Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Half Doll Redo

A friend recently sent me this half-doll pincushion to repair. Her skirt is in bad shape.  I began by removing her waist band. You can see the stitching holding the skirt tight to the porcelain.
Careful snipping (tweezers came in handy), I was able to remove the stiff cotton threads holding the pleats and stitching them tightly to the doll body.  (some of the threads are shown bottom left).  The skirt was a bluish pink.  The fill was wood shreds--which makes me think she originally wasn't a pin cushion.  The wood would not be a good filling for needles and pins that could rust.
I gave the doll a bath with plain water and a Q-tip (cotton bud).  She cleaned up nicely.  She's marked on the back--Germany and a model number.
I think she's really sweet, with her 1920s bob.
 An oddity I found before taking her apart was hooks on the back of the skirt bottom. At first I thought it was to hang her on the wall, but then I realized she'd be face down. I learned from my friend that she was found with a small basket.  So now I believe these were hinges to attach her to the basket and that she was a basket top. The wires are pretty heavy duty.
Before I began disassembly, I measured everything. I haven't looked yet to see what the original base was--I'm thinking some sort of cardboard, since it's warped over time. 

I got silk in a 1920s color, Eau de Nil (water of the Nile, a faded bluish green) to use to make up the replacement skirt.  I'm thinking about a replacement filling--right now I'm leaning toward rice hulls with a layer of quilt batting over the top. 


Anne said...

I'll look forward to seeing your progress on this lovely doll!

Southpaw Stitcher said...

You're a wizard! You plunge right in to a lot of projects that I just wouldn't. I'm in awe!

Aurelia Eglantine said...

Wow, she really cleaned up nice :) Do you know the company that made it? A little research with the model number might turn up something interesting!

I think you're right about the basket top, and I'm really looking forward to following her restoration, it's always amazing to see new life given to old things, especially one so lovely!

underatopazsky said...

So interesting, following your progress with this project. She's going to look lovely when you've finished!