Monday, November 28, 2016

Paper Dolls, Bunnies and a New Etsy Shop

Years ago I had the idea to make dolls out of a bunch of old spools that I had laying around. (Actually it may have been my husbands idea for me to make them but it's my blog so I am taking credit.) I figured out that I wanted their legs to be old wooden rulers, and that their skirts would be vintage quilt pieces from an old bag of fabric that I bought somewhere many years ago. That part came together pretty quickly. Their heads, however, were a different story.

I have always been challenged in the making of a face or head for something, whether it be an illustration or a sculpture. It's not that I can't do it, it's that I am never satisfied with the outcome. I am super critical of myself in this area.

As a result, the dolls sat headless for a couple of years. People would come over and I would get the spools with legs out and ask opinions as to what the heads should be, but nothing ever clicked, so the poor dears went on standing around without their heads.
I finally put them in a box so I could stop feeling guilty about the whole situation.

Vintage Doll
The poor little things without their heads. 

This past September I went to a class called Paper Navigations, in Amsterdam. I cut, folded and pasted paper and I was reminded of how much I enjoyed working with paper and ephemera. I came home and made cards for everyone who was at the workshop. I was having a great time in my studio when the lightbulb went off and the voice in my head yelled out


Seriously, that's what it said.

Hand made card
The handmade thank you cards I made that gave me the kick in the (well you know).

I finished off the cards and immediately started making paper mache' heads. As I sculpted, shaped and painted the heads, their sweet little personalities started to emerge and I was squealing with delight. Some became bunnies and some became girls with little felt hats. 
At some point they named themselves and took on a unique interest or hobby.

Paper Doll
Now they have heads but no faces
Paper Dolls
The personalities came out as I painted their faces.

To say I am smitten with these little gals, is an understatement.

Paper Dolls
"Clara" collects shells

Paper Rabbit
"Millie" likes to embroider and sew.

Paper Rabbit
"Eleanor" loves to travel.

Paper Doll"
"Penelope" loves birds but doesn't believe in keeping them in cages.

Once I used up all the spools, I didn't want to stop, so I made whatever came to mind. A little suitcase, kites and some brooches were a few of the little goodies that came flying out. I was having a great time just playing and I was reminded how important it is to do that.

Paper Kite
Paper Kites that will turn into brooches.

Paper Brooch
Two Paper Brooches

Paper Suitcase wire birdcage
I made the wire birdcage and little suitcase for a future shadow box.

As a result, I decided to reopen my PaulaJoerlingStudio shop on Etsy. It's the place to find all of my handmade items. In celebration of the grand reopening, I am offering a 20% off coupon good through December 1, 2016. The coupon code is HOLIDAY20

The same code is also good at my PaulaJoerlingDesigns shop where you will find all kinds of paper downloads, ephemera and vintage items.

Paula Joerling

Please go and take a look at both of my shops and give the favorite button a hit.

Then go out and play!

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