Happy October! As usual here at Spooky Moon, I’ll be presenting a month full of crafts and spooky links.
This year I’m trying something different. I’ll be posting inspiration pieces, and then showing you what I did with it.
Today’s inspiration comes from the fantastic Grim Visions:
While there will be detailed tutorials this month, this entry is more of a ride-along. In part because I kept forgetting to take pictures. What I used:
- Doll (from stash)
- Fabric, lace, and trim (from stash)
- Fusible webbing
- Acrylic paint
I didn’t want to make something life-sized, so I got out my Box O’ Dollies, and found something more my scale.
Off came her hair (mostly), and her wee head got covered in Celluclay. As I was hollowing out the eyes, I discovered that the doll’s head got turned while I was covering her, as there was a bunch of hair at the bottom of the eye. Oops! I trimmed it down further and moved on.
I have an almost-full bag of Celluclay, and as I worked, I remembered why. It’s like sculpting canned tuna.
Key shapes: The proportions are intentionally out of whack to increase scariness. There is almost no chin, and the mouth comes to a point. I didn’t think there was a nose at first, but looking at more pictures, there is a very simple, triangular shape.
The original doesn’t have a brow ridge, but I decided to put one on mine. I kept it very smooth, in keeping with the feel of the piece. Not adding too many details is hard! At least there are cracks on one side of the face. Here she is, all moist from the first smoothing.
Here’s her initial paint job. I decided she wasn’t smooth enough, so I added a coat of medium matte gel over the top of the paint. After this, I again deviated from the inspiration by adding some antiquing.
Next: teeth! I did a lot of experimenting here, trying to make teeth out of various glues and bits of plastic. Nothing gave me enough control. I finally decided on Cernit, which is a very strong and flexible polymer clay, with great translucency. I didn’t need to paint the teeth. Even that had a little trouble with such tiny points, but I’m happy overall. They got stuck in with hot glue, again, after trying half a dozen different things. I’m going to call the strings a feature. To hide some of the glue line, she got lips, sort of. I think they add to the creep factor.
Around this time, the Spousal Unit walked into my studio and saw my inspiration image on my worktable. “Holy crap, you’re not going to make something like that, are you?” I point to the drying bench. “Jesus Christ, why would you do that? You’re not right.” This is how I knew I was on the right track.
Time to dress Ms. Grim. I had an old lace something-or-other I’d picked up at a garage sale. It had a liner, and nice trim.
I made a pattern, of sorts. I have never made a doll dress, or a dress of any kind. I have certainly never tried to make a pattern. I had planned on sewing, but I realized the hems I needed were too tiny for my skills. So I used fusible webbing. Then I thought, hey, let’s use fusible webbing on everything!
I did end up making a few stitches by hand to reinforce things, but the webbing worked pretty well. As for the pattern, well, the results were…interesting. Note there’s no picture of the misshapen under dress.
After the fusible webbing was no longer helpful, the hot glue gun came out. I love my hot glue gun.
A bit more lace, a bit more trim, and Ms. Grim was ready for her close up. No stand, I just stuck her foot in a glass bottle.
I think she’s at least as creepy as the original. Sure, the dress is inept, but those teeth are pretty great. Dolly Grim says: “Sweet dreams.”
What I learned: glue the doll head in place first.
Raffle status: Yes, despite it being kinda delicate, Dolly Grim will be in the raffle. So you can see the, er, “dress” up close.