Thursday, July 29, 2010

Miss Josephine

It seems that every time I've tried to blog this week, something has come up and thwarted my attempts!  In fact, I'm squeezing this post in as quick as I can before I leave to work on a hair appointment at a client's house! 

I am working on a new clay doll, who, right now looks like her name should be Miss Josephine - though that could change as she progresses.  The photo at the bottom right shows her body parts, and behind her are four heads that will be made into hanging ornaments for a different project I'll be working on.  Bottom left shows the attachment of her limbs.  I kinda thought her arms looked too long, so I made a new pair, as seen in the top two pic's.

Glancing through an art doll magazine, I came across an article on old fashioned Prim dolls, and decided to try and create my own version of the dolls of that period.  The photo on the top left shows her with her bodice and sleeves attatched, and I'm debating whether or not to have an underskirt beneath the cream batiste layer that would peek out below the top skirt.  She will of course let me know what she wants as I go along, because even when I do have a particular idea about how I want my dolls to look, they always seem to know exactly what they want to look like!

Hope you have a great day!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Maya, a Paperclay Doll

I've always been fascinated by the beautiful clay dolls I've seen while browsing through etsy, flickr and doll magazines.  So, while we were away on holidays, I spent a rainy afternoon playing with the paper clay I had brought along.  Maya's head was made by wrapping clay around a styrofoam ball, and I used a bamboo stick for her neck.  The pieces didn't take to long to harden with the warm weather, and when we returned home, I sanded each body part and drew on her face, then used watercolours and pencil crayons to give her colour.  Her hair is made from wefted mohair, which I cut into 1/4 inch strips and glued directly onto her head.  For her dress, I gathered a strip of wide cotton lace and glued it onto her body.  A green ribbon and a fabric flower are the finishing touches.  Little shoes were painted on, and I added narrow strips of lace above her knees - really just to hide the knots from the embroidery thread that holds the leg joints together.
Maya is my second attempt at a clay doll.  I made the first one a few weeks before we left, and as you can see in the photo below, she needed A LOT of improvement!

For my next one, I will attempt to sculpt her entire face with the clay instead of painting it on.  The first doll's nose and lips were sculpted, but more time and detail needs to be used while doing that part, they are quite tricky!

For all those who have been wanting to try Paperclay, please do!  It's super nice to work with and has a lovely consistancy.  And another bonus is it has a smooth, velvety texture once sanded. 

Just wanted to share one more pic of the newest addition to my doll collection.  Aggie was made by Sarah, who I'm sure most of you are big fans of!  She is the creator of amazing clay dolls and her work can be found at
Aggie is a sweet little darling and her eyes, completely handmade by the artist, are incredibly soulful.  Please stop by her blog to see what she's up to!

For additional pic's, check out my flickr site at,

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Helllooo, I'm Home!

Hello, it's so nice to be back!  We had such fun and I enjoyed every moment of our trip!  Our first destination was Loon Bay Resort, nestled on  pristine Sheridan Lake and run by a wonderful Swiss couple.  Wild life was easy to spot, and we often saw deer, bison, eagles and on one drive, I spotted a young black bear not too far from the edge of the road. 
This area was my favourite of the three we visited.  The beauty in this part of BC is spectacular, there are wildflowers everywhere, poplars and birch trees, gleaming lakes and streams.  We could hear the call of the Loons, mostly at sunset and watched baby ducks trailing after their mama's along the water's edge.

Our next stop was Barkerville, an old Gold Rush town from the 1860's that has been preserved as British Columbia's largest living museum.

We spent two days visiting this National Historical site.  Highlights of our trip included a tour of Chinatown, an old fashioned stagecoach ride, gold panning, and having our photo taken at Louis Blanc's photography gallery.  I think hubby and the boys look quite dashing!


Our next destination was Shuswap Lake in the interior of BC.  The devastation caused by the pine beetle is evident along our route.  These little pests have caused a huge percentage of  the pine forests to become gnarled and grey skeletons of trees, and they stretch as far as the eye can see.  It seems like we are travelling amongst a tree graveyard.  There are still spectacular views along the way, and we pass mountains, ranches and beautful lakes.  Shuswap lake is huge, and is surounded by cottages and resorts.  We spent some time at the beach, went to the farmers markets and played mini golf.  Most days were cloudy and chilly, and we were all ready to leave when our stay was up.

 For the last leg of our journey, we headed to Osoyoos.  Our trip took us through picturesque towns and farmlands, where horses and cattle dotted the hillsides.  We stopped at the Village Cheese Company, where you can watch cheese being made and sample dozens of varieties of the cheese they produce.  Cheese is my favourite food, so I had a bit of a heyday tasting them all, and then trying to decide which ones to buy.  We ended up with seven different ones as well as some smoked salmon marianated in a wine sauce.  Yummy!
Anyway, Osoyoos is a little resort town that is situated around a lake in the middle of a desert.  Fruit orchards and vineyards grow up the sides of the mountains and their greenery is stark against the barren hills.  It is the perfect temperature in summer, hot sunny days, and cool breezy nights.  But winter can get extremely cold, and temps can plummet to -40 celsius.
I finally decided to be brave and try out one of the canoe's my hubby had built, and we spent hours paddling around enjoying the views from the water.  Wish I had tried it sooner, I'm hooked and I'm looking forward to paddling around as much as possible while the weather is good!

Our trip finally came to an end, and every moment was enjoyed to the fullest.  We really wanted to make this trip special for the kids, they're getting older and soon both will graduate and move on to doing their own things.   Gotta enjoy them while you can!