Thursday, March 2, 2017

Dolly Makeover: 1880s Edition

You can buy inexpensive porcelain dollhouse dolls (about $10 each) online, but the assortment isn't large. Say, for example, you wanted a doll to portray Sherlock Holmes' housekeeper Mrs. Hudson, Time for a dolly makeover!

On the left is the Before doll. I peeled off her apron (it was glued on) and "cap", and restyled her hair with a new elastic band and a little glue of my own.

I changed her face a bit with sharp coloured pencils (if you don't like what you've done, you can just wipe it off with a damp cotton swab and start over). I stitched the back of her dress to give it more of an early 1880s silhouette (straighter, with a bit of a bustle) and made a gathered petticoat out of sheer unhemmed ribbon, which gives the skirt support and body. I "ironed" it with a hot hairdryer.

For the finishing touches, I glued a tiny jewel to her collar (it was sold at the dollar store in a packet of items for fingernail decoration), sewed a ring of dollhouse door keys to her belt and made a pair of pince-nez out of a used staple (!) and some thread.

You'd hardly know it was the same doll.


  1. Is there a place you would suggest to buying miniature 1:12 scale dolls?

  2. If there are no outlets in your area that sell them, you'll find a pretty good selection at all prices points on eBay.