After some gentle nagging from friends, I’ve decided to make a website/blog, just for the dolls.
The first doll came into existence purely by accident. My dear friend Stefanie had been trying to get me to listen to IAMX for a long time. After a while I gave in and listened to a link she sent me, the live version of Bring Me Back A Dog. One listen and I was hooked. I wanted to make something for Stef as a gift, for encouraging me to listen to something new. A silly conversation about having your own British rock star doll, to cuddle at night, started the idea. I thought, ‘I wonder if I can make a Chris doll.’
I’d never made a doll before. So I looked online, found various patterns but none of them looked right to me. I ended up, using the head from one pattern, the legs from another, then the arms came from a Japanese doll but I made them longer. The body was adjusted from a simple rag doll design but I cut the head off to make room for the new head pattern and there you have it.
With a bit of fiddling about to get the neck on the body and the neck on the head to match up, I was able to start my experiment. I felt a lot like Victor Frankenstein when I had a lap full of body parts, all taken from different patterns, but once they were stitched together, I was quite pleased with the result.
I then looked at faces and hair. A lot of dolls have the hair cascading out from a central knot, covering the head, but the minute you start moving the head around, the hair parts and you can see a bald head underneath. I didn’t want that for Stef’s Chris doll, So I stitched every single thread individually. It took me about 4 days to finish the hair. Then I had to trim it into Chris’ hairstyle.
Once that was done, I wanted to make his face as close to the real Chris Corner as possible. I traced a photo of his eye from an IAMX photo shoot, where he’s wearing a lot of eye make up and a big stripy tie.
I transferred the drawing of the eye, to the doll’s face.
I had considered painting the eyes on, but then I started thinking. ‘What if I messed it up, I can’t remove the paint from the face once it’s on there?’ So I decided to embroider the eyes instead. This may take longer, but the results are, the eyes are exactly how I want them, if I make a mistake while stitching, I just unpick it and do it again, no messy paints and it’s less likely to fade with time.
His lips were just a few stitches of red, using a screen shot from ‘Spit It Out’ for the expression on his face and the glittery dots under his eyes.
His outfit was just a simple pattern, with ruffles added to give it Chris’ style. His top hat is made of felt, and I hand stitched his little leather boots, making sure he had laces to hold them on his feet. He even has braces and underwear.
The final details to Chris’ outfit, were leather wrist cuffs, a leather collar and a little leash, as a surprise for Stef.
Once he was finished, I wrapped him in bubbled wrap and sent him to Germany to be with his new mum.
Since his completion, he has travelled with Stef to many places.
He even came back here for a visit and while he was here, he had an upgrade. A new top, with epaulettes and a fob watch. Some feathers and a gem were added to his hat and new glittery dots were glued to his face.
He spent some time with his ‘brother’ Sawyer and they now have matching necklaces with a key.
One of the final touches, were bells on his boots.
Here is Sawyer, he was the second doll to be created.
As a result of these two dolls being made, people have asked for them and I’ve made them. They take between three and six weeks to make, depending on how well I am.
I’ll post photos of the other dolls in another blog.