This fabulous new hat arrived from LalaTroop the other day. It's ridiculously adorable. Bit of a squeeze to fit all of Fig's hair under it though but we managed.

I feel like an orange jumpsuit would make this the perfect pirate kitty Halloween outfit.

You can find LalaTroop's etsy shop {here} but items can be a bit difficult to snatch!

With some time to kill before dinner we decided to take a walk through the Cemetery. I guess we're that sort, I like reading the the gravestones and find older cemeteries to be really peaceful places. There's something about all that weathered stone encrusted in lichen and moss that's really wonderful.

I did one of these eyebrow guides a long time ago so I thought I'd update it and add it to the rest of the newer 'How To' stuff. I use acrylic paints to paint in the hairs but you can use water colour pencils too, just go for whatever feels more comfortable for you.

 Paint has a much steeper learning curve than pencils so you might start with pencils and then once you feel a little more confident try out some paint.

Start with a pastel base in a shape 
that best captures the expression
you’re wanting

Add two or three hairs at the 
outer edge to define the arch.

Add some hairs being sure to angle them 
in a natural direction. 

Add a second layer of hairs at a slightly 
different angle so they cros over the 
previous hairs.

Now fill in any gaps with extra hairs, 
you can also add  a few hairs above the 
brow for a fluffy natural, look.

Lastly, with a soft brush add some 
extra pastel to darken the arch. 

I was feeling very inspired by the rainy days and all the fall leaves so I cobbled together this collection of some of my favourite Etsy pieces for Blythe. I've decided to give Willow a new face so I've been carving lips and such. Well to be honest she'll probably get an entire makeover at some point. It's hard to find the extra dolly time around commissions but I'm hoping she can be a winter-telly-watching-project.

'Blue and Orange Blythe ' by xhanthi

Lots of gorgeous Blythey things inspired by the rainy days and autumn leaves.

PO - Anniedollz Blythe Vinta...

Miss yo Hand-knitted cloak f...

linen dress for Blythe - Bl...

Miss yo hand-knitted ankle s...

Blythe Outfit +++ My Dearest...

Light Brown Sheep hat For Bl...

Alpaca/Doll hair/ Suri Alpa...

Blythe Green Flower Dress

Blythe gothic navy blue air ...

Premium English Teeswater Lo...

jiajiadoll- Handmade- blue f...

Dress for Blythe or similar ...
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This diorama is a lot of fun. An unexpected bonus is that it seems to be pulling all my characters together into one world, which was unintentional, I just wanted one set that could work for multiple sizes. Guess we'll see how that develops.

I printed out some botanical and anatomical charts the other day and distressed them. They even have coffee rings! I also found some tiny animal bones left over from an old craft project.

Musume let me know that she is having a clothing a event at her shop, Musume & Okasan. For the event every purchase gets a bunny or cat pin of your choice, and any purchase of two or more items gets one free surprise amigurumi! You can find her shop {HERE}

BJDs give us the ability to craft unique characters and bring our imaginations to life, so it's not surprising that fantasy characters are very popular, and likewise fantasy parts. My favourite crafter for fantasy parts is Shannon, the owner of Sparrow's Shop. Her hand crafted pieces are always so beautifully organic, the colour banding, translucent clay, and attention to detail make them easily some of the best pieces out there. I'm really excited to share our interview you.

You can find Sparrow's Shop creations and information on requestion custom works here: 

Your custom parts are instantly recognizable by their delicate striations of colour, they remind me of tree rings, what lead you, or inspired you towards that design? 
Thanks so much! As you suggested, the banding look I use for many of my pieces was inspired by natural formations such as tree rings, sedimentary layers and conical shells. Many of my doll characters are spirits of animals or places and are hundreds of years old. I like to think that every band represents a unit of time like a ring on a tree.

You've created custom parts in a brilliant array of colours and styles, do you have a favourite style to make, or colour scheme?
Unicorn horns are always my favorite design. Their shape is just gorgeous to me, they're simple and elegant. My favorite color schemes to work with are usually the most unusual. I also love natural colors with a splash of something unexpected. Of course, I think in the right proportions any color scheme can work. If I'm given some colors I'll do my best to figure out a way to make them play nicely together.

You do a lot of antlers and horns, woodland inspired critters are pretty popular in the BJD community, do you have a favourite fairytale character or creature that inspires you?
It's so hard to pick a favorite! I love a wide variety of different characters and stories. Mythological characters and creatures have always been very appealing to me. Therianthropic characters, which basically refers to characters that shape shift from human to animal or part animal, interest me a lot lately.

If I had to pick one character...I would say I draw a lot of inspiration from the character Haku, the Kohaku river spirit, from Hayao Miyazaki's Spirited Away. I see many similarities between that character and that world and my own vision with my dolls. I like to think of my dolls as being the manifestation of shape-shifting spirits formed by the great love, or loss, or collective apparition of places, things, animals, even objects. These spirits are trapped in or take the appearance of resin dolls. I'm not much of a writer but all my dolls have similar concept back stories. I may polish my own characters and jot them down eventually. I have so many ideas fluttering about my empty head. I could go on and on.. ^^

What's the most adventurous project you've done so far? 
If I'm honest, I don't think I've really been challenged enough yet. I love the more adventurous pieces. It's fun for me to figure out how to construct new things or how to fit together many ideas. Because of this I'm always learning, I'm always growing. I may be kicking myself later but I say... Bring. It. On.

What are some of the challenges you've faced as an artist selling hand-crafted works?
There are lots of things about what I do that are tricky but I think the biggest challenge is being original. I work hard to do things others aren't. I try to keep my style my own.

You use your own dolls as models for your work and I often think it must be fun to play around with their characters for those brief moments, have you ever made anything that you wished you could keep for you own dolls?
There are so many sets I wish I could keep! Almost everyday I fall in love with a different look for one of my dolls. I'm always telling myself I need to make time to create my doll's their own parts, but in the end I love to see my dolls change and transform into different creatures. I get the opportunity to create and photograph that creation. It's perfect to me. I may settle down and give some of them their own individual parts but for now I'm excited to see them in each new set. Like I mentioned before, I like to imagine my dolls as spirits. One day that manifests as a arctic fox girl, the next day the spirit of fallow deer. I love that.

What does the future hold for Sparrow's Creations?
I love what I'm doing but I have been thinking a lot about where I'd like to go next. I think 3D printing may be a good step for my shop. Some things, like animal ears and tails, are fairly consecutive and so 3D printing may be able to make those parts more effectively. This would hopefully free up more of my time to make custom parts, maybe I could even have in stock items (oh I can dream!). I would of course do a variety of printed parts as a good alternatives to my custom work, which is slower to create and more expensive to purchase. I'm also thinking someday about applying to do some sculpting work for bjd companies. This would probably be creating fantasy parts for limited releases to be used with their dolls. But sculpting my very own dolls could be in the future as well. I'm always excited to try something new. I just need to make the time to pursue these ideas..

I've been having a lot of fun with all these tiny bottles and have made a cabinet of alchemical delights for the dollies. Over time I'll fill it with a better range of curiosities, skulls, mushrooms, tarot cards and such, but I think I'm in a good starting place for now.

Next big step would be walls (with appropriately odd charts and posters), a floor, and a proper base for the table (which is currently just a small bamboo chopping board on a shipping box).

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