Gratitude

Saturday, December 24, 2016

The Dolls' Christmas

After the elves brought the tree indoors last weekend, they returned to the forest to observe the Winter Solstice. While they were gone the other dolls took turns trimming the tree. First the Fairyland FeePle60s hung the red ribbon from the wall.
Only someone tall could do it.
Soom Idealian51, Soul Vito and Dollmore Zaoll Luv added the string of hanging lights.
The RaccoonDoll girls and Iplehouse FIDs paused for a photo, then went back to mixing the punch.
The Dollmore Kids and Judith girls hung the strand of golden bells.
SoulKid Yarn, the Bimong Naraes, and the Luts Model Delfs hung the yarn and bead garland that the smaller dolls had crafted, placing it low enough that the little ones would be sure to see it.
The Iplehouse JID boys, Fairyland Minifee and Unoa Quluts girls took a break from baking cookies and gathered for a group photo.
Next the children arrived: an Iplehouse KID and three BIDs, a Unoa Chibi, and three Little Fees. Little Shiwoo was heard to ask, "Is it time to sing now?"
Then, when no one was looking (except the photographer) the littlest ones took their places: a Doll Chateau Ada, two Aileen dragons, two WithDoll tinies, four Fairyland Realpukis and a Pukifee.
Finally came the moment they had all waited for--placing the star atop the tree. Although everyone looked and looked for it, no one could find it. Just when it seemed they would have to do without, the Iplehouse nYIDs came up with a sparkling substitute--a snowflake! Now if only it doesn't melt before Santa gets here.
Merry Christmas from our house to yours! May all your dolly dreams come true.
You can sing now, Little Shiwoo.
"Fa-la-la-la, la-la-la-la!"

Sunday, December 18, 2016

The Elves Choose the Tree

With Christmas only a week away, the WithDoll elves, their Star and Moon spirit guardians and LumeDoll cousin went into the forest to choose a Christmas tree. They took a moment to pose with their selection. After they bring it in, other groups of dolls will take turns adding trims and decorations--and of course posing with the results.

In addition to posing everyone with the tree this week, I hope to make a new dress for WithDoll Priscilla. At Mia W's suggestion, I tried Priscilla's blue dress on Model Delf Annette. The dress is just as short on Annette as it is on Priscilla--although it looks longer with her shorter heel height--but because the bodice is loose on top and Annette has a larger bust, it fits Annette better.

Here's a close-up:

Unfortunately, yesterday's snow storm meant I couldn't get to this month's doll meet-up. If anyone is interested in seeing photos of the gathering, click on this link: http://vtdolllovers.blogspot.com/2016/12/vermont-doll-lovers-meetup-12172016.html#more

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Annette Gets a Face-Up

It's a good thing I don't make a living painting face-ups. This time of year I'm lucky if I get a few hours of sunshine a week, never mind temperatures above freezing so I can spray MSC outdoors without getting ice crystals on my face-up. Nor do I have the luxury of taking my time painting. If I don't finish a face-up the same day I start, it might be a full week before I get another chance. There were a few hours of sunshine one day last week. The temperature was just barely above freezing so I chanced it and painted Annette. There was no time for step-by-step photos. As it was I barely got her done before the sun sank behind some tall trees at the rear of the house. At least I can show you the before and after photos.

This is Annette before face-up.
This is Annette after face-up. Luts offered two makeup choices. This looks quite different from either of them.
While I was at it I changed her eyes. I didn't care for either her default eyes or the eyes I ordered as a replacement. Going through my eye stash, I did find a pair that look like my DollBakery small iris blue denim. I thought WithDoll Angela had these on but hers lean more towards aqua; I have no idea which eyes they are. Anyway, the blue denim eyes look great on Annette. (Oops. I need to lower one slightly--or raise the other.)
I also changed her outfit. This is the one I bought from Luts. I do like it, but it can be a pain to photograph. The black automatically triggers my camera's flash, which then has a tendency to wash out everything but the dress. I wonder what my neighbors thought as my window shades went up and down, up and down, as I tried to find a balance of light and dark for taking photos. The flash was less of a problem when I photographed her with Soul Kid Yarn and WithDoll Priscilla. I guess the other colors were enough to keep the camera happy.
I ordered the chaise during Tonner's Black Friday event. Originally there were three color combinations to choose from, but the one I wanted sold out before the event. Still, you can't argue with a bargain, even if the color is not what you wanted. The chaise was designed for Ellowyne Wilde. It's also supposed to accommodate Evangeline Ghastly. I have to wonder how Evangeline can recline on it--she's taller than Annette. The Luts outfit has an air of 19th Century French music hall and le cancan about it, so I thought it would be fun to pose Annette with Dollmore's Bitter Biscuit Zinna. All we need is Toulouse-Lautrec lurking in the background with his paints and easel.
One more photo from this shoot. I posed Annette with her head at the foot of the chaise and her hair trailing down to the floor. The black behind her shoulders is her skirt, which I pulled up so it wouldn't wrinkle when she sat on it.
For Musume: Here are Annette and WithDoll Angela. They're the same height but Annette has high heels on while Angela has boots.
Next Saturday is a doll meet-up day. We're supposed to bring doll foods for a holiday feast. I suspect my fake food is out of scale for the dolls I'm bringing, so maybe I'll bring a Christmas tree instead.

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Luts Model Delf Annette

Luts started the Model Delf line in 2014 with four male sculpts: Abadon, Avalanche, Cian and Dion. All were smaller versions of sculpts in their Senior, Senior65 and Super Senior lines. (Just as Iplehouse is doing with its FID line.) I bought Avalanche. Instant love! The body's construction and posing are outstanding. Much as I was tempted to buy another guy, I decided to wait for the girls. When they finally debuted, there were only two: Annette and Blanchet. Both were smaller versions of Senior Delf dolls. They were cute, but seeing as Luts initially released four males, I expected them to serve up the same number of females and waited for the other two. When Luts finally released another pair of MDFs, they were one male (Alec) and one female (Garnet). Both were new sculpts. Unfortunately, I didn't love either of them. Since then, having learned that Alec's head is smaller than the other MDF male heads, I have revised my opinion. Alec might work quite well paired with Raccoon girls. If I had any money left I would buy him.
Box image shows a Model Delf male

There has not been a new Model Delf for some time. Finally I decided to order one of the original two girls. But which one? I went back and forth between Annette and Blanchet, unable to decide between them. What eventually tipped the scale in Annette's favor was her narrower face. Blanchet's round face made her look younger than I liked. I didn't care for either face-up offered, so I ordered Annette blank. She took 39 business days from order to arrival. Along with the doll I ordered an outfit, eyes and a wig. I lucked out with the Shining Purple outfit--right after I hit the buy button it registered as sold out. As for the eyes, I'm not sure Luts sent me the right color. They seem to be a uniform shade of light blue, whereas the ones I ordered were blue-and-violet. There is a possibility they put my eyes in the doll and wrapped the default eyes. I won't know for sure until I take them out to paint her, which I will do as soon as the weather cooperates.
All the goodies

I have to mention her packaging, because I've never had a doll packed this way. (I'd remember if Avalanche looked like this.) Underneath the clothing, wig, etc., was a shrink-wrapped package that reminded me of The Empire Strikes Back when Han Solo is frozen alive in a block of carbonite. How on earth would I get this open? Very gingerly, I cut across one end with scissors, fully expecting to have to peel apart two sticky layers of plastic. You can imagine my relief when the package suddenly filled with air, revealing a pillow with the doll sandwiched in the middle. All that was left to remove were the black foam mitts covering her hands and the bubble wrap twined around her feet.
Shrink-wrapped doll
Poof! There's a pillow inside
Interior wrappings
For her body options, I chose type 2 for the elbow and knee joints as well as breast option 2. This gives her the more natural looking, rounded elbows and knees I prefer on my dolls. Breast option 2 is their basic breast--somewhere between flat and inflated. Both high heel feet and high heel leg parts were options with extra costs, so I went with the basic flat feet. They can easily wear low heeled shoes and boots, as you can see below. Before dressing her, I put her through a few poses. Because her only torso joint is just under the breast, some poses are impossible. For instance, she can't lie on her stomach propped up by her elbows, the way MiniFees can, because she lacks MiniFee's bikini-line joint. Her other movements are smooth and elegant, however, so all-in-all I am very happy.
Type 2 body with one arm extended
Note smooth curve of elbows
Note smooth curve of knees

I didn't put her in the Luts outfit right away, because I wanted to see how she looks in the Sadol outfits I bought for my Raccoon girls. (Sadol mentions Model Delf as one of the sizes their MSD clothing will fit.) Everything fit to perfection--including the hat, which is out of proportion on the smaller Raccoon heads. One word of caution, however; if you buy a MDF girl with the largest breast (option type 3), Sadol blouses may not button. Out of curiosity, I tried the Luts outfit on two of my  Raccoon girls. It fits the small bust but not the large bust, regardless of whether the body type is slim or curvy. I'm not sure if other Model Delf clothing will fit Raccoon girls. The Shining Purple set, which laces up the back, leaves a lot of skin exposed even on a Raccoon small bust. I'll have to see how it fits Annette.
Wearing Sadol (Classic M) K
Avalanche and Annette

And that's it. The last doll acquisition of 2016. Yes, I know. I've overdone it this year. Normally I don't buy a doll every month. Really, I don't. 2017 will be different. I promise. Okay, I have already succumbed to some holiday promotions (Iplehouse, Raccoon Doll, and FairyLand) but that's it. Unless I sell a doll I wasn't planning to part with, there is no money--or room--to add anyone else. I'll be turning more to fashions and stories in the coming year. I hope everyone is on board!