Saturday, August 31, 2019

My New Handmade Mixed Media Snow Fairies Art Dolls - Meet Pixie, Dixie, and Mixie



Back in 2014 I decided to take Julie Haymaker's "Let's Go For A Ride" class at Artful Gathering. The project called for making an adorable little mixed media shadow box scene with 3 pets sticking their heads out the window of a car that was driving over a hill. The class looked like it would be a lot of fun to take so I decided to take it.

A kit was available for purchase from Julie's Etsy shop so I ordered one as it's a lot easier to do that than run around to get supplies. The kit came with everything you needed to create the project including thread and needle. It was fabulous.

Well, in looking at Julie's kits for sale she had some unusual unfinished wood pieces for making several different types of mixed media dolls.  Julie is a remarkable mixed media artist who has an eye for unusual art doll creations and her unfinished wood kits were available as a tool to help you with this. So, of course I bought a few.

rolling  hand carved wooden heart on wheels ready to decorate.  

I've used a few over the years when the application seemed to fit something I wanted to create.  I used the heart and wood carriage above for my "Don Juan Romeo" mixed media art doll creation that I created this summer.

Friday, August 30, 2019

How I Made My Handmade Mixed Media Sponge Painted Papier-Mâché Christmas Trees




For quite awhile now I've had two papier-mâché tree cones in my crafts supply stash.  I've been wanting to use them for a long time but just never seemed to have the time.  Well, with all the Christmas mixed media decorations I was making what's two more....lol

You know me I never do anything in moderation.

So I decided to create two identical mixed media Christmas trees.

I wanted to use them on my kitchen table to surround my new mixed media Santa and Mrs. Claus art dolls I was making.  Their post is here.

I thought they would be perfect for the center area of my kitchen table as it is long in length but only about 8" wide for the depth.  So I need long, skinny decorations here and my Santa and Mrs. Claus surrounded by these two trees would be perfect.

I also made some real pine tree log circles about 1 1/2" tall that my brother had cut from trees in his year several years ago.  Like everything else I've been holding on to these for a long time.

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Santa Sam - My New Handmade Mixed Media Santa Art Doll



As you're well aware from my previous posts I've been creating three mixed media Santa art dolls.

Here's what I've told you so far:

Years ago my mother was replacing her living room coffee table and end tables and throwing her old ones away.  They had a lot of lovely spindles on them and I thought it would be a waste to throw them away as they would make good pedestals for doll bases. Why throw something useful away when it can be re-purposed -  especially for dolls.

So, I asked my brother if he would take the tables apart and save the spindles, which he did.  I also asked him if her could add round wood bases to the spindles to create doll pedestals which he also did.

I also wanted him to drill holes in the tops so I could insert dowels to attach my doll bodies or heads.  Unfortunately the original spindles had metal pieces in the tops of some of them which made drilling new holes a little difficult.  He had to remove the metals first,

The base of the pedestal my brother made had 3"round wood circles that were 1" high.  I wanted to create a basket of sorts on the bottom of the Santa's to add potpourri and other Christmas decorations so I decided to use some thick scrapbook paper strips to do this.  After painting the pedestal bases and inserting the dolls heads and bodies I figured I would double the strips and glue them together so each side was finished and then glue them around the circle.  They would be perfect for what I wanted to do with these Santa's.

I also love combining dried floral potpourri with some of my creations as I'm  always looking for ways to salvage dried potpourri so it doesn't go to waste once it's lost its' smell.

Santa Leo - My New Handmade Mixed Media Santa Art Doll



As you're well aware from my previous posts I've been creating three mixed media Santa art dolls and have already finished two of them.

As you also know years ago my mother was replacing her living room coffee table and end tables and throwing her old ones away.  They had a lot of lovely spindles on them and I thought it would be a waste to throw them away as they would make good pedestals for doll bases. Why throw something useful away when it can be re-purposed -  especially for dolls.

So, I asked my brother if he would take the tables apart and save the spindles, which he did.  I also asked him if her could add round wood bases to the spindles to create doll pedestals which he also did.

I also wanted him to drill holes in the tops so I could insert dowels to attach my doll bodies or heads.  Unfortunately the original spindles had metal pieces in the tops of some of them which made drilling new holes a little difficult.  He had to remove the metals first,

Santa Joe - My New Handmade Mixed Media Santa Art Doll



As you're well aware by now I've been in Christmas crafting mode all summer long. This summer I decided I needed some new Christmas decorations and felt really inspired to make some.  And make them I did.  At last count I was at 34 different creations so, as you can imagine, I have a lot to show you.

Years ago my mother was replacing her living room coffee table and end tables and throwing her old ones away.  They had a lot of lovely spindles on them and I thought it would be a waste to throw them away as they would make good pedestals for doll bases. Why throw something useful away when it can be re-purposed -  especially for dolls.

So, I asked my brother if he would take the tables apart and save the spindles, which he did.  I also asked him if her could add round wood bases to the spindles to create doll pedestals which he also did.

I also wanted him to drill holes in the tops so I could insert dowels to attach my doll bodies or heads.  Unfortunately the original spindles had metal pieces in the tops of some of them which made drilling new holes a little difficult.  He had to remove the metals first,

My New Handmade Mixed Media Santa Art Dolls Trio - Meet Joe, Leo, and Sam



Years ago my mother was replacing her living room coffee table and end tables and throwing her old ones away.  They had a lot of lovely spindles on them and I thought it would be a waste to throw them away as they would make good pedestals for doll bases. Why throw something useful away when it can be re-purposed.

So, I asked my brother if he would take the tables apart and save the spindles, which he did.  I also asked him if he could add round wood bases to the spindles to create doll pedestals which he also did.

I also wanted him to drill holes in the tops so I could insert dowels to attach my doll bodies or heads.  Unfortunately the original spindles had metal pieces in the tops of some of them which made drilling new holes a little difficult.  He had to remove the metals first,

I've been saving the pedestals for a long time and thought this might be a good time to put my mother's old coffee table spindle pedestals to good use for the mixed media Santa art dolls I wanted to make.

Put them to use I did!


The pedestals my brother added were 3"round wood circles that were 1" high.  I wanted to create a basket of sorts on the bottom of the Santa's to add potpourri and other Christmas decorations so I decided to use some thick scrapbook paper strips to do this.  After painting the pedestal bases and inserting the dolls heads and bodies I would double the strips and glue them together so each side was finished and then glue them around the circle.  They would be perfect for what I wanted to do with these Santa's.

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

My New Handmade Mixed Media Collage Christmas Tree #2






As you know from my previous post years ago I bought two 3D unfinished wood Christmas tree kits that contained two pieces of wood that you would put together to form a 3D Christmas tree.  I don't know where I got them and haven't seen the exact kits since.

As I was in a Christmas crafting mode I decided now might be the time to use both of these.  So, surprise, surprise, I did.



I had in mind to create two different types of Victorian Christmas trees decorated with Victorian collage images.  Shown above is the second one I created.

My New Handmade Mixed Media Victorian Collage Christmas Tree #1






Years ago I bought two 3D unfinished wood Christmas tree kits that contained two pieces of wood that you would put together to form a 3D Christmas tree.  I don't know where I got them and haven't seen the exact kits since.

As I was in a Christmas crafting mode I decided now might be the time to use both of these.  So, surprise, surprise, I did.



I had in mind to create two Victorian Christmas trees decorated with Victorian collage images.  Shown above is one of them.

Monday, August 26, 2019

My New Handmade Mixed Media Snowlady Art Doll - Meet Lady Snow Belle



If you've been following me for years you know that I hate snow, but love snow-people - especially Victorian snow-ladies.  Yet, I still continue to create them.  Especially Victorian type snow-ladies.  There is no logic to it.

I've been wanting to creating some large Victorian mixed media snow-ladies for awhile and finally decided the time was now or never.  So, of course, I plunged right in and created some.


Lady Snow Belle is a delightful Victorian snow-lady who is a little unusual as she is sitting atop of large winter fuzzy silk floral cactus.  I've been wanting to use this large winter silk floral cactus for quite some time and just haven't found the right application.  Somehow it seemed suitable for this application.  So, I figured - let's give it a go! It'll either work or it won't.


Lady Snow Belle is a large 16" tall Victorian snow-lady with a paper-clay head  and collage body that resides atop a winter silk floral cactus which is atop a wood candle stand.

My New Handmade Mixed Media Snowlady Art Doll - Meet Lady Maisy



It's really funny that I hate snow, but love snow-people - especially Victorian snow-ladies.  Go figure!

I've been wanting to creating some large Victorian mixed media snow-ladies for awhile and finally decided the time was now or never.  So, of course, I plunged right in and created some.


Lady Maisy is a delightful Victorian snow-lady who, unlike her creator, thinks snow and the winter season are the best times of the year.  She loves spreading her enthusiasm for the winter season around and hopes her enthusiasm will be contagious.

I wouldn't  bet on that for her creator...lol but, I admire her spunk in trying.

My New Handmade Mixed Media Snow-lady Art Dolls



Along with all the Christmas mixed media dolls and crafts I've been making I decided to make some winter themed snow-ladies.

I've been wanting to creating some large Victorian mixed media snow-ladies for awhile and finally decided the time was now or never.

So, I'm pleased to introduce Lady Maisy and Lady Snow Belle. Lady Maisy is on the left in the picture above and Lady Snow Bell is on the right.


Both have paper-clay sculpted heads with acrylic and watercolor painted faces.


Sunday, August 25, 2019

My New Handmade Mixed Media Victorian Collage Mrs. Santa Tree Art Doll



After making my mixed media Victorian collage Santa it was time for Mrs. Claus.


I had a gentle image in mind for her and hoped she would come out that way.

My New Handmade Mixed Media Victorian Collage Santa Tree Art Doll



As mentioned in my previous Linda's Blog post this summer I decided I needed some new Christmas decorations and felt really inspired to make some.  And make them I did.  At last count I was at 27 different creations so, as you can imagine, I have a lot to show you.

I just love creating Victorian inspired Santa and Mrs. Claus dolls and have wanted to create some with paper-clay heads affixed upon Styrofoam Christmas trees for some time.  Kind of a combination Santa doll and Christmas tree all in one.


So, they were the first dolls I decided to create - starting with the Santa.

My New Mixed Media Victorian Collage Santa and Mrs. Claus Tree Art Dolls



As you all know I never do anything in moderation and when I get inspired to create - well, create I do.  And create, and create, and create.

Usually when I take the Artful Gathering classes in June, July, and August I get inspired to create dolls and crafts based on what I've learned.  Well, after a LOT of my own crafting trail and error, research and various online classes I've taken over the years I've learned a LOT about all sorts of dolls, crafts, mixed media art and more.


This summer I decided I needed some new Christmas decorations and felt really inspired to make some.  And make them I did.  At last count I was at 27 different creations so, as you can imagine, I have a lot to show you.

Saturday, August 24, 2019

My Dimensions "Jingle Bell Ornaments" Cross-Stitch KIt


Now I know this won't come as any surprise to any of you but I was immediately drawn to the "joy" ornament in the "Jingle Bell Ornaments" kit by Dimensions.  As you know, I just can't resist any ornament with my Mom's name one it.  But, when I looked at the "Jingle Bell Ornaments" kit by Dimensions further I thought how pretty they were and how wonderful they would look on my pencil Christmas tree.

They looked pretty simple and easy to me.  Based on previous experience I knew they would take a while to do due to the black highlighting and due to the embellishments so I was prepared for that.


The black floss highlighting for each ornament transforms them from a pretty ornament to a beautiful ornament.  The highlighting really makes them stand-out and is well worth the extra time it takes to finish each ornament.  It's quite amazing to see them in person.  What adds to the length of time is the black highlighting is done one stitch at a time.

The "Jingle Bell Ornaments" ornament kit contained the presorted thread, #14 plastic canvas, linked chain, jingle bells, needle and instructions.  The pattern uses full counted cross-stitch and outline stitching for emphasis and depth.

I have worked with the #14 plastic canvas before without a problem. Generally, it is flexible enough to just hold it in your hands but also rigid enough to allow you to cross-stitch it without any problem. However, I found with this kit and the size of the ornaments, in particular, that the 14-count plastic canvas was just too big to hold in my hands and cross-stitch at the same time.  I had to cut the canvas.

I Was Playing With Mixed Media Art Dolls - Meet Glinda, Blossom and Goldie


As mentioned in my previous Linda's Blog post, I Had To Change Her Face, when I was buying the wood doll kits for my Artful Gathering 2019 Session 2 "Beyond the Imaginarium: A Compendium of Holiday Merriment" class taught by Mary Jane Chadbourne in July I decided to buy more of her "The Imaginarium: Anthologies of an Art Doll" wood kits. I told her I just wanted to "play."

Back in July of 2014 I took her ART-S2-307 The Imaginarium: Anthologies of an Art Doll class. It was a delightful mixed media art doll class that I loved.  It was my first adventure into mixed media art dolls and since then I haven't looked back.  I fell in love with making mixed media art dolls.

Now I know what you're going to say, "Linda you fall in love with every class you take and everything you craft."  That's true.  I don't think there's any doll, craft, or online class I haven't loved. Let's face it - I'm a doll and craft junkie!!!


I always get inspired with every Artful Gathering class I take and this year was no exception.  Hubby isn't always happy with this as he knows I can never do anything in moderation and when inspired to create, well - create I do.  And, I create, and create and create.

Friday, August 23, 2019

My New Handmade Mixed Media Art Doll - Meet Glinda



As mentioned in my previous Linda's Blog post, I Had To Change Her Face, when I was buying the wood doll kits for my Artful Gathering 2019 Session 2 "Beyond the Imaginarium: A Compendium of Holiday Merriment" class taught by Mary Jane Chadbourne in July I saw she was still selling her I  "The Imaginarium: Anthologies of an Art Doll" wood kits containing the wood to make three dolls.

So, as you well know from my previous Linda's Blog posts "play" I did.


Glinda is a handmade 12" by 2" by 5" mixed media wood collage art doll who was painted a solid royal blue color.  And, surprise, surprise I didn't sponge paint her, which I usually do.  Sometimes a little change-up is good - don't you think?

Thursday, August 22, 2019

My New Handmade Mixed Media Art Doll - Meet Goldie



As mentioned in my previous Linda's Blog post, I Had To Change Her Face, when I was buying the wood doll kits for my Artful Gathering 2019 Session 2 "Beyond the Imaginarium: A Compendium of Holiday Merriment" class taught by Mary Jane Chadbourne in July I saw she was still selling her I  "The Imaginarium: Anthologies of an Art Doll" wood kits containing the wood to make three dolls.

So, as you all know I bought them to "play" and "play" I did.


Goldie is a handmade 15" by 2" by 5" mixed media wood collage art doll who was painted a medium  teal blue color.  And, surprise, surprise like 'Blossom" I didn't sponge paint her, which I usually do.

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

My New Handmade Mixed Media Art Doll - Meet Blossom


As mentioned in my previous Linda's Blog post, I Had To Change Her Face, when I was buying the wood doll kits for my Artful Gathering 2019 Session 2 "Beyond the Imaginarium: A Compendium of Holiday Merriment" class taught by Mary Jane Chadbourne in July I saw she was still selling her I  "The Imaginarium: Anthologies of an Art Doll" wood kits containing the wood to make three dolls.

So, and this should come as no surprise to all of you, I bought more.   I told Mary Jane I just wanted to "play."

Well, as you all know when I "play" at crafts and dolls I always go a little overboard.  Let's just say these three dolls inspired me to make some more mixed media dolls and crafts.  You'll see what I mean in all the following Linda's Blog posts.  Stay tuned - there will be a lot of them.

Now I know what you're all thinking; "Linda, you don't just go overboard - you go crazy.  Moderation is definitely not in your playbook!"

Guilty as charged, but I do have fun!


Blossom is a handmade 15" by 2" by 4" mixed media wood collage art doll who was painted a solid light teal blue color.  And, surprise, surprise I didn't sponge paint her, which I usually do.  Sometimes a little change-up is good - don't you think?

Tuesday, August 20, 2019

I Had To Change Her Face




Back in July of 2014 I was taking my 5th class at Artful Gathering. The class was ART-S2-307 The Imaginarium: Anthologies of an Art Doll and was being taught by Mary Jane Chadbourne.   It was a delightful mixed media art doll class that I loved.

I'd been anxiously awaiting the start of this class as I have never created mixed media art dolls so it was going to be an adventure for me. And, adventure it was. I never realized how much fun mixed media was, how much work was involved in creating mixed media art dolls and all the different supplies you would need.  I know now and have been addicted to mixed media ever since.

For this class Mary Jane class Mary Jane's husband had created wood doll kits that you could buy from her Etsy shop.  I had decided to buy one of the art doll wood kits as it contained all the wood I would need to make the 3 different art dolls taught in the class.

The dolls pictured above were the three art dolls I made back in 2014. The one on the left took the longest amount of time to make as I couldn't decide on the different papers and fabrics I would use for her outfit and what other embellishments I was going to add. Her message was "to listen is to learn, and to understand is to inspire" so I named her "Compassion."

Friday, August 02, 2019

A Progression Of Learning With Faces - I Hope!


I'm a lifetime student or lifetime crafter always in search of learning something new and have been teaching myself how to make things since I was knee high.  I've learned how to sew, knit, do a little woodworking, painting, floral design with natural and non-natural floral, create pictures, sculpting, drawing, collage, making dolls out of all sorts of media,  quilting, and handcrafting just about anything I could get my hands on.


Basically, there isn't any type of craft I wouldn't want to learn.  My bucket list is huge and, for sure, I won't be able to learn every type of craft there is.  I'll give it my best shot, which is all anyone can ever expect.

Some of the crafts I've tried have been easy for me.  Others have been difficult, like painting faces.  I find that my hand tends to shake a little when I'm trying to draw and paint faces for some of my doll creations.  That's probably what drew me to "faceless" dolls.  That and my love of the Victorian Era and Victorian dresses.

Well, many years ago now I discovered that the internet was a fabulous source for learning all sorts of crafts.  It was like crafting heaven for me.  I literally could spend 24/7 doing nothing by learning how to craft and apply the various techniques I'd learned.  What could be better than that?


In 2012 I discovered the Artful Gathering online classes and fell in love with them. They offer online art retreats that are available in the Spring and Summer each year that are are taught by some of the most unbelievable and creative artists I have ever encountered and whose creativity is beyond measure.


So far I've taken 13 Artful Gathering (counting the two I'm taking this year)  e-classes and just finished the second of the two online classes that I'm taking at Artful Gathering this year.  I have learned so much in all the classes I've taken, especially the doll making ones.

Here's some of my creations involving the painting of faces.  I'd like to think I've progressed in my learning and techniques over time and hope you would agree.