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Dollmaker's Journey

May 2007 Issue 67

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Dollmakers Journey
May 2007 Issue 67
Dream ~ Imagine ~ Create ~ Grow ~ Believe ~ Magic
at we help your creative dreams come true.

May 2007 Issue 67

Copyright 2007 by Dollmakers Journey

Dollmakers 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:


You can read all the past issues online.  Go to:
The archives include an easy to follow index to all the past issues.

Dear Dollmaker Friends,

We got back from AFIC (Artistic Figures in Cloth) in Columbus, Ohio, full of new ideas. We asked everyone what they would like to see us carry, and we will be adding new products to our website in the next few months, along with directions on how to use them. Bonnie had a class from Jean Bernard where she learned to use Apoxie Sculpt while making treasure purses from seashells. Mary Ann learned fun beading techniques from Ruth Prest.  We really relish the creative energy we receive meeting our treasured customers and designers in person.  The closing night we were delighted to participate in stories told by Rosie Chapman. Bonnie played an African piano harp and Mary Ann played the mother to a clueless boy who married the princess who loved her father as much as salt. You really had to be there!  We wish to give huge kudos to Cynthia Sieving and her remarkable staff for organizing such a memorable conference and to thank all of you who made our stay so special.

Mary Ann and Bonnie

We were thrilled to meet the talented JEAN BERNARD in person when we
attended AFIC.  While there we loaded up on her wonderful new molds.  This
week we have three of the miniature faces that she was selling like hotcakes
and because they are miniature they are ON SALE!  Check them out!

Our May Sale continues with THREE categories discounted 20% - Amulets/Bags,
Beaded and Miniature/Doll Pin.  You're sure to find something wonderful in
all of them including KAREN SHIFTON'S new "Fishlips."


My name is Yaffa Smolensky and I live in Tzfat, Israel. I am one of three retired ladies who are founders of a non-profit organization called "Lev U'Neshama" (Heart and Soul). We have been helping poor families in Tzfat for 5 years with food boxes, free shoes for children, free eyeglasses for adults and children, dental assistance, hospital visits for soldiers in our city's hospital and toys and school supplies for three Ethiopian preschools in the city. The children have practically nothing in their classrooms and we have stepped in to provide supplies as well as new, warm jackets, hats, gloves, shoes and socks. However, I am writing to you with the hope that there may be people who would like to make simple dolls, perhaps with brown faces, to distribute to the children. We are trying to help 180 children here and we would really appreciate some help.
Please visit our website:
I can be reached at this email address:

HINT: Free doll patterns for this project are available at our Charity Corner. Just go to and click on Charity Corner.


Bonnie learned the following from Jean Bernard:

*Apoxie Sculpt will never dry out, and can be left uncovered for months. However, you might want to keep the lid on to keep dust out. It will only harden when A and B are mixed together. After they are mixed you have about 1-3 hours to mold it the way you wish.

*Remove small amounts (about the size of a marble or grape) with a wooden ice cream spoon or Popsicle stick. IT IS VERY IMPORTANT to label your spoon or stick. Put A on one end and B on the other. Only use the A end to remove A, and the B end to remove B. If you accidentally use the wrong end, immediately remove any clay or it will contaminate the whole container and cause it to harden prematurely. Put small amounts of each on aluminum foil (Apoxie Sculpt wont stick to foil, but it will stick to everything else), making sure you keep A and B separated.

*Remove any jewelry that might come in contact with Apoxie Sculpt, such as wedding rings. Wet your fingers with cool water. Then take EQUAL amounts of A and B and mix them together thoroughly. If your hands get sticky wet them again. You can begin molding the Apoxie Sculpt into flowers, leaves, seaweed, etc. Apoxie Sculpt sticks to itself. If you wish to add jewels, stick the rhinestone into the clay to leave an impression, and then remove them to paint your project. You can texture the clay using terry towels, crumpled paper, toothpicks, etc. Jean says she sculpts all her projects using spit and toothpicks.

*Jean used her tiny face molds and other molds to create paperclay images which we placed on the project, surrounding it with Apoxie Sculpt to hold it in place.

*Paint the clay while it is wet or dry it doesnt matter. Once dry Apoxie Sculpt can be sanded, drilled, and sealed. Use Grrrip glue to add rhinestones, etc. to painted finished project.

*Apoxie Sculpt is non-toxic, but you need to clean your hands with water BEFORE it dries. Make sure you remove any from under your fingernails before it hardens. If your hands tend to be hot (thank you menopause!) you can dip them in ice water to cool them down.

*Apoxie Sculpt is not available in stores. You can get it from


Who Am I? Sherry Goshon Challenge
Deadline: July 1, 2007
Sherry Goshon has a new challenge and free pattern. The theme is Who Am I? The pattern is a tiny elfin or fairy pattern. You need to make her into whomever you want her to be and write a paragraph about her. For example, she could be the elfin of the woods that takes care of the berries, etc. The pattern may be enlarged for those who dont like to work small. You can find the pattern at
Pictures need to be sent to Sherry by July 1, 2007 at
Prizes from Sherry, Dollmakers Journey, and Cloth Doll Patterns will be awarded.
Feel free to share this information with doll clubs, etc.

Hoffman Challenge 2007
Deadline: July 27, 2007

16th Annual "Dimensions in Dollmaking"
Theme: History in the Making
Show will be August 22-25, 2007 in San Diego, California
Promise forms due by July 19 and dolls by August 1, 2007
Forms and more information at:

All Dolled Up: Beaded Art Doll Competition 2007 Theme Celestial Reflections
Deadline: August 31, 2007For more information go to:

Gypsies of the Sea 2007 sponsored by Treasures of the Gypsy
The challenge packets are available now, and finished dolls are due in September. To enter next years challenge, send $15 to:
Pamela Armas/Treasures of the Gypsy, PO Box 748, Mountainair, NM 87036. 
You will receive a packet of fabric, trims, and trinkets to use on you Gypsy doll. You may add additional fabrics of your choice to your doll.


June 6-9, 2007 - Carousel of Dolls
International Doll Makers Association 35th Convention
Hilton Indianapolis, North
8181 North Shadeland Ave
Indianapolis, IN

June 28-30, 2007 Doll Alley
Cincinnati, Ohio
Great teachers, projects, and doll exhibits
For more information check out (under Ohio)

July 19-22, 2007 - Enchanted Doll Artists Conference
Embassy Suites, Albuquerque, New Mexico 
Also EDAC website has info on the Gypsy challenge.

August 9-12, 2007 - Doll University presents Camp Doll U
Trinity Lutheran College, Issaquah, Washington, U.S.A.

August 16-25, 2007 Masters at Marooochydore (MAM) 2007
Beerwah Q., Australia
Fabric figures and character artists from Australia and Canada
Applications closed June 1, 2007
Website:   for on-line application & general information

May 13-20, 2008 (tentative date) WOW New York
New York
More information will be forthcoming

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


A wing tutorial for your woodland critters made from Tyvek.
Click on tutorials. Also check out Kerrys free patterns.
You can see patterns for sale by Kerry Seymour at

By Gloria Mimi Winer

You can prevent blown fingers by trying the technique I use for tiny separate fingers for a 12 to 19 inch doll.

First... for a great pattern, do what Bob McKinley told me, "Xerox your hand and reduce to size for a perfect pattern".

Trace the hand on the fabric or onto a piece of freezer or waxed paper.

If you are making very small hands, and using a woven cotton or silk you should place the length of the fingers along the true BIAS of the fabric in order to have enough stretch to get a tiny tool into the tiny finger and turn it.

If using a knit fabric place the length of the finger on the straight of the goods, with the most stretch ACROSS the finger and palm.

Set your machine for 1.5 mm stitch length. If you have them, use the feed-dog-cover plate with the tiny hole used only for straight stitching, If you don't put a doubled piece of masking tape over the wide zigzag hole in the cover plate so the machine won't eat the ends of tiny fingers. Also, use a universal needle for either a woven or knit fabric, If you don't have one use a ball-point needle for knit fabric.

Stitch a V rather than a U between the fingers; it's easier to get them to turn.

Don't cut out the hands until after you have stitched them.

Cut them out leaving a very narrow seam allowance between the fingers and around the tips of the fingers. Trim very close.

SNIP with very sharp snips almost to the center of the V between the fingers, If you don't the fingers will wrinkle there.

Here is my secret....I use Grrrip (a PVC glue) and a needle-tip applicator (both available from  I apply a very thin bead of glue all around each finger, only on the stitching and what little seam allowance is left. Then turn it over and do the other side of the seam allowance.

Take a moment to roll the drying glue off your hands. While the glue is still tacky but not wet, use your fingers to wipe away the excess glue.  Wipe it out and away from the hand, while, at the same time rubbing it into the seam. This will prevent the fabric from getting stiff.

Use a blunt tool that fits into the finger and "open" each finger so that it won't glue itself closed. The glue dries clear and will prevent fraying of woven fabric.

To turn the fingers:  Make a turning tool by picking up a couple of tiny metal tubes. They are available at Hobby shops that sell model trains.  Get several that will fit into the small fingers. (There are also tiny turning tubes available at

Then take one of your bent 3 inch (8 or 9 cm) doll needles and put the sharp end into a cork for safety. (You may have to enjoy a bottle of wine to get a good cork!) Try not to damage it too much or you will need to go for another one.) I store the corked-needle inside the tube.

To turn the finger, put the tube into the un-turned finger, hold it against your chest, press the eye of the needle onto the seam allowance at the tip of the finger and use your fingers, (sometimes it helps to lick them for traction), twisting the finger as you try to push it up over the needle.... not down into the tube. It does require a bit of practice to get good at it and I still, but only rarely, have a problem one.

If I do blow the finger I fix it.  Wire and stuff the finger and use the tip of a straight pin to hold the seam together with another spot of Grrrip applied with that wonderful needle applicator. When the glue dries, in an hour or so, the finger will pass inspection.

Once I spent eight hours hand stitching three separate very narrow gimp and other trims around a Victorian skirt. When finished it stuck out unattractively. I hated it. So I spent another 45 minutes carefully removing all of it. Then I replace all of it with Grrrip and that wonderful applicator. It draped beautifully, and the bond is permanent. I can't remove it. I am constantly finding ways to use it to make better dolls.

Editors Note: You can see some of Glorias wonderful patterns at:


Swedens SARAH JONES has added another darling Household Fairy to her Series.  Come meet Wheezy the Cobweb Fairy  hes adorable!

SHELLEY HAWKEY is taking her work in wonderful new directions.  You have to
see her lovely trio of new dolls "Love," "Peace" and 'Joy."  Each is created
with a different inner structure and you are going to want them all.  We
also have added her very lively "Conchita" celebrating Cinco de Mayo. Baby Jada is her newest baby elf and she can even wear real baby clothes!

KAREN SHIFTON is treating us to a very unusual neck pouch called "Fishlips"
that is sure to attract attention wherever you wear it.

ALLISON MARANO has just released Henley the House Gnome CD.  Learn to needlesculpt a delightfully expressive face with this terrific CD course.
We loved seeing UTE VASINAS teeny Baby Trolls in person.  These little creatures have lots of personality and fit in the palm of your hand.  Youll want to make a whole bunch of them.  They are included in the May Sale.
Costuming Queen SYLVIA SCHORR has once again outdone herself with her newest costumes for our Doll and Dude for All Seasons.  Its the Roaring 20s and the Dude finally has a tuxedo!  As an introductory special these two patterns are discounted 25%.
elinor peace bailey has been having way too much fun creating flat dolls and her latest CD Exploring the Flat Doll and the Playful Use of the Figure has SIXTEEN exciting patterns for you to play with.  Why not stretch your creative muscles with this exciting new approach to doll making?


Aluminum Sculpting Wire is back in stock.


Art is when you hear a knocking from your soul - and you answer.  ~Star Richs


We survived the trip to Columbus, Ohio and back. We brought a car and a van (Jim drove one) full of items from Dollmakers Journey. The hotel gave us a room where we set up our shop and slept on rollaway cots. It was odd not having access to a TV, alarm clock, telephone, etc., but thanks to cell phone technology we did just fine. We brought the Elementals, and received many favorable comments. Look for the pattern sometime in June.

On April 27th Mary Ann left to make a very quick trip to Hawaii to attend the funeral of her dear Father-in-law Charles Aa Kaahanui.  It was very gratifying to be united with her Ex Mel, children Ana and Mike and daughter-in-law Kyah along with Mels mother and brother during this difficult time.  Everyone drew strength and comfort from the belief that no matter what, our families are eternal.  She arrived home late in the day on May 1st and then left at 6:30am on the 3rd to head to Ohio.  Thank God Jim had wisely encouraged her to prepare for the journey well in advance.  Mary Ann and daughter Ana will be traveling to Syracuse, NY the first weekend in June to attend the Ordination to the Catholic Priesthood of Anas former beau and dear friend Michael Galuppi which promises to be a grand event.


Free rag doll patterns:

Something you can do to keep your hands busy and your printer
Free monthly newsletter at:

Wed love to hear your thoughts about our Customer Connection newsletter.

Contact the editor Bonnie B. Lewis at with any comments, suggestions, etc. 

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Copyright 2007 Dollmakers Journey

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