Monday, October 22, 2012

'Gift Giver' Challenge Dolls and an online poll

Our cloth doll challenge theme this year was 'Gift Giver'.  Please vote for your favorite doll in the poll on the right sidebar!  At our 10th Annual Show and Sale next month, we will announce the winner as part of our People's Choice Award.

We had six finished dolls at our October meeting.  Our first, very colorful doll is made from the Cindee Moyer pattern 'Weighing the Possibilities'.  You may notice that her name spells Mother Nature backwards. Her gifts include sunshine, rainbows, and clear stargazing nights as well as wind, rain, and storms.
Erutan Rehtom
Our next fellow is made from Ute Vasina's 'Norman' pattern.  He is the main character in the Roald Dahl story, The BFG.  Instead of eating children like the other giants, he gives them the good dreams he has collected.
The BFG (Big Friendly Giant)
The third doll is from a Patti Culea pattern, 'Very Merry Santa Claus'.  He is a portrayal of the Russian Father Frost.  He delivers presents in person every New Year.
Deduska Moroz
Next is a lovely version of Stephanie Novatski's pattern, 'One Kiss is Not Enough', with original costume designs.  Our princess has learned to overcome selfishness by giving love to others.
Princess and the Frog
Ute is a favorite designer, so it's no surprise to find two of her designs in our challenge.  This one started as her 'Kitchen Witch' pattern, found in the July 2003 issue of Soft Dolls and Animals.  Befana is the old Italian woman who delivers presents for children on Epiphany Eve, as she flies over rooftops searching for the Christ Child.
La Befana
Lastly, we have an original design.  This kind lady gives smiles to passers-by, and if you're lucky, a piece of candy from her beaded handbag.  Please check out the fancy Victorian parasol!
Fine Lady Elinore
Please cast your vote for your favorites in our Viewer's Choice Award poll!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Round Robin Reveal - a Group Overview

Welcome, at long last, to the 2012 Indy Cloth Dollmakers Round Robin Dolls!  We call it a reveal, but actually the pictures will get less revealing as we go along, because the dolls start off as bare bodies and get their clothes in the later rounds.  Here they are, posing beside their traveling bags in January.
Round 1 - naked doll bodies
For those unfamiliar with the idea, a round robin doll (also called a bag doll) is a progressive group project.  You start with a doll body inside a bag, and without peeking, trade it for another doll.  You create the face for that doll, and hide the doll in the bag to trade again. As time goes on, the dolls travel to new dollmakers, and at each stage of the journey, get another element of their costume.  We broke our project down into seven steps, so seven different club members worked on each doll.  In February, the dolls get their heads sewn on, now that they have such lovely faces.
Round 2 - faces
Now let me take a second to explain the un-glamorous backdrop in these photos.  The round robin players did not want to see the dolls before the end, so in order to get pictures of all the steps, the photographer had to whisk the dolls away to a nearby storage room during the club meetings, to take pictures in secret.  Finally in March the dolls get to wear clothes!
Round 3 - clothes
And in April, very stylish hair-dos.
Round 4 - hair
June's picture was obviously taken in a bit of a hurry.  It was hard work to get most of the dolls to stand or sit nicely, but you can still see the accessories -- hats and scarves and bits of jewelry.

Round 5 - accessories and embellishments
We will also have a series of step-by-step photos for each doll, so stay tuned for all the lovely close-ups.  Remember, this post is just an overview!  July's meeting was also a little rushed, as people had other places to be, but we do get to see some very delicate footwear.
Round 6 - shoes
Finally, the last step!  The dolls themselves are finished, but need to be shown to their best advantage.  Round 7 is presentation -- giving the doll whatever she (or he!) needs to own her little spot in the world.  Many of our dolls acquired 'significant others' of some variety, while others gained the perfect spot to perch.
Round 7 - stands and presentation
Every doll travelled with a journal, so that each dollmaker could share the developing story as the characters developed.  If you come to our doll show in November, you can see the journals, too!