My newest obsession are Blythe Dolls. Well, I guess I shouldn't exactly say new. I've been telling my husband about them and looking at them for months now. What is new is that now I own some. OK, I own four. And I love them. All of the pics in today's blog are showing three of my girls and all of the dresses are made by me and have sold or are for sale in my shops.
What are Blythe Dolls? Well, for those of you who aren't familiar I will give you a little run down. In 1972, a USA toy company called Kenner (now Hasbro) produced a doll with a small sized body and big color changing eyes. The eyes change color and position with the pull of a string. Kenner sold the dolls for about a year but sales were low and they were deemed to scary for children.
People who owned and collected the dolls had a special love for them and took beautiful pictures showing the dolls in various outfits and situations. In 2000, a photo book was published showing off Blythe and in 2001 a Japanese company called Takara started producing the dolls again. These are not for kids to play with. The dolls are expensive and many are limited edition.
What makes them so special? What makes anything special? The love people have for it. As opposed to Barbie, Blythe is much more customizable. There are many artists out there who do face customization. From matting the skin so that it isn't so shiny, changing the eye-chips, changing eyelashes, carving noses, mouths and expressions and adding make-up, freckles and lipstick. The dolls come with a plastic saran hair texture like most all dolls do. Typically they have pretty awful haircuts. Many people care for their hair, recut and style it. There are also methods for re-rooting their hair so that you can use different materials and colors. I haven't yet attempted a re-root but I have been using Mohair wigs. They're fun, colored and curly. I do plan on customizing some of my dolls. Two are already customized.
Another big deal with the Blythe dolls is fashion. Which I am happy to announce I am taking part in. Lately I've been a bit tired and burnt out from making purses. I feel limited in creativity with them and I don't think they leave me, personally, a lot of room to think outside the box and really add creativity to them. I tend to make purses that I want to carry and everything I make looks like something in my closet. Not that there's anything wrong with that. I feel I have a fun, quirky and enjoyable taste. But I am just a bit over making them. So I have started making dresses and clothing for Blythe. And I love it.
The tiny details that I can put into a garment are fascinating to me. I love making a beautiful dress that is outside of my style. It's easy for me to be more creative because I'm no longer thinking, would I want to be seen carrying this? I just couldn't ever break myself from that.
The dresses I've been making are quite honestly, fabulous. My knowledge of construction and my sewing ability from making so many bags has added skills and techniques to my range of knowledge that I didn't even realize were there. I immediately jumped right into the most complex dresses I could. And they were easy and adorable. Right now I am in love with a drop waisted peter pan collar dress. And I'm not the only one. I have yet to have one sit in the shop for more than 24 hours. Which is exciting to me. Very exciting because I love when people love my art.
I understand that a lot of people find them creepy but if you take the time to google more about the Blythe dolls and look at some of the photogroups on Flickr you will start to see the beauty and enjoyment in them. I hope to bring you all more great pics of my girls and many more beautiful outfits and dresses for yours!