Saturday, December 6, 2008

Toothpick Doll Tutorial #6: Finishing Touches

Tutorial & Giveaway!

All this week, I'm doing a toothpick doll tutorial, & at the end, I'll give away my finished doll. To enter the giveaway, just leave a comment on any of the Tutorial blog posts. Since there's a new post every day this week, you can enter every day! I'll announce the winner on Monday, Dec. 8. Enjoy the tutorial! Oh, & take some pictures of your dolls - I want to see them!

Bows & Such: Finishing Touches
By now, your doll is clothed & has arms, a head - all those things that are fairly necessary in recognizing your work as a doll. Now comes the incredibly satisfying part of adding little finishing touches. Don't skip this part! It really makes your doll look finished & will take some of the attention off of your mishapen head (maybe).

(Editor's note: Yes, I chew my nails. When you get to the level where you're making things like this 1-inch Queen, you will, too. Fair warning.)

You can add all the finishes your imagination can come up with, well...within reason. You may want to draw the line at the blinking eyes or spinning head. If your imagination isn't working for one reason or another, ask the nearest child - they'll come up with enough suggestions to keep you busy! When I make dolls with my nieces & nephew, we add faces, roses, bows, hats, anything we can come up with (& I can make!) My two oldest nieces are making their own dolls by now, & wow, are they good! We're talking ball gowns with feather hairpieces, & elven archers.

For now, let's keep it simple - bows. Bows are beautiful, chic, trendy, & highly undervalued in haute couture. Not to mention, EASY! (Don't underestimate that last reason!) People ask me all the time how I make such tiny bows. This question has always struck me as odd, probably because of the answer - you start with a big bow. No, I have no interest in spending an obscene amount of time & adding immeasurably to my stress level by attempting to tie a 1/4 inch bow. Not happening. At least, not today. Just tie a bow, any size, then gently pull the ends until it's as teeny tiny as you like. Presto! Instant marvel! So go ahead, tie a few bows, add them wherever your doll would like, and...

TADAAAA!!! You have a toothpick doll, your very first. I'm so proud. Always, always, ALWAYS keep your first doll! Never give her away, sell her, misplace her, or chuck her out. I still have the very first doll I made from about 15 years ago, the pathetic little thing. She's got a special spot in my heart, not the least because she's absolutely hilarious to look at! Not saying that your first doll is a laughing matter, of course. But just in case she may someday derive a chuckle, keep her! It's fun to see where you've come from.

If you do decide to use this tutorial & make a doll, please send me a picture! I'd love to see your creativity. Not to mention it'll do my teacher-heart good. Hope you enjoyed the journey!

Leave a comment to enter the giveaway!

You can leave as many comments as you like, asking questions, making astute observations, etc., although your name only gets entered once every day. Yes, you can go back & comment on past days if you missed some!

You can enter the giveway up through Sunday, Dec. 7. On Monday, I'll draw a name & announce the winner. If you like, I'll mount the doll on a pinback. She'd be cute on a hoodie or cardigan, or on a totebag or bookbag. Check back Monday to see if you've won!


Anonymous said...

These are really fabulous - so glad I stumbled on your blog today. Have lots of friends into miniatures and they will love this!

Malissa said...

I'm a little sad the lessons are over! I'll still be back to check on your updates. I love your blog and consider you a new friend! If I win I want her to be a pin so I can show her off on my hoodie!

I wanted the tree on my site to work into a banner and avatar, but I'm having a hard time putting it together with a background that I like. So I'm playing around with some ideas. He's supposed to represent Sleepy Hollow Folk Art Originals (kind of branding, I guess) so people will have something to recognize.

wiredtexmex said...

How do you get the thread to stay curly?

Linda & !!!!I Love it!!!! I have you down as a favorite, saving to buy one. ???or more???

jackiemedley said...

I'm so glad I found your site and your absolutely wonderful tutorial! I just finished my first doll. Quite homely, but I am hooked! So much fun!

Bebe said...

Ok. I have made multiple toothpick dolls and i just started a doll with a big skirt.... and i am having trouble keeping the glue from getting everywhere. especially because its tacky glue. the glue that is on my fingers is dirty and then it gets all over the dress. do you have any tips? for keeping my work clean?