I've been busy transplanting many of the gang's heads onto new Tenner bodies. This, of course, leaves various "old" bodies in the waiting room and my mantra is "a body is a tahr'ble thing to waste". So here is a new member of the gang - her name is Sunny.
She has Liat's "old" J'aime Rosebay legs and lower torso and her own Ashton-Drake Effner vinyl arms and upper torso (surgically removed from her lower torso). The other spiffy thing (at least to me!) is that she has the results of my very first Effner-style face-up with air-dried paints, learned from videos on Dianna's Ning group. I've got a lot to learn still .... and she may have been a poor choice to start with since her smile causes her eyes to be so small. But regardless of my mistakes, I surely think she looks better than she did "from the factory"!! R.
I was thinking this morning that I really need to give Georgia a treat of some kind, since she has been so nice about having her head taken off and put on and taken off and put on, over and over again the last several days!! Maybe a day at a spa?? Or all the ice cream and cake she could eat??
And then I realized that today is Hinamatsuri - it almost slipped by me in all the concentrated focus I've had on Tenner "business" the last several weeks!!
So Georgia's treat is to be my Hina Doll for 2014!!
And we all enjoyed singing a Hinamatsuri song called "Ureshii Hinamatsuri (Happy Hinamatsuri)." Here is the first verse:
Akari o tsukemashou bonbori ni
Ohana o agemashou momo no hana
Go-nin bayashi no fue taiko
Kyo wa tanoshii Hinamatsuri
Let's light the lanterns
Let's set peach flowers
Five court musicians are playing flutes and drums
Today is a joyful Dolls' Festival
There are lots of videos on the 'net that feature this Hinamatsuri song. I like this one: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zwjTA30LVcc It is really cute to see the tinies wiggling around, trying to be patient through all four verses of the song!
Thank you Georgia, for being so patient! Happy Hinamatsuri to all!! R.
Goldie is having a fine time twirling around on the ice!!!!
MaryMary is a little more unsure of herself - she's just concentrating on staying upright.
Kylie arrived a little late, so she's just started to put on her skates.
What fun - can't you just hear a Strauss waltz???
Goldie and MaryMary are Effner Ashton-Drake vinyl dolls (with Tonner legs and inset eyes). Being fascinated by taxonomy -- or perhaps more like genealogy in this case? -- I've always wondered which Effner porcelain sculpts the Ashton-Drake doll were based on. Some of them, like Goldie, are relatively obvious ("Bedtime Jenny"). But it wasn't until very recently that I realized that MaryMary is based on "Everyday Jenny" (also known as "Jenny I"). So in my skating photos one is actually looking at Jenny and Jenny!!!! R.
Last night was the denouement of the Christmas pageant preparations.
We had kings!!
We had shepherds!!
We had sheep!!
We had an angel!!
And we had the Holy Family!!!!
All played their part to perfection. Alison only sneezed a couple of times. They are all very proud of their efforts!!! "Show everyone the photos!!!"
And afterwards there was a great party - Christmas cookies, egg nog and mince-meat pie with vanilla ice cream. Then time for more fun singing Christmas carols.
From all of us here at Joe Pye Towers - "Love and joy come to you, and to you your Wassail too, and God bless you and send you a Happy New Year". R.
The talk around the breakfast table this morning was all about the upcoming Christmas pageant, as it has been for the last couple of weeks! Alison learned yesterday that she has been cast as one of the shepherds. (I'm sure she gave a great, thespian-rich audition, but we won't tell her that what swayed the director was that she owns a nice sheep doll!!! The pageant needs all the sheep we can get!)
Later during the day I looked in on Sophie and Sue Lin, hard at work in the school room. Sue Lin is helping to sew the costumes and Sophie (with her list - see her list?!) started going through the prop chest. She was distracted when she found some of the crowns and tiaras .....
No girl can resist trying on a tiara if it comes her way, right?!
Stay tuned!!!! R.
Meet Salali. She tells me her name means "squirrel" in Cherokee. Maybe she's playing a joke on me .... but she is so cute that Squirrel does seem quite appropriate! Apparently she is another nature lover, so I'm sure she'll find lots of friends here.
She arrived from Effner/Ashton-Drake land, and like Brigitte, Goldie and Mary Mary before her, I've fitted her with a pair of Tonner legs. R.
Here is a picture of Dame Cecilia and Azalea together, both now in updated bodies (see post below) and one of their favorite younger friends, Annie Laurie (still chasing butterflies!)
Not only did Dame Cecilia emerge from orthopedic surgery more limber, but she lost a couple of pounds off her waistline - we had to take in her Firefly uniform skirt's waistband. How nice, since "a waist is a terrible thing to mind"! R.
Hear that warbling, wobbling duet out in the pea patch singing "oh what a beooootiful morning!!"?? What a great way to introduce you to Ms. Azalea "Mulch" Househob!! She is Dame Cecilia's sister and while not as active and well known on the international scene as Dame Cecilia is, Azalea is equally as famous in gardening circles. It is Azalea who has redesigned the large formal gardens in the Lilyhill family estates in England (Prince Charles comes to her for advice!) But she also loves to get her hands in the soil in something so mundane as her vegetable patch. Which is where I found her this morning, with Kitty and Ann Estelle tagging along. And just look at the peas they picked!
Time to shell 'em!
Well! Someone is having fun "shooting" peas!!!! Ahem!!!
The reason you haven't seen Azalea before this (even though I believe there were references to her in the living moon rock post?) is that someone has postponed giving her orthopedic surgery. But that all changed recently when I viewed a great instructional video on Dianna Effner's website http://www.expressionsdolls.com/youtubevideos.html
After stumbling around a bit to find a good size armature (they seemed to be described in sizes for reborn baby proportions rather than adult proportions) I got one that worked. (These armatures fascinate me - they are made by a company in China called Jeton, originally as flexible coolant hoses!!)
Upon seeing how flexible and energetic this surgery has made Azalea, Dame Cecilia is now eagerly awaiting the same therapy!
I haven't been doing a good job of keeping up with introductions to the various members of the clan here, have I? Well now is a good time to remedy that and do a small "feature" on Gwennie, who you don't see too often. That's because she's shy and she worries a lot ... about all sorts of things .... like having her picture taken!
Gwennie has the head of a Jacqueline Kent figure attached to a Tonner body. Jacqueline Kent makes lots of different "collectible" figures - not dolls, per se, since they are not meant to be redressed or "played" with, for that matter. They have cloth bodies, with or without armature. The heads and hands (and sometimes feet) are caste in resin, and, in my experience, the heads are solid. Thus Gwennie's head could not be strung onto a Tonner body; it had to be fixed on with glue (hence I used one of the bodies with jointed legs since they do not require stringing to the head to attach to the body.)
Ms. Kent's forte is the wrinkles, lines and character of older folk's faces, but occasionally she will produce a face that looks younger, like Gwennie (who is from the hanging/flying angels set.) I would love to find one of her figures in the correct scale to act as a granny for the gang, but so far the ones I see are either too small or too big. Here is a great Youtube video showing Ms. Kent sculpting a head in time lapse. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_JxIngq-ZcI
And here is a little compendium of older photos of Gwennie. Enjoy! R.
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