Monday, October 7, 2013

For a swap: Halloween Cutie

Time to show off another item for a swap.

This swap was to make a Halloween themed art doll.  The only "rule" was it had to be at least 5 inches tall (and be Halloween themed, duh!).

SO. . .let me preface with this.  I had sketched up a really cool idea that I was convinced would work.  I wanted to take a styrofoam ball and the bottom from one of those little containers you get toys in from the gum machine and make an Audrey II style plant doll.  Kind of gross between Audrey II and El Seed (from The Tick).  But that didn't pan out.  The styrofoam and plastic part just didn't work together the way I had planned (and, quite frankly, the plastic part insisted it be a hat, it just fit on the ball better as a hat).  Then I tried to make the plant doll just using felt but it wasn't turning out right.  I did make a full head/face but it was just way too cutesy and I had no way to make the body (I hadn't planned it out well enough, that's the problem).  So I still have the flower head.  I can always pull it apart and/or use it for something else (it could easily become a dotee doll).

OK, now that I've aired out my "failure", time to show off my success.

I think the runner up idea came out darn cute.  What do you think?

The biggest deal was using the styrofoam ball and that plastic piece.  I was OBSESSED with using them (and using them together somehow).  And see, it does work perfectly as a hat.

A removable hat!

I was tempted to glue it down but I have this hella hot glue gun and I got the sinking feeling it would melt the styrofoam (it melted some other foam I used in a dotee, so my worries weren't unfounded).  And I kind of like the hat being removable.  It also proved a smart move for packing.  The boxes I found for mailing were all very snug and the doll wouldn't have fit if the hat was attached (I packed him with his hat in his hand!).

The head is a styrofoam ball with the features cut out using an exacto knife.  Then some plain old acrylic paint then sealed with modge podge (for the win!).

The hat is the bottom from one of those bubbles you get toys in out of the gum machine.  The dome part was used to make the UFO dotee I made many months back (yes, I kept the bottom part that long, that's why it was making me crazy. . .I had to use it to justify having held on to it.

The leaf is just a bit of felt and the vine is yarn coated with Stiffy (fabric stiffener stuff) and then wrapped around a pen until it dried.  It's still really pliable, not brittle (I didn't super coat it in stiffy, I used just enough to get it damp then squeeze out the excess. . .stiffy is awesome).

The body is felt stuffed and polyfil over a full armature made from floral wire.  It's not a one piece skeleton, though.  It's a body curve (with extra long ends to jam up into the head) and then curves for each limb (cut even to the end of the fabric).  You can pose the doll but do so gently.  This is definitely an art doll and not a play thing.

The front and back leaves are also felt with embroidered veining.

The curly vines are wrappings from the floral wire.  I was going to make all the vines like I made the vine on the hat but when I was trimming the wire for the body parts I noticed how it curled up and it was PERFECT.  There is one long continuous piece (pulled from a full wire).  It's wrapped around the neck and over the arms kind of like a scarf.  Then there's one smaller piece (from a smaller bit of wire) that I slipped over the end of one of the body wires (that went up into the head) and it hangs down the back of the neck in just one strip.

The head design is my own.  The body is based on doll patterns found at Nuno Life (best patterns for small felt stuff!) and the leaves are from images found by searching for "pumpkin leaves" (I honestly don't remember exactly where they came from, I think it was a cake making site--I had to shrink them down to make them the right size for this project).

This fabulous pumpkin fella is headed off to his new home today.  I'm very happy with how he turned out pleased to see I was able to do the wiring without much drama (though I really need to get wire cutters, I about killed my craft scissors trying to score the wire so I could bend it until it broke--this is why I have craft scissors and fabric scissors!).

What's next up on my crafty list?  Well, I'm hip deep in Day of the Dead stuff right now.  The paper mache skull is ready to be sealed and I'm getting ready to sew up the skeleton bunting (I need to make a test piece first before I start working on the real item).  Then I just need to make a place mat (using some cute Day of the Dead themed fabric) and get a few small toys to add to the package.  THEN, I need to work on DotD stuff for my shrine for my cats.

Oh, and I still haven't made anything for the Fluff Project this month so I need to get on that, too.  And some Teesha patches (orange themed and a cool comic strip one).  Busy, busy, busy.

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