Anonymous on Aug 3, 2012
Was pleased with order
Old Ways For Modern Dolls
My name is Carolina Gonzalez and I am passionate about dolls. I have been sculpting, sewing and customizing dolls for over a decade, which while it seems like a lot is not much in dollmaking terms really. Right now, my passion is focused on reproducing disappearing forms of hand crafts (hand spinning, hand sewing and embroidery, crochet) and of course about the History of dolls. I come from a family of seamstresses and painters, but I am completely self-taught. My two grandmothers and my mother were/are professional seamstresses, and while I learnt a lot from them in my early childhood, my interest was more drawn to painting as I grew up. About thirteen years ago, I started sculpting clay dolls, and of course those dolls needed clothes, but I was still really reluctant about learning things like pattern drafting and it took several years until I was inspired by a friend to take up embroidery.
That changed everything. As someone with knowledge about painting and drawing, it was very easy for me to start drawing embroidery designs, and I was hooked immediately. As I was learning, I experienced a really strong feeling of reconnecting with my family’s heritage. I found some abandoned dolls, restored them the best I could and started customizing them, and the sewing and embroidery also started having a more and more important place in the dolls’ outfits.
My husband, whom is a very talented artisan, taught himself to spin wool and even built his own spinning wheel from a vintage magazine’s instructions that he found online. The thread spun by him had to be put to use, so I took up crocheting again, a skill I had learnt the basics of when I was a kid, but that I had not practised in many years; of course, the dolls got crocheted items too.
As the years went by, I started learning about the history of dolls, and found out that I was more at ease working with bigger size dolls. I started collecting vintage discarded dolls to use as mannequins, and purchased some books on pattern drafting. For the first time, I felt I had found my type of doll – one large enough to go completely overboard with baroqueness on every detail :). The sewing, the embroidering and the crocheting started taking my every free hour, and I realized that it was what I wanted to make for the rest of my life. Although right now I have another full-time job that pays the bills (I’m sure many dollmakers can relate!), I hope one day to become a full-time dollmaker. One can dream.
Born and living in Tenerife, self-employed artisan, folk doll collector, gardener, Spiritualist, lover of all forms of artisan work.
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