Ethel and I will be at MDCC again this year in San Antonio Texas, YAY never been there before!
This limited edition of 30 Ethel dolls will only be available through MDCC. I will be also providing a presentation at MDCC in September called, “Mound to Magic” That will journey through the making of a BJD from a mound of clay and the process of bringing life to these amazing little souls.
I am very proud to say that everything for Ethel is created here in my studio, the sculpt, molds, casting, clothes, paint, wigs, bases, her toy bunny and even the protective doll bag she will go home in.
What is included in this wonderful little bundle of joy?
This edition of Ethel is the first to be released made with my own special resin concoction in a realistic skin tone with slight transparency as well as UV protection. I call this new color created right here in my studio, Latte.
Ethel is 10 inches tall and is the first doll I have sculpted with separate wrist joints and magnetic hands for ease of posing and dressing. She comes with her artist faceup as well as her dress set with matching hair bow, tights and shoes made here in the studio.
Ethel’s little bunny doll is super cute and designed specifically for her to drag and toss about. She rarely goes anywhere without him. He is made with love and hugs and is 7 inches from tip to toe with a body of just 2 inches long.
The set also comes with a doll bag made especially for MDCC from natural cotton, lined in batting and satin for an extra comfy trip home.
Last but not least Ethel has a custom stand fit just for her.
Thank you to everyone for continuing to collect my work and “Keeping the Dust Flying” in my studio!
Please contact Karen Schoewe on Facebook or email her here firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in adopting Ethel through MDCC.
Been busy here in the Incubator testing some fabulous new resin colors and deciding on which ones I will be keeping as my regulars. I have decided on 4 and will have pictures later in the week. Just wanted to get a quick update out
In the resin experimenting process I cast just 2 or 3 Ethel dolls that will be available as one of a kind resin test dolls. Very pretty natural to tanned tones with a touch of transparency. These little sweethearts will be available for adoption late next week. Soooo much going on ….no wonder I haven’t been to the lap pool lately, hehe, this is much more fun!
Sprite Nola’s are ready to flitter home and I am sending out shipping requests over the next day and starting to ship her the following day (Monday Feb 12)
Don’t forget she will be leaving here in Mexico via FedEx, where she goes through customs to the United States. Elizabeth my wonderful shipping helper and Facebook admin for the Stella and the CreamSoda Kids group receives all of the pre labelled packages and drops them off for me at the USPS office in West Virginia. THEN each individual package goes on it’s way to it’s destination in the US, Canada, Australia and everywhere else.
The reason I do things this way is because shipping through regular mail in Mexico is very unreliable, if your parcel ever arrives it will be in about 3 months after shipped. So to be safe I use FedEx, but it’s very expensive and to ship one doll to the US is $150. That is just craziness!!
So in my best attempt to keep shipping reasonable-ISH the packages go through channels and arrive safely but they do take about 1-2 weeks to arrive depending on customs. Also using this bulk shipping method I need to wait to send a box until it is full of packages, which can take a week.
I have lots of new things to tell you, I have been incredibly busy in the studio since I returned home to Mexico from chilly Alberta, Canada.
The work on Stellas went very well and she sold right out. I didn’t even get to keep one for myself, hoping to remedy that with the next preorder.
Speaking (or rather…typing) of that, it’s coming up! I am planning one for the end of January. Stella will be offered in my custom resin color, Winter Blush. It’s lighter than the Desert Sand of the previous order dolls and equally as pretty.
Fullset dolls will come with a special limited edition outfit and handmade shoes especially for her.
GREAT STELLA STUFF
I LOVE creating for Stella!
I have been working on some designs for outfits and dress sets for our special girl.
Each outfit is carefully designed, sewn and hand dyed by me and then finished with all those tiny little details my collectors have grown to love and expect from me.
I will generally spend about 5 days making an outfit as I like to do the basic sewing and then let it sit a bit until I find just the perfect finishing touches, dying ribbons, making buttons etc….
NEW~ I am now designing shoes and boots for Stella, how exciting is that? I am having lots of fun with it with new designs rumbling in my head daily…actually nightly til about 3am to be more accurate 🙂
With the same love and attention to detail as goes into my outfits the new footwear is sure to please even the most discerning collector, made right here in my studio, one shoe at a time.
Since his debut with Stella at the Quinlan Doll and Teddy Show in Philadelphia last year Princess has captured the hearts of many including Stella.
Each stray kitty is sculpted by me in studio and no molds have been created of him. He has so far been released in my Etsy shop in 2 different poses and I hope to add a new pose each month as time permits.
He is the perfect size for MSD (16 inch) dolls. Do you have room for an adorable, loving stray in your home?
I have been working on some great new colors to add to my selection of Tibetan Lamb fur, you are going to love these!
Fantasy colors, great for your mermaids, trolls or fun loving dollies.
I’m hoping to be finished these and have them in the shop about the end of January.
ALSO new for the shop are fur pieces cut specifically for making your own Stella wigs. These pieces come in a variety of different colors and will come with the pattern I designed and use for Stella. Easy to sew with just one seam. You can sew it either on a machine or by hand.
Ever since I arrived in Mexico shipping has been a big challenge.
The problem is that Mexican post is very slow and not always reliable as far as actually delivering. I find that the postal service is great for inexpensive items like and they generally arrive anywhere in 3-6 weeks. I am not comfortable using the service for shipping dolls. So I experimented with shipping through Fed Ex which is super expensive here and generally costs about $150 to use. I resorted to paying half the shipping so my customers weren’t being surprised by a huge bill after saving up for a doll. Well it didn’t take long for my bill to take a toll either so onto my new solution…
I am now shipping once every week or 2 depending on how many orders I have, kind of group order style.
I address each order and prepay shipping using USPS and then put them all into a big box together which gets shipped to my courier in California (thanks Christopher). Once the box arrives in California all the parcels inside are taken to USPS and shipped on to you the collector.
It’s a bit more work on our end but it saves you guys a lot of money in shipping and takes no more time to arrive than it would if I had shipped directly to you through Mexican post…AND you get a tracking number!
SO if you are looking at ETSY and see that your item looks like it hasn’t shipped yet it’s because I’m waiting a few days for the box to get full, no worries I haven’t forgotten about your order.
I have been way behind on posting updates here on the site, but have been managing to get them onto FaceBook for any of you that follow me there.
So here I am finally getting a chance to make a much needed post 🙂
I arrived in Canada from Mexico on August 25th to set up my temporary studio and get ready for the arrival of all the Preorder Stella’s.
My traveling companion, Tinker and I, and all of my STUFF has invaded the home of my great friends who don’t seem to mind me taking over the place with all my mess for a couple of months….thank goodness for excellent friends!
Come September 7th, it was just like Christmas day in the house when 3 tightly packed boxes of the girls arrived…woohooo! Finally it was time to get down to work, snipping, painting, sewing, there was fur flying I can tell you!
Blank dolls and faced up only dolls were the first to go out and I was able to get the bulk of them shipped off to their new homes last week.
Rave reviews from collectors are already coming in….I love you guys!
I have all of the wigs sewn, most of the clothes for fullset outfits done and dyed and will be sending out more Paypal invoices this weekend for shipping.
Any Fullset dolls that were ordered directly from my website will be going out next. Then all the dolls ordered through the Denver Doll Emporium store will be shipped. Last but certainly not least will be the 3 one of a kind dolls that were purchased.
I will be wrapping up here and heading back home to Mexico October 27th. By then It’s going to be getting way too cold here in Alberta for this girl and her trusty chihuahua.
I am hoping to make a few of Stella’s stray cats, Princess available before I have to leave if time permits.
I do plan on being back again in March with Stella’s new little brother Ethan to do a bit of work on our way to The Quinlan Doll and TeddyBear show in Philadelphia April 12-14 /2018
Meanwhile there are shoes and eyes available for Stella in my Etsy shop and I’ll be adding some clothing there as I can.
Off and on over the past year I have been working on an idea for my version of a Catrina doll, quite unlike the traditional Catrina.
Here in Mexico the Catrina doll is a character that has become a part of the big celebration Dia de los Muertos.
La Catrina as we know her originated with Jose Guadalupe Posada, considered the father of Mexican printmaking. Born in 1852.
Since her beginnings in illustrations of political and social satire during times of revolution, Catrina has moved into a role of literal and metaphorical poster child for the Day of the Dead, symbolizing the joy of life in the face of its inevitable end.
Now La Catrina is the beloved grand dame of Mexico’s dance with death 365 days a year, appearing in movies, drawings, sculpture and taking on such roles as mermaids, brides and the all-around icon of celebrations.
The dolls will be on display at the boutique gallery Lujo Lifestyle in Bucerias, Mexico and will be sold through my Etsy shop and Facebook.
If you are interested in purchasing one please contact me here through the contact us form or facebook. Fully poseable she about 14 inches tall to the top of her head and 19 inches including her hair. She can be displayed on or off her custom doll stand.
The Maribel sculpt was originally done in paper clay and then cast by myself in white resin. Please note that these artist casts are not perfect and may have a bubble or 2. I have incorporated any imperfections into the design of the doll so they look like they are supposed to be there. It actually worked out beautifully making the resin look porous in places like naturally aged bone.
Maribel comes with her own custom stand and her mask of her former alive self. Her custom wig is made of wool with metal decorations and finished with an amethyst and crystals. I made the wig with magnets so it is detachable for easy shipping.
The stockings and shoes are painted on, and her clothing and eyes are not removable.
All the jewellery, clothes and tiny details were also made especially for this doll.
“The days of the Dead” is a time of celebration which refers to the Days of October 31 – November 2. October 31 is Halloween or All Hallows eve. November 1 is “el Dia de los innnocentes” or the day of the children and All Saints Day. November second is All Souls Day or the Day of the Dead. During this time candles, flowers and the favorite foods of the deceased are placed on the grave and the family visits, eats, sings and tells favorite stories about those who have passed.
Altars are usually decorated with flowers, candles, pan de muerto, ceramic skulls, and most importantly pictures of loved ones.
Drinks should be placed in the altar to quench the thirst of the dead after their long journey back home.
Salt is considered the spice of life and is one the staples that are often left at the altar.
The rituals used to celebrate the day are varied and colorful. Yet, all carry the same message, celebrating the day of the dead is a true celebration of life.
Here are some pictures of her progress. I am also working on 2 more one of a kind dolls in this series.
Now that I’m happily settled into my new surroundings here in Mexico it’s time to start spreading the dolly love and share the beauty of this mystical place!! Have you ever wanted to experience the sights, sounds and tastes of Mexico or maybe just take a creative journey under a palm tree, poolside? Here’s your chance! I now have space in 2 classes.
A SAMPLE OF THE DOLL STYLE I WILL BE TEACHING IN CLASS This is Tiffany
*please note, fabrics, clothing styles and facial features of your doll may differ. No two dolls ever turn out exactly alike.
WHERE?: Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
WHEN?: November 5-11, 2017 & November 12-18, 2017
6 nights, 7 days stay in a beautiful artist’s retreat close to the beach (read more about the venue and see pictures below)
all tools and supplies needed to complete your art doll
5 days of art doll instruction and 24 hour access to the studio
meals prepared by a personal chef
Sunday evening Welcome Reception, 6 full breakfasts & 5 lunches (more like dinner) served poolside in a tropical setting and a Saturday departure breakfast.
optional local sightseeing as well as an incredible night cruise to an eco island lit solely by hundreds of candles, be entertained under the stars as Mexico’s past comes to life through music and dance. The show is followed by an amazing dinner beachside with open bar.
I have designed a wonderful new doll style especially for the classes. Come join me and a wonderful group of people for an unforgettable time of learning and discovery.
WHAT WILL YOU LEARN?: Making a complete art doll in air dry Ladoll clay. Your doll will be about 16 inches tall if posed standing. This will be a static doll in your chosen pose, with the exception of one ball joint in her neck for extra expression. by class end, you will have a good understanding of my techniques for
Armature construction and striking a pose
Sculpting the complete body, head and hands
Making a ball jointed neck and stringing
Hair and eyes
Painting and blushing your doll
Designing the outfit and dressing
Making leather boots
And MUCH more
There is much to learn in 5 days so we will have full days in the studio with evenings free for enjoying the sights or just relaxing. WHAT IS THE COST? $1800 USD per person all inclusive except for dinners QUESTIONS?** Are the rooms shared?: Yes the rooms have 2 beds and each room has a private bathroom. If you are coming with a friend, great if not you will make wonderful ones here. as we already know doll people are incredible! **Do I need to bring anything for class?: No unless you have special trinkets, or fabrics and trims you would like to include in the making of your doll **Do I need sewing skills?: No we will be doing only a small amount of hand sewing. I will have a sewing machine onsite as well if you choose to use it. ** Do I need prior sculpting knowledge?: No, not at all, I teach in a way that is suited to both beginner and the more advanced student. **Can my spouse come with me?: Yes they are welcome but the venue does have an extra fee of $450USD for a spouse or companion which includes 6 nights stay as well as breakfasts and lunches on site. If your guest would like to attend the excursion the cost of that is $130USD. If you would prefer to stay off site I can assist in booking something close to the venue. ** What should I pack?: I would suggest you don’t pack like I did on my first trip here, with 8 pairs of high heels 🙂 A pair of low heeled sandals comfortable for walking is all you really need. Mexico and the places we will be for the most part are casual. Don’t bring any gowns! Cool light weight clothes and maybe a sweater in case you need one in the evenings Sunscreen, sun glasses and a bathing suit Pack light, if you forget anything don’t worry you can get anything you need here for cheaper than you could back home. **When do I have to book by?: Class space is limited to 12 students onsite so booking early is a good idea. I can take more students but you will need to book your stay off-site. **Do I make a deposit?: All bookings require a $500USD deposit.
You may also pay in full if you choose. Payments can be made through Paypal with the above “add to cart” button.
In order to hold a reservation we must receive the deposit within ten days of the booking being made. The balance is due 45 days prior to your arrival date. ** Cancellation and refund policy: Reservations cancelled prior to 90 days, 50% is refundable. Less than 60 days, 25% is refundable. Less than 45 days prior to class, fee paid is non-refundable ** Is there WIFI?: Yes About the Venue
Located just 3.5 miles south of the airport, the walled garden hacienda with swimming pool and inviting common areas is artist owned and operated. Art abounds! Made on site mosaic tables and fused glass tableware serve to enhance your breakfast in this lush garden setting. Palm, mango, guayaba, and banana trees, along with flowering ginger, hibiscus, jasmine, bird of paradise as well as the ever-present bougainvillea create delight for all the senses. upscale Mexican neighborhood that affords visitors a chance to experience the charm of daily life in old Mexico. You will find cobbled streets, where tortillerias and markets catering to the locals rather than the tourists…..craft shops, cantinas, night life and adventure. Your optional excursion: The adventure begins with a scenic ocean cruise across Banderas Bay to the isolated cove of Las Caletas. As the sun sinks into the Pacific Ocean and darkness descends, you’ll enjoy a privileged view of the shimmering lights scattered along the coastline. Enticing aromas of freshly grilled steak, chicken and fish lure you towards your private beachside table bathed in the soft glow of candles. The dinner buffet is complimented by freshly prepared vegetables, salads and authentic handmade tortillas. Our dessert trays boast brownies, pies, traditional rice pudding, and plenty of local fresh cut tropical fruit. And the show starts: In a hypnotic and exhilarating spectacle, stories of an ancient civilization are told through live music and modern dance as one of Mexico’s most innovative contemporary dance troupes transports you on a magical and mystical journey through time. After the show, end a perfect evening with a nightcap and dancing beneath the stars on the short cruise back to your point of departure. No other nightlife in Puerto Vallarta comes close to comparing to this amazingly unique experience. Immerse yourself in the Rhythms of the Night.
A little about my vision for Stella, OR more correctly, Stella’s vision for herself.
She is about 40cm tall with a slim type body and an oversized head. Normally this size body would have about an 6-8 inch head (measured around the top of the head) Stella’s head will be about 11 inches.
I am now working on the 5th head for her as she didn’t approve of the first 4.
Fussy girl she is, she knows what she wants and it took me a while to get it right 🙂
Yay!! We finally got her a head that we are both happy with, now we can get on with the rest of her 🙂
This would be a great time to give awesome thanks to Christopher for putting time in to edit my videos for me!……I am kinda clueless when it comes to that sort of thing and would rather be sculpting than learning how to edit vids.
Well that was FUN…Let’s see some more! Who knew there was so much to making a BJD. It usually takes me a year to make a master doll of part time sculpting. I mean with life happening.
If I sculpt 18 hours a day which I did quite often with Stella I can make better time and cut that down to about 5 months. I get a bit delirious and some pretty great things happen amongst having a whole lot of conversation with myself and the doll 🙂 Oh yeah, I LOVE what I do!
THE LAST VIDEO ON FINISHING STELLA WILL BE POSTED IN A COUPLE OF DAYS!….STAY TUNED
An update on Stella’s stats:
wig size 11 inches, eyes 22-24mm, height 40cm or 16 inches, shoes- yosd, she will wear many yosd clothes though her legs are longer than usual. Stella is pictured with in standard yosd pumpkin pant and top which could be a short dress on a standard size yosd doll.