Friday, October 12, 2012

Holiday Diorama preparations...

I noticed I did not have any posts for October! Which means I have been busy with other things...and have had very little doll time.
October is when I begin to decide what I would like to do for my Christmas cards, as I use the dolls and their props to create a Christmas card setting that I send to family friends and my customers with their orders during the Christmas season.
Here are a couple of photos from Christmas past:

Last year, I did the top card scene -'I saw Mommy kissing Santa Claus' and the 2nd scene was done for our friends who belong to the Acca Shriners, my husband is a Mason and a Noble of Acca Temple here in Va and belongs to the motor patrol unit - he rides a go-cart in the Shriner parades. It is a great organization where money is raised to support the Shriner's Children's hospitals. Our friends simply loved the card.

This year, I have a couple of holiday projects in the is the abandoned Abbey with cemetary for the Buffy the Vampire slayer dolls, where Giles has his secret library. I was hoping to have it finished. Here is the work thus far-

Sorry for the bad pictures...which brings me to my recent purchase of Hunger Games Katniss, that I purchased at Target with this Fashionista Ken, Ryan. I was disappointed with him- his legs are not jointed, but he will do for the project I have coming up.
The door is almost finished on the Abbey. I need to finish the door and decide to finish the door, put the hinges on it and create the doorknob/handle. I also need to finish the roof. I have the tombstones for the graveyard, so that just needs to be landscaped.
My 2nd holiday project in the works is to do a Nativity scene using the dolls. That means I will have to make everything- the robes, clothing, manger for the Baby Jesus, the stable, and find animals that will be 1:6 comparable. It is ambitious, I admit. Usually when I embark on a diorama of this type I google search for images or photos but found none where someone had used Barbie or action figures in 1:6 scale for a nativity. The closest I have found is the Fontanini Store which sells remarkable nativity accessories and figures in all scales- even full size. Their 12 inch sizes I had seen at the Yankee Candle outlet in the Christmas section in Williamsburg, Va. I love the animals, but cannot afford $25 for one sheep. I have searched on Ebay for Breyer animals, may have better luck there or at Hobby Lobby.
So I picked up the above two dolls and I think Katniss will make a great Mary. I knew I did not want that cheesy smile on their faces, but a serene look, and the doll who plays Joseph must also have a similar look too. Fashionista Ken will probably end up as a shepherd, but I have decided to use the Basics Ken with dark hair for Joseph, simply because he is taller than the Fashionista Ken and looks better beside Katniss.

Here they are and they look great in this pose. Imagine the manger in front of her, with a white robe and blue mantel, with the infant and straw, and so on.
So far I have in the lineup the Holy Family- Mary, Joseph, Baby Jesus; the Three Kings or the Magi; I have earmarked my Pirates of the Carribean Johnny Depp as one  the Three Kings. I will probably have 2 or 3 shepherds and I also have a Todd doll that I can dress as the Little Drummer Boy.

The hardest part is the clothing for this project. I have already begun on Mary's robe, which I thought should be in keeping with the Nativity Christmas cards I have always received from time to time, and I had some beautiful white filmy fabric as well as satin. Here is what I finished a couple of days ago after bringing home Katniss-

I went to Hobby Lobby and found in the felt section this powder blue fleece for .50 cents- they had pink as well. I figured this would be good for part of Joseph's mantel as well as under the Baby Jesus in the manger.
Her robe or overlay is still unfinished on the sleeves and neck. I have to admit on this project I might be sewing 'to the camera' so those sleeves might be finished with ribbon or tucked up under so they drape. I have some beautiful blue satin that will look wonderful for her mantel & hood.

I have several infants in my collection, but will have to look for a new one. Ross has the babysitter Barbie which has a very realistic looking infant in the playset- all for 14.99 and it has some cute toddler furniture..I may go back and get it when I have more moolah. Target's price on Katniss is reasonable and this is one of the times when their clothing and doll far exceeded my expections. Katniss has an articulated body, much like the first Fashionista body, and the clothing and props exceeded what I expected. Go figure. I have thought of buying another one of this doll simply because I love her face!

So back to my trip at Hobby Lobby. I found a small sheep, but do not know if it will work- here it is beside Fashionista Ken. It might work standing next to Todd as a shepherd boy.

I was thinking it might work as a lamb in 1:6 scale. The lambs that went with this particular animal were quite small. I did find a camel in wood seated, at Hobby Lobby, but did not get it. They did have 1:6 scale animals, but they were all dinosaurs, dragons, lions, bears, everything but cows, donkeys, and sheep! sigh...back to Ebay. I would really love to have a 1:6 scale cow or sheep, but may have to forego the cow- there are a few on ebay and they want $35 & up for them.

But my Hobby Lobby score was in the fabric department. I have been searching for scraps of brocade, satin, broadcloth, muslin and did not want to have to buy alot of yardage to get the miniscule amount I would need. Hobby Lobby had lots and lots of gorgeous remnants that were a jackpot- I got a large roll of unfinished muslin for the mens's robes in an off white, and lots of subdued colors for their mantels, overblouses, and all. I have some purple velvet too, and I think creating the Kings' ensembles will be quite fun.
Reading back thru the passages of the Bible for clues in the books of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John was also enlightning- the details are few and far between, so it leaves the way open for imagination. I am hoping to pick up last year's Angel Barbie so I have put it on my list to cruise Tuesday Mornings in my area because at one time she was there. She would be perfect for the Angel of the Lord above the stable, or nearby. One clue I found was in the time of Casear Agustus, so that should give me an idea of fashions from Rome, Judea, and Egypt as well. I think in the end, I will stick with a basic robe pattern I have made and make it to fit the different sized male dolls.
The only thing left on my list is what to use for the gifts, Gold, Frankincense and myhr. Forgive me if I have misspelled these- I always remember at Church or Mass when the Nativity is re-enacted elaborate boxes and perfume bottles decorated with paste gems were used, I may have something suitable in my stash of minis.
So far, this is the mish mash of progression! I hope to finish Mary's ensemble then work my way thru Joseph, the shepherds and then embark on the Kings ensembles since they will have the most detailed ornamentations.



Miranda Ixie said...

WOW! Can't wait to see it all fixed up and congratulations on Katniss, even if Ryan was disappointing. She's pretty cool.

Lisa said...

thank you Miri! Your halloween decorations look amazing at Wightwick Manor!