Sunday, December 28, 2014

Christmas Caroling

The Minifees have just had the photos developed from their caroling event on Christmas eve.  Heath (MNF Karsh) stayed home with a sore throat, so the girls went with their friend Alastair (Luts Model Delf Avalanche) for company.  Despite some lingering snow on the ground, it was actually a balmy 42 degrees Fahrenheit outdoors, so those without coats were not as chilled as one would imagine.





"It came upon the midnight clear, that glorious song of old
from angels bending near the earth to touch their harps of gold..."


"Joy to the world, the Lord is come. Let earth receive her king!"

"I saw Mommy kissing Santa Claus, underneath the mistletoe last night..."

"Rocking around the Christmas tree at the Christmas party hop..."

"We wish you a Merry Christmas, we wish you a
Merry Christmas, we wish you a Merry Christmas..."

"And a happy New Year!"








Sunday, December 21, 2014

How Many MiniFees Fit on an American Girl Daybed?

I bought an American Girl daybed for my Mini BJDs.  How could I not?  It was on sale for half price.  Still, it seems I never learn.  AG dolls are considerably larger than Mini BJDs, with the result that AG furniture is out of scale.  The first AG item I bought--Caroline's Parlor--was perfect for both Minis and Tinies, seeing as it consists of three wall units.  If anything, it is too small for the AG dolls for which it was intended.  With that encouragement I bought Rebecca's sofa.  It's a little too big but it passes, so long as you overlook (or disguise) the fact that the dolls' feet don't touch the floor when they're seated.  The hinged desk and chair I bought next almost works with my Model Delf boy if you ignore the item's bulk.  On the other hand, I can't picture an AG doll using the desk either.  It's hard to sit close to a desk when your knees don't bend.  The daybed is designed to accommodate two American Girl dolls.  I decided to test it with FairyLand MiniFees.

Here is the bed pictured alone.  The bottom drawer pulls out, revealing a trundle bed, hence space for a second doll.  I suspect you can fit more than two AG girls on it if they are seated, but the company's advertising never shows more than one in that position.


This photo reminds me of the old Castro convertible ads, where a little girl easily opens a sofabed without help from an adult.  Actually, the trundle on this bed is not easy to pull out unless it is placed on a smooth surface.  Carpet pile raises it enough that it cannot clear the bed, particularly with the mattress in place.


Lishe has climbed aboard.  She is soon joined by Siean.  We'll give them a few moments to get comfortable, and then we'll introduce a few more Fees.


Here are Siean, Mirwen, Shushu and Lishe.  I could squeeze them together and fit one more girl in that row, but I'll let them enjoy the roomy comfort and start on the trundle.


The girls have been joined by Chloe and Juri '08.  (I'm not using the names I gave them because I can remember only half of them.  The names you see are sculpt names.)  The trundle has been pulled open only partway.  This allows dolls in the front row to lean back while still having their feet on the floor--except for Chloe, who decided cross-legged was the way to go.


Karsh has joined the girls, sprawling as boys like to do, and there is still room.  What to do?  I've run out of MiniFees.  Guess it's time to invite the LittleFees to join in the fun.


The big kids have made room for Little Lishe, Shiwoo and Ante.  There is still space in the back row.  Too bad I didn't think of it at the time, as I could have added the three RealPukis.  They're so tiny they don't take up much room.

Originally my plan for this piece was to use it instead of individual doll stands.  I gave up on that idea when I saw how big and heavy the daybed was.  It took up most of the top of my bureau and weighed a lot more than the doll stands it would have replaced.  I looked around the room for a place to store it.  Seeing none, I put it back in its box and placed it at the bottom of a pile of plastic totes, but not before trying it with a different size doll.


FeePle60 Moe line Mirwen is taller than an American Girl, but seems to be in better proportion to the daybed than the MiniFees.  She'll need a pile of pillows behind her in order to sit with her feet on the floor, but that's something I can manage.  And in a few short months she'll have a same-size companion with whom to share the space:  I placed the order for Sionna Fomhar on Friday.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Too Much Snow for Sledding

Max and Yuri were looking forward to the first measurable snowfall of the season.  They couldn't wait to go sledding!  Though snow had fallen a few times this autumn, either there wasn't enough of it, or it didn't stay on the ground long enough for them to get the sled out.  Finally, this week the snow began to fall in earnest.

It fell...

And it fell...

And it fell.

Before anyone could say "Jack Frost", there was a lot of snow on the ground.  The boys got the sled out of storage.  Put on hats, goggles, boots and muffler, opened the door and looked out.


"Whoa!"

"It's awfully quiet.  I don't hear anyone.  And there are no cars."

"It looks deep.  How will we get up the hill?"

"Follow someone else's footprints, I guess."


But there weren't any footprints to follow, and anyway, Mother put her foot down and said, "No.  Absolutely no sledding.  There's too much snow."

Too much snow!  How could there possibly be too much snow?


"I wanna go sledding!"

"Maybe we can go tomorrow."


Sunday, December 7, 2014

A Poet Shirt for MiniFee Karsh

I've had this pattern forever--I just haven't had a doll who could wear it.  Let me elaborate.  I bought Gracefaerie pattern #23 The Poet for MSD Boys back when I had a Limhwa Limho Mono and needed to make him some clothes.  It was the closest I could find to his measurements; unfortunately both garments ended up being too small.  The pants went into a plastic bag to await a future doll that might wear them.  The shirt ended up in the trash.  Normally I don't throw away doll clothes, but I made a major error on this one.  Instead of placing the sleeve pattern piece on the fold of the fabric, I cut all around it, then couldn't figure out why the sleeve was so narrow compared to the photos on the package.  There are times, I swear, I shouldn't be allowed near a pair of scissors.

Enter FairyLand's MiniFee Karsh.  I wouldn't have expected any part of this outfit to fit him, as he is smaller than the Dollzone and Angel of Dream boys it was designed for.  But because I eventually try these pants on every mini boy (and girl) who enters the house, whether or not I think they will fit, I tried them on Karsh.  They were a bit loose, but I moved the snap and he is able to wear them.  Score one for pattern #23.

That led me to rethink the shirt.  A poet shirt is naturally loose and blousy.  In other words, it didn't need to be an exact fit.  I had some white cotton gauze and some lace trim, so I set about making the variation on the pattern that Gracefaerie calls The Prince.  (It would work equally well for a pirate.)   The pattern calls for a couple of hooks and eyes sewn inside the garment so you don't see them from the outside.  I cheated and sewed a couple of snap sets instead.  Once the waist cincher is in place, either method of closure is a moot point anyway.

You may have noticed that I rarely take measurements, and only make adjustments afterwards, when it's obvious something doesn't work.  I need to see the garment on the body to see where it doesn't fit; only then can I alter it.  Looking at a flattened pattern piece, I can't see where or how to take it in or let it out.  I need to manipulate the fabric on the body--after I've put it together.  Now that I see the finished shirt on Karsh's body, I know I can't take in the side seams, because that would make the shirt too tight around the hips.  The dropped shoulders are part of the design, not a sign that the shirt is too large.  On the whole, it's not a terrible fit.  And the waist cincher, being a bit wider than the red ribbon, might take care of the excess fabric.

I ran out of daylight hours before I could make the waist cincher (pieces shown in the first photo above), so I tied a ribbon around his waist to hold the shirt together until I can finish sewing.  Darkness comes so early this time of year.  I'm always surprised when 3:30 p.m. rolls around and the sun has reached the back of the house.  I know that whatever project I'm working on had better cease for the day if I want to get any photos without the dreaded flash going off.  Today I stopped sewing fifteen minutes too late and paid for my folly with a succession of photos that I had to delete.  In an effort to override the flash I changed a few settings.  I thought the pictures were good until I got them up on the computer screen and saw how grainy they looked.  Two more weeks to go before the Winter Solstice.  After that the days start getting longer.  I can hardly wait.

Karsh doesn't get much camera time--he tends to be overshadowed by the girls--so here are a couple of extra shots of my handsome elf.


Monday update:

I finished the waist cincher.  Actually I had to start over.  The fabric I selected initially was from a sample book for home interiors.  It was a small piece, and much of it was covered on the back with a paper label containing the fabric content info.  I had stripped most of the paper off.  What was left looked usable, but when I ironed it the remaining glue suddenly bloomed and stained the front of the fabric.  There was no washing it, because it was marked dry clean only.  I found another sample, this one without any label, and used it instead.

I also changed Karsh's wig.  I don't know if cold dry weather causes resin to shrink, but his red wig kept falling off.  I could have put a wig cap under it, but he's been wearing this wig for a while so I decided to go with a different one.

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Introducing nYID Chris and Doll Chateau Ada

If you read last week's post, you know that Chris was delivered too late to get a formal box opening. With the doll meet-up scheduled to begin in mere minutes, I cut him out of the box as fast as I could, dressed him, and sped down the Interstate, thinking I would take lots of lovely photos once I got there.  Only when I took Chris out of his carrier bag did I discover that the one and only wig I had brought for him didn't fit.  We borrowed a curly, feminine wig and he spent the next two hours cowering in the background, afraid someone might photograph him looking unmanly.  Seeing as he is still feeling grumpy about his undignified debut, I decided to let him share in Ada's box opening.


That's a small box.  What size is this resin person?

Not sure, as I've never seen one in real life.  Smaller than the box, obviously.

Well, are you going to open it?  I'd offer to help, but I can't bend over.  My jeans are too tight. 

Sorry.  [I cut the box open and took out some wadded paper and an envelope.]  Here.  Hold this.
THIS is what's in there?

I sure hope so.  Could you manage to look a little less horrified?

What are these...things...on either side of its head?

They're supposed to be antlers.  Like a moose.  Here.  Hold this.
What the...?


It's her extra belly.

Do I even want to know?

It's so I can convert her from four-legged to two-legged.

I think I'm going to be sick.

Please don't.  Ooh, pretty blue bag. There are two bubble-wrapped pieces inside.  Let's start with this one.  It appears to be the body.

It appears to be something I might smash with my boot.

She wouldn't like that.  And neither would I.  This other piece must be the head.  How do I attach it?  [I had to remove the eyes in order to be able to turn the S-hook inside her head.  Then re-insert the eyes behind the hook.]  Isn't she a cute little thing!


No comment.

You'll hurt her feelings.  Shake hands and be nice.

How do you do?  I'm Chris.  (I feel like I'm talking to a large mouse.)

I'm Moosilda.  You can call me Hilda.

There.  That wasn't so bad, was it?

I guess not.

So, are there any other giants like you in the house?

Um...yeah.  Most of us.  I can think of only three that are smaller than you.

Smaller than me?  That will be fun!


Fun?

Could be Hilda will give the RealPukis a run for their money.  That WOULD be something to see.


Doll Chateau Ada (aka Moosilda, aka Hilda) arrived on Friday, November 28th.  On Saturday we had sunshine for the first time in days, so I took advantage of it to do her face-up.  No body blushing, however, as I wasn't about to risk unstringing her in order to do it.  Her limbs are so spindly, I'd never get her put back together!  After giving much thought to how I might clothe her, I sewed a prototype outfit on Sunday.  Of course, by the time I finished it was too dark to take good photos, but I took a few by flash.  Here is the best of the bunch:

I realized that in order to clothe her, I had to treat the front and back ends separately.  In front she wears a sleeveless top with attached half skirt.  The back end wears a matching "skirt" treated as if it were more of a horse blanket.  I made the wig for a RealPuki.  Turns out Hilda's head is the same size (i.e., just slightly over 3 inches in circumference).  I'd like to make her a feather wig like the one she wears on Doll Chateau's postcard.  I also want to make her some shoes so she won't slide on the furniture.  Her feet are so tiny!  I think a sandal sole should work with some ribbons to tie it on--times four.
I waited a long time for this tiny doll.  Ordered on May 1st, she took just under seven months to arrive.  Chris, by comparison, was ordered on September 14th and arrived a week ahead of Ada.  This hobby is not for the impatient.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

November Meeting of the Vermont Doll Lovers Club

The Vermont Doll Lovers celebrated Christmas a month early yesterday.  Like Halloween, this is a  holiday that brings out the props as well as the dolls.  There were lots of both on hand.   

My FairyLand FeePle60 Moe-line Mirwen couldn't believe her eyes when she looked up--and up and up and up--at Nerdy Victorian's Spiritdoll Stayne.  At 70 cm, he stands taller than any doll Mirwen has met so far.  Also in the photo:  Nerdy Victorian's DollZone Luke and Yan, at the table; and Volks SD10 Kira (holding DollFactory Bobo) with Resinsoul Mu, wearing antlers.  I didn't get a close-up of little Bobo, but you can see him on Modern Wizard's blog.  (See link below.)

Perhaps Mirwen will find these three boys more to her liking:  my Iplehouse nYID Addiction Chris, on the left, with Lyrajean's Volks Date Masamune and Hijakata Toshizo.  Chris is wearing a borrowed wig.  The Postal Carrier delivered Chris just before noon yesterday.  I took the time to dress him, but waited until reaching the meet-up to put on his wig.  Long story short:  it doesn't fit.  It's the first Iplehouse wig I've bought that did not run true to size.  This one is so tight that I suspect it's a mislabeled 7/8 instead of an 8/9.  So, no close-ups of Chris until I find him a wig and change his eyes.  Love the color but they are too big for his face.

Among the ladies in attendance:  Modern Wizard's Yamarrah, on the left.  Yamarrah is a hybrid consisting of an Iplehouse Addiction Doria fantasy head on a Domuya Perennial Flexi body, with Mirodoll torso and Soom Topaz fairy hands.  She joins two Iplehouse EID ladies, Asa (standing) and Bibiane (seated), who belong to Lyrajean.

My three FairyLand LittleFees woke up from their naps long enough to come and wait for Santa.  They are Little Shiwoo on the sled, Little Ante Elf in the chair pretending to read (because she doesn't know how to read yet) and Little Lishe sitting on the floor.

The LittleFees enjoyed some sledding in front of the Winter background from American Girl.  Br-r-r-r!  They must be chilly without coats and hats on.

And because I seem to collect things in threes, here are my three little troublemakers, FairyLand RealPukis SoSo, KaKa and PuPu.  I seem to recall they were caught stealing gifts at last year's Christmas meet-up, too.  They're incorrigible.

Lyrajean's Volks Chiyo reads a Christmas story to Volks Yo-SD Kira.

Nerdy Victorian's DollZone Luke and Yan offer treats to my Alchemic Labo U-noa Lusis.

Doesn't that tablescape look yummy!  Can you tell which treat is real?*

 
Custom House Petite Ai Uriel spies a cat--Hujoo Freya--atop the Christmas tree, while Custom House Petite Ai Sariel sits nearby with her gingerbread house.  The three belong to Lyrajean.  Perhaps the cat has been treed by the three ferocious RealPukis at the bottom?

Boys behaving badly:  Nerdy Victorian's Spiritdoll Stayne and Lyrajean's Iplehouse EID Bichun express their feelings for the festivities.  Stayne's sign reads "Dashing Through the No"; Bichun's sign reads "Bah Humbug".

Xagadoll Sylvia trims the tree in her babydoll pajamas.  She belongs to Lyrajean.

Did you notice that we have two Volks Kiras in the group?  One is an SD10 while the other is a YoSD.  Same sculpt, different sizes.

I think Mirwen has a secret admirer.  Someone has given her a gift.  Which of the boys could it be?

Spiritdoll Stayne behaving badly again, this time with the ladies.


You can see Modern Wizard's photos of the meet-up at http://vtdolllovers.blogspot.com.  There is little duplication between us, as most of her photos are close-ups whereas I took more group shots. The Vermont Doll Lovers meets again in January.

*Answer: the candy canes.