Hi lovelies,

How many of you know that I am part of the Makers Medley? If you don’t, don’t worry, but here is a quick recap. We are a small group of doll making artists from around the world, inspired to teach and showcase doll makers and artists everywhere, and we do that by holding monthly challenges. Challenging ourselves and anybody who wants to join in with us, to make a piece to a certain theme each month. It doesn’t even need to be a doll, just a piece of art that fits within the theme. Check out @themakersmedley instagram and my feed to see what each month’s themes is at the begining of each month.

To make June a little more special we decided to add some prompt to this month’s theme of Oceans, meaning that extra art could be done throughout the month too. My particular prompt was merman. I ummed and arred over this one for a while, I don’t often make male dolls and have never made a mermaid even. So, was I going to take the easy way out and just do a drawing of this. I had until the 23rd of June, when the prompt needed to be revealed…. No, I decided, that wouldn’t be much of an easy way out as I am not all that good at drawing, so there was sculpting or sewing, or needle felting. Or using my new found waldorf doll making skills and all my old needle- felting ones and combining the two. Yes, there was the answer. So, I thought about how a little boy merman would look and started to needle felt his face.
I am really pleased how he came out, a twist between fish and boy.
Next came a stroke of genius, instead of trying to hide all that excess material you get trying to get a smooth neck joint, I would make it into gills. I already had extra excess as this little chap has much more of a pronounced chin and jutting lower half of his face than is normal so there was a lot more material to get out of the way.

His eyes are just pins at this stage that I had painted to use for a paperclay doll, but haven’t got round to using yet.

His body and tail were needle-felted next, around a wire armature to enable him to bend and swim, and a pair of arms needed drafting to size. (As I made the head first, all other proportions came from that.)
A quick look on ebay and I had found the fabulous material his tail is covered in, it has a slight stretch to enable movement, and he was coming together very nicely.
I had wanted to make his hair using a latch hook technique but decided that that the colour of the locks I bought just didn’t go with the base cap, and I didn’t have time to buy more yarn so instead the cap got brushed out and styled and looks pretty good I think, I can imagine it floating about in the water.

Obviously, ears couldn’t just be ears, they would need to look more like fins, so a quick drawing became a pattern piece and a couple of ears-fins where sewn and turned, but when placed in the usual ear area, they just didn’t look right, so with a little bit of play I decided the neck was a much better place so they were stitched there instead.

How do you like him? I really enjoyed doing a large piece of needle-felting again, it has been a long time since I made a rabbit or mouse, I feel that I may need to do some more.

And this is how a usual waldorf  head should look, neatly sewn up, without folds on show.

UPDATE: IT’S NOW SATURDAY 23RD, SO IGNORE THIS BIT HE HE.

As this blog post is out before the actual reveal date, I haven’t put a full photo of him on here yet, but will update this after the reveal. So if you are reading this on Friday 22nd do check back tomorrow to see my little merboy is all his glory, or follow my social media where there will definately be some pictures too.

Thanks for reading, I’d love to know what your thoughts are, and if you like him. so why not drop me a comment? We don’t bite.

Most of the dolls don’t even have teeth, he he

Ally xx