Thursday, December 31, 2015

Happy New Year!

I hope everyone has a wonderful & fun & safe Happy New Year!  See ya on the flip side in 2016~ Lisa....

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Looking Back on 2015...

I was looking back over my blog posts this year and thought I would do a review of the year 2015 like Vanessa did in her blog post 2015 in Review . It gives you a time to reflect on accomplishments, things that need improvement and what you would like to do for the upcoming year. 

First, as far as the dolls- I did not have a limit on buying dolls- I buy what I love, the only thing that really limits me is my budget, which is very limited, LOL. I've often told my husband when looking at the extravagant dollies I lust after it is a good thing he is not a millionaire or I would be buying dollies like Demi Moore. 

On that note, 2015 was a year of many what I call 'Challenges' . I challenged myself in many areas, my personal life, my doll collecting, diorama building,work, my health and wellness, as well as re-organizing my household to better suit my and my husband's lifestyle. 

1- De-clutter. The beginning of the year I donated, sold at yard sales, and took to an auction house a great deal of needless items to make room in our home so we could begin the massive job of getting our home ready for repairs and refurbishing that we have wanted to do. It is still on going, day by day, job that I do. Hopefully I will get a larger doll display room out of this massive project. This is a continuation going into 2016.

2. Dolls.  I am more and more getting into the Hot Toys, Star Ace , Dragon, and other action figures and the realistic head sculpts and bodies that are offered out there and plan to explore and enlarge my collection. I am already working on a custom Sheldon from the Big Bang Theory show as I have purchased a head off of Ebay and I did a custom Amy to go with him. My tastes are widening from Fashion dolls into the action figures and the stories that I love to read, such as Harry Potter,Dr.Who and so on. There are several dioramas that I want to expand into for 2016. 

3. Dioramas. 
One of the 'Challenges' I did for myself was to do builds solely for my own pleasure and the Gothic Mansion and the Gingerbread Candy workshop are two ongoing dioramas that I have been working on in that scope. I never thought I could do something this large. Some pain in my left arm and shoulder has hindered work on that diorama when I had planned to have it finished for Christmas. I just couldn't finish it as my hands were too swollen or useless to cut the foamboard. 

This is where my dioramas have gone from 'dioramas' to what I now am beginning to consider miniature set building for stop motion photography and how it is used. The challenge this year of building to the camera really excited me and the Gothic mansion is and was a test of building to the camera angles. Sometimes it worked, sometimes it failed. 

4. Health and Wellness
2014 I was really serious about this and I carried it over into 2015 and succeeded in losing a total of 27 pounds so far. I still have a long ways to go to my overall goal I made with my trainer in 2014. When you have weight on you it hinders you greatly and when you start working out, even just walking, which works best for me, you never know how much good it does until you start. It relieves all of the stress, anxiety and helps release the creativity if you're an artist. That is why I love walking outside versus inside a gym, though I do like going to the gym too. 

Part of the health and wellness is also- learning to say no. For me, that will be saying no to over-extending myself to charitable organizations, committees, etc. who always need a 'helping hand' and call me. I have decided for the good of myself, it is time to say no to those organizations for a change and devote my time either to the business, or to my own interests, and art. It is hard to devote yourself to focusing on art or anything if you're racing about town to meeting. 

Toxic people. 
This falls into the health and wellness. You know the types. Moochers, people who argue, cause drama, and the list goes on.

5. Expanding...
I plan for 2016 to expand my horizons to try new things and not to do things so 'traditional' . Try new foods, new ways of doing things, if they are practical, new techniques in art, sculpting, etc. as well as attempting to learning to sew more, possibly even learning to weld, if I can get my husband to teach me. I am also going to look into felting too, as I still have the supplies. 

6. Writing...
Here is where I fall short. I would like to start writing more again, especially stories for the dolls and then enacting them, as it would make the set building come to life. Maybe start with short stories , scripts , plays and go from there. I have one that I need to edit but I need to work on the props and scenes. I would eventually love to do a photobook using miniatures, dolls and props. 

7. Photography
I am going to research more into stop motion photography and and film making as this subject really fascinates me and how to use dolls in it. I have tried it before but I never have enough time to really do it in depth. I also need to see if I need better equipment, cameras, etc. So that is on my list for 2016 this year too.

8. Design
I had some fun doing a one of a kind doll, Steampunk Butterfly and want to do more one of kind dolls later on in the year. I have another one on the drawing board, I just need to get the materials together for her and her costume together. I actually have alot of ideas for OOAK dolls to do, but not enough time to them! 

So that is a long list, and 2016 is going to be a year of what I refer to as 
'Expansion'....expanding my mind, my creativity, my artwork, my diorama techniques, to infinity and beyond! as Buzz Lightyear would say. Spreading my wings artistically without having to do it for a living. Though I miss my King William Miniatures website and Pumpkin Hill Studios eBay store , it was a good thing to close it.  Being able to focus on solely creating for the sake of it is invigorating and not a 'time to make the donuts' type of deal which I felt like I had fallen into. Also, learning my husband's commercial boiler industry also is stretching my wings in another mental direction which I actually enjoy on the business aspect as well.

Thank you all for reading the blog and being so interested in the things I do here! I hope to really accomplish alot in the coming year. I hope you have a Happy New Year!~Lisa

Saturday, December 26, 2015

My Christmas Present and a new doll- Silkstone Boucle Beauty!

Christmas day was wonderful. My dad visited early and we had dinner around 11:30 am with a simple but non-traditional meal- a roast beef, mashed potatoes & gravy, dressing, green beans, & rolls, then fruit cake and pie with tea. Nothing over the top or difficult, since it is the three of us and a turkey takes up so much time to cook. My dad, since my mother passed away, also visits with their friends on Christmas and usually has a breakfast with them in the morning so a great deal of food is not what is wants. 

My husband wanted to surprise me so with the weather being so balmy & warm we hopped in the car and were on our way to Williamsburg for the rest of the day after my dad left! It was so much fun. We live in King William county which is about 35 minutes away and a short drive. I have always wanted to spend the holiday of Christmas in Williamsburg, my all time favorite place, which is known for its historic decorations. I finally got to! We walked all over. We did not go out to eat anywhere, having just had an early dinner but just took some sodas with us and my camera of course. 

Here are my pictures-

The Governor's Palace...

Horses and can take a coach or a carriage ride in Williamsburg with costumed re-enactors who give you the skinny on living in Williamsburg back in the day....

A beautiful house with a small herbal maze/garden in front of it...

The historic church, I forgot to get the name of it. This church is famed for its ecoistics. I have been in it years ago. 

These are the colonial buildings behind the Wythe house. Wythe was a friend of Jefferson's. These are the kitchens, smokehouse, well, icehouse, and so on. 

And now, for a silly selfie of me and Chris. He took this quickly before I could blink, which I think I did! lol...

My hair is simply limp from the humidity- it was 80 degrees! My husband with his quirky sense of humor was wearing his Hawaiian shirt since it was hot on Christmas! I was thrilled it wasn't snowing and cold. I have been wanting a tropical Christmas like...forever...! So we had a great Christmas and saw so much, it was truly the most wonderful gift I had ever had. 

Now onto Boucle Beauty- who arrived today! 
I got her with my last reward and free shipping from Barbie Collector. And she was on sale. I was glad. Personally, I have had it with Barbie Collector and their BS Games.  The only reason I am planning on joining again is not for the oh-so-generous rewards but for the Faraway Forest series and the articulated silkies nest year.  The Toki Doki scavenger hunt, Platinum stunts with the waiting room which turns out to be an admitted lottery is for the birds.  Enough already. 
*rant over* giggle.....

She very much has that Chanel look especially with the bow at her neck and the pearls and chains but needs more like In the Pink, who I have took a side by side photo of with her. They go together quite well. Especially those spectator pumps. Boucle has a pale skinttone which I believe is the Peace skintone and her hair has shades of different blonde- even grey running through it to match that suit. Very dazzling and makes her look matronly and like the Ladies who Lunch. I just wish they had given her a PURSE! Instead she got sunglasses. I didnt' put them on her. It just seemed odd to give this doll sunglasses and no purse. I have the perfect Integrity purse I can put with this doll, but still. 

 But if you are a Silkie collector, I highly recommend her. She is going to be so perfect for one of my perpetual shoppers in LaBelle's!

I still haven't de-boxed the other two dolls I received for Christmas- IT Airways Poppy Giftset and Tonner Moonlit Romance! So MORE dolls to de-box and show here. 

Thank you for following the blog, and hope you enjoyed the pics!~Lisa 

Friday, December 25, 2015

Merry Christmas!

Thank you all for reading this blog and I wish you all a very Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Merry Christmas!

I want to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and thank everyone for taking the time to read my blog all year long. It means alot to me that people follow my adventures in my creative endeavors and I hope you find them interesting. I also hope that this Christmas finds you all safe, blessed and filled with all you could wish for. 

Taking a break from dolly box openings and just some warm fuzzy photos of dolls enjoying cookies and sweets, caroling under the tree. 

My Ruruko holding a vintage Mrs. Beasley doll, vintage Skipper doll and Mini American girl doll Emily all enjoy Christmas cookies, gingerbread house, cakes and peppermint sticks, cookies by me. The two little santa cups are the Hallmark ornaments that I blogged about in the previous post. 

My Happy Holiays Poppy Parker holding a wreath and walking in the snow with Kellys dressed for the occasion...

More photos of the dolls and their goodies.....Oh what a wonderful time of year!

                                               Enjoy & Merry Christmas!

Day 3- Dolly Advent Christmas Countdown ...Stage Presence Veronique

I'm a day late on posting my dolly box openings. This should have been posted yesterday but I was racing about getting some last minute things done. I should say I was being good, shopping for gifts for long lost relatives, buying ingredients for my baking of cookies, last minute Hallmark cards, etc, etc. but I'm not lie. ....I wasn't doing any of that shit. I shopped for myself. 

Ok sorry for the expletive. But I was having fun just wandering around without all the pressure from past Christmases when I had to do all that. This Christmas there is no hustle and bustle, and my husband and I get to do what WE want to do with a freedom that we haven't had in years. I did pickup some much needed items, a card for my dad that I usually put money in, he loves that, since he is on a fixed income...and candy, which everyone loves. Yes I did go to the Hallmark store for those cute little Santa ornament cups that everyone has been showing off with their dolls. And Beau, the Elf on the Shelf, got a new jacket. 

But back to my dolly opening! I opened Stage Presence Veronique. She was a W CLUB Luncheon doll. This bowled me over - I thought for sure when I saw the pics of this doll, no way, she's going to go for alot and decided to look from afar. I noticed she wasn't going for as much as previous luncheon dolls, which surprised me. To me, this doll was an out and out stunning lady. In fact, she is my favorite doll of the year, topping the Poppys. She oozes Jean Harlow. The only thing I would have done is given her Sparkle Sparkle Poppy Parker's fur. I will probably end up getting her a real mink off of ebay. She's that classy. 

And here she is with the rest of the ladies dressed up for the holidays...

I hope you've enjoyed the pictures! And a Merry Christmas to you! Thank you for reading my blog!

P.S. I will pick up again with another blog post today but will not be posting more box openings on the other two dolls I'm getting for Christmas until after the holidays are over...So after today's two blog posts, I will have more pictures on the remaining two dolls, that have yet to be opened! Merry Christmas, Lisa

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Day 2- Dolly Advent countdown to Christmas

Day 2 of Dolly Advent countdown to Christmas box opening- and today's opening is Idol Worship Cinamatic Kyori!

Stay tuned to see who else I open tomorrow!~Lisa

Rug Santaka Carpets
Chair- Jim Coates Miniatures, manufactured by Bespaq, designed by Jim Coates Miniatures
Table- OOAK Bespaq, 
Christmas tree- found in novelty store

Monday, December 21, 2015

A Dolly Advent Countdown to Christmas....Day 1..

I didn't quite know what I wanted for Christmas. Mostly , every year I feel blessed, but I want what every doll collector wants-DOLLS! So I decided to save up whatever dolls I purchased on sales, lotteries, etc. and that I would have a 'Dolly Advent' opening countdown, saving the most wanted doll for opening on Christmas Eve and Christmas day. 

So I chose Five dolls, purchased from sales, lotteries of the W club and the Tonner warehouse sale. My Tonner Moonlit Romance Deja Vu Anne de Leger, a gift from my wonderful husband, arrived today. Every time he goes online, he knows just what to get me!(snicker= I usually purchase my gifts myself, because the poor dear asks me what I want, -dolls..and then asks me to buy it as he does not know which doll is which. We joke when the box arrived today that he got an incredible deal, and it arrived just in time for Christmas. I love to see the smile on his face when we do this. ) 

Below is my loot.

So the three dolls to the left are Sparkle, Sparkle Poppy Parker. from the Cinematic convention collection; Idol WOrship Kyori Sato, also from the convention collection, and Stage Presence Veronique Perrin, a W CLub luncheon centerpiece doll. I had also purchased CI Style lab homme outfits, Sterling Riese and the Marilyn Monroe look alike CI doll, but had already opened them. 

Then there was the Airways Poppy Parker giftset I won on the lottery chance, and I am saving that to open too. She might be opened Before Christmas. 

Finally, there is the Tonner Deja Vu Moonlit Romance. I got her on the warehouse sale at 60% off. There was another Anne de Leger as well. The convention Tonner in this line is lovely and I am still trying to acquire her. I love the 18th century Marie Antoinette look and these dolls are just breath taking. So Ann may be a Christmas day doll. 

Today, I opened Sparkle, Sparkle, Poppy. I probably will not re-dress her. I actually traded Ace McFly with Karon, my doll buddy as I won him in the lottery and Karon and put in the lottery for this doll and tried for Ace but didn't get him. I am glad I traded with her, as this doll is lovely. This will be one of my Poppys that does not get re-dressed. 

Here she is in some silver and Gold Christmas photos!

 Stay tuned tomorrow to see which doll I open next! Lisa