekend, I was  left to ponder what to do next.  As I mentioned in the last post, I seem to be off the knit.  I was writing an email to my friend Mindy (shout out!), and I remembered, like a bell went off, that I had actually watched the entirety of Danita’s Art Doll class, and after all the anticipation of taking it, and the excitement of snatching it on sale, I went off the dolls, and never made one.  That had to be corrected.  So, I got the doll making supplies out, and got to sewing.

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And then stuffing.  I had a heck of a time with the neck.

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My that little head took a lot of stuffing!

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As you can see, I’m making two – so that when I mess up the first one, I’ll have the second one ready to go.  And, honestly – I’m good with that.  I’ve long ago gotten over the idea, at least with art, that I’m going to immediately get it right the first time.  It all takes practice.  I’ve always been a quick study, and I used to have a nearly photographic memory, so school, and tests, and my job – I’m not going to say I didn’t have to work at things, but I think I started out with less of a learning curve, and I had a shorter road to travel to get to a place of satisfaction.  Art is really hard for me, and I’ve gotten to a place where I’ve accepted that – that I have to draw, erase, draw again, paint over, throw out, start over, whatever it takes.  There’s no rush.  I have no customers, no critics, no deadlines.  What’s the rush?  To post a photo on the blog?   And, at the end of the process, when I call something done, it doesn’t mean that it’s good, it just means that I’m good with it, and that’s all that matters.

So, that’s about as far as I got when Joe came home from his Sunday all day overtime shift, so it was time to have dinner, and watch some t.v.

What to do, what to do, can’t just sit and watch t.v! And, I’m off the knit . . . well, the doll thing worked out, how about some crochet?

Yes, it’s time to revisit ol’ languishing Sophie:

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Olive apparently approves, and has staked her claim!

So, hopefully tonight, I’ll finish stuffing the dolls, and perhaps get to gessoing.  And, if I don’t get to the gesso, tomorrow is another day!

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Sewer Down!

So, here’s my little experiment from the other day.  As you can see, her head is just gigantic.

Here’s a close-up of the paint/stitching:

I posted on Instagram that I was going to put her away to hibernate, and someone  mentioned she did look tired.  She does look weary – as if she’s saying, geez oh man you forgot to give me a neck, and it’s going to be exhausting trying to hold my head up.

So, before I again make a forever doomed to be exhausted little person/creature, I decided maybe next time, I should have a pattern or a sketch or perhaps at the very least, a plan.  And, I thought before I wing it, and reinvent the wheel, maybe I’d make some other folks’ patterns.

I’ve had Jenny Doh’s We Make Dolls on my nightstand for the past week.  I’ve been studying the pictures, and getting ideas, but I wasn’t really reading the instructions, or thinking about construction.  The book is an anthology of doll designers, their stories, and their patterns.  Reading their stories, and their passions for the craft makes me feel better about “wasting” time making toys.  Now, hopefully, their patterns will get me on the right path to making dolls that are more my own.

So, I started with my latest craft crush, Danita.  As I mentioned Danita has a rather expensive online dollmaking class, A Doll Story, that I have managed to resist signing up for.  And, let me just say, “expensive” is relative.  $149 is expensive to me – but as far as classes goes, obviously if you took the class in person, it would probably be double, and there are 48 lectures and 5 hours of content – it’s a lot of stuff.  And for someone who has such a signature style like Danita, that’s a lot for her to put out there and share.  So, again – I’m not judging – I’m just saying I know I’m going to buy yarn today for a sweater for my 6’4″ husband, and I would rather put my craft budget there, than an online class.  Just me.
And that’s not to say that if I have a month when I’m still in doll making land (because as I explained a few posts ago – my crafting ebbs and flows through different mediums), and I have the $, and a glass of wine, and some sadness from the day that I think a big ticket purchase will do the trick to cure, I won’t go for it. But right now, I’ll stick to the book.

Oh, as an aside, I did mention that I was particularly enamored with Danita’s cloth and clay dolls.  So, I did a ton of googling, and Pinteresting, and deep dives into the internet to find a similar looking doll – at least the form.  The clay head, cloth body, jointed limbs – and I found this CD/Book – looks like the same construction, different face.  But, that’s all good because I’d never be able to carve a face that looks like Danita’s anyway.  So, that’s on it’s way, and I’ll learn the secret of attaching the paperclay head to the cloth body (which is different from Gritty Jane’s paperclay and cloth doll – in that, the doll’s head is part of the fabric body, and you cover the cloth with the paperclay).

But, back to the book I have, not the book that’s on it’s way.  Danita has three dolls in We Make Dolls – a Frida Doll, a mermaid and a wood nymph.  I decided to have a go at Frida.  I free motioned stitched the face,  much like I did with amazon doll above, but with amazon doll, I doubled the fabric.  I should have done that again – my muslin is really thin, and I think the stitching would have been easier had it been stablized with the thicker fabric, and I think the stuffing is going to show through this fabric.  Lesson 1 learned.

Once done with the face, I went on to the body, and for the big big Lesson 2.

Free motion fail guys – as I was trying to sew the collar onto the body fabric, my fabric kind of got jammed in the bobbin – I just couldn’t get the fabric to move, even though I have a free motion slippery plate thing I put on my machine – it was just stuck, and as I was tugging it, and my finger got a bit too close to the needle – well, not a bit to close – it was under the needle – ouch!  I didn’t take a full stitch through my finger, but I got a nice poke/jab/stab.  But, I put a bandaid on, and continued on.

What’s the lesson here – definitely to stabilize the fabric, and the area that needs to be stitched cannot be right on the edge – I should have cut a much bigger seam allowance to so that I could have guided the fabric better without getting so close (under) the needle.  Or, I should have used a Pellon interfacing that was bigger than the body to stiffen the whole thing up.

So, I’ve learned my lesson, and I’m ready to finish her up – drat that work thing – I’m going to have to wait the entire day!

Hopefully, when I get home tonight, and attempt to sew her limbs, I won’t repeat lesson 2. I’m going to cross my bandaged fingers!

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