Sunday, 13 May 2012

The Vampire And The Asylum Doll In Progress

It's been a busy week.
A busy week in both a good way, and in a not good way for those I love. The sun has shown it's face around here for the last couple of days, and I actually wore a summer dress today!!!
I've managed to get a lot of work done to my dolls, which I always enjoy, and I found a couple of great Vintage dresses in local charity shops. Plus, I finally finished sorting through the bedroom and getting everything organised and put together neatly. I won't go into details about the sadness in my life and in the lives of my friends. Needless to say if I could take their pain away I would do it in a heartbeat. If only it were possible...

To talk about dolls...
At the end of last week I started to sculpt a new doll for Anita. A lovely little Vampire who I've named Ruby for the time being. She looks quite small here sat next to the second project I'm working on (close your eyes if doll nudity shocks you), but it really is just because my next Asylum doll is very tall.

Ruby is a cute little size, and the more I work on her the better I feel about her. You can't see her sharp little teeth in these pics yet as I haven't set them. I'd rather not get bitten by my dolls as I work on them, and I'll be using a lovely soft charcoal coloured satin for her skirt and don't want to snag it.

I tried something new with Ruby. Anita asked me to make her look like she's just left her grave, so as I was painting her body and limbs I added a very fine wash of grey to her skin. Unfortunately it doesn't show up well in the pictures, but as I hold her here in my hand the touch of gray has added a real other-worldly look to her.

I choose to give her shiny black shoes and a dark burgundy red for her lips, making her skin look even paler. If you look close at her face here you can see the little groves in her bottom lip where her teeth will sit.

Now that she has her underwear and bodice on Ruby is starting to look the glamorous Gothic part.

I've given her a little pair of black lace knickers, and a mass of lace and black netting petticoats to hold out her skirts which will come to just knee length.
Her bodice is layered over with more black lace, and she's already looking very pretty.

After I sew her skirts from the dark gray satin I have I'm planning to find some fabric with another nice texture to make her a little cropped jacket so that she can have some more details added to her - After all, what lady from her time would be seen out with bare arms and no gloves!

Last of all I'll add in her sharp little teeth and give her a full head of rich bright red hair. I'm flying along with her clothing now that I'm started, and I should be able to start on the final details next weekend when Ruby will get her last little bits and be slightly roughed and frayed to add to her grave look.

I'm not really used to sculpting one doll at a time. I usually like to sculpt a big batch of arms, legs and bodies while I'm in the mood as it can get to be very tedious. Then I work on faces and clothing as I go along, or if I know who I'm making from the start I get all of the faces done in one go too. Get all the messy stuff out of the way as I've not much room here to keep things out to dry - I really wish I had my own room.
So, to get to the point, while Ruby was drying through all the stages of sculpting and painting I began working on another doll. This one a large Asylum doll.

So far this lady has her underwear done - A pair of split crotch drawers, a knee length shift with a wide gathered neckline, a black corset, a plain white petticoat, and a stiff cream cotton petticoat that has one long ruffle in the front and rows and rows of lace ruffles filling up the back. At the moment this seems like a very odd petticoat, but it's there to provide the right shaping for her dress. This lady is from around the 1860's, just as the extra wide skirts were disappearing and just before the back heavy bustles and narrower skirts came in. Once her next red checked petticoat is added and pleated onto the back, with her skirts attached in the same way, this wide skirt should have a slightly trailing shape, fuller in the back than in the front.

I have a beautiful dark blue patterned fabric I'm planning on using for this dolls dress, but I'm not totally sure of it quite yet. She's on hold now until Ruby is done, and I'll only get a little done to her over the next week. This is the largest doll I've made for my Asylum series of poor unfortunate women. But as I looked at her big blue eyes and the way she tilted her head I couldn't resist. She came out just as I wanted her, with a slightly vacant melancholy look. And I know that once I'm done she'll look just as I see her in my mind. Her dress once she's done will have drop shoulders to her narrow sleeves, a simple day dress without the trouble of a crinoline or bustle that she would have been unable to dress herself in without help. And I'm going to try and make her restraint removable so that it can be tied differently or removed as wanted. I always find it scary when an Asylum doll gets to the point when I need to attack their carefully sewn clothes and make them rough and dirty. And I can see it being even more scary this time because of all the extra detail I'll be able to add because of her size. It's odd, but I'm really looking forward to it.
I think that may mean I'm nuts! :-S


  1. They're coming along beautifully. And yes, I can understand the anxiety/excitement from roughing up a dress you've put so much time and care into. I wish you luck!