Friday, 6 January 2012

Paper Doll Fridge Magnets!

The purse refashion had to wait, because another project completely took over my attention this week!


A week ago, I was at a friend's house and she had these fridge magnets that were like paper dolls: a dude in his underwear and a bunch of amusing t shirts and costumes for him to wear.  I absolutely adore paper dolls, and have ever since I was a kid, so these amazed me and my whole brain turned into a big frenzy of wantwantwant!

My friend told me where she had gotten them, and it turned out they weren't even that expensive; but unfortunately, I'm not really in a place right now where I can spend money on something just because I think it would be fun.  It was too bad.

But the next day I realised, "Hey - if I had some magazines and some of that magnetic sheeting, I could MAKE those in like, five minutes!!!"  The idea wouldn't leave my head so I abandoned my half-finished purse to make paper doll magnets.

I started by running to the dollar store and buying a couple sheets of magnet material, which came to about three dollars.  Then I dug out my stash of fashion magazines and flipped through them page by page until I had found a bunch with nice, forward-facing clothes on them.  I tried to find ones that were roughly the same size and didn't have text printed all over them - not easy! 

When I felt like I had enough, I cut them out and put them aside.  Now I needed the actual doll to dress with them!

I decided rather than flip through a hundred thousand magazines to find a picture of a model in the right size, whose face I liked, it would be easier ( and more fun!) to just draw my own.

I got out a sheet of nice watercolour paper and placed a shirt cutout on it, to use as a guideline for the body.

  I rendered it loosely at first, and then solidified the lines and added detail.

(I left her braless because some of the shirts I'd cut out had plunging necklines and I didn't want to mar the look with a drawn-on bra, and also because let's face it; bras are stupid and pretty pointless for a paper doll.)

My natural drawing style is very cartoony, but because the outfits were photos of real things I tried to make the head and face as detailed as possible while still staying true to "me". 

My, but I am a talented photographer.  Anyway, now came what was surprisingly the funnest part of the whole endeavour: trimming the outfit pieces down to fit her.  Some pieces were far too big for the doll I had designed:

others would never fit the body type I had chosen to draw:

and some were too small, but I liked the patterns enough that I just couldn't not use it!  This one was too small to be a dress...

but a quick cut and paste job turned it into an awesome t-shirt!

And the blue dress above would never ever fit her hips, so I turned it into a simple tank top.  Others just needed to be trimmed slightly to fit shoulders, etc.

When that was done, I coloured the whole thing with pencil crayons and cut it out.

Then I glued it to the magnet sheet using an ordinary school glue stick.  (Aannnnd I forgot to get any pictures of this stage...huh.  Well, I'm sure you're all clever people and can imagine it.)

Are you imagining the doll stuck to a large black sheet of magnetic material? Good, because she was.  Then, I cut that out. 

As a final step, I separated her legs and torso, her arms and her hands from each other.  The reason for this was that some of the outfits had been photographed to face a different way than straight ahead, or had their sleeves folded in front of them or something.  This way, she was movable and could fit all of them.

I did the same gluing and cutting steps on all of the outfit pieces, and voila!  Interchangeable awesomeness!

An example of the movable arms and hands in action:

It's not perfect - because of the kind of magazines I had to work with, I was limited to a certain type of fashion and also to a certain body type.  Also, I had wanted to make a guy doll, but oddly there weren't many ads for guy's clothes in Cosmo and Vanity Fair. 

But for what it is, I think it turned out perfectly.  It's already as fun as I thought it would be - today she's wearing her wild-print pencil skirt and guy's sweater, jacket and scarf. 

Only one problem left - what do I make with all the leftover magnet scraps???

I hope you make something cool today!  Thanks for reading!  Love, Emily.

Sunday, 1 January 2012

And We're Off!

I said this thing would go live January first no matter what, and here we are!  First goal of the year, acheived.
So hi! I'm Emily. 
In these pages, you will find craft projects.
And art pieces.
And comic strips, and cooking adventures, and outfits and room decoration and terrible photography and any other thing I happen to dip my head into without looking first, I suspect.

You see, I can't ever seem to settle on just one thing.  I want to try everything at least once, and I go through cycles of being completely addicted to one thing only to toss it aside for a new, exciting thing a month later. 

This would be fine, if I actually followed through on any of my projects.  But the sad thing is, usually they just wind up tossed to the curbside as I chase after some new, shiny idea.  Well, no more!

This year, I hope to use this blog to guide myself along some sort of path to seriousness.  If I start a project, I have to finish it, and I think being able to write about those projects here will help me not only finish them, but finish them well instead of half-heartedly.  Anything goes!  There are no themes where I come from; I just have to do whatever it is I'm doing WELL!   

And hey, on as little budget as is humanly possible would be nice too.

Welcome to 2012 everybody, and to my shiny new blog.  I hope everybody's years go amazingly!

Stay tuned for my first "real" post, in which I document the harrowing experience of refurbishing my old purse!