I am currently working on a doll for the Treasures of the Gypsy Challenge. It seems I’ve been working on this doll for the whole summer. That may be because my first attempt was such a disaster that I scrapped it entirely and had to begin anew. I had gone back to a style of doll that I used to make and had moved away from. She was a more traditional doll with a realistically proportioned, posed body and an armature. I hated her. Her body was nice; the shape was nice; her face was nice; I hated it all. I had no interest in clothing her or finishing her at all. I know I’ll never finish her and yet I can’t throw her out. She will go, naked, to live in a deep, dark corner of my closet in my box of body parts.
There remained, of course, the problem of what to do for the challenge. I would love to make a spirit figure for the show, but that glitzy, shiny fabric tells a different story. Then it hit me. I could use my Shakti pattern. Pamela, the owner of Treasures of the Gypsy, had asked me to make a sample doll for the pattern to display in her sales booth at shows. So this way I can make the one doll to serve two purposes: for the challenge exhibit and as a sample for her booth after the exhibit.
Here she is so far. Now, before she is dressed, is a good time to show what her unconventional body looks like. Her head isn’t even sewn on yet.
The blue fabric is part of the challenge pack. The green/gold body fabric and gold silk shantung are previous purchases from Pamela’s booth. Her clothing will use the other fabrics from the challenge pack.
Although Shakti is a stump doll, the pattern is more complex than most. The body shapes are unusual and sewn together differently from other pattens. After she has clothes on, she’ll look a little more conventional, but not quite. And that’s OK. Pamela calls this a “Buddha” pattern, so in a way, she is a spirit figure after all.