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1  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects / Pin-up style outfit and leggings for 17" MH dolls on: April 29, 2019 10:36:37 PM
I made this outfit and leggings for a friend in the doll customizing community on Instagram.

I used a lightweight fusible interfacing on the top so that it would better hold its shape and stay up. The shorts have a line of stitching to prevent further fraying and were intentionally frayed so that it looks as if the doll is wearing cut offs. It's all held on by pins here but I promise I did sew in some Velcro.

The leggings are made of a t-shirt knit I've had in my stash for a couple of years now.

2  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: General / Reusable shopping bags on: April 29, 2019 09:24:20 PM
I'm tired of having plastic bags stuffed into another plastic bag hanging in the broom closet, waiting to go back to Walmart.
So I took one of them and, using a tutorial I found here on Craftster, I made myself some reusable shopping bags. I've only made 3 so far but plan to make at least 3 more for myself and more for gifts for family.

3  Archive of Past Craftster Challenge Entries / CHALLENGE 125 ENTRIES / Cute little Pikachu kigurumi (pic heavy) on: November 02, 2018 08:03:14 PM
My 2.5 year old is enamored with the most famous Pokemon of all time: Pikachu, the little yellow electric mouse who is the franchise's official mascot. He has 7 different plushies and a plushie backpack harness of his beloved "Chu".
So of course for Halloween I decided I'd dress him up as Pikachu. I used Simplicity 8527 as the base and created the ear, tail, and stripe patterns from scratch using one of my son's many plushies as reference. The shoe covers were made by tracing an outline of the shoes he would be wearing with the costume. It's a bit big because I went a size up so that he could have it as a dress up outfit after Halloween.
It wasn't the most complicated project because I used a commercial pattern for most of it, but I think it turned out really well and my toddler adores it. He loves it so much that he has worn it a couple hours everyday since I finished it; he takes it off when he's tired of wearing it.
The yellow parts of the tail were separate pieces from the brown pieces and sewn together with the brown overlapping slightly. The ears were made in a similar manner, with the yellow and black being separate. The tail has some Shapeflex interfacing in it to help it keep its shape, as do the ears. The ears are also lightly stuffed to help them to keep the round/conical shape of Pikachu's ears.



After these photos, I improved the position of the tail and made new shoe covers (these were accidentally made of the wrong shade of yellow fleece) and sewed a couple of pieces of elastic to the bottom of them to keep them in place.

At the mall for trick-or-treating because of rain (these shoe covers are the proper color):

Costume without the toddler in it, front:

Costume without toddler, back:

Tail and ears WIP:

Tail by itself because I'm so proud of it:

Bonus pic of him being cute in his costume before I re-tacked the tail:

4  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects / Golden dragon princess on: November 02, 2018 09:49:03 AM
I joined a mythical creatures themed doll collab on Instagram and decided to make an Asian dragon woman, ultimately choosing to go with Chinese dragon so I could make her a lovely red Qi Pao (I love those dresses). This lovely lady is the end result:

She's a princess since in Chinese mythology golden dragons are symbol of the emperor and the imperial family. (She needs a name and I'm open to suggestions!)

To make this doll, I used Gilda Goldstag's head since she has horns (as Chinese and other dragons are often depicted with) and Jinafire Long's body for the scaled texture and the tail.
Originally, she was just going to have an off-colored head but another doll artist on Instagram had made a dragon using the same hybrid of dolls and told me to use a few layers of Pan Pastels in Rich Gold.
Here is a comparison of my princess next to Gilda so that you can see the difference (I need to get a photo of her alongside Jinafire, too):

Her eyes, lips, and eyebrows were all "painted" with Pan Pastels using the tip of a silicone tool. Here's a closer shot:

I used the Pan Pastels instead of pencils because I didn't want to scratch the layers of Pan Pastel that I had used to color the head. And I didn't use paints because I'm terrible at painting tiny details unless I have penciled guidelines.
Her tail hair was also painted with Rich Gold Pan Pastels but I first painted over the bright green tail hairs with a metallic gold paint to make it easier and so it would require less layers of Pan Pastel (these pastels aren't cheap!)
Her lovely claws were "painted" red with Red Pan Pastels but I'm not sure if it's actually visible or if I just "see" the nail color because I know it's there.

I'll try to get better pics soon and update this.
5  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects / Elara, a Monster High hybrid doll repaint (lots of pics) on: July 19, 2018 11:03:45 PM
Howleen Wolf is one of my favorite Monster High characters because she's cute and spunky. One of my favorite things about the character/doll is that one of her ears is floppy, which only adds to her attitude.
So I wanted to give her a makeover that suited her character. I redressed her instead of making her clothes because I really liked this outfit for her.
Completed repaint on my sofa:

On my carport, so that she looks like she's waiting to get into a venue:

There are LOTS of Howleen repaints out there that utilize her shorter little sister stature to make adorable, youthful girls.
But I wanted my Howleen to stand out. So I decided I would body swap her with a Cleo De Nile I had whose skin tone was a perfect match.* I also swapped out her hands since Howleen's hands are curled like claws.
She was nearly finished at one point but I ruined her face and had to wipe it, which was actually a good thing because I love her new face even better.
The process:
First I wiped her face and put her head onto a Create-A-Monster body so that I didn't get paints or pastels on it and put down some light pencil work and some pastel on her lips

Then I used some purple yarn to give her "dreadlocks", which I glued on but it slipped off (I think I didn't let the glue dry enough before wrapping her hair up.) In this photo, she also has pencil work on her eyes:

I can't find any more photos, but at one point, she had purple eyes that were nearly the same color as her lips. But when I started applying the paint to the whites of her eyes, I slipped and couldn't get the paint to wipe off so I wiped her with acetone and put her aside. (The original version of this girl was started before my mini-me.)

Here are some photos of her hair, which was strategically rooted this time around. Her whole head isn't rooted as that would be way too much.

Building up the color of her face:

**Not all dolls of Cleo and Howleen have matching skin tones. I know their skin tones may look like they match in this photo due to the flash, but the shorter Cleo on the left (who got Howleen's body) is darker than the Cleo next to her and the Howleen next to Elara is lighter than her. Inconsistent skin tones are a common thing with Monster High: a doll made in Indonesia is often a slightly different skin tone (in this case darker) than one made in China and the difference is easily missed unless you're holding two of the dolls side-by-side for comparison.

If anyone is curious, Elara is wearing a random earring (not sure who/what it came from but I lost its mate), Ghoul's Night Out Spectra's outfit (minus the belt, which I lost), Music Festival Venus' VIM badge, and Emoji Clawdeen's boots. Emoji is one of the new, super basic dolls with no articulation; I only have her because she came in a doll lot I purchased. I stole her shoes for this custom and put her head on a spare Clawdeen body.
6  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Discussion and Questions / So you wanna do a repaint (guide/outline for total newbs) on: May 24, 2018 03:32:11 PM
If you're here, somewhere, at some point you've probably seen a repainted doll and are interested in doing it for yourself.
Maybe you've been hypnotized by Dollightful's work on YouTube. Or maybe it's Hextian or DollMotion or TheDollFairy? (These are just some of my personal favorite artists.)
Or maybe you just liked the Frankie doll I made for gozer or the doll I made of myself? Wink
No matter who it was or what their work was, someone, somewhere has inspired you and you want to create your own custom doll, which is awesome!

But where do you start?

I will start by saying that I am no expert but I've been interested in this form of art/craft for nearly ten years and have watched/read a lot of tutorials so I know a LOT of useful tips that I'll be sharing here.
I'm also going to point out that this hobby can be rather expensive, especially when you're first starting out.
I personally have a lot of supplies but I bought them all over the course of several years to keep from breaking the bank (which is highly advisable).
I will be breaking it down into sections as replies to this initial post. For your convenience, I'll link each section so that you can jump to the section you're interested in reading.


If there's anything more you want to know that's not here, just leave a comment and I'll do my best to give you the information. It might be something I have to look up, or it might be something that I know but completely forgot to mention!
7  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects / Let's play plastic surgeon (an experiment in doll modification; lots of pics) on: May 24, 2018 03:05:06 PM
I recently acquired two 28 inch tall Monster High "Voltageous Ghoulfriend" dolls from two sellers on Mercari (often cheaper than eBay!) I got them to use them as decorations: I intend to make various outfits for them (or at least one of them) and change the clothes according to the holiday.
One of them was nearly complete but the other was nude and didn't have her accessories, either. She was also missing her hands, had a piece broken off her arm above her elbow joint, a small crack on the side of her face, and another crack above her right elbow.
Here she is, as she was after I received her and took her out of her shipping box:

She reminds me of Jane Boolittle because of the skin and hair color.

I figured, since she was missing bits, I may as well use her as a guinea pig because I wanted to see if I could give her knee joints.
Now, I've never tackled any such modification but Dollightful, one of my favorite YouTube doll customizers, used Apoxie Sculpt and screws to transform a 17" Frankie Stein into the Pokemon Xerneas (note: it's a two part video because she did a LOT of modding on that doll) so I thought I could use the same technique on my doll, even though she's much taller.

So I sawed off one of her legs:

And put some Apoxie Sculpt on the pieces:

Which I broke off after it dried because I dropped it on my hardwood floor (note: Apoxie Sculpt is strong but it hit just the right (wrong?) angle):

So I sawed it all off and started over, deciding to saw her other leg off and do it all at once:

The sudden hands are because the nearly complete doll arrived and I put the extra set of hands (which were webbed) on this doll after modifying them.

After the Apoxie dried, I needed to modify the holes because they didn't line up quite right. So I used my rotary tool to make the holes bigger and threaded the screws and secured them with nuts.

Here she is, sitting on my dining table:

Her right arm fell off after I moved it a bit but I can fix that later.

A closer shot of her legs:

She still looks a bit rough but I'm not going to work on her anymore right now. When/if I get around to cleaning it up and making it look nicer, I'll update this post.
8  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects / Punk Red Riding Hood (Frankie Stein paint over/fix) -very pic heavy- on: May 19, 2018 10:09:05 PM
I was recently in the Nerd Games Swap and was partnered with the amazing gozer. I was so excited because she's AWESOME and I knew I would receive something amazing so I had to make her something equally great.
Like myself, gozer collects Monster High dolls and her favorite is Frankie Stein, the daughter of the Frankenstein monster. I can't blame her because Frankie is super cute.
I had an original release Frankie that I bought secondhand a while back to steal her shoes and belt for customs.
She's the one on the left:

But I couldn't bring myself to repaint her because I loved the original dolls' darker make-up so I was just going to change the color of her eyeshadow and give her some custom clothing.
Except that I had a mishap: when I used Goo Gone to remove the sticky gunk from her hair due to glue seepage/melted hair elastic, I got a bit of it on her face and when I wiped it off, it took off some of her factory paint! Shocked

Post accident:

Frankie was upset about it:

I was briefly upset then I told myself it'd be okay because I could easily fix her.
I had never tried to do a fix/touch-up/paint-over on a doll, only full repaints. I didn't know if I could emulate the original paint well enough for it to pass. But I knew I wouldn't know unless I tried so I gave it a go.
And I was pleasantly surprised with the results:

I changed the color of the eye shadow, as well as the shadows under her eyes, darkened her facial stitches, darkened her eyebrows, and gave her some subtle shading on her cheeks, corners of her mouth (in an attempt to give her a pouty look), and at the inner corners of her eyes (not as subtle):

Her crop top I made from a pattern that I hastily drew up because I couldn't find one I liked. I seem to have lost the pattern so I can't make another but Frankie's came out nicely the first try:

Her skirt was taken from a "Coffin Bean" Toralei that my sister gave me, as were her shoes. I made the leggings myself with the underwear/bikini/leggings pattern from Requiem Art Designs.

The shoes were cute but dull so I painted the details to make them pop (they were originally solid red):

Honestly, painting the shoes was the hardest part of this whole custom but it was so worth it because they look better that way.
I don't know if you can tell from the photos, but the spikes on one shoe are darker than the spikes on the other. It's really subtle but I did it as a nod to how Frankie dolls sometimes had mismatched shoes.

I know what you're thinking "If she's a modern Red Riding Hood, where's the hood?"
Well, she's a modern gal so instead of a traditional hooded cloak, she's got a hoodie:

The hoodie pattern is also from Requiem Art Designs and is the same as the one I used for my mini-me's Deadpool varsity jacket Smiley

ETA: I forgot this pic of one of her rhinestone earrings:
9  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects / Doll-sized Deadpool varsity jacket on: May 17, 2018 11:09:05 PM
I decided to make a second Deadpool jacket in an attempt to improve upon my miniature sewing skills. This is actually the third varsity jacket made from this pattern from Requiem Art Designs. The second was a Captain America inspired one but I can't find my blue thread to sew on the Velcro.
Anyway, this one came out much nicer than the first, especially the collar, which I struggled with the first go 'round.



Though this one looks nicer, I'm more partial to the first I made:

I still need to make new clothes for Red but I joined three doll collabs on Instagram and need to work on those dolls first.
10  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects / Self-portrait doll (aka Red) PIC HEAVY on: May 12, 2018 03:04:35 AM
Exactly what it says on the tin Smiley I'm calling her Red because it's one of my many, many nicknames.

Close-up of her jacket:

Red's jacket was made using the Hoodie/Letterman pattern from RequiemArtDesigns on Etsy. I actually own a similar jacket but the red parts on my jacket are a brighter shade of red and my jacket has pockets. (I may go back and add strips of the red fabric so that it looks more like the real thing.
The Deadpool logo and black stripes were all hand painted with acrylic paints, as was the small section of black on the front of the jacket at the bottom.

The base doll for this project has been sitting in my stock box since late 2014.
I bought a Holly O'Hair doll (Ever After High) specifically to make a self-portrait doll, wiped and prepped her face, then put her back in the stock box because I couldn't bring myself to cut her long, pretty hair.
I was also afraid I would ruin her because my repainting skills at that time were less than amazing. I've since watched a lot of repaint videos and finally decided to bite the bullet and work on her so I could cross her off my to-do list. (Also, I bought another Holly so I would have a long-haired redhead.)

First layer of watercolor pencils:

Next-to-last layer of watercolor pencils:

After that layer of watercolor pencils, I gave her face some freckles (the darker freckles are intentional and echo my own):

I also repainted a pair of clear resin eyeglasses that I bought from Plastic-Curves.com way back when (sadly, she no longer carries this style):

Comparison to my actual glasses:

The doll on the left is what Red looked like before her repaint (minus the outfit, which isn't even for the same doll):

Expect more photos of her sometime in the near future: I've got to make her some clothes that actually fit (those pants are from a Monster High doll and don't Velcro over the EAH body's larger hips).
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