Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Some Past Doll Projects-Part 1

Hi guys! I'm working on getting some videos uploaded for you, but in the meantime I thought I'd do some posts on some of my past doll projects. Hope you enjoy them and get inspired to try fixing up some dolls of your own! :)

 First up is the sweetie above, my Gotz Katie doll. Katie was part of the Gotz Little Sisters line that was made in 2001 and 2002. She normally goes for a lot on ebay, but I was able to purchase her on ebay for $32.

I was so excited until she got here and I realized she was in much worse shape than I originally thought. She had white and sparkly red paint-like residue in her hair (it may have been colored hairspray), powdered makeup on her eyelids and face, and general markings on her vinyl. She also had one eye that stuck, refusing to close unless I used my finger to shut it manually. Her leg limbs were a bit loose, but she could still hold a pose if I positioned her just right. I was a little concerned that I had bitten off more than I could chew with this one! As I started working on her, I had no clue what I would end up with. Below you'll see some other "before" pictures of her.

 I started my project by cleaning her vinyl with a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser (thanks for the tip, stephenswodadancer!) :) That took most of her markings off and removed all of the makeup. The next big hurdle to tackle was her hair.

Before I started, I taped cotton balls over her eyes, as you'll see in the picture below. This helps protect their eyes from water damage and keep them from rusting. I also wrapped her cloth body in a towel to keep it as dry as possible.

I washed her hair twice with Johnson's Baby Shampoo (it took 2 washings to get all the yucky residue out). Just as a side note, I know it's not recommended to wash doll wigs, especially at the wig cap, but I figured her hair was in bad enough shape anyway that I had nothing to lose!

After her hair was clean, I gave her a downy dunk to condition it. Actually, to be perfectly accurate, it was a Sun brand "Cuddle Soft" dunk. This works just as well and is usually a little cheaper. She stayed in the "downy" overnight, and the next day I carefully rinsed all of it out, being careful not to tangle her hair again. I brushed through her hair, then laid her on her back on a bath towel and hung her hair over the edge of the washing machine. (that was the best flat surface available) :) I've dried the hair this way several times, which first was suggested to me on stephenswodadancer's tutorial video on Youtube. I like it because it helps the hair dry and you end up with some natural curl on the ends.

As her hair was drying, every once in a while I'd come by and brush through it again. It took almost a whole day to dry, but when it finally had, it was well worth it!

Aarrgh! I just accidentally deleted the after picture that was right here! Oh well, there are some more down below. She turned out so pretty! Almost all of the painty hairspray stuff came out, and I was able to remove just about all of the makeup, too. Below I've posted some "after" pictures, showing Katie with Tess and Lily, the other Gotz Little Sisters dolls, and one of Katie in her original meet outfit.

I absolutely love these dolls! They have such sweet faces. Tess is the brunette in the middle and Lily is the blonde. As you can see, I have Tess and Katie's original outfits, but I had to make do with Lily. Her original outfit was a blue striped turtle neck and a blue jumper. I'm not sure if these were the outfits from 2001 or 2002. The other year of production, the girls had floral print turtlenecks and jumpers in the same colors with a floral print decal on the front.

So as you can see, Katie turned out beautifully! It's so rewarding to start with a doll that is dirty and worthless by the standards of most people and make it beautiful again!

I really didn't think she would turn out as well as she did.
I was sure I'd have to rewig her, but the paint or hairspray
stuff came out amazingly well! :) She still has an eye that sticks, and her legs are still loose. Eventually I may re-string her, but I haven't been brave enough yet to re-string a doll. There's a great tutorial video on Youtube (once again by stephenswodadancer...I've learned so much from her!), but I'm so nervous to try it! It's not really an easy project, and I'm worried that I'll end up taking the doll apart and then not be able to get her back together again! I know once I've done the first one I'll probably be fine, so we'll see! :)

Check back for Part 2, when I show you my custom Gotz Hailey doll, a Craigslist rescue! :)


Anonymous said...

Her hair turned out great! Such an improvement!

beastsbelle said...

Thanks, I'm very pleased with the results myself. :)