Written on August 31, 2011 at 12:00 pm by Michelle
Filed under: Article with tags: blythe on a budget
I’m a huge fan of thrift stores, maybe because I’m always on the look out for that elusive Kenner! But besides my search for a vintage Blythe, I like going through the toy section to see what other dolls or doll clothes there are as well as going through the rest of the store to find some little gems. Here are some of my thrifting tips for you:
- Bring along a spare body. It’s so much easier to judge if a doll is similar in size with Blythe (or any other doll that you’re trying to clothe) if you have a model. Don’t just look for Skipper – I’ve found other dolls in cute clothes that subsequently get stripped and ignored in order to clothe my Blythes. You never know what other dolls out there have clothes that could fit Blythe unless you try.
- The craft section has knitting needles, crochet hooks, sewing supplies, fun trims and so much more. I’ve gotten fabric, trims and lovely sock yarn (a decent thickness for making Blythe knits from) all from the crafting area in the thrift store.
- Please also consider the book section! Most thrift stores have a crafting section and you can most definitely find (from time to time) books on sewing, sewing doll clothes or books on sewing clothes in general – some things can be taken from the human scale to the doll scale.
- Check out the clothes! Even if they’re not quite your style, the patterns in children’s clothing is great scale for dolls and one large adult shirt has a lot of fabric for making clothes for your favourite doll!
- Go frequently. Thrift stores get new products to sell all the time. What’s not there one day will pop up the next. Go frequently, find out when their stocking times are, maybe sign up for a newsletter so you know when their half-price days are…?
- Be prepared to be there for a while. Thrift stores are rarely well organized unfortunately and it can take a lot of time hunting to find a little gem. But that’s what makes it fun (right?). So have some time set aside for digging through the trash to find the treasure.
- Have fun! It may not be for everyone, but thrifting is fun and economical. Keep a note on pricing though – not everything is priced cheaply/to sell. Some things are heavily marked up while others are priced dirt cheap.
- Be critical – you’re looking at used things. Look for stains, cracks, rips, runs and all that fun stuff when it comes to dolly things. There’s no point in dropping $5 on a bag of doll clothes if none of it suits your tastes (or your doll’s) and none of it fits!
Exhibit A: Doll with Blythe-sized clothing I had thrifted:
Written on August 29, 2011 at 12:00 pm by Michelle
Filed under: Question of the Week
Besides Blythe, I don’t collect any other dolls. I do collect other things, but not other dolls. I know some people collect Monster High, Lalaloopsy, Liv, Moxie Girlz, ball-jointed dolls from various makers and other dolls that perhaps are of the same vintage as Kenner Blythes. There are a lot of other dolls that people collect and are interested in – some are less expensive compared to Blythe while others are much (much) more expensive when compared to Blythe.
Photograph from stock.xchng user mzacha.
Do you collect other dolls besides Blythe? And if yes, what do you collect? And if no, is money the obstacle?
Written on August 26, 2011 at 12:00 pm by Michelle
Filed under: Article with tags: freebie friday five
Every month’s last Friday (or just once a month, sometime on a Friday) is part of the new feature on BlytheLife.com, Freebie Friday Five. Welcome everyone to the second instalment!
If you have any suggestions for next month’s Freebie Friday Five, please don’t hesitate to email me! Maybe you have a site you think that I should feature or a pattern that’s free and up on the web? Tell me!
- This month I have really enjoyed the Blythe?Swap group over on Flickr. Ran by Phillaine, it’s super active and there’s been a swap every month since Phillaine took over administrating the group. I know I mention taking part of swaps quite a bit to get new (or just new-to-you) things and it’s good to get involved! Learn about new people and get fun mail! New swap sign-ups start on the 1st.
- I love showing support for fellow bloggers, big and small. This month I’ve enjoyed following Rosie Applies and Friends,who has some super cute entries from her dolls’ points of view (so cute!), and Claribari Blythe (Heather’s) blog (she’s got some cute photos!).
- Get connected with fellow Blythe enthusiasts – it’s free to make a Twitter account! (Please note: Twitter may or may not become a time-suck for all your free and not-so-free time, you have been warned! But at least it is free!) Remember to follow @blythelifecom, you’ll get Tweets about new posts, new giveaways and maybe even get in on new posts by getting quoted or interviewed!
- Update your blog or start writing one! If you do, be sure to drop me an email and let me know what it is if it’s Blythe-related so I can get it up on the Links page! Also be sure to check out the Dolly Blogging mini-series here on BlytheLife.com.
- Know some local Blythers? Start organizing a mini-meet in your area! Don’t know some local Blythers? Go post on either Blythe Kingdom or This is Blythe to see if there are people in your area and organize a get-together!
Written on August 24, 2011 at 12:00 pm by Michelle
Filed under: Article with tags: blythe on a budget, crafting, diy
I love the look of mini-buttons on doll clothing. They’re super adorable and they come in all sorts of colours. My main problem? Even though they’re (somewhat) readily available in scrapbooking sections of stores, the pricing is at a few dollars for less than 20 buttons. If you go online, you’re paying a smaller price for a larger amount (lowest I’ve seen is $2.50 for 100 buttons) but you get all of the same colour. And while I can appreciate beauty of small plastic buttons, there needs to be some kind of alternative that doesn’t cost as much.
It’s been in style lately for human clothing to have large buttons – why not transfer that idea over to doll clothing? If you have buttons that came off of your own clothing, you can still use them! Make a nice peacoat for your dolls and use ‘large’ buttons on the jacket to mimic fashions for people!
Seedbeads are small and come in some fantastic colours! You can buy a lot for very little money – some places will even sell mixed packages or vials for a low cost. This can be great because the beads are an appropriate scale for dolly clothing, but at the fraction of the price of the plastic buttons. You can find them at dollar stores at $1 for a vial or a bag. You can also find them at craft stores. They come in various colours (solid colours, milky, translucent) and can be made out of plastic or glass.
Craft your own mini-buttons! Get some polymer clay and make them for yourself. Just a reminder that they will end up very thin so your best bet for curing the polymer clay is to boil them rather than to put them in a oven (they’re likely to burn). Quite possibly the more expensive of the three ideas, but polymer clay comes in great colours and you can make them the same size as the miniature buttons without completely breaking the bank. And when you’ve made enough buttons in the colour you have, you can use the clay to make something else entirely (maybe make your own doll-scale foods?).
Written on August 22, 2011 at 12:00 pm by Michelle
Filed under: Question of the Week
When I first started out in the Blythe community, I was fascinated by the big heads and those giant eyes that could change with the pull of a string. The magic of Blythe still revolves around the funny little mechanism inside of their heads. I knew of Petites, but I wasn’t fascinated by them the way that I was with the big Blythes. I mean, the Petites didn’t have the same charm. They lacked the changing eye colours, they lacked more of a change in expression. Of course, when I first started in the hobby there was no such thing as the Littlest Pet Shop Blythes – there was only the Takara Petites with their ‘sleepy’ eyes. They reminded me a lot of the dolls I used to have as a child that could go to ‘sleep’ as soon as the doll was horizontal.
It took until BlytheCon for me to ‘meet’ Petite Blythes. Suddenly I got why people had both the Neo-size dolls and the Petites. They had their own charm. Their heads might not be as large and they may have some of the tiniest doll bodies ever, but Petites have such a charm about them that they became interesting to me. They have a permanent wide-eyed expression that can either look slightly dopey to me or just doe-eyed.
Do you have any Petites? What drew you to them?