Monday, February 25, 2019

Heads and Things

   Yesterday I had a customer interested in the casual/gaming/working western doll I had for sale, but she really likes dolls that have removable hats. In general, it is easier to have a doll with a hat permanently attached to their head for a couple of reasons. One is that there is no potential to lose the hat.  Sometimes, depending on the hair, the hat might sit funny on the head, where gluing it down solved this problem. And lastly, to get really in-scale hair a head is never full haired. 
    Personally, when I hair an Yvonne or Gracie head I do one circle all the way around the head. And that is all. It makes the buns and braids nicely in scale. If I was to do that for a doll with a removable hat she would look like she had hair that was starting to thin out, a lot, on the top. The way I found that fixes this is to do my first line of hair from ear to ear, just about 1/8" back from the hairline. I know, that sounds a bit confusing, but there is a faint line on the heads where the hair is, ideally, supposed to go. If you are using a regular Yvonne or Gracie head where the original hair was first removed you can just use the same holes. Then when I have that first line of hair on I put a bit of glue on the doll's head and brush and carefully lay down that line of hair I just put on. The bit of glue (spread it around first!) will hold the hair down and keep your girl from getting bald spots. Then I add the front line of hair and when that is done I style it the way I normally would. In case anyone is wondering, my little pink brush is a My Little Pony brush that I got from Elecktra about 10 or more years ago. It has widely spaced bristles that will separate the hair but not yank it back out of the head. It's basically perfect.
    I am really loving the new, totally bald heads that are available from KC's Galloping gals! They have their stock up in the 8 inch superstore. Though as always, if you order a doll from me I have plenty here and you don't need to provide your own. The store has some cool accessories in it so it's worth a look if just for that!
    As I was saying, I have really been enjoying the completely bald heads so I can put the hair just where I want it and can use smaller bunches. Which also leads to the end result of more in-scale hair.  Things being in-scale, or as close to it, is a very big deal to me. I'm aiming for realism after all. Another feature of the bald heads is that you also have the option of getting them without the faces painted. This is a WONDERFUL thing and I love it! I don't always use the bald heads because I can't financially justify buying an extra head for every single body when they come with a perfectly good head. But sometimes it is a great thing to start with a completely bald head and a totally blank face. I think this lady came out really well.

     Because I can't seem to stop working, no matter what day of the week it is, and I do have a show coming up in a couple of weeks, I got to work on painting my Christian Bale head while I had the paint out and was working on the Gracie head. So the first problem I had was I don't really have a good skin-tone colored paint. Or I thought I didn't. I did buy a couple of options before Christmas and one I tried, which was decent but I wasn't madly in love and then there was the other one. Which I can't remember the name of, again, even though I looked at the bottle twice in the past couple of days. It's peachy something. This is the color it was coming out:
Paint color peachy something
      After I had a couple of layers on, enough to cover the primer, I grabbed the Liquitex portrait pink (I remember the name of that one at least!) and put a layer of that on while the peachy something was still a bit wet. That was a bit too much so I added another two layers of the peachy something paint and the results were a guy with not too pale skin who sort of looked OK even in my super bad lighting. I was fairly pleased. I am also not horribly picky most of the time.
2 layers of sugared peach, 1 layer of portrait pink and 2 more layers of sugared peach. I looked at the name of the paint. 
     Today I was totally planning on doll work after school but then I got distracted by food websites and I found a couple of good ones that I want to investigate. I'll post the links at the bottom for anyone else that is interested. So I got back to work on Christian Bale and I think he turned out pretty well. His lip color is straight portrait pink, which I think is a decent lip color for a lip with no lipstick. I might be able to make it a bit more pale with a touch of the sugared peach. But I think he looks fine. 

    The last step was to put on a coat of the super matte nail polish Joan gets for me. It dries incredibly fast, like nail polish should, and it leaves the doll head looking fairly natural and not too shiny. But not too flat either. I love that stuff. So I am calling my Christian Bale head done. Now I have to get it on a body and get him some clothes! I may or may not have him ready for the show in a couple of weeks, we'll see.

    Have you figured out that I am easily distracted and am often working on several things at the same time? Well, it's true. So while I was hairing a head and painting a couple of faces I decided that I wanted to tighten up the breeches on Halestorm's doll. So I took care of that last night as well. I think she looks a bit more natural now. And it defines her legs better, which came out really well. So another little project out of the way. 
     I  may have mentioned, but I can't remember, that I was thinking about skipping treats on my birthday because of the weight loss competition I'm in at school. But then I decided that was not a good idea for me. While I DO want to lose weight and I would LOVE to win the competition, I don't want to hate my food. I don't want to skip all the delicious things all the time. I don't want to feel like I am on a diet. Because I am not. I changed the whole way I eat and I plan to keep this up. Right now I am just in the mode where I eat a bit less in calories, which then of course leads to weight loss. But the reason I can keep at it is because the food is delicious and I feel fantastic. Skipping my birthday, my 40th birthday, would not feel fantastic. It would feel like a huge sacrifice and I am not willing to do that. So I am on the hunt for what cake I want to make. In some ways I want to make something small, so there are not tons of leftovers (because even though I am not skipping the birthday treats I AM still trying to lose weight). I have an amazing recipe for salted caramel brownie cupcakes. I made these last year when I was first getting started with low carb eating and, as was my custom, I brought a bunch to school to share with my sugar eating friends to help me taste test them. They were a HUGE hit and everyone was very excited about them. So those are in the running for birthday cake, since I already know they are amazing. I also got really distracted on the Pinterest rabbit hole today. There were some other cake options that looked like they had merit. One of them was a loaf sized cake. And that sounded awesome because it is little. And it was chocolate with peanut butter buttercream frosting I think. Need to find that and print it... there were some others, and I think I at least remembered to pin them, but Pinterest is such a dangerous place!
    OK one more story and I will go. So yesterday we all went to a baby shower like I mentioned. I was really good! I did eat a bit extra in calories and had extra veggies (ahhh, carbs!) but I made good food choices. Even when confronted with fresh empanadas. I LOVE empanadas! Ethan does too. So we were both slightly tortured by that one, but were well behaved. So now I feel another life goal is to make a low carb empanada. Which if we eat too many will not be low carb, but I found a coconut flour pie crust that I think would be perfect. I may have actually made this for one of my Thanksgiving pies, I can't remember. I forgot to check my binder. Anyway, with just 2 net carbs per serving we can eat several and still be within reason. So those are definitely in the planning phase. And I have such a love of empanadas I may need a press for my birthday...
     As promised, websites. I found this one The Hungry Elephant  I think because I was looking for  burger buns that act like real bread. I can't remember. I think I mentioned Pinterest was involved. So this site is new to me and looks like they have a lot of interesting things. I need to check it out more. This site also had a bunch of delicious looking things. And a cookbook apparently. I do love Keto cookbooks. I have 3 in my collection at this point (Keto Sweet Treats, The Essential Keto Cookbook and 30 Day Keto fix) all of them were "free" with just the shipping. They do look interesting, but so far I haven't made any of the recipes. I keep meaning to and then I just don't. Though there is a coconut breakfast bread I want to make. As soon as I can remember where I put my loaf pan. Anyway, last website is Gnom Gnom  and there were several interesting looking things on there. I'm going to go and look around on them a bit more and then work out. Nope, I lied, I'm going to go and workout right now and then make supper. Maybe some more show prep later on. And low carb recipe hunting.

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