Thursday, May 13, 2010

Treillis métallique, beauté naturelle, les contes de fées, et KatSilk s'harmonisent à merveille!

Metal mesh, natural beauty, fairy tales, and KatSilk combine beautifully!


For my reimagined Natalia, I chose to keep the doll true to her Egyptian roots with a nod to the richness of gold in her ancient world. Her eye shadow reminded me of the colors of the Nile, and I wanted to mirror those green/blue colors in her dress. The result was this dress of gold-toned metal mesh with a front panel of iridescent colors that flow from green to deepest blue. The panel falls directly from a jeweled necklace displaying the symbol of the Oracle, the all-seeing eye. I have added jewelry with reserve in the form of simple gold bangle bracelets on her arms and iridescent bits to her golden shoes. For the crowning touch, I decided to keep the original shape and fullness of her outrageous hairdo, adding a simply head band to mimic the effect of an ancient Egyptian headress. I've named the doll Golden Rose of the Nile and, like her signature flower, I see her as a beautiful rarity.

Barb Johnson might be better known for her custom crafted mini cocktails than for her OOAK dolls and fashions. The 1:6 world has been a favorite playground for many years. But since 2007 she's been experimenting in metal mesh, creating dollie fashions in the mode of Paco Rabanne's early styles of the 60's and 70's. And her IFDC contribution this year is another in a line of these jewel-like fashions.

As the third generation in a family of tailors, Barb came by her fashion sense in a natural way. Sewing clothing for herself and her dolls by the age of ten, she was very comfortable with construction techniques by the time she entered college. But it was in her undergrad years at the Institute of Design that Barb's visual senses were truly honed. Core programs at the ID emphasized experimentation in all variety of materials and production methods, and Barb gained a wealth of knowledge from the hands-on approach.

As a post grad, Barb drew upon her experiences with visual design and her knowledge of photography to begin a successful career as a Stylist for catalog photography in Chicago. She has been at the head of her own small business corporation for the past 30 years where she offers design and styling services to fashion clients across the US. And, she is not ashamed to admit... some of those old Barbie doll photos in the Sears catalogs of the 70's were styled by Barb J! Barb says: "I am truly honored to be asked to contribute to this fundraising auction. I love the concept of re-imagining, and can't wait to see the entire group." You can contact Barb to talk dolls. 


Ynez is an OOAK repaint of FR Back to Black Natalia. I wanted Ynez to be a little less 'glam' and more classic (with a bit of 'sassy' thrown in). Her hair was relaxed and trimmed, then clipped back with one tiny butterfly clip for a more manageable 'do'.
It's been a gazillion years since I've sewn for anything this small, but I managed to adapt a basic Barbie pattern for Ynez's little black dress. The homemade earrings & necklace, and the redesigned Barbie shoes added a touch of gold to complement the subtle beading on her swingy black dress. I hope you like her

I am first and foremost a horsewoman, raising and training Thoroughbred racehorses along with my husband for almost 40 years, I'm also a lifelong artist. Fashion dolls are a more recent outlet for my artistic energies, and I really love working on these beautiful dolls. I was introduced to drawing by my artist father at an early age, and sketching realistic horses (talent is genetic!) before kindergarten. As a high school and college English/Art major, I showed locally, and in the late 60's, I trained at Cleveland's Cooper School of Commercial Art. In the early 70's I left my job as a Promotion Artist forThe Cleveland Plain Dealer to pursue a career assisting my Thoroughbred Racehorse Trainer husband in breeding, training and racing our stable of Thoroughbreds, and to raise our family.

Over the years, I've kept a hand in the art world by doing occasional commissioned portraits (mainly equine) and dabbling in varied media and styles including totally computer-generated art.
My most recent field of interest is OOAK (one of a kind) Fashion Doll Repaints! The genesis of my OOAK career was sparked by happy accident in April of 2006 when, as I browsed eBay in search of something 'Barbie-ish' for our granddaughter's birthday, I discovered the world of OOAK repainted 16" fashion dolls. My first thought: "Wow - I can do that!" I began repainting and selling Genes and Tonner dolls in May of 2006, and I've been working at it (with the help, encouragement and support of a few wonderful and very special friends in the doll community), as time allows, ever since. You may view my work at DesignsbyDonna.


Back to Black Natalia Fatale takes her turn as a fairy tale princess to honor this year's IFDC and The Wonderful World of Dizzy! Natalia was completely repainted and restyled to become "SinDerella" - a sultry, scheming, and sometimes edgy little princess - one which you never, ever want to turn your back on! She wears a limited production party dress in steel blue 'paper silk' by Thailand designers; T.D.Fashions. Her "glass" slippers are clear with glitter in a tap-shoe Maryjane style. She arrives to the ball with tiny rhinestone stud earrings, a black ribbon choker and her little "gold" crown from Mattel toys (not affiliated with). 'SinDerella' will be arriving in her original, labeled collector box with a stand and COA.

A little about me ... My name is Vin Trapani and art has always been a huge part of my life. From the time I could use a crayon I colored, created books, comic strips, and illustrated short stories -any form of expression an eight-by-ten sketch pad could afford me. Art in school developed into art as a living. I attended Paier College of Art, as well as Albertus Magnus College, both in New Haven, Connecticut and graduated with a BFA in Graphic Design and minored in illustration. Inking backgrounds in comic book pages of Marvel Comics and Archies Comics was my first foray into the professional world of art/illustration during summers while attending college. Since then, I've worked with publishers, with commercial art studios in NYC, and with toy design firms doing story boards and visual concept boards. After 17 years and my fill of the fast-paced advertising and graphics field where everything went electronic and much of the hands on creative process (for me) was lost; I decided teaching others my love of art was what I wanted. So, back to college and the life of a grad-student this time around! After two plus years of college and a semester of student teaching, I have come full circle, but instead of the student, I am the teacher, and enjoying every minute.

During a work hiatus in the summer of 2004, my career took another turn. This time, into the world of fashion dolls and their tiny 3-dimensional canvases. Though, not a huge collector/hobbyist of dolls at the time - I took a commission to repaint the face of a Gene doll. Having never tried this type of art work previously in a professional arena, I was a bit apprehensive but had the blessing and complete trust of the collector/doll shop owner.

With the doll completed and the customer pleased; I breathed a huge sigh of relief! I had crossed over to a career I had never dreamed existed and have not put the brush down since! This world of fashion doll repainting has afforded me opportunities never imagined. I have met people from all over the world from Japan to Australia or from Miami to Italy - they have all been wonderful! I have made life-long friends whom I enjoy chatting with nearly every week and the few times we get together in person is as exciting as the first day we ever spoke. In retrospect; this hobby has expanded my love of collecting into my art career - and my art into doll collections all over the world!
You can see my work at my Repaint Studio.   


My vision for transforming Natalia, was all in white.  With her dark skin, I thought the contrast would be wonderful.  I gave her a complete reroot with a gorgeous platinum white quality KatSilk hair that is super long  and super straight.  I pulled her hair up in a high haute couture ponytail, wrapped it, and attached a white bow.  Her hair can be worn loose and sexy if desired.  For  her gown  I created a white, stretch, ruched body hugging dress with curled white tulle and Swarovski crystals details.  Her jewelry consists of a single pearl strand with magnetic closure, and little pearl earrings.  Now she is ready for the runway, or perhaps she will be a bride.

I  design and create doll fashions and jewelry for the elite fashion doll collector.  My fashions have sold all over the world to many happy customers..  Prior to starting my doll fashion design business, I have spent many years as an artist in California where I was trained.  I deal primarily in oil painting and have shown my work Art Galleries, and competitions.  I have always been interested in fashion design, sewing and sketching.    I  have  sewn from an early age, beginning with sewing classes, and making a lot of my own clothes. I made outfits for my daughter's various school plays, such as Annie productions at Pepperdine Universityamd Thousand Oaks Civic Plaza.  Doll collecting, designing and making fashions for dolls is my main passion today as well as designing adult fashions.

On my website I offer a wide range of doll fashion designs, from glamorous gowns to haute couture separates, and fun fashions such as Victorian Goth and Fantasy.  I specialize in  beaded glamorous gowns for 16 in. fashions dolls such as Tyler, Sydney, Brenda, Sybarites, Deva  and other similar sized dolls.  I am presently work on  new designs  for  various BJDs.  I take commissions for custom orders, and do reroots.  One of   my most challenging commissioned work was making the "Half Breed" outfit for Sybarite thatCher wore in her 70's videos.  My inspiration for fashion comes from everywhere - music,  gardens, nature, books, magazines, movies and dreams.   I  particularly love musicals and  Hollywood glamour, glitter and mystery  from the 30’s to 50’s era and Parisian, Milan Haute Couture.  I love working with beautiful  fabrics that feel sensual to the touch, imported lace, luxurious satins that flow like liquid on your skin, chiffon, pearls, crystals, and ostrich feathers that I  incorporates into my designs.  This world of dolls and fashions is an absolute fantasyland in which I can get lost and dream in.  I believe in perfection, detail and quality!  To contact please e-mail or visit my website.  

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