Sneakers that fit Liv: Only Hearts Club

They were selling the last Only Hearts Club dolls for 50% off, so I thought "why not?". (And although I know perfectly well why not, I went ahead and bought one anyway.)

They're poseable cloth body dolls and the little booklet calls them "wholesome" and "age-appropriate" several times. I think the target group is "parents who want wholesome dolls for their kids", which ...isn't really me (and the way I remember it, Barbie's relative lack of "wholesomeness" and "age-appropriateness" was the whole point for me as a kid), but I read The Toybox Philosopher's review and thought the realistic face sculpt was pretty cool, and I so wanted one for the collection.

Only Hearts Club sneakers - staining
Yes yes, but what about the sneakers?!?

She doesn't fit very well with the rest, though, and I haven't decided what to do with her yet (keep as is? Rebody? Pass on to my friend's kid when she's old enough?) BUT I did discover that she comes with very nice sneakers that look really good on Liv! Liv has sneakers of her own, of course, but they're hard plastic and pretty clumsy (the pair I have and the ones I've seen). These are squishy rubber and pretty realistic!

Liv vs Only Hearts Club
Left: Liv, Right: Only Hearts Club. The pink sneakers are Liv's.

If I get around to buying more shoes for the Liv body, I think I'll try to find another pair of OHC shoes rather than some of Liv's own. There are a few OHC fashion packs on the 'bay (although nobody offers reasonable shipping to faraway exotic EU at the moment). I'm not sure whether the other shoes would fit, but a few of them come with sneakers in different colors (seems like the same model, though). These have pink yarn for shoelaces that unfortunately has stained the rubber and the doll's feet a bit, but a white pair should be safe.

Liv and Only Hearts Club
They're so wholesome they don't need pants!


drawing Spectra

spectra 2

Drawing my Monster girls in the middle of the night... I'm trying not to be a perfectionist and just finish something for once.


Canvas sneakers for Ken!

When I said I would scale down on the doll stuff shopping, I didn't include shoes!


I've wanted these canvas sneakers for a while. Originally I wanted red, but then GoodStuffToGo had the blue version for about half price (closing sale! :( ). There is a male and female model, but they're action figure sized, and according to the pictures I saw the male shoes are HUGE even for action figure shoes. The female model is about 4 cm and looked like it might fit Ken or other male fashion dolls.

They come with a bag and box, which I knew would probably get beat up in the mail, but I don't care. It's patina!

The socks have pretty thick printed strips that stretched and cracked a bit when I pulled them over Liv's heels. Ken doesn't need them, but they fit Monster High pretty well!

(Cheap unarticulated Ken, but I think the feet are the same, more realistic mold as, say, Fashionista.)

Some random comparisons:

Action Man's and Triad Omega's feet are too wide!

Ballerina Barbies feet are too small!

Compared to the "micro sneakers" for fun.

Some of the eyelets don't line up. Also I think the skull logo ended up on the wrong side, but I can live with that. I looked, and the logo seems to be exactly where intended, although I have to wonder if it wouldn't look better placed on the other side? The glue residue looks bad but that's mainly due to the camera settings.

These would probably fit more 1/6 scale male fashion dolls if they weren't so narrow! Is it just me or do action figure shoes generally have a pretty odd length/width ratio? They always make the feet look super long.

Re: scaling, I remember reading a complaint somewhere about the neck on the Omega body being too long. Someone suggested this was deliberate, to allow for several layers of clothing made of not-quite-1/6-scale fabric without making the neck look too short. That's actually pretty good thinking: some things need to be tweaked in order to look good in 1/6 scale, and I'm wondering if there could be a similar reason for the extra-long and narrow shoes. Can't think what it might be, though, but someone who owns more than three action figures might know?

These are probably the nicest shoes any of my dolls own. I kind of wish I had bought two pairs while I was at it, but like I said they only had blue left and I've only got one doll who can wear them anyway... I might save up for a red pair from the Bay of E sometime, though.


onoes I'm popular (not really)

My one popular pic on flickr suddenly saw a lot of traffic today. Someone must have shared a link on a forum or something, but since I don't have pro I can't see the stats and have no idea where everybody is coming from. Ah well.

While I'm glad people seem to like it, I feel like all those views are a bit wasted since I haven't got much else of interest to offer. Clearly, I fail at providing relevant content to my user base, as well as marketing strategies, SEO, and any other buzzword you can think of. I should just resign as CEO of my account of random doll pics and spend my days golfing in the Seychelles...


The Quest for Stretchy Fabric

Winter has made a comeback the last few days, but still I ventured out today. Mostly for groceries, but I also took the opportunity to check out the "cheap-socks-and-underwear aisle" for some fabrics suitable for 1/6 scale clothes. That's right - instead of finishing my sewing project I'm planning for the next one! My excuse is the more fabric I have, the more likely I am to actually make something with it, instead of hesitating because it's The Last Stretchy White Cotton In The World and I'll Waste And/Or Ruin It! It's perfectionism vs shopaholicism, I guess, and I wish I'd only resolved to fight one of them this year...

The socks weren't much to write home about, but I found some kids' panties with a pretty cool skull/heart pattern that are so perfect for Monster High, they could almost be a copyright infringement. They came in packs of three, sadly only one patterned and the other two in solid colors. A bit expensive too, so I only bought one. At least I got some black stretch fabric too, that's always good to have on hand.

Skulls and cell phones and hearts, oh my!

I also found this pair of shiny nylon shorts with a cell phone print. Cell phones! It's just so weird, I had to have them, and luckily they were on sale. Lots of fabric too (XL), so my entire doll crowd will be wearing Cell Phone Couture this year. Yeah, I know: when sewing for dolls you should try to find patterns that fit the scale, but come on - who wouldn't want to walk around wearing huge cell phones!? I know I would.

I'd like to use the lace hem for a sleeve or something.
Finally I got another pair of their nylon mesh panties. Terrible underwear, great doll fabric. The last pair is now half a MH dress that's awaiting my decision re: shoulder straps in a drawer somewhere. These have a sort of fall color theme going on - great for a Barbie blouse with lots of ruffles! I'll put them away until the end of summer and see if any ideas have crystallized by then.

So that was my day, I guess. :)


2013: Year of the Face-Up

The eyes in question.

...I really have to do something about those eyes. It didn't bother me when she was on her original cheap knock-off body or when she was a floating head, but now with a proper body and clothes the look is downright disturbing. Maybe this will be the year I finally get it together and start repainting faces.


Darren's New Sweater, part 2 of at least 3

Plugging away on the sweater. So far I've got the collar hem mostly attached. This is the second attempt - at first I forgot to stretch the fabric as I attached it and the collar ended up sticking straight up. Not the look I had in mind. 

Stitch the stretchy blue stuff to the white stuff...

...fold it over...

...fasten with a second seem... 
...aaaaand almost done! Next: The Difficult Bit
This is supposed to be a v-neck, so next I have to try and stitch the two ends of the hemming together at an angle... while keeping them slightly stretched... and trying to make it look good... Yes, I'm procrastinating a bit. Maybe tomorrow!

This pic of Darren showing off The Sweater So Far refused to show up for some reason. C'mon Darren, it's not that bad!

Also, I should probably read up a bit on English sewing terminology so I'll be able to actually describe what I'm doing. Then again, since my sewing knowledge basically amounts to "sew this thingy to that thingy and try to make it look good somehow", I feel like specialist terms would look a bit out of place here. :D I might have to actually learn how to sew first... (The horror...)


A Simple Dress for a Busty Lady (Volks EB-Beauty type E)

Finally got my first Volks body. Since the old EB model was discontinued and the international site was constantly out of stock on the EB-Beauty model, I was starting to worry I'd never get a hold of one. But, here she is! This is EB-Beauty Type E, the one with the rather large "tracts of land". They just didn't have Barbies like this when I was a kid! :D 

The body came with a head, but it's very anime-looking and not really my taste. It has the pointiest nose I've ever seen. Instead I used a head from a thrift-store find I was planning to rebody. This is Claire - and yes, the eyeprint is more than a bit wonky. She was cheap and I liked her anyway, particularly for the hair color, but she's definitely getting a new face as soon as possible. (She's... a secret agent who is having a bit of a silicone mask failure. Yes, that's it.)

Closeup - skin tone match
Claire and her eyes
 The skin tones don't quite match: the body is a bit more neutral beige, almost grey in comparison. Different parts that are made of different types of plastic have slightly different shades - and of course the vinyl bust part has to be the worst match for the head... Still, I think an Obitsu would be an even worse match. As always it depends largely on the lighting.

 Posing 1 

Due to her generous cup-size no barbie clothes fit her, so I had to make her a dress. I'm trying to be less of a perfectionist and actually get stuff done instead of getting hung up on details, so the hems are simple "up-and-down stitch" and nothing is particularly neat and/or tidy. Took about 2 hours or possibly a bit more, divided on two nights. As usual I think "I'll make a better version later" but I'm not sure that will happen. This will have to do for now.

Posing 2
Behold my glorious photo studio: an old pillowcase in front of the window!
I actually had two pairs of shoes that fit her, more or less: a random pair of gold colored ones that are made of some sort of plastic that smells really bad and which I'd rather not use, and this pair of repro Francie shoes. They're a bit too long and too narrow, and of course it's the wrong shade of blue, but it's better than nothing.


The dress sags a bit in the back. Maybe two snaps would have made it fit better, but the waistline is so high that there wasn't room for more than one.
Dress 6 
Looks a bit weird when she bends over.
Dress 1
The dress in all its glory

Dress 3

Closeup of the messy insides of the dress. The straps (or whatever you would call it) took a lot of tweaking to get the right shape, so there are lots of extra stitches all over the place.


Darren's New Sweater, part 1

 Well, I was going to start off with the traditional "yay first!!!1" post, but then I figured I'd just get started with the actual content.

Dusty Darren
Darren is a bit dusty.

This is Darren. Hi, Darren! He's a Triad Omega and he needs some clothes that match his dashing good looks and broad shoulders. I'm not sure about the look, but the shoulder room I can probably manage.

This is the first time I've attempted a sweater. I don't know what I'm doing and I'm not in the mood for extensive research, so there's lots of trial and error involved here. Material is an old T-shirt I think and some very very blue stretchy fabrid I had lying around. Not the colors I'd pick ideally, but good enough for practice. The stretchy stuff is for hems and cuffs. It's a bit thicker than I would like but I'll give it a try.

I was going for a simple, loose model since I don't think I could manage a more form-fitting style. It also helps hide bulky seams, particularly around the cuffs.

One thing I wasn't sure of was where to place the sleeves: high up or low on the shoulder? I went with low since I thought it would make his shoulders less pronounced, and also to go with the loose fit.

Too big?

Too wide

Unfortunately I managed to miss the marking by about a 5-10 mm and the seems ended upp even lower down on the arm than planned! This also meant the torso ended up too wide, moving the look from "loose fit" to "hockey goalie gear"... I haven't decided yet if I'll remove the sleeves and try again, or leave it as it is. I'll probably hem the v-neck first and see how that turns out before I decide.

Attaching the cuff 1

Attaching the cuff 3

Attaching the cuff 5

Attaching the cuffs turned out to be easier than I thought! The fabric didn't bulk too much, and keeping them stretched was easy with the
Now, I know very little about sewing but one thing I've managed to pick up somehow is the importance of zig-zaging the edges to prevent fraying, particularly when attaching stretchy hems. In 1/6 scale it's really not feasible to do on the machine, so I'm improvising something similar by hand. This stitch most certainly has a name, but I can't be bothered to look it up right now. Is this how a professional would do it? I have no idea, but it seems to be working.

Cuffs, closeup

This is just to show the difference one little stitch makes when it comes to 1/6 scale.
The one on the left I "zig-zaged" after attaching the cuff, the one on the right I did it the other way around. The one on the right looks slightly better, I think.

Yes, of course one turned out shorter than the other. I can live with that. :)

Posing in the WIP
Note incredibly unspecific idea sketch in background.

Well, that's as far as I got in the first sitting. Stay tuned for part 2!
(All pictures preserved for posterity on my Flickr, here.)