game of thrones – melisandre

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Yes. Yes. I know. I’ve been absent, quiet, missing in action… just plain gone.

I began all these posts about my repainted dolls and then just… stopped. I have no excuse. Well, I actually have tons of excuses. I’ve been working. I’ve been flat out getting ready for the Etsy Makers Market. I’ve been tired.

So, just quickly – here is Melisandre – the Red Woman – from Game of thrones. First meet the doll who became Melisandre.

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Then see the inspiration…

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So there you have it. The Red Woman.

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You know, sometimes I catch myself dreaming of a simpler life. One where I groom (work) and garden (my one and only hobby). What a nice dream that is… I’d have a lovely garden cause I’d spend my free time working in it and there’d be nothing pulling me this way and that, demanding my time. I’d work, then I’d rest, and I’d garden.

I can always dream, right?

Cause there ain’t no way it’ll happen in my life. I can’t help myself. I will always have things to do and things I want to do. There is almost no creative item or method I can look at and think “I want to try that”.

The saying might go “there’s no rest for the wicked” but it should say “there’s no rest for the creative”!

z

 

 

game of thrones dolls – cersei and tyrion

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The inspiration photo above, the doll below.

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Cersei took ages to finish… The face and hair weren’t hard – I chose a look with a simple hair style so there wasn’t a lot of fiddling to do there, a simple wash and restore messy hair on a used Bratz doll.

The dress however… well that’s another story. I’m not the best at sewing so its always a challenge to make something for the first time. Mind you, it would probably help if I had proper patterns rather than making up my own!

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Next doll is Tyrion. He was great fun to make as he was a challenge… I mean, Bratz dolls don’t come in Tyrion shapes!

This is my inspiration photo.

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And this is the doll:

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I had this brilliant idea to use a baby Bratz doll’s body and Bratz boy head. You can see his size relative to Sansa below:

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Have I ever mentioned how much I enjoy repainting and restyling dolls? Pinterest and YouTube have a lot to answer for!

z

game of thrones – khaleesi

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I had planned to share all the Game of Thrones doll repaints in one post, but it turns out that would be too huge and photo intensive. So I’m going to combine a couple of dolls in each post till I run out of dolls.

This post is about the two Daenarys Targaryen dolls. One I’m calling Dany and the other is Khaleesi.

This is Khaleesi – the before and after pics of the Bratz doll I used as my base doll. Since I’d chosen a doll with the right colour hair and even a hairstyle that suited her, I didn’t need to do a lot of work other than repaint her.

And give her a baby dragon.

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This is the dress I based the doll’s costume on:

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Then there’s Dany, the early days, when she was in the desert, dressed in rags. Here is the inspiration photo:

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And here is the doll. She even has her dragon eggs.

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And like the real Daenarys, she has a white horse.

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Both Daenarys and Khaleesi will be at the Etsy Makers Market at the end of November.

Meanwhile, I gotta get to bed. I’m so tired. A really hard day grooming, then I mowed the lawn and I think I cracked a rib doing something really stupid.

I need a rest!

z

 

 

dolls dolls dolls – tattooed barbie

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I’m sharing my second tattooed Barbie doll make-over. I started this girl right after I finished the first one, the pin up girl Barbie with victory rolls.

This time I went with a more traditional rockabilly look with a touch of punk.

More like me, in other words.

Or me years ago.

With huge tattoos (unlike me).

Anyway, back to the doll. This time I had the outfit sorted first. I’d bought the red leopard print trousers on ebay and wanted a doll to use them on. I made the top myself (so its not the most perfect, hehehe). Then I decapitated the doll and worked on her hair and body separately.

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I made the chest tattoo first, a combination of symbols with a rockabilly theme. Then I gave her a calf tattoo that I would love. I always wanted a double bass tattoo on my ankle…

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She wears flat shoes, again like me, cause I was a dancer and I can barely walk in heels, let alone dance in them!

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Last I gave her some pretty 50’s style makeup, did her hair up in a quiff and added a bandana to hold it back.

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A bracelet and handbag complete the outfit. This little girl is ready to go rockin’!

I began remaking dolls using Bratz dolls into TV and movie characters and had a Barbie doll I decided to make into a pin up girl… that’s how the obsession began… I’m now in love with these rockabilly girls with their great hair and tatts.

This girl will be at the the stall I’ve got at the Etsy Makers Market in Hobart at the end of November, and will be listed in my Etsy shop when I get the time to list her.

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Over the next few days I’ll share the other dolls I’ve finished. I don’t think I’ve shared them all… And I’ve been so busy finishing market projects I haven’t had time to work on anything else to share. Hope you don’t mind!

z

game of thrones – sansa and joffrey

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Ah, the lovely couple… Sansa and Joffrey (the most disliked person on TV). I guess its a bit cruel to saddle poor Sansa with Joffrey forever by putting these dolls together, but what the hey.

This is one of the inspiration photos for Sansa:

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And this is the doll Sansa. Her dress is inspired by the photo above but I’ve added a fur cape from another outfit.

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Joffrey… hm. This is the inspiration photo:

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And here is the doll. I think I captured him pretty well. He actually looks mean…

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So, I have two more Game of Thrones dolls to share – a post coming up soon.

Soon as I finish the last of the current dolls.

Stay tuned.

z

princess and the pea bed

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Its finally finished. I think I started this project about two years ago. Maybe more… nah… whatever. Ages ago.

It sat on top of the wardrobe in the office, a wire bed without a base and without mattresses… But the idea was there. A very tall bed, with a stack of mattresses, fit for a princess.

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It was finally time to finish it. I had to put wire on the base to hold the mattresses, then I had to make the mattresses. It wasn’t difficult, just fiddly. I had scraps of fabric and batting, I made up a small pattern to fit the bed and got making.

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Its a bit wonky but that’s part of the charm, its all hand made without jigs or anything.

I love working with wire, I’ve made a few beds, cups, a teapot and other stuff, but this is the first TALL bed I’ve made. What fun.

Sorry for the pics, Its really hard to photograph wire items!

z

i’m back. sort of.

Its been almost a whole month since I last wrote and a ton has happened.

First I went off to the mainland, as I do most years, to groom poodles for the big shows. This year I went to Melbourne for the Poodle National and the Royal Melbourne Show.

I stayed with my good friend Iris, and groomed silver toy poodles for her, and her grand daughter’s white standard poodle.

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The gorgeous Kismet.

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The beautiful Mishka.

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The elegant Mystique.

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The cute Piper.

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The handsome Sonic.

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Retired from the ring now, the stunning Armani.

I had tons of fun playing with poodles and enjoying the smell of hairspray in the morning, but it was also exhausting and hard work.

I did manage to go out one night and catch a band, a great rockabilly/hillbilly trio called The Rechords – it was great to catch up with old friends and even have a few dances.

Unfortunately I got some bug on the flight over – not surprising, an airtight tube with a heap of people in it, you’re bound to catch something! – and spent my entire 10 days there living on cold and flu tablets.

I still had it when I came home, only worse. I spent the first week home feeling I was going to die and sounding like I had kennel cough. I’m still not over it … Still coughing, still blocked ears, still going through tissues at an alarming rate.

As a result, not much has been done around here. Priorities, right? I had to groom, its my job, so I concentrated on putting all my energy into that, then I’d crash out in front of the TV (or in bed) for the rest of the day.

The house looks like its been occupied by squatters for the last year, the yard looks like the weeds staged a coup and have taken over. Well… its spring and its been raining a lot and the grass and weeds are growing like WEEDS. Today Wayne took matters into his own hands and let the horses in to do some landscaping for me. As long as they don’t eat the precious few plants that made it through winter I’m happy. At least I can see the garden beds now.

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I also came home to an injured dog. Montana was run over by a car and had to have surgery to put in a plate and screws. She’s on the mend now thankfully, but coming home to her in hospital was awful. It really makes it hard to go away again. Between that and getting sick every time I fly, I’m considering putting down an anchor and staying put forever…

Anyway, I hope to get back to things soon. The bathroom is still not finished, the house, well, the less said about that the better, ditto the yard… The To Do list is staggering and I’m still spending more time on the couch with Montana, just existing and recuperating.

I hope you’ll forgive me and hang in there till I’m up to creating and sharing again.

z

nothing new to share

I have no idea what happened there.

I wrote a long, very detailed, very informative, insightful and articulate blog post where I answered all sorts of questions, not least being the meaning of life itself… and I lost it.

I hit save twice. Then pressed preview and nothing came up. I repeated the process, put it down to a glitch, proofread it, tweaked it, and hit Publish instead.

That’s when it all disappeared.

I gave up in disgust.

You lose. Now you’ll never know about all the wonderful stuff I wrote about.

So here’s a consolation prize.

Weight-gain-vintage-era

z

we have a vanity!

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Yes! We have a vanity.

The bathroom isn’t finished, but today I waved our adopted plumber off for the last time (for this project).

I feel like a weight’s been lifted. I have a heap of work to do to actually finish the bathroom, but the house can now go back to being a home instead of a construction zone.

So, let me remind you what the vanity started out like. I found this little cabinet, complete with a broken top, at a garage sale a year ago.

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From the moment I saw it I thought it’d make a great vanity for our bathroom. So it sat in the shed for months till I was ready. I had planned to just fix it up and replace the one we had in our bathroom currently. Till the broken shower moved the bathroom reno to the top of the To Do List.

The plan was to find a sink to put on top and I’d fallen in love with this Ikea sink:

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So I had the cabinet. I had the sink. I needed to decide on a colour. Well, that took a bit of work. I ended up with a grey/blue/green colour I love. Its paler than my original ideas, but I’m happy with it. Our towels are sea foam and white, so this will fit in nicely.

Here we are now. Finally.

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All I managed to do today after work, was to clean up a bit and move a few necessary items into the bathroom. A vintage mirror just leans against the window for now, toothbrushes close at hand… An Ikea trolley holds bits and pieces and can be wheeled in and out as needed. Our towels are on a timber towel rack for now. The idea being that I can continue to work in there with minimal need to move things back and forth till the bathroom is finished.

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For now I’m just happy to have a sink in the bathroom!

z

the bathroom saga continues

Ok. Yes. I’ve been absent. I realise that. I have a good reason: bathroom renovations are very hard on your psyche.

I think I left you last somewhere before this stage: one wall done and the second wall started.

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Next came the bit above the shower and onto the window wall. That wall includes a black ‘feature’ stripe. We made a feature stripe of that bit cause it was just easier to put in the black tiles than try to chop up the white ones and keep the brick layout going AND matching up with the next corner. At this stage I’m all for easier and quicker. I’m beginning to feel like we’ve adopted the plumber.

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You may have noticed the weird little red spaceships on the tiles. They’re a kind of tile spacing and leveling system. Click on image to see details on how it works.

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Great, wonderful invention. You place these blue plastic spacers in the corner, line up the tiles, then use the little red screw on widgets to clamp the tiles in and line them up. Genius. Except that they’re made to be used with much thicker tiles than the ones I chose. See below? That little blue bit sticking out where the grout is meant to be?

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Uhuh. Now, I noticed this earlier on in the process but didn’t say anything cause, you know, I’m no expert. I expected that if there was something amiss about this, the plumber would notice. Right? But obviously not. He continued to blithely tile using the same system leaving more blue bits sticking out. But again, who am I to question the professional?

Let me clarify, at this point, that he’s a plumber. Not a tiler. Yes. My mistake. However, when the plumber that you like and trust says “I can tile” and “I can put up cornice” and “I can put in the window and door trims” you don’t think “No, I think I’ll look around for another trades person who can come in at the right time so the job gets done in a timely fashion, without any wasted time waiting for someone to turn up or finish a job.”

No. What you do is you say “Fantastic! You can do the lot? Wonderful. Forge ahead!”

One tradesperson to organise. One bill. Great.

Ok. Maybe not so great.

These little blue things are one example. The time it took for a plumber to tile and the mess he made doing it, also not so great. By the end of this I’ll have a new bathroom and have to redo the floor in the hallway, repaint the door frame and touch up some walls…

But we grin and bare it. I did choose small tiles. I did ask for a brick pattern. I believed him when he said that cleaning off the tiles of the glue after it set would be easy peasy.

sigh.

Ok, it wasn’t so hard getting the glue off and out from between the tiles. It just took ages. Both my time and the plumber’s time. Not ideal. But too late to do anything else. After all, I was the one who said it was a brilliant idea after all…

So, back to the little blue things.

I had planned to use a medium grey grout. I decided to go with dark grey. Almost black. Why? So that I could use a Sharpie (the crafter’s answer to everything) to colour in the visible blue bits.

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After all, I loved the look of the dark gaps which looked sort of like dark grout, and a black Sharpie should work…

Anyhow… when the plumber came in the following day he’d had an inspiration: he was going to use a fine cutting wheel on his grinder and grind out the little blue bastards.

Um… No. I don’t think so. Not a grinder. Its big and heavy and so easy to slip up. So I offered him my Dremel – the one I use on dog nails. It has teeny weeny cutting disks and it has a flexible hand held bit, so much easier to use. A much better choice.

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The better choice would have been to not use the blue things, but hey, what was done was done. Let’s make this thing work.

Now we have a multitude of scratched tiles and one chipped one which he wants to replace… How hard is it replace tiles? “Easy Peasy!”. I’m not sure I want to replace them. I think I can live with the scratches… I want the bloody bathroom finished in this lifetime. Tomorrow would be nice!!!

sigh.

Oh, and remember the deep scratch on the shower wall? I spoke to the guys in the store. They said “No problem. Bring it in and we’ll replace it”. Yeah right. Its ON THE WALL NOW. I wasn’t waiting another week for a working shower! Can we fix it? Nope.

Did I mention that some of the stuff on the floor tiles won’t come off? Its meant to all be the same stuff but some of it isn’t, I swear. I’m so over this. I want to start on the fun prettying up work!

Speaking of which, here’s a preview of the vanity. The colour looks awful cause of the lighting in the casita, but in the end I went with a greeny grey blue I loved – the colour of a Kmart throw I use on the couch all the time. I had a colour which was similar, I added a bit of grey which I already had on hand and viola! Happy Zefi. Only took 4 different colours to land on this one.

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I gave the inside a coat of waterproofing paint and then painted it white. Hopefully it’ll be easy to keep clean.

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One of the reasons I fell in love with this little cabinet was the hinges and the shape. Its not the ideal vanity unit, having only one door. It makes accessing things inside difficult. But I’ll make it work.

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So this is where we’re at today. All tiling done. Grouting touch-ups still to come. Tile replacements a threat hanging over my head. Tons more cleaning to do.

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The power points need putting back in place (and I need to get new cover plates for them). The wall you can’t see needs patching with plaster to smooth it, the door trim needs to go back on, then I need to patch and paint both the door and window trims and the wall itself.

And of course the vanity will go in tomorrow. And the cornice. Then the plumber will be finished.

I hope.

I’m not holding my breath.

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Meanwhile I found these towel rail holders with hooks. I love them. They were in my house in Melbourne and I kept them to use if I ever renovated another bathroom. I plan to use them in this one. On the long wall, a long towel rail… very industrial aren’t they?

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But I’m getting ahead of myself. There’s still so much to be done before I can begin the fun parts.

I sure hope this is over soon. But at least we can shower now!

z