Tuesday, June 30, 2020

Weird Things About Time

      Have you ever had one of those times when someone asked you a question and you knew what they were talking about but were a bit confused on a nuance of what they asked/said? I started posting ads on Instagram and my Facebook studio page, for my live sale (which is next Sunday 7/5 at 2:00pm eastern time). I should start just putting eastern time in all of my ads I make. Someone asked on one of the ads (that said EST) if it was in standard time even though it's currently daylight savings time. My long answer was Google "what time is it in Massachusetts" because that will give you the time difference no matter where you are (Google almost ALWAYS has the answer). But then I got to thinking. How did I get to be 41 years old and never realize the acronym EST (eastern standard time) was only used part of the year? Really, how did that happen? So I did what I almost always do when I have a weird question, I Googled it. 

      And Google told me what I already knew (that we are in daylight savings time) and what I did not know (that the acronym was different... which is obvious at this point). And I then changed all of the rest of my ads and contacted Heather so my ad on Mares and Black is not potentially confusing to people. It's funny to me the amount of random crap that I know and the little things that just never occured to me. 
      On another note, have you ever stood in the pouring rain being paralyzed with fear and simultaneously mad at yourself for that fear? It happened to me. On Saturday the week of rain started and we quickly discovered that we needed to put an extra large tarp over the roof. It would have gone much faster, and potentially smoother, with 2 people. I could not get on the roof. And I knew IF I managed to get up there, I would not be able to get down. So I stood in the pouring rain being mad at myself. I'm not afraid of all that much, at least not very afraid, but the heights thing is so bad. I did manage to go up and down the ladder, barefoot in the rain, totally fearless (and sort of fast) but I could not go those last few rungs and actually get on the roof. Grr. 
     Anyway, my live sale is coming up very soon and I am doing my usual, should I make more things or should I take the break. Taking a break is pretty foreign to me. I did start going through the miniatures that I ordered for my miniatures sale and looking up what I paid for everything and starting to make a list with pricing. Turns out I already have a pretty good variety of things to offer! I have a few more things on the way, I do want to make some stuff, and while I was looking up prices I ordered some more. It is entirely likely the new orders will NOT make it here in time for the sale. In which case I will just have to offer them at my next sale. I should start thinking of when I want that to be. 

Monday, June 29, 2020


     I did it! I finished all of my planned goals for my NOT Breyerfest sale! I am pretty pleased about this. Yes, I am tired and sore, but it feels so excellent to have made a goal and worked towards it. I feel very accomplished. The last thing I did was make 2 more pairs of mens cutting chaps. Now I have these 4 pairs, plus 3 pairs of the larger mens chaps. I also have 8 pairs of ladies chaps. I think I have a good variety. 
    So now I am totally finished and I still have a week before my live sale (July 5th, 2pm EST on my studio Facebook page). I have a vague idea of making a handful of saddle pads. I have a vague idea of making a couple more dolls. Roberto sent me the custom heads I asked for, and it would be cool to have more dolls to put them on. So it's a thought. It's also supposed to rain for most of the week. More dolls MIGHT happen. But maybe not. 
    I found out one of Ethan's friends, who works construction, offered to help with house projects. I got very into promoting the idea that this needs to happen! I am not strong enough, tall enough, fearless enough or knowledgeable enough about power tools to be very helpful with the roof work. I do know where most of the tools are so I am fine with being the gopher. With 3 of us working on the project, maybe we can cut down the time it takes to get it done. I am not getting my hopes up too much, but I think that would be the ideal situation. 
     So now I again run into the same question I have posed before. If I am taking a doll break (which I should... it might happen) what do I do with myself? And if I am not working on dolls, what do I blog about? It's a mystery.

Sunday, June 28, 2020

Dolls Are Done

     I did it. I finished 32 dolls for my NOT Breyerfest sale. I have a pretty good mix of dolls I think. A bunch of western pleasure dolls, and hunt seat dolls. I have casual western and casual English dolls. I have an upper level dressage doll, a showmanship doll, a couple of driving dolls, male and female dolls. Hopefully I have something for everyone. I am also super close to my 1400th doll. I think I now have just 3 more to do. But they will have to wait a bit.
     We got some more painting done and enjoyed some really lovely weather. Ethan made some pulled pork, which was excellent as usual, and I made coleslaw which was coleslaw. My Dad makes super fantastic coleslaw. I think I have actually made coleslaw twice so I don't really have any amazing recipe or anything. Maybe I should work on it. Ethan makes such amazing pulled pork and having mediocre coleslaw to go with it sort of sucks. 
      The other day Governor Baker released protocols for the start of the next school year. Everyone older than the second grade needs to wear a mask. All day. Desks need to be at least 3 feet apart and ideally 6 feet apart. We will need to continue to social distance, wash our hands when we get to school, before we eat and when we leave school. Hand sanitizer is going to be placed all over the school. I can see that turning into an issue in a hurry. Oh and students may need to eat in the classrooms. HOW is that supposed to work in high school? They barely have time to get through the lunchline when they sit in the cafeteria. How are they going to get their lunches, get back to the classrooms and be clean enough not to have a school totally infested with bugs? I am really not sure how that will all work out. And passing between classes... there is not really any way to social distance in the hallways. The article I read did say something about schools need to have 3 plans for fall. I don't know if this is just the idea we are going with now to get ready, or what. But if it is I have a feeling I will need to get back to sewing more masks. I personally have 3 that I rotate through. If this is an all day, every day thing, I am going to need more. Oh this sounds challenging. 

Saturday, June 27, 2020

Believe it or Not I Took it Easy

     I got a lot of work finished on Wednesday, even though I was not entirely sure what day of the week it was a lot of the time. I got some more customized heads painted and I finished up this casual western and casual hunt seat lady. They are doll #30 and #31 for my NOT Breyerfest live sale. I have one more in the works and then I think that is it for this time around. Last year I had 32 dolls for Breyerfest. When I saw that I was going to reach my original goal of 30 easily, I decided to add in a couple more. I don't have enough energy to add enough dolls to my list to get to 1400, but I will get there sometime after Breyerfest. After I have a break. 
     But it's not break time just yet! I also finished up a bunch of ladies cutting chaps. These have been worked on here and there for several days. I need to get 2 more pairs of chaps finished and I will have my full goal of 15 pairs of chaps. And I think that is enough. 
     So believe it or not, I really did take it easy. When I got up the day I finished all these things I had a very relaxing morning. I read a bit. Then I took a bit of a nap. I read some more and decided I wanted a bit more sleep. After awhile I decided I would paint the heads at the kitchen table. I can paint sitting on my bed, and I do it all the time, but it is easier at the table since I was doing full heads and not just painting faces. But once I was done with the painting I moved into my room and sat comfortably on my bed and watched movies and worked. It was pretty nice. My work is almost done, goals have almost been reached, and pretty soon I can just relax a lot. Sounds nice. I have no idea what I should do. 
     I am almost sure I am going to take the week off before my live sale and potentially after it as well. Though I will still work some because I will be doing invoicing and shipping. But I think that is basically my plan. A couple of weeks without any doll work. Maybe I will play with miniatures. Maybe I will not, I have no idea yet. But the real question is, if I am not working on dolls, what am I going to blog about?

Friday, June 26, 2020

We’ve Been Flocked!

     There has been so much going on around here. It has been really excellent not having to do any school work this week but it sure makes it even harder to know what day of the week it is. On Tuesday it felt like it was Friday. Wednesday felt like Sunday. I actually had to check my fitbit to see the date and then match it to the calendar to see what day it was. It's been tough. But even without being sure of what day it is I am doing OK.
     I have been customizing some more doll heads. My new Magic Sculpt came in (so quickly!) and has been a lot of fun to work with. I've tried for some different skin tones as well. 
      I didn't have a western pleasure doll in pink (how did that happen?) so I remedied that mistake. I really like how this doll came out. 
      Awhile back Ethan got a couple of pink flamingos for the yard (they are classic trailer decor after all, lol). They were hanging out in the hostas, but then they started disappearing. So he moved them to the front with the dogwood and the azaleas but then the 2 birds looked lonely to me. I asked Travis how many more flamingos I should get and he said 10. I said that was too many and he said 4. So I got 4 more. I could have gotten the 10 and I think it would have been fine. More may join the 6 we have. They are tacky and silly and I adore them! Also this front view is the finished product of some of our projects. We still have lots and lots to go, including some really important roof stuff we are waiting on good weather to get to. But this little piece is looking quite nice. 
      I am starting to run short on time to reach my goals for my NOT Breyerfest sale so I got back into making chaps. I was working on some at the beginning of the week at the laundromat and just kept on going with them. I still have some more I need to get to, but I am doing pretty well with things and I am pleased with my progress. 
      If I continue to be as efficient as I have been I will finish up my creative goals a week early. I am really considering doing nothing for the entire week before my sale. Well, I might work on starting to package things for the miniatures sale so I can see exactly what I have and figure out what I want to start making, but it might be nice to take the week off for the most part. Stranger things have happened after all. 

Thursday, June 25, 2020

Just Keep Swimming

      It is getting closer and closer to my NOT Breyerfest live sale. I am excited and ready for the day to get here, but I am also not done getting ready yet. I need to keep on going. Sunday we did a lot of work on the house, and since it was Father's Day, I went and brought my Dad a cake and had a backyard visit for a little bit (as in, I stood at the bottom of the stairs and he stood inside and we chatted). It was a busy day, but I knew I had a busy week ahead of me so I got out the dremel and a bunch of doll bodies and got some prep work done. 
     Monday morning I started right in on cutting out clothes. I went from having 3 more to having 5 more dolls I want to get finished before July 5th. So Sunday I prepped 5 bodies and Monday I cut out and got 5 outfits sewn. Progress is being made.
      Monday also brought laundry day and working on more chaps in the car in between putting things in the machines. It was about 90 degrees on Monday, so even in the shade with all the windows and the sunroof open, it was a little bit warm. But it is a little bit warm everywhere when it is in the 90's. The humidity has been super low for Massachusetts, so it's not bad. I got 2 pairs of pleasure chaps made and 4 pairs of ladies cutting chaps traced out. Definitely making progress. 
      When I got home and finished defeating laundry mountain I started working on finishing a doll. I am excited to say that I managed it! This lovely lady will be available at my live sale (July 5th, 2 pm EST on my Facebook studio page). So now I just have 4 dolls left to reach my new goal. I still need to make/finish another 9 pairs of chaps, but I think I can. I am making pretty great progress. 
     In other show prep news I finally remembered to get a new package of paper lunch bags. I wrote up a page of trivia questions. Some are new, some are old. One I won't have the answer to until the morning of the sale (how many dolls have I made to date). I think I still have the write up of the basic rules written up, all of the finished saddlebags, cross country kits and chaps have numbers on them, as do the dolls. I am definitely making progress. I just need to keep swimming. 

Wednesday, June 24, 2020

1400, Coming Soon

     The other day Travis's iPad broke (also, not an iPad, just a cheap nook tablet that he calls and iPad). He was very insistent that he wanted dark coffee and to put on socks and shoes and go to Barnes and Noble for an iPad. Travis doesn't usually put in such specific requests, and he doesn't actually ask for all that much, so I figured we could go out and get him a new tablet. After checking prices on new nooks from Barnes and Noble I asked if we could go to Staples for an iPad. Travis is flexible, he said that was fine. 
     While we were at Staples I seriously considered, again, buying a new laptop. Travis has basically taken over the desktop, though I use it to print out doll photos for my book. I usually use the Chromebook for emails. But it actually belongs to the school and it would be nice to have my stuff on it. Photos, files, all sorts of things that I don't want to put on it because it is not mine. Anyway, I considered but I didn't buy one because I didn't actually like anything they had in the store and I didn't want to settle. So we just got Travis an Amazon Fire tablet and went home. 
      When we got home I found out that my desktop computer no longer plays well with Publisher. I could not get my doll photo pages to print. It just kept not responding. I started over twice and waited a ridiculously long time, but it didn't work. I finally had to load photos onto the Chromebook and put them into a Google doc to be able to print out some photos. I NEEDED to know how many dolls I have made. It was maximum effort to print a couple of pages of photos and then I had to delete everything I put on the Chromebook. I may actually have to cave and buy a laptop soon. Maybe I can squeak by a little longer. 
     Anyway, after I got my photos printed and numbered I realized something...
     ... at 1392 finished dolls I only have 8 dolls left to reach 1400. Which is an enormous milestone. There is probably no way I can get 8 more dolls finished before my live sale. I just don't have enough time with everything else going on. Most likely I will reach 1400 by some point in early to mid-July. I feel like I should do something to celebrate this. But I have no idea what. Sometimes when I have a milestone doll I try to plan on doing a particularly cool doll. I have no ideas for cool dolls. I have no ideas for cool contests. But I am a little bit in awe of what I have managed to do. I wonder what 1400 dolls would look like all together. The largest group I ever photographed was 32, which was the group I did for Breyerfest last year. That did not take up that much space. But 1400... would be amazing. I wonder how many of those dolls still exist. 

Tuesday, June 23, 2020

Things are Happening

      As I have mentioned, things have been very busy around here. We have had a lot of home repairs that have needed to happen. It's been a very busy time. The other day we had to take apart part of the roof on the addition. It was gross and in very bad shape. But the deconstruction process went very well, which is more than I can say about a lot of our fixing projects. The worst part for me is I am incredibly afraid of heights so going up the ladder to bring things to Ethan is horrible. But at least I didn't have to kneel on a hot black room in the sun. A little fear isn't the end of the world. And we are a lot further along on fixing things. 
     I have sort of taken a bit of a doll break, though I don't know how long I can let that last. I still have a bunch of dolls and chaps I need to get finished. I am not out of time yet though, so I think I will be OK. I'm pretty excited for my live sale! I got some more prize items in the mail, more of the miniatures I ordered for the sale in August and I got this awesome Ember micro from Maggie Bennett. I have been wanting an Ember for awhile, but I kept missing him. 
      Last year before Breyerfest I was struggling to find dolls to work on. There were none in stock anywhere and the ones I got from Jackie were mis-delivered, the post office said they put them on my porch (not possible) and would not pay on the insurance claim. Things were rough. This year I was incredibly prepared and had lots of doll bodies. And now I will have more variety! Roberto sent me this photo the other day.
    His Caster is finally allowed to open on a part-time schedule and got these made. I have a bunch of bodies that came in and more on the way! I am so excited about this! Now I am just hoping I still actually have the time to get all of the planned stuff finished. The house fixing is incredibly important and sometimes takes a lot of time, and all of my energy. But I still have a couple of weeks. As long as I keep picking away at things, and don't slack off too much, I should be OK. Must. Keep. Going.

Monday, June 22, 2020

A Horse With History

       Purdy Zippin Chick started her life on Tiffany Purdy's workbench. She is a customized Strapless with a Ruffian head. When I was working out the deal with Sara we were talking a bit about the horse and she said she bought her from Erin Corbett. I started wondering about this horse's history. And I have had a lot of fun looking into it.
        When I contacted Tiffany said I should ask Jennifer Buxton for photos. And when I did, Jennifer sent me the links to a couple of blog posts where Pudy Zippin Chick had been included. So I learned she started her showing career on February 9, 2013 at the Sleigh Rally Model Horse Show in Columbus, Wisconsin. She apparently won everything. She did well in English, Western and Other Performance. 
     Tiffany Took Purdy Zippin Chick to NAN in 2013 where she got reserve champion in hunt seat pleasure-stock/pony. Jennifer sent me a link to the blog posts to help me with my research. And that was where I saw that the year Purdy Zippin Chick won reserve...
photo by Erin Corbett
       Was the same year Caramel Latte (who is mine) won Champion! What a weird coincidence!
photo by Erica Ipes
     But then the small-world connections kept going. Purdy Zippin Chick went on to win champ in western pleasure (Caramel Latte missed that class) but the horse in the background of this photo won reserve champ. And that horse is owned by my friend Marisa, the one who showed Caramel Latte at NAN for me! How cool is that?
photo by Erin Corbett
      Tiffany told me that NAN 2013 was where Erin first saw Purdy Zippin Chick and decided she wanted her. That was also the show where Erin and Tiffany became good friends. I don't know if it was because of the horse, but it was something that brought them together. Either way, I think it's really cool. 
      Erin showed Purdy Zippin Chick at Breyerfest live in 2013. This horse really looks excellent in so many different setups. 
Erin did incredibly well with Purdy Zippin Chick...

     ...and got English Performance champion! Then the show got incredibly hectic and Erin didn't have time to get any more photos. 
      Purdy Zippin Chick went on to win Overall Performance champion at Breyerfest live. That is an amazing accomplishment! It does exclude her from being able to show in performance at Breyerfest however. Which is sad. Erin showed her a few more times at local shows before she decided to let her go to someone else. 
      At some point Erin sold Purdue Zippin Chip to Melissa Hart, who did not show her. Then she was sold to Sara Bowman in 2016. Sara then showed her extensively from 2016 to 2018. She showed her in a wide variety of classes, including Other Performance classes...
photo by Sara Bowman

photo by Sara Bowman

photo by Sara Bowman
  Western classes...
photo by Sara Bowman

photo by Sara Bowman
photo by Sara Bowman

photo by Sara Bowman
 and hunt seat classes.  
photo by Sara Bowman

photo by Sara Bowman
      Sara showed Purdy Zippin Chick in everything she could think of to show her in. She was a great show horse, but Sara is a lot like me and will show a horse (or two) extensively and then show a new horse and the older ones sort of get left out. When Sara sold her to me she sent me a very large stack of NAN cards that the horse had earned.
photo by Sara Bowman
     When I saw that Sara was selling this horse I was really interested. I have not really wanted a traditional scale horse in a long time. Other than Beauty Queen (my NaMoPaiMo horse) I don't remember the last traditional scale AR or CM I added to my collection. It's sad that I can't show her at Breyerfest, but I will get over it. Purdy Zippin Chick has had a very impressive show career over the last 7 years. Now she's mine and I feel I really need to make the effort to keep her legacy alive. I need to think up new and interesting ways to show her. This should be fun. I am really looking forward to adding to this amazing horse's history. 

Sunday, June 21, 2020

Chaps are Happening

     It's not just dolls I have planned for my NOT Breyerfest live sale on July 5th. I also have cross country kits, saddlebags (and saddlebag stuff) and chaps planned. Most of the other items were already finished but I needed to get to some chaps. Thursday was the day I got a chance to start in on those.
      So far I am only working on cutting chaps, those seem more popular than chinks, though I may also make some chinks if time allows. I will have 3 sizes of cutting chaps available; ladies, mens, and large mens. The large mens chaps are made to fit the basketball player dolls. It's funny, I have to slightly adjust all of my mens patterns to fit that doll, but I had to draft a whole new chaps pattern to fit him! I guess the length of the jeans (pattern) is very generous already. Chaps are more precise.
     I am far enough ahead in my plan at this point that IF I can keep being as efficient as I have been the last couple of weeks I may also make some saddle pads. Possibly just a few that would go well with the dolls I have made. But I haven't decided just yet. I have 2 weeks left to get things ready for my sale and so far it is looking good. We'll have to see what the next couple of weeks have in store for me. 
      So a reminder because I have said the date but not the time a lot. My NOT Breyerfest live sale will be on Sunday, July 5th at 2:00 pm EST on my studio page on Facebook, Field of Dolls Studio- Custom Dolls by Anne Field. The morning of the sale I will publish a blog post with a catalog of what I will have available at the sale, with prices. That will give blog readers a chance to think about what they want to try for ahead of time. The numbers for the dolls will not be visible, to give everyone an equal chance at them. I will also, as usual, publish the most current total of completed dolls for trivia.

Saturday, June 20, 2020

Almost There

    I am really excited for my miniatures sale. I know that my NOT Breyerfest sale is coming up first, and the miniatures sale is not until August, but most of the things I ordered are finally arriving. Some of the stuff that finally arrived I ordered way back at the beginning of April. I was hoping it would actually arrive on time, some of the delivery estimates have been iffy. One of the very first things I had to do was take a picture of a doll holding one of the ice cream cones. I think they are perfect!
     Besides ice cream cones I have a couple of different kinds of pastries, apples and pizza. I have a big list of miniatures I plan to make myself, but I know how much people like miniatures, and having a large variety all in one place should be a lot of fun! Plus you won't have to wait months for the different items to trickle in. I have done all the waiting for you. 
        I also recently bought a new horse. This is Purdy Zippin Chick, who I bought from Sara Bowman. I am really looking forward to playing with this horse. Now I just need to find the time.
      Not only do I finally have almost all of the miniatures I ordered but I am also getting close to my doll goal for my NOT Breyerfest sale. I got these two ladies finished this week which brings me up to 27 finished dolls. I am really pleased with my progress. I'm almost there!
     I know a lot of you are concerned because the other day I said my hands hurt. And they do. Some of that is because I have been working a lot. Some of it is I have been doing a lot of heavy lifting because of the home repairs. Some of it, according to my doctor, is because I am old. He doesn't really say I'm old, and insists he can't because he has over 20 years on me, but he has suggested some of it is from age. Super. When I am working on dolls I have no pain at all. Hairing heads gets to be a bit uncomfortable if I do a lot of them at once, but it is sort of awkward positions. Anyway, I promise I will stop working on the house just as soon as I can, lol. And I am planning to take a doll break soon too. I am still not totally sure what I will do. I wish I had a pool. 

Friday, June 19, 2020

Diversity in the Hobby

       The other day I was listening to The Mares in Black, episode #42, which was all about diversity in the hobby.  It was a wonderful episode full of interviews from a variety of people from different backgrounds. And in the model horse hobby, differences can be a bit hard to find. As Jackie and Heather said, if you say the middle aged white woman who is slightly overweight and has long brown hair and glasses, that describes the vast majority of the hobby. A lot was also said in the episode about the dolls in our hobby, and it really struck me. That's my job. I am falling short with diversity in my doll making. Yes, I am limited by what is out there for dolls, but I can try a bit harder.
        Last week I posted about my project plans for making African American dolls. I found bodies I can use, ordered them and Roberto is going to send me heads. But I am impatient. And the mail is slow. I want to make sure that the hobby can have these dolls now (or really really soon). Yes, KC's Galloping Gals does have future plans to do an African American doll, and many other types of dolls, but not yet. So I am going to try harder. 
      In my post last week I said that while I had been able to find the bodies, heads were not available (apparently they are, I just didn't see them... and I think they are just dark Yvonne heads). I said that I didn't know what to do because I know my limitations and I know I can't sculpt. But I also know that everything is fixable and sometimes it is good to move out of your comfort zone. So on Tuesday evening I went out of my comfort zone to see if I could modify a doll head. Not do an original sculpt, but see if I could modify the features on a doll. 
     It turns out I can handle that. I was not sure I could do it, and not sure the modifications were coming out well while I was working on the sculpting. I did have reference pictures and I think I did an OK job. I had to start over several times before I managed to get a few faces I was happy with. Not that I managed to photograph these heads well. 
      With some hair and faces on I think these ladies are looking pretty good. I do have one other head I modified, though it had gone missing when I was painting these 2 (found it!). My Magic Sculpt was super old so I barely had any usable material left. I ordered some more and am confident that I can at least manage some minor modifications. 
     I was nervous making these doll heads. I know I am not a great sculptor. But I think they came out well and at least are a start in adding a bit more diversity to our hobby dolls. Now I need to decide on clothes and get these dolls dressed!

Thursday, June 18, 2020

Doll Stylist; Hair and Makeup


 Recently I was asked if I could show how I do a bun on a doll. I may have been asked for a tutorial, but what I managed was a few series of photos to show how I do a few different doll related things. First I will start with painting doll faces. 
     There are a lot of different doll faces but my favorites to paint are the Yvonne/Gracie/Quinn heads that come without paint. It is nice to start fresh after all, and it is not always easy to remove all of the factory paint. 
      I actually find it very quick and easy to paint these heads. They are small, the features are small, and you don't need a ton of details to make them realistic. I start with the eye whites. I just fill in the eye space with a tiny brush (usually a 20/0 spotter). Next I add some tiny dark brown dots in the center for the irises. If I don't forget I also add the eyebrows in. My goal is for them to at least be sisters and for them to look reasonable. Sometimes it works and sometimes I have to wipe them off a few times. Next I will add a dot of raw sienna in the center of the dark brown dot. I paint on the lips and add a slim line of black above the eyes and a tiny dot in the center of the eyes for the pupil. After everything is dry I add a coat of matte finish and the face is painted. It's usually very quick, other than fighting with the eyebrows.  
      Another thing I thought I would share is how I do the braided pigtails on youth dolls. I don't love doing them, even though they are cute. There are no bald youth doll heads for me to buy so I first have to remove the factory hair. First I cut it all off, close to the scalp. Next I take tweezers and pull the rest of the hair out from the inside and outside of the head. It is time consuming and I definitely prefer an already bald head. 

double pointed needle/rooting tool
     Part of the reason I don't love pigtail braids is because it is like having to hair the same head twice. The first step for me is to root the hair straight down the middle of the head. Then I root the hair all the way around one side of the head. Once that is done I will brush it out (I have an ancient My Little Pony brush I use for that). After that I separate it into 3 sections, braid it, and tie it with a bit of thread. The next step is to do it all again on the other side, including rooting the hair up the middle of the head, roughly where the other hair is. This ends up looking very natural when it is finished. I have also found that doing one side at a time is less frustrating than trying to do the entire head at once. 
       The original question was on how to do a bun on a doll. As I mentioned, my favorite heads to work with are the blank/bald ones. They don't require any prep work, I can just jump right in. I always start in the back and I like to hair lower than where the factory hairline would be. For a doll that will be wearing a hat or helmet that is glued on, I just hair a circle all the way around the head. 
       I brush out the hair with my My Little Pony brush, which smooths it and takes out the loose pieces of hair. Next I wet my fingers and run them over the hair, gather it all together at the base of the head and start to twist. Once it is tight the hair will start to twist on itself, that's fine, just wind it around itself, pull the end up to the top of the head and glue it down. Trim the end if it is too long. That's it, buns are not complex to do. Though I have no idea how to do them without a rooting tool. I would probably glue tufts of hair all the way around the head in the same way that I root the hair, when it's dry you should be able to (carefully) brush it back and style it in the same way. 
      I know the post title said hair and makeup but I meant face painting. I do very little makeup on dolls these days. Which is funny considering how much I love makeup. Anyway, I hope you enjoyed a little bit of how I do a couple of different hair styles on dolls and paint faces.