art dolls · BJD

The 100 Day Project 2023

Hello lovelies and fairy folk.

Have you heard of the 100 Day Project? It starts today, that’s 22nd February 2023, if you are reading this in the future.
If you have been following me for at least a year you may remember it, as I took part last year too. It is run by the marveloous Lindsay Jean Thomson, and you can find out more about it here….

Basically, the gist is you do something everyday for 100 days. Simple as. It doesn’t have to be for long each day 15 mins can do if that is all you have to spare. But even with 15 mins, constantly over 100 days, you improve. It’s about the commitment to your project. And projects are wide and far reaching, whatever you want to work on can be your project.

Look at those tiny hands

Last year, I decided I wanted to improve my wood carving and if I do say so myself, it definitely improved. And I managed to commit to the 100 days, which in itself is just as big a thing for me as commitment is not usually my forte. I find it very difficult as I am always being distracted by “bright shiny objects” aka new crafts I want to try. At the moment I am trying my utmost not to get swayed into basket weaving and making string from banana skins, believe me it is a thing. (I have booked up to go on a couple of workshops later on in the year, so I will get to play there soon, so I will/should/hopefully will wait patiently. Not easy!)

This Year’s Project

Anyway, this year’s project, I am equally excited about and it had been one on the back burner for a number of years now, in fact since I first saw this style of doll on Pinterest.
I intend to make a Ball Jointed Doll. And if I utilise the commitment and support that goes along with the community involved in the project, I can do it.
Check the hashtag #the100dayproject it has over 2.1m posts, so there is lots of love and support involved.
In actual fact I plan to make at least 2, one from air dry clay and one from porcelain. I can use the air dry clay one to make a mould to pour porcelain into and use to make porcelain dolls, but I also want to improve my sculpting skills with porcelain itself. It is a whole different beast from airdry clay and takes a whole different approach.

If you have been following me for a while, you may be shaking your head thinking here we go again. Yes here are 3 blog posts I wrote when I tried this last in May 2020. I still have all those body parts and will use lessons learnt from them to improve this time. And finish this time, I hope.

Ball Jointed Doll

18th May 2020

There might be a rite of passage for a lot of doll makers that we start out with cloth dolls.

Designing a Ball Jointed Doll

26 May 2020

Design Ok this is a stage I really try to skip in almost every area of my life. I am a jump in feet first kinda girl.

BDJs – Starting work on the legs

8 June 2020

As far as I know Ball Jointed Dolls have two types of joints. If you know more please do let me know.

Day 1

To today I am planning my blueprint. The porcelain shrinks about 15% in the kiln so that will need to be taken into account and the doll made bigger than I want it when it is finished. This is a bit advantageous too as it is easier to sculpt bigger, not fiddle with tiny pieces. But 15% won’t make it that much easier.
I will mark my progress on Instagram Stories and in catch up posts on my feed, so as not to overwhelm people who aren’t all that interested. I will try to remember to post to Facebook too, but if you want to follow along, Instagram is probably the best place to do so.

So I have my airdry clay, I have my porcelain and now I have my blueprint.

larger doll so 2 pieces of paper stuck together

Next stage tomorrow is to make the forms to shape the clay round. They need to be hollow inside to run the elastic through.

Ball jointed Doll workbook
pages from BJDs workbook

For instructions, I will be using this fab book for looking at pictures as it is in Japanese. Don’t be fooled by the English on the cover, it’s only the odd title inside. And a course from Adele Po who is well worth following if you don’t already. Her Ball Jointed Doll online course is great and she is so helpful answering questions. Check out her Instagram here.

Well wish me luck. In 100 days I should have a pretty little self-standing and sitting and all those things, doll to play with.

till next time, don’t forget to play in the meadows.

Ally x

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