This is Katherine. I started making her a few weeks ago, trial and error, making and re-making parts, experimenting with stitches, faces, shapes. I have been dipping in and out of Art Dolls for some time now, but when I saw the work of Joanna, a.k.a. The Pale Rook, I was *inspired* to really, actually, start making.
I was terrified: of “making a mistake”, “doing it wrong”, (As though there is a way of “doing art” wrong. I drive myself mad with these thoughts sometimes) but mostly, that she wouldn’t turn out like I had in my head.
And she didn’t.
Like how it is, that we “imagine” our children will be a certain way and they rarely are; she became herself as I made her, whispering and nudging me along, appearing before my eyes as herself.
I made her boots as soon as I made her, I had dreamed of her wearing them, so I stitched them with the tiniest of stitches, but drew a blank at the dress. I knew what I wanted… but it just wouldn’t come together, I couldn’t find the materials I needed. I wanted something vintage-y and a bit eccentric.
So I thought and hummed and hawed.
Until yesterday, when I was rooting around in my mountains of boxes of stuff and had a brainwave: Some years ago, an old family friend had gifted me her dolls, and their wardrobe of mostly beautifully made, handmade clothes (deserves a long post of their own). In one of these boxes, I found this dress. It is much longer than Katharine is, made of silk chiffon with lace. It is perfect. Perfect in its delicacy, in its fit: simply perfect.
I’ve now started my second- and third- doll. More sculptural, using more mixed media, my brain is in overdrive: dreaming, planning, conceiving; waking to nurse a baby at night and falling back asleep with ideas and visions of shapes and stitches (I’m so exciting)
I’m meeting with some fellow bloggers tomorrow, but hoping to get a chance to do some more on Sunday. I’ll hopefully post some progress next week. Until then, have a great weekend 🙂
She’s absolutely beautiful, Ems. Like a cross between Catherine Earnshaw and Emily Dickinson. I love her abundant hair, her pert face, her adorable dress. Brava! She’s a work of art, for sure.
Thank you Nuala 🙂
Emily, she is amazing! I love her! Her boots! I love her in the garden holding up her dress and “flashing” her boots. Also where she is clasping her hands. Such an elegant creature.
Emily, she is beautiful, a triumph! I can’t believe you made her, (really I can) that is such a skill. Well done!
Thanks Joanna 🙂
WW thank you… I’m living through this “elegant creature” ha ha!
She is so beautiful! You are so talented! I can’t wait to see what you do next. And next, and next and next…
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I’ve just found this while looking for something else, and I am so chuffed that you were inspired by my work. Your doll is beautiful, so is your description of making her. Take care, Johanna 🙂