Ghouls in love

A few days ago I bought Gooliope and 13 Wishes Twyla.

I found their difference in height completely adorable, but when I tried to take pictures I realised that Twyla’s hips are loose and have a mind of their own. Every time I stood her up, her legs slid all over the place. So Gooliope needed to help her stand up.

And they sort of ended up looking like a couple.

Gooliope is currently midway between a hair sorting, her hair was half frizz ball, half gluey gunk mess, so it’s tied back a little until I can figure out how to curl it.

Twyla’s hair wasn’t too bad visually straight out the box (as she is here) but WOW is it sticky. There’s so much goop in it that it feels damp to the touch. Which is more than a little bit gross.

But still. They’re adorable. And I last minute realised I hadn’t stuck in Gooliope’s head band, it sits quite nicely under the two locks of tied back hair.

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Oh deer.

So lately university has been getting in the way of my experiments on poor Draculaura, and her partially rooted head has been put aside for the time being.

But buying things doesn’t take up much of my time! So when I was in Toys’r’Us a few weeks back I saw this EAH forest pixie and picked her up.

She is a very sweet little deer girl… thingy. There was also a rabbit girl in the store, and there’s a bird(nest?!) girl about too, but she wasn’t in stock at the time.

I really like the colour of her skin compared to the colour of her hair. If anyone’s ever read The Old Kingdom series, she reminds me of the Clayr, with their dark skin and fair hair.

Her hair did come in a ponytail, but unfortunately one of the ear / antler combos wasn’t set in fully, and when her hair is pulled flat against her head there is a notable gap between ear and scalp.

Her belt and shoes, whilst one colour, are also deer themed. With the stag (I assume) head on the belt, and a small… fawn? It also looks like a bunny? On the toe of one of her shoes. Just one though. The other looks like it has a sort of bush on it. How odd.

Her dress is fairly sweet, I like the shape but find the pattern a little too garish. But hey, most of my dolls end up lying around naked anyway.

She’s also pretty small.

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Compared to Apple White (shown here naked, I told you) she’s about a head shorter and also, obviously, less articulated, only moving at the hips and shoulders, but she was fairly cheap, so eh. I would really like the other two Forest Pixie’s, especially the bird nest one, but I just checked on amazon and they’ve moved from the £7 I got this one for to £30. Ouch.

SPEAKING OF £7 THOUGH, one last picture to end with. Smyth’s were having a clearance sale so I got Lagoona Blue for £7 rather than whatever the hell they were originally charging. Here is a terrible picture I took just after I got her out the box, and I was very happy as this is one of the first times I’ve removed a doll to find NO STICKY in the hair.

 

Eyes!

Poor, mutilated Draculaura now has eyes. Sort of.

I’ve never handled nor seen in person doll eyes before, so whilst there were a bunch of size options, I didn’t really know what that meant. Going off a google search for an appropriate size, I settled with 10mm.

And then discovered what a pain in the butt it was putting them in.

The disembodied head looked cross-eyed for a good while, until I settled on an almost straight, albeit incredibly vacant, stare for the time being. Held in with a small mountain of blutack as I am a terrible person who forgot eye putty.

Exciting tip: blutack does not stick well to the smooth inside of a Monster High head.

Buut here is the face. With eyes!

As I foolishly carved out the eyes after removing the original face, I didn’t have much of a guideline to work around, so they’re slightly uneven. But without something filling the hole, looking through to more light pink inside of head just meant it was hard to see which bits in particular needed reshaping. The lower lines are at a different angle, but there’s not much I can do about that without it going horribly wrong. The right eye needs to be widened a little, but that can easily be done by shaving off a little bit more from the top lid.

I have made more progress with the reroot though.

If progress means rooting three half rows, and realising, wow. I do not have enough hair here. Also the etsy shop I got it from is currently closed.

The world is a cruel place.

LUCKILY the hair happens to be incredibly thick, barely a third of the headspace I’m covering is done and it already looks like quite a lot, due to the nature of the hair. And in another bout of luck, I’ve been wanting to attempt flocking ever since I heard about it all of two days ago.

So girl is getting an undercut.

I have draw a vague biro line that is unlikely to ever rub off where I’m planning on stopping the rooted hair (as I balance the face and scalp together), and I’ve no plans at all to root any hair in the middle. Where the previous hair was parted, the holes are rather wide and close together, I’m wary of splitting them, because if that starts to happen her whole head may fall apart.

It will probably look disastrous when it all comes together.

But at least it may be an endearing and pastel coloured form of disastrous.

You and Me and My Crochet Hook

I am slowly but surely putting hair into Draculaura’s pretty pink head.
(Pretending here that there was a gap between the previous post and this, as if I’m not doing them on the same day to make it look as if my blog has content)

I’ve only spent one evening doing it so far, I anticipate having a bunch more time in the following week, so I’m sort of waiting until then to really get going. Probably whilst continuing to watch the X-Files again, I’ve become hooked.

Which is an entirely unintentional pun.

I am using a crochet hook for rerooting.

I’ve seen tutorials that use a rerooting tool, folding the hair in half and then pushing it into the… holey-bit. Which looks like a fantastic way of doing things. … except the hair I’m using has a distinct blunt edge and tapered edge, and tends to have a slightly ombre effect in the lavendery tones.

Instead (and here’s where I sort of wish I persevered with my hunt for a nice wig tutorial) I found a method in which you knot the end of the hair, thread it on a needle, and pull it through the hole. Like a single stitch. About a billion times. Excellent!

Except I’m far too lazy to rethread a needle a billion times, plus when I did give the needle a shot out of curiosity it ended horribly.

So instead I’m using a crochet hook! I knot the strands together, give them a twist to keep them nice and tight, pop a 0.6mm crochet hook through the top of the head, scoop up my lock, pull it out. Simple!

Aside the cursing and coaxing that occasionally happens when it gets stuck. But that’s fine, I’m still learning.

Of course the whole process is made easier by the fact I’ve scalped poor Draculaura.

Leaving a few hair holey things around the edge of her face, I used a craft knife to remove the majority of her head. I did not do this for rerooting, but it turned out to be surprisingly convenient, so two birds and one stone and all that.

Her scalp looks very very dirty. That’s because it pretty much is. When I took acetone to the previously black painted head, it removed it pretty well, but some of the paint did get stuck in the holes, and no amount of rinsing would get rid of it.  I tried poking at it with the crochet hook, to see if the gunk would come out, but nope. However when I pushed through the first lock of hair, it didn’t come out streaked in black, so I figured it’ll do for now. I can figure out how to fix this problem in the future, poor Draculaura is only a test subject for now.

Also the main reason I removed the head. I cannot draw even eyes.

I’m looking forward to the rest of a face up, but the EYES oh god the EYES. I was debating just never trying it ever because no matter what I did any doll I touched would end up looking like it had a lazy eye and it would be awful and bug me forever.

But then I realised. I could carve the moulded eyes right out of Draculaura’s face and stick in some doll eyes! Which is what I did, removing her scalp for easier access. I’m waiting on the delivery of the eyes. In the mean time, her head is chilling about looking like this.

Which isn’t weird in the slightest.

[Wow, check out that poor picture quality!!]

Brushee Brushee

I had the most EXCELLENT idea to reroot a Original Ghouls Draculaura. It was the best idea I’ve ever had. Especially considering I have literally never done anything like this ever before. But hey, what can go wrong?

I started out doing some reasearch, looking at different materials for doll hair, and I wanted a whimsical wavy / curly sort of effect. Browsing through etsy, I found some Tesswater locks. … I assume this is a type of sheep. The ones I’m using are a really great lavender colour that go well with Draculaura’s skin tone. unbrushee

So here’s what I started with. Some wonderfully curly locks. These are 2 of the 4, as I only decided to take a picture when I’d gotten half way through combing them out. Which is an adventure in itself.

There are all sorts of different tones and shades within the locks, and it should hopefully have a pretty nice effect once it’s all been attatched to Draculaura’s head.

Making a wig seemed a little tricky for my ability level (in hind sight it would have probably been better) but I have yet to find a concise tutorial to figure out how to get all the hair on without the parting looking appalling. I’ve seen some people gluing hair to wig caps to make them, but what do they do when they get to the middle?! More research is definitely needed.

 

But first the brushing. So much brushing. brushee

I picked out each lock as it curled, and started from the ends, using a rat tail comb to comb it out. The fine teeth meant most of the tangles didn’t stand a chance, and the thin handle helped pick apart bigger tangles.

Once I’d gotten halfway to the middle form one end, I switched it round and started from the other. I had to keep the locks wrapped around a finger, not just held on to, so less strands could slide through my grip and escape.

A lot of the tightly curled ends broke off during the combing process, which made life a whole lot easier. I lost maybe 2cm tops in length, but didn’t have to deal with what seemed to be the most knotted part. Also as locks had only been roughly washed and dyed, the ends were a little discoloured at times (perhaps from dirt? animals do like dirt…) and there were little bits of grass and seed casings among the locks, that caused a fair amount of the tangles.

There was also a bit of wastage. But really, it’s unavoidable, and the amount seemed reasonable given how a few of the locks were to knotted they were essentially dread locks. All the tips and the strands that tangled in my comb looked like a large purple dustbunny by the end of combing out 2 hanks.

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I’ve stored it in a box for now, it’s a big swirly mess of purples, which is weirdly aesthetically pleasing. I suspect I shall end up giving it to my grandmother to use in her crafts, I’m sure she’ll find some use for it.

It took 2 evenings and half the first series of X-Files to comb this lot out, my arm ached by the end of it, and my bed was full of seed cases (because where else would I do anything).

And now to embark on putting it into the poor girl’s head.