Episode 2: From Plastic to Perfect

Hi there! Today I have another doll customization and her name is, Poppy!

If anyone has seen Dreamwork’s new movie “Troll’s”, then you’ll know that the main character, Poppy, is one of the cheerfullest and most caring Princesses out there. I myself haven’t seen the movie yet *embarrassed laugh* but after a few days of research I thought, “What good grounds for a new doll!”

~First step, was the concept art. Now, this is something you want to do, especially if your basing your doll off of a character from a movie or a book. The picture itself DOES NOT have to be a work of art. This is just scratching down your original concept on paper for you to refer to throughout the customization. This way, if you feel like the project is running away from you, or you hit an “artist’s block” (heehee) you’ve got something to get you back on track ????

For Poppy, I wanted to take the cute, pink troll, and transform her into a beautiful young lady! I kept close to the character’s bright and happy colors but made her more delicate like a fairy. I wanted her to have a big smile and warm welcoming eyes. I was keeping the ponytail look, but switching it from a mohair updo, into a voluminous cascade.

With my sketches complete, it was time to choose the doll!

~At first glance, I knew that Meeshell Mermaid from Ever After High inc. was the one! Her long, silky hair matched Poppy’s color scheme exactly, and her face mold already had a wide smile lifting up her cheeks. Her build was tall and graceful; perfect for a princess!
Sometimes you need to tinker around with different dolls to find what your looking for, but Meeshell just screamed “Poppy” from the moment I saw her.

~Faceup time! I removed the factory paint with pure acetone, covered up her hair, and sprayed her face three times with MSC sealant (sealants are a HUGE topic when it comes to doll repainting, and I hope to do a more thorough post on it soon… plus a video… hang in there group!).

I ended up halfway done with her face before I decided the colors weren’t working for me. The bright velvety pink against the cartoon black was way too harsh for my pretty princess. So, I started over! Painful as it sounds, after a day’s rest and a cup of tea, I wiped the face clean with some more acetone and began the faceup all over again. This time, I left the black out entirely and balanced out the pink with soft browns for both her pupils and eyelashes.

Ahhhhh… perfection… Poppy was a sweet, smiling success ????

~Onto the dress. As you can see from the pictures, I abandoned my concept art’s blue gown and went for something, yes, softer (just goes to show you that the concept art is only there as a ground point: you don’t have to copy it to a T). Wanting to incorporate some of Poppy’s childish, “Troll” lineage, I edged her knee-length frock with felt!

To make the strips, I took my felting tools and punctured the thin layer of pink into the thick layer of purple. When punctured a billion times with felting needles, the two pieces of felt bonded together like velcro. Then I simply adhered it onto the dress using fabric tape!

~A tiny pearl accent and another felted hair tie was all I needed to complete the look. Princess Poppy had become a young woman, cheerful and delightful in every way! I had thought about giving her shoes, but decided on keeping her feet bare as it added more to her carefree aura.

It’s SO MUCH FUN taking your favorite character and making him or her come to life in your own way. This doll ended up better than I could have even imagined! It leads me to believe that the doll kinda makes herself. All you have to do is give her a second chance ????

If you’d like to see Poppy’s faceup in more detail, visit HerGirlStudio on youtube! (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1zpg3co-uoc)

Click thumbnails to view full-size images …

4 Comments
  1. Three Little Ladies May 18, 2017 at

    Your work is beautiful. It is easy to see how much time, care and love goes into every doll.

  2. Adorable! Wish I had painting skills, my hubby barely trusts me with a big blank wall! ????

  3. Lol ????
    Believe me, I wasn’t considered an “artist” when I started out either, but practice became my best friend/tyrant 🙂

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