She was a gift from my friend Sally Springfield after we did an Art Doll Collaborative together. That was my first venture into doll making.
Two artist friends had invited me to join the collaborative. I immediately said yes because I admired both artists very much and was honored to be invited. Then reality hit me. I never even played with dolls let along make one! But I had committed so I set out to see what I might do.
First I found instructions on how to make a head with a sculpted face – after a few tries – success. But I couldn’t just send a head I did arms but found stuffing them made them sort of lumpy so I decided finger weaving would have to work for the legs. A cassette case covered with fiber fill and jersey became the body so she would be able to sit, yarn and ribbon became her hair and Elzabeth was ready for her journey. She carried a small sketchbook so each of those who contributed to her finish could do a self portrait and tell about what they added.
Elzabeth traveled to Texas, California, Kentucky and to a few places here in Michigan before returning home to me. Wish I had a picture of how she looked when she started, certainly not this good but here she is when she got back home. She even got a stand to hold her up while she was traveling.
We had so much fun with those dolls that another group started and I did a second collaborative. This time with Nealie, a mermaid. When she left she had a face, hair and a body. The rest of her decorative parts were added by the other artists.
And that was the start of an adventure that has continued because it’s fun making dolls every once in awhile. My most recent doll was for a Day of The Dead Exhibit at the Gallery Uptown last November. Meet Catrina, she lives on a shelf with a Christmas Doll that was a gift from my mother-in-law.
In between I’ve taken a couple classes and even entered a competition. I won First Place in that competition with Aunt Agnes. She’s the one in white in the middle. There are some others up there too, experiments or just fun to make.
I am a collector – and one of the several things I collect is angels – so why not make a few. Some of these are from patterns, some my own experiments...
The one with the knitting in her pocket is a Guardian Grannie from a pattern by Marcia Acker-Missall. I made her for my mother when her health was failing. I have a few others hanging around. This gal with the big feet was a class with Jacque Uetz. And some using old quilts, you can see the finger woven legs on the one on the right.