Monday, August 23, 2010

Drowning my selfish sorrows.....

Can you believe it? The first day of school was today~ where the heck did the summer go??? Today I was home all alone for the first time in 15 years...nope didn't like it at all. Tressa is in high school, Josh & Em are in Elementary, and lil Pip in preschool. I was actually doing very well this morning, as I have been given the family crying gene, and cry at the weirdest things....anyways, I was holding it all together until a little fellow came and sat beside Pippy and was just a crying his little eyes out. That was it. I couldn't help it, I started to cry, so gave her a kiss real quick and left before I made too much a fool of myself....and yes, I cried the whole way home....while I was doing the dishes....while I swept the floor, and I had to stop reading my emails for a bit, cause I couldn't see to write. How pathetic. I had made a whole list of things for me to do today, to keep me busy, so one by one, I did them all and then some, crying the whole blasted time! I spent about 6 hours finishing up Abby's dress~ what a patient girl! Would you like to see how she came out? I'm really quite smitten with her

Doesn't she look FABULOUS!? This is a very special dollye of mine~ she is a HUGE MS Superior Mache head~ (Edyth, shes a wonderful and very proportionate 51" tall! ) This same mold was used by the German firm of Kloster Veilsdorf and can be found in china heads~ I love her bubbly curls all over hear head~ short little things, not sausage curls....Anyways, I'm getting off the point. In order to truly appreciate her, as I do, I need to share a bit of her history with you. Abby was one of my Dearest friends dollys, Edyth O'Neill~ we both like the larger dolls, and she held a place of honor in Edyth's lovely Cape, sitting by the window in this gorgeous Windsor rocker.

One stormy day in 2005, lightning struck her precious home, and so many dollys perished in the fire, it was devastating. Our Abby was drenched and burned as the heavy sooty smoke billowed out from her window. The firefighters saved as much as they could, including our Abby. Here she is afterwards, resting.

To save what she could, Edyth removed the heads and hands from so many, and set them to dry out in an o-zone chamber for many many months. Here you can see our Abby girl, heavily smoked, in the upper left of the picture below. Her original painted features blackened by the smoldering smoke

But our girl is a trouper! Her & Edyth weren't about to let some flames snuff out her spirit, so Edyth lovingly repainted her, and I think she looks just as good, if not, dare I say, better than she did before the fire.
She has been patiently waiting for me to make her a dress....and I have been looking for just the right fabric for her~ we both are quite picky! I wanted to make her gown from an antique fabric, but she is so big, I couldn't find what I wanted, in enough quantity, so I went with this repro~ washed it a few times, and it worked really well. Matter of fact, I really like it, I mean, really. Its all hand stitched, and lined in antique polished cotton, with a very wide 8" hem facing of the same, makes it drape perfectly.

She is always helping me, and as time has passed, she has picked up some things here and there, to wear for herself. I let her borrow the early child's mull undersleeves~ they fit her perfectly.
The pantaloons are really great, c1850, with wondrous hand made Van Dyke edgings. She is borrowing them, but they fit so well, I don't think I will get them back. The shoes, however, are hers permanently! I had pulled some things of later 19th c to sell, and she snapped these up quick as a whistle. They are c 1870 red wool side button shoes. She has always told me she wanted another red other color would do, and these would match so perfectly.

She is happy to model an early, 1840-60 child's inked apron over her dress. It ties in the back, and the bib pins in place on the bodice. I was elated to find this earlier this year, as so many early Izannah Walker dolls wear dolly sized ones...but I had never seen a child's size one. It fits her so well, it was like it was made for her.

I love this picture, of her hands~ doesn't she look just so happy? This is a great example of how you can dress a dollye in a period style, using both modern and antique clothing together. I was really glad to have gotten her dressed today~ heck, I may be able to get a lot done with the children at school...I keep telling myself its a good thing, but I'm selfish, I want them here with me forever.


Dixie Sargent Redmond said...

She is beautiful. Outstanding job dressing her!

Christine LeFever said...

Why does everyone start school in August these days? We always went after September 7th., and the Oregon schools aren't back yet, that I know of. Hello! And, I went to private schools, so it's not that.

Oh but she is a gorgeous doll who has come through so very much. She is of my favorite vintage in doll making. The look is so beautifully and truly that of Early America.

Bravo to you and Edyth!



Rachael Kinnison said...

Thanks Dix! Thankyou Christine!
xoxoxoxo r

Sally StitchyWooWoo said...

Love your dolls Rachael, really beautiful. And I know what you mean about the kids. I loved the school holidays and hated it when they had to go back.We always had so much fun. Weird Mummy !!!

Wanda said...

She is just amazing, and my mom is only an inch or so taller!! I love her face, and the red dress is just perfect. Thank you for your site, I love it.