Here is part four of the “How to Design a Fashion Doll” series. There are four basic steps to the doll design process: Inspiration, Fabric Selection, Initial Designs/Revisions and Finished Illustrations. In this post I talk about creating the final, finished, full color doll illustrations.

How to Design a Fashion Doll Part 4

Finishing the Designs

Once the designs have been approved by the client, or in this case once I was happy with the look of each quick sketch, I move on to final illustrations. These can be large, hand-painted works of art, small but tight marker drawings, or finished illustrations created on the computer. At one time this really was the last step in my design process before the doll was given to the the pattern maker and we started to sew and create the actual doll, or 3D, but now I often continue to make revisions and tweaks on the computer depending upon my client’s needs. Still, this was the last step in the creation of my Gypsy Chic collection. Here they are.

This design is my favorite.  She’s wearing a long pink faux fur coat over a floral blouse and brown ultra suede short-shorts. Brass accessories and a blanket-stitched brown ultra suede hobo purse with floral appliqué complete the look.  She’s also wearing brown mesh tights and high-heeled clogs.

Gypsy Chic Doll Design by Heather Fonseca

This one’s pretty darn cute too.  She’s wearing a cropped faux fur vest over a floral peasant top and blue ultra suede pants.

Gypsy Chic Doll Design by Heather Fonseca

The final look is a floral dress with vertical ruffles worn under a “snake skin” printed pink vinyl motorcycle jacket. A little pink fur tail hangs from her purse, and her over-the-knee boots are made of blue ultra suede.

Gypsy Chic Doll Design by Heather Fonseca

There they are, the final collection!

This is as far asI took my Gypsy Chic dolls. If I were to make them into real, three-dimentional, dolls I would work with at team of artists to create each aspect of the finished product. Sewing doll clothes is an art in and of itself, and I have the utmost respect for the pattern makers and sewers who create these tiny garments. Sometimes my clients ask me to do technical drawings to help the pattern makers understand exactly what’s happening with the design. We call these “flats”. Of course the doll needs shoes and jewelry too. A sculptor molds the doll’s fashion accessories, and I often do technical drawings to show the sculptor the front, back and sides of the shoes and jewelry. And then there’s hair rooting and face painting! After the head is “rooted” with hair and styled, the face carefully painted onto the head, the clothing sewn and the accessories molded into plastic, the final design is truly ready.

I hope you’ve enjoyed this series on doll design!

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