Sunday, 11 April 2010

French Fashion Doll

Voici Claudette, une poupée très grande en effet!  Thank goodness for the Yahoo translator - I did get a GSE O Level in French all those years ago in school but most of it is in the dark recesses of my (pea) brain these days!
En anglais "Here is Claudette a very large doll indeed".  Most of the paper dolls I make are quite small, whereas this whopper is almost 12" high.  Now that doesn't sound very oo-la-la does it - whopper!  Never mind, I think you know what I mean.

Last October I went to the Knitting and Stitching Exhibition at Alexandra Palace and bought a 'French Paper Dolls' kit from Barbara Willis, an American fibre figure artist.  Her stand there was fantastic, so many amazing creations - I truly was in doll heaven. 

I decided to open the kit this weekend (only six months after buying it!!)  What prompted me to do so was the fact that I didn't go to the Big Rubber Stamping and Scrapbooking show this weekend at Alexandra Palace because I knew I would spend too much money and I already have far too much stuff - much of it as yet unused!  I'm still inwardly sulking though - LOL, even though my hubby was all set to chauffeur, accompany and pay for me to go!  Making this doll made me feel better anyway!

The kit comes with full instructions and templates, some pre printed heads and feet on fabric, backing fabric (which is actually black out fabric for curtains and blinds) and some thick felt (Pelt Tex).  All other fabrics for the clothes you need to provide yourself.

I embellished the face with acrylic paint, watercolour pencils and pastels.  In her hair I stuck on a few beads (some strung and others stuck on loose) and Glimmer Misted a white fabric rose. 


Her apron is part of an old doily and the hanging ribbon thingy at the right hand side below her bodice is actually one of the charms I received from a PDA swap (if you click on the link you'll see the photo of all the charms I received, and the one I used is roughly in the middle of the photo.  It was this charm that I based the whole colour scheme on - well, losely based it on anyway and I'm so pleased to be able to use one of them in such a lovely way! 


To finish the skirt off I added a thin lace edging.  There is a border of wider lace attached underneath to give the appearance of a petticoat.


I liked using the fabric (black out and felt) as a base as it is more movable and durable than paper.  It was however a little tricky glue-ing the fabrics without making the whole thing bulky - something I need to work on I think if I make another.

While I was at Barbara Willis' stand last October, I also bought her book 'Cloth Doll Artistry' - Design and Costuming techniques for Flat and Fully Sculpted Figures.  I've just about covered chapters one and two with this French Fashion Doll so when I'm feeling more adventerous I'd love to have a go at one of the detailed cloth dolls with a fully scultped face!  Stay tuned, although you may have to wait awhile, or until I decide to miss another great crafting exhibition!


Healing Woman said...

Sherry, your paper doll is so lovely. I hope you will check out my two paper dolls that I posted yesterday. I think you'll like them.
My blog is

I became a follower of yours awhile back and enjoy your posts very much.

Healing Woman

Jan said...

Sherry, she is GORGEOUS! So very French. It begs the question though........ where are you keeping all these beautiful dolls? Especially if they are to be 12" high in future lol

Danise said...

Yes I also LOVE your paper doll.I used to collect them when I was young (years ago)I have a couple I made reciently and you can see them on my blog.It is all the details you put into the doll and her dress that makes her devine!

Carol said...

She is truly gorgeous Sherry, lovely work.


Malissa said...

She is "tres magnifique" (I'm sure I spelled that wrong, sorry!) Don't sulk too long!

Gez said...

awe, Sherry, Claudette is STUNNING. I am soooo delighted to hear you plan to make more. :D I love all your little touches you've added to her. :)
I think her name should be Alexandrea because you didn't go to AP last weekend! I didn't get to go either so we can sulk together!!hehe.. Gez.xx

JaN's ArTy AtC JouRneY said...

Wow, Claudette is a stunner, Love all the little details you add Sherry!
'Belle dame'
yup, I did a lil French all those years ago in school too! LOL

Jan x

Deborah said...

Votre poupee, c'est fantastique! Well done you for resisting Ally Pally this weekend. You're a stronger woman than I! :-)

Gez said...

Hi Sherry I read an article last night & thought of you! so I've just popped back.... it's just a thought. Someone was having trouble sticking fabric to paper & used sticky dots (those gel things I presume) I know I've used them in the past & they are really sticky! just a thought. :)
Thanks for your lovely blog comment. Hugs, Gez.xx

Cindy Is Crafty said...

They are lovely, Sherry!

Joyce said...

Love Claudette Sherry! She's gorgeous - those tidy shelves in the craft room will son be full if future dolls are all this size. Fab project! Joyce (Ribbonlady)

Magis said...

Очень красиво!!!

WendyK said...

Wonderful, love her