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We Need a LITTLE CHRISTMAS

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At 13″ this Shirley Temple puts the “Little” in Christmas. Good things come in small packages!

ST SANTAI’ve said it before: while other dolls may receive other names from their little humans, 99.9% of the time, a Shirley Temple doll will always be named Shirley Temple.

So without further ado, meet Shirley Temple! O.L.D. (Once-Loved Doll) No. 23. You can see her adoption page HERE.

I confess, I didn’t see this picture of Shirley Temple as Santa Claus until just last night, unfortunately. Do you see that fur around the bottoms of the real Shirley’s pants? Wish I’d thought of that! You’ll soon learn why.

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Shirley Temple in “Little Miss Marker.”

Believe it or not, it takes me all week to do a doll. To clean her and do any repairs and then make two outfits plus accessories…Therefore I wanted one pair of shoes, which I also make using my stash of different colored leathers, that would work with both outfits. Black boots were required, because we decided Shirley should be dressed as Santa. It’s pretty hard to make boots that work with a dress!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThen I saw this picture of Shirley Temple from “Little Miss Marker.” It’s reportedly her favorite photo from her movie career. Yes, she’s wearing shoes and socks rather than boots, but the effect is the same and I liked it.

My plan in place, and with Shirley’s enthusiastic agreement, we went to work. The Santa pants would tuck into the boots and blouse over nicely and the boots would look good with this dress. Perfect!

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Here she is in her blue velvet coat and hat. Between that, the green velvet Santa bag and the red velvet Santa suit, it’s a wonder her name isn’t Velveeta.

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There’s just nothing like a Shirley.

But guess what? Turns out, if you make boots to fit snugly around a little girl’s ankles, they will NOT go around velvet pants! Oh sure, it seems obvious now

If I have time, I’ll add some cuffs to the Santa pants, although I’m currently hard at work on the next O.L.D. She too will be adorable (I hope! I think!).

TRIXIE! Ah, Trixie. I was right, she was not everybody’s cup of tea and went for a song. The good news is that my sweet sister Carol, who lives in Arizona, was able to adopt her. Every now and then she bids when there’s an O.L.D. she likes. See? So there IS someone for everyone! And a bargain to boot! But JUST YOU WAIT:

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And with that, I leave you. Merry Christmas! I’m going to be saying that as often as I can, because with the luck of the draw (and the calendar) this will be the second shortest Christmas season on record, darn the luck. Happy Wednesday! You’re my favorite!

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Meet Sweet Sophie Repreeze!

I first posted Sophie’s tale a few weeks ago, but since it’s her turn to find a new home via ebay I thought I’d post it again for those who might come here to read more of her story. You can see her listing here:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Sweet-Sophie-a-PERFECT-21-Vintage-Composition-Cloth-Doll-thats-not-perfect-/140984270037?pt=US_Dolls_Bears_Toys&hash=item20d3513cd5

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Outfit by Ruth the Runner.

Meet Sweet Sophie “The Faithful.” She was all set to leave me, and as with all of my dolls she was very excited to go to the place where she was needed most. Then, the night before she was supposed to go, we had a BAT ATTACK.

There I was, sleeping PEACEFULLY in my bed – or almost, when Ziiiipp!!! A dark shadow flittered past, breaking the constant stream of light between my eyelids and my Sponge Bob nightlight – er, the MOON. I knew instantly What It Was. And my heart started.

“Boom-BOOM Boom-BOOM Boom-BOOM Boom-BOOM!”…only, FASTER.

And I screamed. It sounded kind of funny though, because after a split second I was screaming through closed lips. The curse of a vivid imagination: Bats like caves. What if my mouth resembled a dark, cozy cave admidst my howling?

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Victims Three

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“One, two, three – WHA – ?!”

Now if you’re smart, and I think you are, you will notice there are four little maids in the picture. Ultimately, I will be dressing them all, but I’ll just do two – or three – at a time. Plus, I like “The Mikado” and was originally going to use three, but this last little girl snuck in at the last minute.

The reason I chose these four is because they’re each excellent examples of things I want to show during my first live broadcast this morning at noon eastern on Ustream. Yes! The thrill is undeniable!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe first girl is Effanbee’s Anne Shirley or Little Lady. Both dolls were from the same mold. Anne was named for the character in “Anne of Green Gables” and was made to resemble the young actress who played Anne in the movie series – and who I believe changed her name to Anne Shirley.

What makes this doll distinctive is that she has individual fingers rather than the usual cupped hands of most composition dolls. The problem with that is the fingers would frequently snapped off, as with this Anne. Either that or she really, really wants World Peace. I’m going to rebuild her fingers.

It won’t be the first time! I once had an Anne with her middle and ring fingers missing. I wrote in her description, “We think she’s trying to say, ‘I love you.’” Comedy GOLD!

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She also needs her lips touched up.

The second girl is the one who snuck in, bald head and all. I love wig searches! I have a several shoe boxes full and it’s always fun to try different wigs on and see what would look best. She is no one special, just one of many of the unidentifiable dolls made by one of many doll manufacturers.

And on that note, we come to the third and largest. I believe she’s a “Special” doll by Madame Alexander. That’s her name! Her worst problem is terrible cracking and lifting on her shoulderplate, but I chose her because I’ve had another “Special” come through. See what difference a different wig and a slightly different paint job makes?

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You will not believe the difference when she’s clean.

The fourth girl is exceptionally filthy. She is a Princess Elizabeth type. Back then, doll companies were swapping doll molds like little boys used to swap marbles!

If anyone out there has dirty composition dolls, I can show you an easy cleaning method using a common household item you may already have on hand, but that at the very least you can readily find. She also needs re-stringing, as her joints are a little loose. Good times.

So these are the victims! First the refurbishing, then the fabric choices and dress designs for each including coats, hats and shoes, and then I’ll be listing them on ebay so they can finally find good homes where they will be loved and enjoyed again! I’ll note their progress as I go here as well as on my show. Make-up! Wardrobe! Clapper! ACTION.

Fingers crossed that they turn out well. With a little magic and elbow grease, they will!