Diary of a Mad Dollmaker

Mimi's Weblog – Let's Talk About Dollmaking

Making Posable Hands that can Grasp Objects – New Free Video Tutorial

 

This is Chapters 6, 7, and 8 of Lesson 6 Posable Hands from the new Mimi’s Modular Mermaid Classroom on DVD. It takes eleven minutes and discusses and demonstrates how to make and pose doll hands that can grasp objects.

To see the previous videos, please visit Mimidolls.com. they are listed on the front page or under the “Video Tutorials” button.

Don’t forget to subscribe by email by using the button over in the right column.

For more information, click Mimi’s Modular Mermaid!

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Friday, September 2, 2011 Posted by | Instructions, Mimi's Mermaid | , , | 1 Comment

Reminders – More Mermaids – Doll Club Discounts

Mimi is on the Left Coast this week attending the ODACA (Original Doll Artists Council of America) and preparing to teach the High Priestess at the IOLCC (Imitation of Life Construction Company) doll club in Oceanside, CA. She asked me to post these reminders:

1. There will be a get-together to meet Mimi in Oceanside, CA on Thursday August 4, 2011. For more information call Lois Boncer, 760-438-3431 or email Lois@AardvarkToZebra.Com.

2. The sale on the Mermaids DVD set ends at the end of July. Order now to save $11.99 or 20%.

Here are pictures of the latest Mermaids and Elves:

Orange Overhead Tail - $275

Gold Wall Doll - $275

Burgandy Satin Sidetail - $350

Cyan Overhead Tail - $275

Brown Overhead Tail - $275

Black Wall Doll - $275

Pink Overhead Tail - $275

Prince Elvin - $425

Prince Elvin

Prince Elvin

Doll Club Discounts

We offer a tremendous discount for doll clubs. Here’s the deal:

1. A single person must place the order, pay for the order, and receive the shipment.

2. Discount is about 50%. Pretty Faces is $20, Mermaids is $30. Plus you pay the postage on the box (usually under $20).

3. You must order a minimum of ten (10) copies, but you can mix Pretty Faces and Mermaids to make up the ten.

Email Firebird-JMW@Comcast.Net for more information or to order. (Or you can email Mimi@Mimidolls.com, but it will take longer since she is out of town.)

Happy Dolling,

Jim Winer

Thursday, July 28, 2011 Posted by | Mimi's Elf, Mimi's Mermaid | , | Leave a comment

Mimi’s Elves Attend ODACA – Turning Fingers – New Free Video Tutorial

Prince Elvin and Trilby will be in attendance at the Original Doll Artists Council of America (ODACA) convention at the Anaheim Hilton, Anaheim, CA on Sunday July 24, 2011 from 2-10pm. A lot of mermaids will be there too. (rooms CL AVILA A and B)

Prince Elvin

Prince Elvin

Prince Elvin

Trilby

Trilby

There will be a get-together to meet Mimi in Oceanside, CA on Thursday August 4, 2011. For more information call Lois Boncer, 760-438-3431 or email Lois@AardvarkToZebra.Com.

Turning Fingers for Cloth Dolls.

This new demo is chapters 3 and 4 of Lesson 6 Posable Hands from Mimi’s Modular Mermaid. It takes ten minutes and discusses making and using finger turning tools and turning fingers for cloth dolls.

To see the previous videos, please visit Mimidolls.com. they are listed on the front page or under the “Video Tutorials” button.

Don’t forget to subscribe by email by using the button over in the right column.

For more information, click Mimi’s Modular Mermaid!

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Tuesday, July 12, 2011 Posted by | Instructions, Mimi's Elf, Mimi's Mermaid | , , | Leave a comment

Making & Using Templates for Doll Patterns – New Free Video Tutorial

Making & Using Templates for Doll Patterns. This new demo is chapters 4, 5, 6, and 7 of Lesson 1 Introduction from Mimi’s Modular Mermaid. It takes nine minutes and discusses making and using templates from pattern pieces and how this relates to precision sewing. We hope you enjoy it!

To see the previous videos, click here (Intro and Wefting) and here (Sewing Machine).

Don’t forget to subscribe by email by using the button over in the right column.

For more information, click Mimi’s Modular Mermaid!

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Tuesday, July 5, 2011 Posted by | Instructions, Mimi's Mermaid | , , | 2 Comments

The Screaming Mimis Workshop – New Free Video Tutorial

The Screaming Mimis Workshop is a free Yahoo Group established by Sandra Bejster especially for folks making my dolls. I am a member and I try to visit and answer questions whenever I am needed.

From the opening message that created the group:

“The Screaming Mimis Workshop is a group dedicated to the dolls made by Gloria “Mimi” Winer’s patterns.

“In this group, we will be able to post questions regarding workshop “homework” and dolls we are making from non-workshop related patterns. My hope is that we can use this group to post pictures of our progress, areas we are having trouble with and finished products.”

The group members are currently working on the High Priestess, Drawing Down the Moon which is still being tested in classes around the country, and the free Mimi Pattern, An Elf Named Stretch which you can download from Mimidolls.com. The Screaming Mimis Workshop will soon be adding Mimi’s Modular Mermaid and other Mimi patterns.

The group has a file area where revised pattern sheets and instructions are posted, a photo gallery where each dollmaker can display her dolls (and if she wishes, ask for critiques), and a general discussion group where the members help each other solve problems, receive encouragement, and learn to be better dollmakers.

There are two ways to join. If you already have a free Yahoo account, You can sign in to
Yahoo and go to this link: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/TheScreamingMimisWorkshop/ and join from there, or you can send Sandra an e-mail at sbejster@yahoo.com
and she will send you a personal invite.

New Free Video Tutorial

Using Your Sewing Machine for Dollmaking. This brand new demo is Chapter 13 of Lesson 1 Introduction from Mimi’s Modular Mermaid. It takes six minutes, discusses presser feet, cover plates, stitch size, needle visibility for precision sewing, and all of the other things you need to know to use your sewing machine more effectively for dollmaking. We hope you enjoy it!

To see the previous videos, click here.

Don’t forget to subscribe by email by using the button over in the right column.

For more information, click Mimi’s Modular Mermaid!

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Tuesday, June 28, 2011 Posted by | Instructions, Mimi's Mermaid | , , | 5 Comments

You can take a Private, 6-Day Dollmaking Workshop with Mimi!

Mimi’s Modular Mermaid is here! Suitable for ALL Skill Levels!

6 DVDs — 20 Lessons — 163 Chapters
— 12 Hours 58 Minutes of Classroom Video!

No Travel Required!

Your own copy is less than 1/6 the cost of a 3-day seminar! Much less when you include travel and hotel expenses!

Learn at your own pace. Ask questions and share your work with me through “The Screaming Mimis Workshop” on Yahoo
Groups, established by Sandra Bejster especially for folks making my dolls.

Below are the new introduction video and the new Wefting Fibers Demonstration taken from Lesson 19.

Complete 6-Day Dollmaking Workshop on DVD Suitable for all skill levels

Mermaid Case Outside

Mermaid Case Outside

Mermaid Case Inside

Mermaid Case Inside

  • 6-disc DVD set with 12 hours 58 minutes of over-the-shoulder classroom video.
  • 20 Lessons with 163 easy-to-navigate chapters covering every aspect of mermaid construction.
  • Electronic pattern sheet on the first DVD. Printed pattern sheet on lightweight paper optional.
  • 1″ thick 6-disc DVD plastic case for storage.

Filled with the complete contents of Mimi’s 6-day dollmaking workshop.

Suitable for all levels. If you can do basic machine sewing to make the seams on the torso and tail, you will learn everything else you need from watching the step-by-step video.

What You Will Learn:

  • Precision machine sewing.
  • Stuffing smoothly and firmly using the right tools.
  • How to make your seams beautiful so that they are part of the design.
  • How to make your own finger-turning tools and easily turn tiny fingers.
  • How to make hands that can grasp objects.
  • How to make webbed hands without having to turn fingers.
  • How to make and needle model a lovely female torso.
  • How to make 3 types of poseable hands and arms.
  • How to make 4 different poseable tails.
  • How to make 3 different types of flukes.
  • How to create many different poses using modular arms, tails, and flukes.
  • How to needle model a female face.
  • How to use dyes and watercolor effects to paint mermaids.
  • How to bead a stuffed figure.
  • How to weft mohair and other fibers for wigging a doll.

Contents:

  • Disc 1
    • 01 Introduction (45 min)
    • 02 Sewing Torso Skin (41 min)
    • 03 Stuffing Torso (26 min)
  • Disc 2
    • 04 Needle-Model Torso (56 min)
    • 05 Webbed Arms (46 min)
    • 06 Poseable Hands (29 min)
  • Disc 3
    • 07 Poseable Arms (42 min)
    • 08 Sewing Head Skin (32 min)
    • 09 Needle-Model Nose (37 min)
    • 10 Needle-Model Eyes (30 Min)
  • Disc 4
    • 11 Needle Model Mouth & Close (54 min)
    • 12 Ears (20 min)
    • 13 Tails (41 min)
    • 14 Flukes (36 min)
  • Disc 5
    • 15 Wall Doll Variation (53 min)
    • 16 Overhead Flukes Variation (55 min)
    • 17 Other Variations (4 min)
  • Disc 6
    • 18 Coloring (34 min)
    • 19 Hair (46 min)
    • 20 Embellishing (51 min)

To order your copy at 20% discount ($47.96) until 7/31/2011, please visit Mimidolls.Com.

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Sunday, June 12, 2011 Posted by | Classes, Mimi's Mermaid, new patterns, Sale | , | 8 Comments

An Elf Named Stretch is Here – Free Pattern (& Mermaids Too!)

Mimi’s New Elf doll is a twelve inch male Elf on walk-about. One leg is armatured so he can be posed mid-step. He wears breeches and has a vest and shirt (which he totes in his carryall so he can expose his manly chest). He also has shoes and a woodsmen’s hat.

Some of these instructions, patterns, and photographs were printed in the December and February issues of Soft Dolls & Animals! Magazine. This new free pattern with instructions is the original version from which those articles were adapted.

To get a copy of the 27 page instructions and the 5 pattern sheets, go to Mimidolls.Com and click on the download link.

Stretch Clothed Hello

Hello, I'm Stretch

stretch Bare ByeBye

Bye Bye

Here are some of the Mermaids in Progress from our soon-to-be-released Mimi’s Modular Mermaid Dollmaking Workshop on DVD. It will have 6 discs and 13 – 14 hours of video:

Mermaid with Overhead Flukes, Webbed Arms

Mermaid with Overhead Flukes, Webbed Arms

wall Doll with Posable Arms

wall Doll with Posable Arms

wall Mermaid with Webbed Arms Out

Wall Mermaid with Webbed Arms Out

mermaid on Side with Arm on Head

Mermaid on Side with Arm on Head

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Monday, May 23, 2011 Posted by | Free Patterns, Mimi's Elf, Mimi's Mermaid | , , , | 4 Comments

Stretch’s Clothing Patterns – Auction Format – Christmas Sale Ending Soon – More Mermaids

The second part of the An Elf Named Stretch was published in the March 2011 issue of Soft Dolls & Animals magazine.

An Elf Named Stretch

This article includes his clothing with shirt, vest, pants, hat, and boots. Since the patterns in the magazine are printed on both sides of the paper, we have put the original clothing patterns up on the web site  so you can download them for printing on one side of the paper. You can print them on regular paper or on card stock (if your printer will take card stock) to get instant templates without having to trace patterns or paste paper printouts onto file folders. Both the Stretch body patterns and clothing patterns are in the same file that you can download by clicking Mimi’s Complete Stretch the Elf Pattern Sheet.

We expected the article on how to needle model his chest would appear before the clothing. It may appear in a future issue. If it doesn’t, we’ll publish it on the web site.


Our Christmas sale is ending on February 15, 2011.

We will be discontinuing the Mimi’s Child Interactive Video pattern. If you are a pattern collector, and you want this one, now is the time.

We need your help!

We have hundreds of out-of-print cloth doll and animal patterns by other designers and dozens of out-of-print books. I’m so busy designing my own work at this point that I will never get to any of them. We would like to auction them off to other dollmakers and pattern or book collectors.

The problem is EBAY is not a good place for this kind of thing. We are looking for a better auction site or we could do a silent auction on out own web site. We don’t know what to do. If you have any suggestions, please let us know. Here are a few examples of what we have:

Patterns:

RenaissanceMaiden

Fantasy Fashions 1981: Pattern for ADULT human for Renaissance Maiden. Includes instructions for adult, girl’s large, and girl’s medium and small variations. Includes guide for M’Lady’s Bonnet, Wizard’s Hat, Jester’s Hood, Renaissance Cap, Cindy’s Bonnet, Flat Cap, Renaissance Cap, Mob Cap, Bag Hats. Also includes 2 hand written pages by the designer on how to alter some parts of pattern to create another style.


Victorianna Petite by Elizabeth Biship, 1990: 20-inch cloth doll with ball gown, high-heeled boots, lacy undies, Gibson girl hairdo. Flexible, posable limbs with another strapless ball gown that has bouffant skirt and petticoat. Miniature satin ribbon rose trim. Color cover picture. Muslin body is embellished to look as if she is wearing Victorian underwear. She looks great just in her unmentionables seated on shelf in bathroom or bedroom. Other clothing patterns available.


Books:

MarionettesOnstage

Marionettes Onstage by Leonard Suib & Muriel Broadman 1975: Divided into three major parts. 1) The New Marionette – words, drawings and photos show how to make and manipulate a new type of figure that has cardboard as its base — lightweight and perfectly balanced. You don’t need a workshop or complicated equipment. 2) Becoming a Puppeteer – presents a full discussion of playscripts,  performing, stages, scenery, props, music, sound effects, marionette magic, multi-media, putting on the show, and safety. 3) Puppet Theater Management – useful suggestions on how to save time and money, business procedures, professional ethics and affiliations, etc.


Mold Making with Martha Armstrong-Hand 1992: The famous NIADA artist tells you in 32 pages how to make plaster molds for porcelain dolls.


We need your help!
If you can think of any way we can get these patterns and books from us to you, let us know. We don’t really have time to run a silent auction on the web or to mess with EBAY where everybody complains a lot. If you know of a better way, or want to volunteer to help us, let us know as soon as possible. Thanks.


More Mermaids

Wall Doll - Small Tail

Straight Arms with Fins

Wall Doll - "J" tail not included in pattern but easy to figure out


Incidentally, if you sign up for an email subscription using the button on the bottom right of the screen, we’ll tell you by email every time something new is posted.

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Friday, January 28, 2011 Posted by | Auction, Diary, Mimi's Elf, Mimi's Mermaid, Sale | , , | 5 Comments

Mimi’s Christmas Sale Continues – Mimi’s Mermaid – Elf Named Stretch

We got the sale up late, and Jim’s not able to do as much so It’s going to have to stay up until he has time and energy to redo the website again because the blog needs to get done first.

The second part of the An Elf Named Stretch was published in the March 2011 issue of Soft Dolls & Animals magazine. I submitted both how to needle model his chest and how to make his clothes. They chose only to run the clothes, so I’m waiting to hear back from them if they are going to do the needle modelling section, or if I can post it on the web site. We’ll put the clothing patterns up on the web site as soon as we can so you can download them for printing on one side of the paper.

We are currently working on two DVDs. The first is Mimi’s Modular Mermaid that I started when Cassi was 7 has developed quite a bit now that she is thirteen.  The mermaid is posable (but each pose is separate, not movable) with both articulated arms with wired hands that can hold things, and display arms and hands that have extra fin surface for decoration. She can sit, lie on her stomach with her arms up or down and her tail over her head. There are four different tails and two sets of flukes so you can get lots of variations. Here’s some pictures:

There are also wall mounted variations with gigantic tail flukes and arm and pectoral fins.

Arms Overhead

Red Mermaid

Sitting Blue Mermaid

David's Blue Mermaid

Orange Mermaid

The second DVD will be Mimi’s Handbook of Dollmaking Techniques . It will include videos or animations of everything on the website, and dozens of new techniques collected from everywhere.

Incidentally, if you sign up for an email subscription using the button on the bottom right of the screen, we’ll tell you by email every time something new is posted.

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Wednesday, January 19, 2011 Posted by | Mimi's Mermaid, new patterns | , , | 4 Comments