Saturday, 17 October 2015

Doll Size Shoes

I've been working, on and off, for the last couple or weeks on some small footwear. Mary, my Izannah walker style doll can be made with bare feet, or painted boots, and the bare foot girl has been very patiently waiting for some shoes to add to her wardrobe.

Mary - Izannah Walker Inspired
Although many of the original Izannah Walker dolls have painted, laced ankle boots, I noticed that so many pictures of girls from the mid 19th Century showed them wearing ankle strap shoes, so I thought that Mary had best have both!

10357611_10152402917517126_1487112293570588973_n.jpg (360×480):

Ambrotype Little Girl with Her Large Doll CA 1860 | eBay:

Amazing 1860s 2 Little Girls Matching Check Dresses Cloth Doll Innsbruck Austria | eBay:

Izannah Walker Chronicles: Wonderful Izannah Walker Doll to Be at Auction:

You can see lots more pictures of all things Izannah Walker related, and inspired here in my Pinterest board.

First up were red ankle straps. Everyone needs some red shoes, right?

Doll Shoe Parts

Mary ready to try her new shoes

They fit like a glove!

A second pair were decorated with a buckle in a dark brown leather

Ready for the fastener

The lace up boots were tricky to fit, but I still made two pairs....

Fitting lace up boots

Once they were all finished, it was time to write up the pattern...

Inspiration and finished shoes

Reproduction Izannah Walker shoes

Doll Shoes & Pattern

One of the things that I love most about being a doll artist, is that I get to chop and change what skills I use all the time! Next week it's back to clay and doll faces :0)

Friday, 9 October 2015

Out and About.....

One of my favourite events of the year is The Knitting and Stitching Show, at Alexandra Palace. I've been a regular visitor since the early 1990's, when it was a quick drive around the North Circular Road from home.

Now I'm in Colchester, it's a bit more of a trek to get there....... Last year's visit by car resulted in an almost 3 hour journey home, and the previous year's jaunt on the train was marred by a lost travel card. So this time I decided to give the coach a may take hours to get there, but at least I have a seat, and can read during the journey. (It's so blooming cheap too, which is an obvious bonus!)

After arriving at Victoria, I wandered down to Tate Britain to see the Barbara Hepworth Exhibition before it closes at the end of the month. As with most exhibitions these days, you can't take photographs, but here's the mini exhibit guide.....

The works on show ranged from early figurative carvings, to abstract wooden and bronze pieces. There are collages, drawings, sketches and a film showing her at work in her St Ives studio.

Hepworth's early carving work in the first room of the exhibition is shown in context, with carvings from artists such as Jacob Epstein and Eric Gill.

The exhibiton is on until the 24th of October, so if you want to see it, you haven't got long.

After a quick slice of cake, and an apple juice, it was onto the tube to Wood Green, then a quick ride on the courtesy bus to the beautiful Alexandra Palace for the main event. 
Luckily I had a  gorgeous sunny day, the trees in the park  are just starting to turn golden, and the view is spectacular, but I was on a tight schedule, so no time to enjoy the panoramic views for me.

I was dying to get inside to see  Kate Jenkins'  knitted fish counter which is a complete and utter joy, well worth the trip just to see the sardines, prawns, mussels, lobsters et al...

Kate's Plaice - Kate Jenkins
Sequined lobsters, crabs, red mullet, plaice, scallops and even squid and octopus are all there in their woolly glory. There were even some fab frenchie fishes complete with berets and breton tops!

Kate's Plaice - Kate Jenkins
Kate's Plaice - Kate Jenkins
Staying on the food theme, I love this quilt, in the SAQA food for thought exhibition

Vicki Bohnhoff - Pepitas 

Vicki Bohnhoff - Pepitas 

Another "edible" work that caught my eye was from Kate Barlow on the Royal School of Needlework stand

Kate Barlow

Back to the woolly theme, the Selvedge team were showcasing the work of Sophie Digard 

Sophie Digard

Sophie Digard

Sophie Digard

Sophie Digard
....and if woolly birds are more you're thing, how about these? From Toft Alpaca

Toft Alpaca - Bird Menagerie
If you're going over the weekend, make sure you check out the exhibition area, there's loads more to see.

I didn't plan to shop much, as my stash is full to the brim! A few Liberty fat quarters, some silk ribbons and wool felt managed to smuggle their way into my (eco) tote bag. I even splashed out on some alpaca wool, for my (postponed) knitting project.

Down the hall, the beautiful Italian coast is recreated in stitch, lots of visitors were getting pictures by the fabric cliffs.....

Cinque Terre - DAMSS Fibre Art

Then it was back to Victoria, for a quick spaghetti dinner, and the protracted coach journey home. If only coach drivers knew the streets of London like me...... Oh, well no day is perfect!!!

Thursday, 1 October 2015

Sunday, 20 September 2015


You know that this year marks the 150th anniversary of the publication of Alice in Wonderland right?

Well I thought I would make a cloth and clay doll inspired by Alice. She's a little bit quirky, to tie in with all the strange characters that she finds down the rabbit hole, and also through the looking glass.....

Many of those characters have been reproduced on Alice's apron, I hand tinted them to make them stand out nicely. Her blue cotton dress is lined and buttons at the back.

Alice's Illustrated Apron

Alice has stiffened and painted cloth limbs, a soft cloth body, and a hand sculpted Paperclay head and shoulders.

Her legs have hand painted red and cream stripey stockings, and she wears hand made leather shoes.

Alice by Dottie Dollie
Like the real Alice she's off on an adventure, hopefully I can tell you more about that soon.....

Thursday, 17 September 2015

Throwback Thursday....... last Thursday, when the sun shone, and the coast beckoned me away from my work.....

.....and it felt so good

Friday, 28 August 2015


You know I have a short attention span right? And I'm easily distracted?

We've had a lot of visitors over the last few weeks, so work has been rather stop:start this makes my mind wander......and a wandering mind leads to work avoidance, and procrastination.....which leads to random new projects!

Yesterday I started something very unusual for me, a dress for myself. I used to make a lot of clothes when I was a teenager, but then I discovered doll making. I'm so used to sewing in miniature, that the long seams on real life clothes seem to go on forever!!!

I had my eye on the Bettine dress from Tillly and the Buttons, it looks so casual, and comfy, especially in jersey

A quick trip to Franklins, my local sewing shop (just a 5 minute walk!), and it was all systems go......

I selected a viscose print, and a printed cotton jersey to get me started.

I had to adjust the pattern a little, to accommodate my large bust, and still wasn't sure if it would fit well, so I decided to make up the jersey first, even though I've never sewn jersey. I figured that the stretch would help, if I hadn't made the new pattern quite big enough....

I found some tips for sewing jersey here, even though I don't have a walking foot, the stretch stitch on my machine seemed to work really well.

The top stitching around the neck band is neat and even, I love the sleeves, the length is good, and the cuffs are a nice touch. I managed to get a neat finish on all the seams, and the neck casing. The adjustments that I made to the width of the pattern worked out well, but the bodice, and the skirt come up rather short, so I will be lengthening both of these before working on the viscose version.

I think this colour is great for Autumn, but it works well with my navy Birkenstocks too, so if we get some more sunny days, it'll still be good to go.....

With a little more adjusting to do, this won't be the last thing that I sew for myself this weekend.

Whatever you're up to this Bank Holiday weekend, enjoy yourself!!

Wednesday, 29 July 2015

Shop Update

We've been dog sitting this week, so with early morning walks, cuddles and playtime taking most of the day I'm behind with listings!!!

There's been so much grey, grey weather too, which makes photography hard.....

But here's the latest brooches over in my Etsy shop right now

Cutie Kewpie Bunny Brooches

Rose Pink - Antique Doll Brooch

Rose Mint Green - German Doll Brooch

Wordless Wednesday

Monday, 20 July 2015

More Unloved Dolls!

All of my doll brooches start life as a broken, discarded doll that never made it out of the factory. Even though they had a tough, unloved start in this world, I love each and every cheeky, chubby face. I feel so lucky to be able to salvage them, and share their cute faces with my customers and followers.

If you fall in love with a face, but would like different hair, eyes, or maybe a hat, please contact me via Etsy, and hopefully we can make your dream dollie too.

I've been working on another little batch of brooches, after a couple went AWOL in the post, and I had some custom orders to complete. Doll faces are quite addictive to make, so a few extras are now on their way to my Etsy shop ......

Dottie Dollie Doll Brooches

Dottie Dollie Doll Brooches

The Dutch Girl is a new design, and is currently available in green or blue. She has the cutest googly face!
Dutch Girl Doll Brooch Lysbet

Dutch Girl Doll Brooch Lysbet

Kewpies always make me smile, so I've popped two new Cutie brooches in my shop as well

Kewpie Doll Brooch

Cutie Kewpie Doll Pin
Hoping to put more lovely things online later this week, so maybe the doll for you is coming soon. Have a happy Monday xx

Monday, 15 June 2015

Doll Face Brooches

Izannah Walker dolls have really taken over this year so far, but at last the Dollie Brooches are back!

They still make me smile just as much as they did when I made the first ones nearly 3 years ago, mostly because each one is different.

Cutie Lilac Bunny Kewpie

Cutie Cream Bunny Kewpie

Penny Red Bow

Penny Soft Yellow Bow

Cutie Devil Kewpie

Timothy Lime Green Hair

Cutie Kewpie

Timothy Chestnut Brown

Cutie Chubby Kewpie

Cutie Ginger Kitty Kewpie

Keep your eyes peeled for more lovely Dollie brooches soon!