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Dollmaker's Journey
CUSTOMER CONNECTION

March 2008 Issue 76

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Dollmaker’s Journey CUSTOMER CONNECTION
Dream ~ Imagine ~ Create ~ Grow ~ Believe ~ Magic
At http://dollmakersjourney.com we help your creative dreams come true.

March 2008 Issue 76

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Copyright 2008 by Dollmaker’s Journey

Dollmaker’s Journey Customer Connection newsletter is a free e-mail newsletter. Tell your friends, family and fellow dollmakers about us, and feel free to forward this newsletter to those who might be interested. You can visit our companion website at:
http://www.dollmakersjourney.com/

**Notice!**

You can read all the past issues online. Go to:
http://dollmakersjourney.com/newsletter/archives.html
The archives include an easy to follow index to all the past issues.

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Dear Dollmaking Friends,

One of the funniest plays I have ever seen is "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum." My daughter Dawn had a leading role (Domina) in it when she was in college. Right now I think this newsletter needs to be titled "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Newsletter." As some of you know, I was able to go on an ocean cruise for the first time in my life last week, joining all my siblings and their spouses. Our flight to the cruise was cancelled due to a major snowstorm in Cleveland (they closed the airport), and we were rerouted through North Carolina. Fortunately we arrived in Miami just in time (with one minute to spare). The ship closed its doors at 3:30 p.m. and we arrived at 3:29 p.m. We had a lovely time, and I managed to collect unique dolls from each port which I will talk about in April. On the way home, upon arriving in Charlotte, North Carolina, our plane was delayed due to tornadoes. Of course, our luggage was left on the tarmac as crews took cover and everything got soaked, except the dolls and my Bible. We finally got the only plane to Washington, D.C. that left that day, but our luggage was left behind. It finally arrived after midnight, and we waited for it because my husband was flying to Atlanta the next day and needed his clothes and computer. While we were at the airport waiting for luggage, my son-in-law fell 20 feet from the top of a ladder onto a hard floor while installing a ceiling fan and broke his back. We are grateful (A) he isn't dead, and (B) he isn't paralyzed. I took care of my 5 grandchildren so my daughter could be with him at the hospital. He is now home and walking around with a full body brace, and I will be helping as needed while he gets more x-rays and physical therapy. I know you didn't need this long epistle, but that is why the newsletter is delayed this month. Hopefully in April it will come out in a more timely fashion. In the meantime, have fun with our March quiz. By the way, the February question related to tax collectors, something on the mind of every American since taxes are due April 15th.

Mary Ann and Bonnie

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MARCH SALE

We’re delighted to announce that our Costuming Queen SYLVIA SCHORR is transforming our Doll and Dude for All Seasons into incredible renditions of “The English Teacher” and “The King of Siam.” As always the introductory price will be discounted 25%. Do take a look at these beautiful new costumes. http://dollmakersjourney.com/dollforallseasons.html

You’ll find a colorful assortment of patterns in our four MARCH SALE categories JESTERS/CLOWNS/STORYBOOK and TOPSY/TURVEY. Be sure to take advantage of the 20% discount – less than a week remaining for this fun sale. http://dollmakersjourney.com/

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FEBRUARY QUIZ WINNER

Question: If you truly want to see trulli, there's only one country where you can do so. What country is it? What are they?

Answer: Italy
Source: www.initaly.com

The Truly Amazing Trulli

Trulli are truly amazing. But – what are trulli?

Trulli are rounded stone drywall (mortarless) houses with gray, stone, cone-shaped roofs found in Italy (the Puglia region) and nowhere else in the world. The origin of their oddly shaped, stone teepee design remains unknown, though some stories date trulli back 5,000 years.

The favorite story is that inhabitants of the Middle Ages first constructed such buildings. At the time, the King heavily taxed anyone who built a dwelling on the King's land. With this in mind, residents cleverly devised the dwellings solely for the purpose of tax evasion. Upon word of the taxman's arrival, people rapidly dismantled the trulli and moved the stones out of sight. After the taxman was gone, they re-erected the homes.

Today the trulli are firmly in place, buttressed with stucco and whitewashed every year. The town of Alberobello, location of a large number of trulli, boasts a historical center declared a World Heritage Site by the United Nations Educational and Scientific Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

Congratulations to Nancy Zastrow from the United States. Your name was selected at random from all of the correct quiz entries, and you will receive a $10 gift certificate from Dollmaker’s Journey. Watch for your name in a coming month!

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MARCH QUESTION

March is National Women's History Month in the United States. To celebrate, this month's question is:

Who is the first woman inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame?

Everyone who emails in the correct answers by April 15th will be entered into a drawing for a $10 gift certificate to Dollmaker’s Journey. The winner will be announced in the next newsletter. Email your answers to Bonnie at EnchantedR@aol.com Put March Quiz in subject box. Please include your full name and where you live (state/country) in your email.

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CUSTOMER QUERIES

Q: Last month in your newsletter you mentioned that you need to list the value of dolls you own. I have donated to charities and fund-raising events, given to friends/family, or kept most all my dolls, very few have I sold and then only after a lot of arm twisting (my arm) and they offer a price and I agree. My family really treasures my dolls, and constantly encourages me to make some to sell, but I'm not sure how they would feel about the ones I leave when I go to the big doll show in the sky. I haven't the slightest idea what value to place on my dolls, neither the larger porcelain ones or the smaller Barbie sized polymer clays. Is there a formula for value pricing homemade items? Alice M.

A: I think everyone has difficulty putting a price on creativity. The basic formula is twofold:

First: Add up the cost of all materials used in the project, including paint, stuffing, etc.
Triple that (e.g. if the materials are $20, the doll would cost $60) Include in this formula the cost of gas if you needed to go to a shop for something special, or postage if you ordered something.

Second: Keep track of how long it takes you to create a doll. Multiply by the amount of money you want to receive per hour. (e.g. $5.00 to $10.00 an hour). Add the cost of materials.

NOTE: The second method isn't very realistic for most dolls, because they are a labor of love and take much longer to create than anyone is willing to pay.

Most cloth dolls would be worth $25 to $100, unless they are special with lots of beading, art dolls, etc. Porcelain dolls are sometimes priced higher. Please don't take this as gospel. It is just my opinion from selling many dolls and operating craft shows for 13 years. Keep in mind that dolls made as special gifts for those we love are priceless.

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GODDESS OF LOVE HAT from Sherry Goshon

Cindy checked out our free pattern "Goddess of Love" from Sherry Goshon (http://dollmakersjourney.com/goddess.html) and noticed there weren't any hat instructions included. So we wrote to Sherry and asked. She said, "To be honest, I haven't a clue really what kind of hat it is….too funny….however, my guess is…."

Following are her directions to create the hat:

"Measure around the doll head where the hat would go...double that number...and make a square that number X that number...fold in half...do a running stitch up the side round the corner and to the fold and pull the thread to make it bunch up tightly....secure knot...turn and turn under about 1/2" and do a running stitch about 1/4" from edge and fit to head...secure the thread and make the bunched up part in the front of hat...sort of scrunch and stitch or glue in place..."

Hope this helps any of you who make this fun pattern.

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CHALLENGES/COMPETITIONS

The Storybook Challenge
Deadline: March 28, 2008
For more information: http://thedollnet.com/storybook_dolls/index.html

[The Material Girls] Becky Holloway Challenge!
Deadline: September 30, 2008
Rules:
1. Use the Becky Holloway pattern called "Garden Party" (available at http://dollmakersjourney.com/holloway.html)
2.You can change the pattern by upsizing or downsizing and adding bits and
pieces but it still needs to look like the Garden Party pattern somewhat
when you are finished.
3.You must finish and send the pictures to Lisa Risler (happyartist@gmail.com) by September 30th, 2008 with a NAME and a good DESCRIPTION of what all you did and how you did it...even a story is nice!
4. Voting will begin on October 5th with the url to be announced as soon as it is available online.
5. NO LATE entries can be accepted to be fair to everyone.
6. Please join the Yahoo Group "Hollowaypatterns" so we can kind of keep up with what is going on.
7. Do NOT show anyone your finished project until after the voting has been done. You must not tell anyone which entry is yours. You will be disqualified -- out of fairness to everyone else entering the contest.
Prizes will be awarded by Dollmaker's Journey, Cloth Doll Patterns, and Cloth Doll Supply.

Treasures of the Gypsy Challenge - Journey of the Gypsy
Kits available now for $20.00 US
For information on 2008 challenge contact: Pamela Armas
P. O. Box 748, Mountainair, New Mexico 87036, USA.
Email address: gypsytreasures@cs.com

2009 All Dolled Up: Beaded Art Doll Competition
Due date: August 31, 2009
Theme: Earthen Mother
Official rules posted here: http://www.landofodds.com/store/alldolledup.htm

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UPCOMING EVENTS YOU WON’T WANT TO MISS

April 10-13, 2008 – Creations in Fiber
For more information go to www.uncommonfolk.org or
www.creationsinfiber.org

April 18-20, 2008 - Magic, Mischief, and Mayhem: Art Gone Wild, American Style
Richmond, Kentucky (near Lexington)
Visit http://www.AnnieDolls.com for all the specific information.
Any questions - email Annie Hesse at: anniedolls@roadrunner.com or call: 859-623-2455

April 24-27, 2008 – 9th Canadian Doll Artist Association (CDDA) Show and Sale
Hilton Garden Inn, 500 Beck Crescent, Ajax, Ontario, Canada
For more information go to http://www.dollartists.ca/ (Look for Conference in menu)

April 26, 2008 – Calgary Doll Club Doll, Teddy and Toy Sale
10 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Admission $3.00
Acadia Recreation Center, 240 – 90 Avenue SE, Calgary, Alberta, Canada
For more information call Betty at (403) 243-3575 or
email Carolyn at cbtank@shaw.ca

April 26 – May 10, 2008 – Doll and Teddy Bear Tour in Germany
The tour begins in Frankfurt and travels down the German Toy Road to visit the International Doll Festival in Coburg and the Doll and Teddy Festival. Visit doll and teddy bear designers, manufacturers, museums, shoppes, a doll & teddy bear doctor, etc. German sights and sounds are included as well as a day spent in Salzburg, Austria on a “Sound of Music” tour. Return to Frankfurt up the German Romantic Road.
For more information contact Sharon Ellis at travelific@msn.com or call 763-241-8733

May 13-20, 2008 – WOW New York
Holiday Inn, Fishkill, New York
For more information go to http://thenewyorkwow.com/
Register now for exciting classes from Jennifer Carson, Diane Keeler, Adele Sciortino, Gloria Winer, and Judy Skeel.

May 16-18, 2008 – Think Pink! Conference from the Doll Gatherers
Aurora, Ohio
For more information email Joan Stephens at DGdolling@aol.com

June 5-28, 2008 – Exhibit in Fiber Artspace
1420 S. Alamo Street, Space 202 (Blue Star above Joe Blues), San Antonio, Texas
Free exhibit called Figuratively Speaking, Art Dolls by Pamela Hastings and Rosie Rojas
For more information call (210) 271-1015 or go to www.fiberartspace.com

July 17-20, 2008 – Enchanted Doll Artist Conference (EDAC)
Embassy Suites, Albuquerque, New Mexico
Visit: www.enchanteddollartistsconference.org or contact Rae Sook edac@cox.net , 9827 N. 151st E. Ave., Owasso, OK 74055 for more information

July 26-30, 2008 – National Doll Festival (21st annual)
Tuscany Suites and Casino, Las Vegas, Nevada
Same time and town as UFDC, ODACA and NIADA National Conventions
Contact information: National Doll Festival, P.O. Box 66823, Scotts Valley, CA 95067
E-mail: NatlDoll@aol.com or DollFestival@aol.com
(831) 438-5349 phone (831) 439-9142 fax number

To save yourself time and energy, get all the details on upcoming doll related events at CLOTH DOLL CONNECTION: http://clothdollconnection.com/

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SPECIAL GIFT FOR YOU

Learn Judi Ward's technique for hidden button moveable joints
http://mimikirchner.com/blog/archives/2007/03/hidden-button-movable-joint/

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NEW PATTERNS/BOOKS/CD-ROMs/DVDs/MOLDS

You’ll be learning a variety of techniques when you make SHERRY GOSHON’S lovely “Mannequin” body to go with her “Shaya” pressmold. SHERRY provides a short tutorial explaining one of the many ways the doll can be finished. http://dollmakersjourney.com/goshon.html

We really love BARBARA WILLIS’ newest pattern “Bliss” a simple but expressive wrapped doll that you’ll have a ball making. http://dollmakersjourney.com/willis.html

“Esmerelda” is another unique offering from CINDEE MOYER. Her dolls are easy-to-construct but have tremendous style. http://dollmakersjourney.com/moyer.html

Australia’s MICHELLE MUNZONE packs her patterns with terrific photos that will guide your every construction step. There’s a lot to learn and enjoy with her latest fairy “Arwen.” Be sure to take a look. http://dollmakersjourney.com/munzone.html

We finally have ELINOR PEACE BAILEY’S wonderfully eclectic “Chess Set.” What a special project for your favorite chess player! http://dollmakersjourney.com/epb.html

We have 2 new rabbit patterns from BECKY HOLLOWAY that would be just perfect for your spring decor. Stop by and check out “Hare’s Tale” and “Ode to Spring.” http://dollmakersjourney.com/holloway.html

Hot off the presses we have two fantastic new patterns from New Zealand’s JILL MAAS. How can it be that a simple body on a stand could have as much personality as the “Dressmaker’s Dummy!” And that impish “Eddie’ what a charming fellow. You’re going to love them. http://dollmakersjourney.com/maas.html

We’re delighted to announce that our Costuming Queen SYLVIA SCHORR is transforming our Doll and Dude for All Seasons into incredible renditions of “The English Teacher” and “The King of Siam.” As always the introductory price will be discounted 25%. Do take a look at these beautiful new costumes. http://dollmakersjourney.com/dollforallseasons.html

Did you know that PATTI CULEA has added a selection of stamps to her pattern line? We now have the lovely “Jiliana Face Stamp” and the “Starmere Tag” along with her newest pattern “Little Star Pincushion & Sewing Folder.” Three wonderful new projects for your creative enjoyment. http://dollmakersjourney.com/culea.html

We have quite an array of fabulous dragon patterns but SUSAN BARMORE’S “Cecil” is the first painted muslin one. If you haven’t tried this clever construction technique what are you waiting for?! http://dollmakersjourney.com/barmore.html

If you’re itching to try some new doll making techniques we’ve got two new projects from SUSAN BARMORE that are sure to tickle your creative fancy. As with all of Susan’s projects “Sea Child” and “Sea People” are easy-to-construct stuffed muslin bodies that are gessoed, painted and antiqued to great effect. A wonderful way to hone your painting skills! Stop by and take a look at our selection of Susan’s patterns. http://dollmakersjourney.com/barmore.html

SHERRY GOSHON and her mom JACQUE UETZ have teamed up for a fabulous two-part project. Part 1 is SHERRY’S lovely “Sweet Pea” that is holding Part 2 JACQUE’S “Lil Snips” marionette. “Sweet Pea” is available now and we’ll have “Lil Snips” in about a month. http://dollmakersjourney.com/goshon.html

We have two great new patterns from JUDY SKEEL “Flavia A Flat Mermaid” and “Faerie and Lace Mini Case.” Both projects have lots of options! JUDY has also revised her “Gemini CD” that now has more than 150 photos! http://dollmakersjourney.com/skeel.html

If you have a Red Hat Lady in your life or happen to be one then SUSAN BARMORE’S “The Girls” is for you. We also have SUSAN’S “Ancestor Spirit” an intriguing doll with a center opening. Stop by and take a look. http://dollmakersjourney.com/barmore.html

“Yo Yo Mama Cruz” is another fun, colorful project from elinor peace bailey. http://dollmakersjourney.com/epb.html

Wonderful new patterns just keep rolling in! JULIE MC CULLOUGH decided to give a modern look to the favorite doll style of her youth and came up with “Snippets.” Take a look at these fabulous dolls and see what we mean. http://dollmakersjourney.com/mccullough.html

Troll artist extraordinaire UTE VASINA has just released her wobble headed little guy “Shortie.” What a charmer! http://dollmakersjourney.com/vasina.html

We have two delightful new characters from CYNTHIA SIEVING “The Amazing Juggling Julletta” and “Jeppo de’Jester” that just happen to be in our MARCH SALE categories. http://dollmakersjourney.com/sieving.html

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FINGER F.A.Q.'s
by Gloria "Mimi" Winer

Q: What grain should fingers be on to make them easier to turn?

A: It depends on the size of the fingers. For very small hands, less than an inch long, I recommend you put the hand on the bias so there is a bit of stretch to help you turn them. However larger hands cut on the bias will not stuff without funny wrinkles between the fingers. I put larger hands on the straight of the goods. (Align pattern piece with the selvedge of the fabric,)

Q: How do you turn fingers?

A: To make a finger turning tool that will turn the tiniest fingers you will need a metal tube (such as brass tubes sold in 12 inch pieces by the box at hobby shops that sell model trains), a cork and a long doll needle.

Push the point of the needle into the cork. This is to give the needle tool a handle.
Here is how to use it:

First trim the fingers down to just the narrowest bit of seam allowance, too much will not allow the fingers to turn. Put some Grrrip (if you have any left, there is no more) or Crafter's Choice-Ultimate glue into a plastic container with a fine metal tube, (available from dollmakersjourney.com) and run a fine bead of glue around each finger. Turn the hand over and do the same to the other side. Now, use your fingers to pull the glue off and away from the hand, removing the excess glue. Set hand aside and roll the glue off of your fingers.

Push a tube or a tiny pair of hemostat jaws into each finger to be sure they have not been glues shut.
Wait about five minutes until glue is sticky but not wet.

Place brass tube into a finger. Put other end of tube, sticking out of the wrist against your chest and with the other hand place the eye of the needle tool on the tip of the finger against the seam allowance and
gently twist the finger with your other hand until the seam allowance goes down into the finger. The object is to push the finger up over the needle not down into the hand... When all fingers have been done, use a hemostat to reach inside the hand to grasp a finger and pull the hand right side out. Again, push a tool into each finger to straighten it out. This may take a bit of practice to do quickly and correctly every time.

If you "blow" a finger continue to turn it, when all fingers are turned, stuff each one with a folded-in-half pipe cleaner, not a chenille stem, but a pipe cleaner from the tobacco shop or news agent shop. They are smaller and the wires are stronger than chenille stems.

Then when all fingers are stuffed slather the blown finger with a bit of glue and use a needle or pin to put all the broken threads back in place, pin the hole together neatly until dry, It will be hard to find the tear when the glue is dry.

After the fingers are stuffed, I add a tiny bit of Airtex wisps to each finger with hemostats to form knuckles and to shape the hand (it is wedge shaped not flat).

Place the jaws of a large pair of hemostats over the hand below the thumb to keep the wires in place and fold the wrist back so to grab all the wires. (The thumb wire should be in the center of all the other
wires to create an opposable thumb that moves naturally.) Wrap all the wires together with a piece of white floral tape (stretch it to activate the wax adhesive and wrap tightly. This becomes your forearm armature.

Additional hint from Teri, one of our readers: If you don't have a set of Teeny Weeny Finger Turners (Tiny Turning Tubes are available at http://dollmakersjourney.com), it will be the most valuable addition you can make to your dollmaking tools. In addition, here's how I handle woven fingers. Sew them with the tiniest stitch on your machine (mine is at the setting for making buttonholes). Before clipping or turning, paint around each finger in the seam allowance with acrylic paint close to the color of the fabric. Let it dry completely, then trim and clip the seam. I use three-dimensional paint. This binds the fibers together. Since I started doing this, I haven't blown a single finger.

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SUPPLIES

Curved Quilting Needles are back in stock. http://dollmakersjourney.com/supplies.html

White Gel Pens are back in stock. http://dollmakersjourney.com/supplies.html

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PHOTOGRAPHY TIP from Estelle Katz

Another tip for those doll makers who take pictures of their dolls. I have hung an inexpensive roller blind up in my laundry room. When I want to take a picture of a doll I simply pull down the shade and place the doll on it. You have horizonless backgrounds as professional photographers use.

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NEWS FROM THE HOME FRONT

Bonnie survived the snowstorm, tornado, ocean voyage, and when she returned she babysat 5 grandchildren who had the stomach flu while her daughter stayed in the hospital with her husband. She had a great big slumber party with sleeping bags all over the floor. Ages were 10, 9, 9, 6, 3, 1, and 3 months. Fortunately her daughter-in-law Lisa came to help, bringing her new baby and 9 year-old. Lisa even helped everyone dye hard-boiled eggs for a special Easter treat. Grandchildren returned home just in time for Easter. Bonnie's husband spent the week in Atlanta, Georgia on business, arriving home after the crisis was over. He stayed one day and returned to Atlanta for two more weeks. Hopefully NOW she can get something done!

Mary Ann and Jim traveled north to New Jersey for the long Easter weekend and were able to visit with her sister Barbara, now in a nursing home, for four days in a row. Because her mobility is getting more and more limited Mak likes to spend her visits massaging Barb’s hand and feet. Barb’s family, friends and co-workers are planning a “Beef and Beer Fundraiser” to assist her family during this difficult time on Saturday April 26th from 6-10 pm at St. Ann’s Church, 22 Trenton Road, Browns Mills, NJ. They’ll be great food, music, dancing, a gift raffle and 50/50. Donation $25. For those that can't attend but would like to make a donation, please log on to: www.stannschurch.org. Click on Online Donations and then Barbara Cantrell Fund. Donations can be made through PayPal or a major credit card. If the St. Ann’s site is down, please try again in a few days. Mary Ann will be making some dolls for the auction. We will have the directions for the “Loving Hands Blanket” on the site very soon.

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WEBSITES:

Free printable tags
http://www.primdoodles.com/printables6.asp

Animal and soft toy patterns, including unusual ones such as a Rhino
http://www.funkyfriendsfactory.com

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We’d love to hear your thoughts about our Customer Connection newsletter.

Contact the editor Bonnie B. Lewis at enchantedR@aol.com with any comments, suggestions, etc.
Please feel free to pass this newsletter on to any of your friends. Help us spread the word about Dollmaker’s Journey! All we ask is that you forward it intact, with all the subscription information included. Thanks!

(By the way, you might want to print this out and put it into a binder to keep for reference….) To subscribe to Dollmaker’s Journey Customer Connection, go to: http://dollmakersjourney.com/subscribe.html

To unsubscribe, go to: http://dollmakersjourney.com/unsubscribe.html

To change your address, subscribe the new address and unsubscribe the old address.

Copyright © 2008 Dollmaker’s Journey



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