Thursday, April 30, 2015

A trip to Hobby Lobby!

Note to self:  Don't let Lisa go to Hobby Lobby with money! 

So I went to Hobby Lobby since I was in the area- it is so far, that when I get to that area of town, I usually stop in. I can't help myself, it is diorama heaven. I found some wonderful items there, not just for doll stuff, but for re-decorating the house. Hubcap and I have been talking about decorating the bedroom and house in a nautical theme, since we leave near the river. Not shabby chic beach, but 'elegant' beach as the hubcap calls it. So I've been taking pics of items that might appeal to me and him. Everything almost appeals to me, except the kindergarden crafty look that I could do myself. Or the campy look. I already have the just-moved-in-and-still-living-out-of-the-boxes-look, as everything in the dining room and den has been packed up to move the rooms about. 

Today they had those neat, gas station pumps at 50% off. And the only ones they had left were the Texaco ones- they were down to 2. These things run 34.99 so I got mine at 17.49 I think. Here are 2 of my boys who are thrilled some manly props have come into the doll room.

All of the metal car statues and signage were on sale at 50% off this week, except for furniture. I wanted the neat little Texaco sign, but it wasn't really tall enough and even half off wasnn't worth it. I did snag these nice vintage looking magnets. I also got ten sheets of brick scrapbook paper at 1/2 off as well. I picked up some polymer clay too with my 40% off coupon. 

I dragged out one of my cars to show how in scale these pumps are. I should have bought the other one too. They are about 13 inches in height or more like 13 1/2 inches high- much taller than  GI Joe or Mattel Johnny, so even if a FR homme is next to them or a FR2 doll would be there I don't think they would be overpowered. A vintage style general store/filling station would be cool especially with the signage. I have always wanted to create one of these for the Joes. 
All for now- Lisa

Sunday, April 26, 2015

A Poppy for Every Season....

I have been a little busy and a little bored lately, so haven't had much time to work too much in the diorama department. I have been sketching as I have been working on the Extreme Kitbash project and dryfitting the walls as it has been bothering me on the original design I put together for it. Since spring is here it has now been back to rain, rain and chilly and windy, so I am waiting for May to come with more dry weather and less breeze when I get warm weather and work on the new framework design I have come up with, with the help of hubby. So I have new plans for that project in the works. 

But being bored there is a new Tag game going around called A Poppy for Every Season . I was originally tagged by the outstanding flicker photographer
    Michaela Unbehau click on her name highlighted here to see her amazing photos in her photostream on Flicker.  When I saw she had tagged me in her Poppy photo, I put it aside and thought on it for a long time as to how I wanted to stage my Poppys. Many times I take a different approach outside the original idea of the tag game and sort of 'stretch' the rules of the game, especially on props. I just can't help myself, especially when I get an idea.

So when I got the idea it came to me sorting through the spring cleaning of the linens. I throw out towels and wash cloths for rags for and what is beyond salvage. Many times we take the old ones and use them for rags for hubby to use for cleaning his tools, washing the vehicles, rags for outside, woodworking, etc. and then replace the towels and washcloths on the next trip to the store. Two wash cloths were well worn and I thought- bath wraps for the dolls at the spa! And so began my photo shoot...

The jacuzzi was made of styrofoam from a form that came with a statue a few years ago out of a box and lined with home depot in two different sizes just simply glued onto the foam. The bath towels were just stitched into place for this photo shoot or draped. Four of my Poppy Parkers are missing- Lilac Frost(who has been customized into Marie Antoinette) Holiday Poppy Parker, Wild Thing-yet to be deboxed, and Joyous Celebration.  
The plastic greenery is a collection of stuff I have accumulated from Michael's on sale and could not do without.  It really makes the scene. The columns are the tallest ones from Hobby Lobby's cake decorating aisle. 

Monday, April 20, 2015

Retro Kitty #2 Dress...

I did the finishing touches on the 2nd dress I made from the retro kitty fabric with a different spin. These little dresses might look cute for the window in LaBelle's on the mannequins if I want to do a 60's theme. I did a different little spin on the collar with silk ribbon sewn into a ribbon rose at the neck. The belt has two tassels, one on each end. Kind of sassy and different. The silk ribbon edges the hem as well. 

Though I would love to be good enough to sell these little beauties, I don't think I am. I'm my own worst critic I guess, I see all the little imperfections! So I just sew to enjoy myself right now and have new outfits for my dolls. I'm really loving the pattern and the pink on these two dolls. 

Friday, April 17, 2015

Sewing with Vintage patterns....

I had some time yesterday so I did some sewing on a dress. A few months ago I had purchased some vintage patterns that are copies from this ebay seller 
mjsvintagepatterns who I highly recommend. Her reproduction patterns are high quality prints on 8 x 17 copies with a color copy of the dolls in the fashions from the original pattern with the instructions. She usually gives free shipping on all of her patterns. She also sells on Etsy as well. . I had also purchased a wedding wardrobe pattern because it had the bridal gown and veil in a sheath and I wanted to try that with the idea to make Poppy's wedding gown for Poppy and Ryan's wedding. 

So I started with this cute little piece of Retro kitty fabric that I had purchased at A.C. Moore a while back for the luncheon dress. The luncheon dress is very cute, it fits not only Silkstone Barbie- and regular Barbie with a pivotal body, but Poppy Parker, and Victoire Roux. I imagine you can squeeze Agnes in it too with the old Fashion Royalty body in it, I haven't tried yet. 

I simply couldn't resist Victoire in this little dress. Her red hair looks stunning with the pink. So sultry and sassy. 
The dress pattern calls for a belt that cinches it in at the waist. It is actually a very shapeless sheath and snaps at the back. I was thinking of playing with the belt and making it more ornate instead of cloth. I played with the collar, discarding the pattern for it. They had it white and made it look like a bib. I used a soft chiffon and scrunched it up a bit, then sewed it in place. I didn't use a pattern for that, just draped it. Looks much better than what they had. This is the pattern that I used:

Originally made to fit vintage Barbie, this dress can fit so much more and has alot of versatility. I purchased this pattern after seeing alot of people on Flicker who belonged to one of the Flicker groups make it and saw it might have some possibilities- and then saw similarities in some of the dresses that designers like the ones of dresses that go for so much I slobber over have similar construction. Since I don't have $80-100 to spend on an outfit for my doll! I decided that I could with a little patience, make my own. It has been time consuming learning. Dressmakers and designers like Matisse, Belissama couture, Culte De Paris, Dangerous Dames, all have far more talent than I. For one, I have never learned to operate a sewing machine. I sew everything by hand. Even in home economics, it was difficult for me to work on a sewing machine. I come from a long line of women who sew, quilt, needlepoint, cross stitch- all of which I learned to do. Sewing on a machine simply drives me crazy. I remember telling a fellow doll artist this problem and she said the problem I had was a talent that many wished for. I have found it simpler to drape it and pin it and then stitch it in place then to thread the machine and figure out how to keep it straight and yada yada. Most of the time when I have tried to sew on a machine I end up taking more time messing up my project. lol... I have often thought of taking a class to correct this but figure out that will be on the bucket list, lol. What I seem to be doing works, so oh well. 

I have enough of this little retro kitty fabric that I may make another one of these little dresses if I can get some aqua to make the collar in a drape. It is such a fun print. I would love to get good enough to make these little dresses to sell on Etsy or Ebay occasionally  if people liked them enough. Victoire has a cuff bracelet and I was thinking making a little pair of earrings that went with the dress would add to it, in the same shade of pink. 

I would love some opinions on this dress, please let me know what you think. 
Off to sew some more- maybe put them in LaBelle's for the ladies to buy!

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Doll with a Towel....

So there is this tag game going on about Flicker called Doll with a Towel. I did a photo with my online event Agnes who hasn't received any camera time lately and has just now in 2015 been undressed out of her evening gown. Shows how far behind I am. I still have her other outfit she came with on its display mannequin and her two pairs of shoes and jewelry and hands in their boxes they came in. She technically has been 'de-boxed' but simply displayed about my doll room in an inconvenient manner with my Tony Stark now and then as she looks like Pepper Potts a little bit. 

Today I decided to give her some camera time and have been wanting to use that wonderful prop I got at Michael's some months ago on sale. It is the china claw footed bath tub I told you about. It comes in two colors and they are still on sale- pink and cream. I purchased the cream one as it has the most versatility in prop display. It was 50% off 17.99 so it was a steal. They have some left in the aisles, but they are becoming a little scarce. Enjoy the photos!

I used the plants from Lady Tremaine's photo shoot and the rug as well. The nightstand is Bespaq, shoes are from Sous des Tropiques Victoire, cup is
 Re-ment, and the bath towels are an old washcloth I cut up. I originally wanted to put real water and bubbles with bubble bath in the tub, it will hold water, but did not want to take the chance it would ruin my doll. I had looked over her joints and stuff and just was edgy about putting her in water. I didn't think it would hurt her since she literally comes apart, but you never know. (I just am chicken when it comes to $150+ dolls and immersing, taking them apart, etc. call me cheap, crazy, whatever, lol)  Which for me was a disappointment on the realism level as I was looking forward to all sorts of nice photo shots of bubbles in her hands and cute puddles on the floor. 

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Lady Tremaine....

I have finally got around to doing some photos of this lovely before giving her a new body. I find myself stopping on doing that because she's so lovely the way she is. I have yet to see the movie and may end up buying the DVD because for me getting the time to go and see a movie is, well, difficult at best. Yeah, I'm that busy. Buying the DVD is easier. I've already got a big list I want for my birthday. 

You ordinarily wouldn't think lime green would be anyone's color, but it definitely is Cate Blanchette's. This doll looks like her spot on. I would venture to say if they had given this doll a pivatol body you probably would not have been able to find her in the store right now. 

In that dress she just resembles Una Thurman playing Poison Ivy from one of the earlier Batman movies with Val Kilmer.  That outfit could be very Edwardian,or early 20's or modern today evening wear. I am of half of a mind to keep her as she is and buy another to re-body! She is so lovely like this. The feather thing in her head is plastic and comes out. Though the hands are plastic gloves, they really do make the outfit. One reason I was thinking of keeping her like this is when you have a formal event such as a cocktail reception with dolls in formals- my dolls tend to live it up- she would be a very useful 'filler' extra character and does not look cartoonish! I really do adore her. The other one that Disney or Mattel made was done in a Victorian gown of black lace. I would like to have her but would not be able to use her in regular scenes. 
 Still working on Poppy's apartment layout,  which may come down in a couple of weeks as my birthday is in the first weekend of May. (I have been promised a special birthday weekend by hubby this year, with lots of loot.) I am also hoping for a couple of Hot Toys wishlists for my birthday and hope they can be here by then. If not, I will have lots of blog posts when they arrive afterwards!

Sunday, April 12, 2015

I get by with a little help from my friends....

This tune came to mind this week when one of my miniature friends, James Opher who I have given alot of miniature supplies to at a deal clearing out my stock from my shop last summer, and some of my miniature magazines, recently contacted me. He had some finds that were in the playscale size he had purchased in a couple of lots off of Ebay and wanted to know if I was interested.  The set I am showing you is one of the items he gave me. The video above, is from the music special celebrating the Beatles 50th anniversary show on Ed Sullivan in 1964 last year with Paul and Ringo singing "I Get By With a Little Help From My Friends" . Paul and Ringo are two of my favorite of the Fab Four. 

The set is marked on the bottom Handmade by N.C. blind craftsmen and it is very well made. The table is not high enough to accomadate their legs, but I can probably get some of those modern plastic chairs for the table. It goes with the whole butcher block theme. 

I was going through some of my mother's items/miniatures and also found she had purchased some matching Re-ment at a dollshow years ago, which was a nice surprise. Here are Poppy and Ryan having a nice little Sunday Breakfast.

Today I began the layout of Poppy's apartment so I moved the entry hallway diorama to where the entry hallway of the condo complex will actually be. Poppy's apartment will have a living room area, kitchen/dining area, bathroom and bedroom and a small balcony. I did the layout on the table this morning, cutting off edges of the tiles and figuring out how many walls I need, and any extra supplies. The table and chairs James gave me are wonderful. I used Poppy's new daybed to hold up the wall between her living room and bathroom

There, you get a feel for where it is going. Alot more walls need to be put in place. When I finish, I will be able to take away walls to photo graph from different angles. I need to purchase a few more tiles and alot more foamcore, and contact paper as well. Lots and lots more to do. To keep myself busy until I get that shopping list done I probably will get the rest of the pillows done on her bed. 
Have a great Sunday!~Lisa

Thursday, April 9, 2015

More on the Entry Hallway of Poppy's Apartment

I did some tweaking today and added some French doors on one end and a bistro table and chairs on the other end. Having alot of fun with this diorama.
Here is what I did today with it. Enjoy!