15 April 2009

What's on the work table and imaginary friends

I've finished all the little papergirls I'm going to make for now. They are for sale in the SugarCain Etsy shop. Any one of them would make a nice little inexpensive gift or the start of a collection. Here's my favorite so far:

Batgirl in the bleeding hearts ACEO by angelique, SugarCain

I've been busy sorting through my half-made dolls. I have a hundred ideas, and about 20 of them are sitting around in various stages of disarray. I'm glad I got my work room arranged enough to put them all in there. That way I can't hear them at night: Paint me a faaaaaace. Sew me a dresssssss. Give me arrrrrrmmmmssss. They have suffered long enough. I took some photos of them quickly in my laundry room so you can see where I'm starting.

Here's one little devil. Woodsman named her Licorice. I've made her some shapely little legs, which will be loosely joined to make her particularly poseable. I have some special mohair, dark brown with purplish tips, for her hair. But what shall she wear? I have sketched several outfits but they just aren't right. And I always like each doll to have a prop, something that stands as a clue to her personality. I am thinking that she may be accompanied by a raven in a plaid vest and perhaps even boots.

I love bunny dolls. I had this little skinny bunny girl when I was growing up. She was made of silk and the softest velvet and was moth-eaten in a gentle and endearing way. The wire of her armature had to be reconcealed every time she was handled. Until just a couple of months ago, I thought she was dead, as I had not seen her since high school (many decades ago).

But apparently my little sister Kelly rescued and preserved her, and she emailed to say that I could reclaim her next time we meet. I hate to admit how much I'm looking forward to it. All she ever did was sit on my dresser. It's not like I told her secrets or cuddled her, or let her sleep under my covers at night. But I remember her long face and her long socks and her big shoes and the tactile pleasures I got from the velvet and silk. I am curious to see if she lives up to my memories.

So here is a pair of little bunny sisters. I hand-stitched their bodies of muslin and painted them with artist acrylics. This is the the thing that I think is clever about them: They can be displayed barefoot (with their cute little painted toenails) or in a stand (that consists of little boots attached to tiny scraps of checkered floor). They need dresses, arms, and perhaps a toy or two. Like all my bunny dolls, they will come with removeable hats. There will, of course, be some details that I haven't thought of yet.

I had an imaginary friend: a rabbit named Duffy who stood about four feet tall and wore overalls with no shirt and a pair of old muddy workboots. He was sly and a bit of a smart aleck. He was Bugs Bunny meets Bunny from Captain Kangaroo. The most unusual fact about Duffy was that he carried a hoe and worked upright like a little man in my mother's garden. He said his job was to keep the rabbits from eating the spinach and the roses. (But he was a rabbit. I know.) He was as real to me at the age of four as this dog sitting here in my lap right now.*

Pixie (left) and Taz. Today is Pixie's birthday, and she got lots of special treatment.

So I have not managed to explain why I so love bunny dolls. Instead I've just wandered around in the forest and come back to the place I started. I appreciate you following my footprints and breadcrumbs. Maybe telling you about the girls on the work table will spark some ideas in my sleep tonight. I often wake up with great ideas, don't you?

*I'm fascinated by imaginary friends. Did you have one? My son, an only child, did: "Lou the worker man." Woodsman says he didn't have one, poor thing. It's like hearing that some people dream in black and greys.


DeadpanAlley said...

i LOVE your dolls! just the right mix of cute and creepy. i have that NEED feeling...please let me know each time you list one so i don't miss out on my perfect SugarCain friend! one with a porcelain face. soon.

i didn't really have an imaginary friend that stuck around, just whatever sort of imaginary friend fit the occasion...

Woodsman said...

I didn't have any imaginary friends but I do have a very vivid imagination.

Tristan Robin Blakeman said...

Licorice is positively fab!!!

Cat (darklingwoods) said...

Licorice is wonderful! (the bunnies are super cute too!)

I love imaginary friends too :) I had bunches!

Sweet P said...

I'm glad your dolls and bunnies are calling out to you. Soon they will be calling out to us as well.

I didn't have any imaginary friends when I was little. I sure could have used some when the dark times visited.