Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Twas the Night Before Christmas (hobby style)
Written by Joan Yount and Anne St.Onge

T'was the night before Christmas, and all thru the halls, not a model was stirring, not even the dolls...the dremel and tools were all hung up with care, the doll heads on pencils with new viscose hair

The resins were nestled all snug in their pouches
While the wrappings from new models were thrown on the couches.
And ma in her studio and I in my shop
Had just finished work and were ready to stop.

Then from the studio arose such a noise – I looked at my cats and said OK, boys,
I know there are six but I only count 5 – who’s in the studio, land sakes alive!
I rose from my bed and flew into the room and removed little kitty before things went boom.
So I went back to bed and waited for Kringle – but all I could hear was the dog’s collar jingle…I drifted away into a sweet sleep, thinking which models to sell, which models to keep…

When, what to my wandering minds eyes should appear,

But a show string of minis, I could see them so clear!
With a Mindy a Flitwick an Aten a Breezy,
A decision like this sure would not be easy.

I knew in a moment I needed assistance
My tiny collection would not go the distance.

The jolly big man in his bag, I am betting
(because we all know it’s not the having, it’s the getting)
Are saddles, bridles, tiny blankets and more
To load our already-full shelves galore

From the floor to the ceiling tiny tack and props of all kinds,
Look at these horses, they’re dressed to the nines!
I look all around at all the beautiful things,
All the time wondering what Father Christmas will bring
A halter is needed, a cart, and a jump…
When suddenly I hear a loud thump!
Up on the rooftop, a familiar sound
Could it be Santa, so jolly and round?

Oh wait, it is! I hear my heart race – to peek from the corner to see his back brace
From carrying the heavy, model-horse sack,
Filled with horse goodies, new dollies and tack!

And then for the horse room I dashed with an inkling,
That Santa would be there in less than a twinkling

As I jumped from my bed and was turning around,
Down the chimney St. Nicholas came with a bound.
With his high shiny boots he was dressed for the hunt,

And his warmblood was stomping and stamping out front.

There were breyers and stones and resins and minis,
Little horses so real I could hear all their whinnies
With a wink of his eye and a tip of his hat,
And a few little sneezes (he’s allergic to cats)
He straightened up tall as he emptied his treasure
Knowing he gave me joy beyond measure

Then he shot up the chimney and jumped in his sleigh,
And I grinned to myself from the joy of the day.
As I heard that kind man preparing to depart ,
I ran to the window to see him get his start.
And he started the team with a jump from the roof,
And I caught a glimpse of more than a hoof.

Why a group of fine long-ears were Santa’s flying team,
I blinked my eyes in surprise, this must be a dream.
I figured this must be a joke or a game,
But as they started out he called them by name.

On Cricket on Gulliver on Kit and Cleopatra,
On Calliope, Big Jake, on Jasmine and Lola.

On that cold winter night as they flew through the air
I looked at the presents arranged with such care.
I hoped Santa Claus would have a good trip
(and I was secretly hoping I got my new resin Chip).

But I heard him exclaim, ‘ere he drove out of sight,
"Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good-night!"

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Let's get things started!

Welcome to my wonderful and crazy world of dolls! I figured since I did start the blog and I did post a link I should probably post something. Hmm, where do I start? I started making dolls a couple of years ago. I have been sewing since I was little and making "tack" (oh if only I had photos) since I started collecting horses (which was a long time ago). When I discovered eBay I also discovered the model horse hobby. Wow! What a world this is. So I started making Arabian costumes. And it was fun and I had a good time with it. I always wanted riders for my horses (what little girl doesn’t?) and Barbie was always too big, and the Breyer dolls have ugly clothes that always need "fixing" to look decent. So the natural thing to do was to make a new doll. And since the tack I was making was Arabian costumes I figured I would try out an Arabian rider. And here she is.
I don't think that was bad for a first attempt. Though you can see through her pants in the right (or wrong?) light. I have made lots of dolls since this one, though not hundreds. I think maybe I will hold some sort of drawing for when I make my 100th doll. I am not all that far off I don't think, but I would have to go back and check my records.
In the beginning of my doll making I was nervous to try new things. New things are so easy to screw up after all. But then I did some new kinds of dolls and made new patterns. Sometimes they worked and sometimes they didn't. I had one lady ask for 3 particular dolls. I told her I had never made that type and it was still new to me. I worked really hard on those dolls, sent her photos, got approval and sent them home.
She took over a week to get back to me after she receive them and then said so many horrible things about them that I almost stopped making dolls. I had charged her a pittance and she trashed my work. That is discouraging. But I tried some more dolls and I sold more dolls and People started to say nice things about my dolls. I started to think that maybe that one lady was just trying to get something for nothing, or take advantage of a newbie. That is one big reason I will do so much to help new people. I am always trying to improve on my dolls and I do a lot of my work with my friend Joan Yount (who is an awesome doll maker!) we share patterns back and forth and struggles with new designs and it makes things easier. And having someone to chat with (well, email with anyway) is nice. Not everyone is on the computer all day after all, lol.
So in the past couple of years my dolls have gone from that first Arabian doll with the see-through pants to dolls that have helped people win NAN championships. I was pretty proud of that. But I am just as excited to hear that someone had success at a small show. Even if you have a doll just to play with on your kitchen table (I do it!) I think you should enjoy your dolls, your horses and all your other "toys". After all, the hobby should be fun.
So this is one of my more recent dolls. She is much more refined than doll number one, though she really should be or I should quit :)

So things are moving along and I am having a good time with them. I recently started taking on more custom orders and I am having a lot of fun with that as well. I still enjoy making whatever comes to mind, but having the challenge of trying to create someones dream doll is nice as well. I have has some really interesting dolls ordered in the past couple of months :)
So that is my somewhat long-winded first installment of my blog. I probably won't just end up talking about dolls and doll work, because there is so much more that I can babble about. Thanks for reading!