Loyal blog readers may remember that I have tried "enhancing" three of my non-Tonner dolls that had factory painted eyes by cutting eye openings and inserting inset eyes. I didn't do a really bang up job .... so back in September I sent the three vinyl doll heads away to a pro, in hopes that my rough job of beveling the eye sockets could be "corrected". Hoping to keep things simple, I just sent just the heads and kept the pieces of the back of the heads that one has to cut open to work inside the head here at home where they wouldn't get lost in the "shuffle".
The project didn't come back to me until about a week ago. When I restored the heads to their bodies and got ready to glue back in the cover for the opening at the back of the heads, I got a shock - the pieces will no longer fit into the holes they came from!
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Here are a couple of drawings that may help visualize what I'm trying to describe. Imagine the sphere to the left is a doll head facing downwards (and no, doll heads aren't "perfect" spheres like this, but let's keep it simple.) To work on the inside of the
head, one cuts off a section, like the top section of this sphere (but no, with the dolls it isn't usually such a large portion of the sphere as this!) So the edge of the resulting hole in the head is (approximately) circular and the edge of the piece you've cut out is (approximately) circular.
What has happened to these "open" doll heads in the 3-4 months that they sat around without the "cover" glued into the head/sphere opening is that the opening has stopped being the shape of a circle and is now more like the "prolate ellipse" shape in the drawing to the right.
All I can think of is that there must be pressures on the surface of the vinyl "sphere" of a doll head that cause it to gradually change shape if part of the "sphere" is removed. Apparently the shape that the head "wants" to be is longer and narrower.
Luckily for me in two of the dolls the only apparent difference that this is going to make is that the back of the head looks pretty funky, like a jig-saw puzzle where the piece isn't quite right but you jam it in the space anyway! Since this is covered by their wigs, it won't matter. In the third doll the change has been extreme enough that her face is noticeably narrower, and I'm not sure I can get the back cover on, jammed or not! She is still a pretty doll, but not the same as when she left here!
So ..... learn from my mistake!!! Beware of opening up a vinyl doll head and leaving it open for too long!!! R.