Total Pageviews

Friday, January 20, 2023

Dragan my attitude around the Dragon

Don't Give Up Never Surrender

Final sculpted parts and pieces
      The last half of 2022 has been a whirl wind of important issues needing my attention. This is of course life and it didn;t include any creative endeavor  such as, pattern making, fabric sculpting or art in general.  I did managed to get enough sculpting done for one Christmas show.  I had to push myself through every stitch.  Every artist goes through this. Life happens and when you get back to art you just can't be creative.   I thought I would never get my mojo back but to my surprise I did. This is about not giving up. Just  push yourself through the mind block weather you want to or not. 

     My husband collects dragons,  I make him at least one a year. Several weeks before Christmas I sat down and drew out a dragon pattern. My heart was not it it nor was I in the mood. There was no more time to waist. I must admit the pattern was not thought out very well. I usually spend several weeks thinking it through.  After cutting, sewing, messing around with the results it was obvious the parts and pieces were better suited for a sea horse than a dragon. I chucked all the parts in my abandon body parts box. (I can tell you about that box at another time).

Pined together and ready for assemblage 

I took some time and thought about the style and type of dragon I wanted to make, I then sat down with more resolve and purpose.  Taking a breath thinking each body part through I went back to the drawing table. Not only did I draw out body parts, I drew out more parts than I needed just incase I wanted to change the design.  When in the middle of sculpting I don't like to stop and make more pieces.  The pieces I don't use always go into the "Abandon Body Part" box.  =t.  

I like to sculpt details giving texture, It comes to life and gives it depth.  Each pieces is wired for strength, including the claws. As the individual parts were sculpted I started to feel my creative juices flowing. I just could not wait to get it done.  I am always excited when I making a new sculpture and this feeling was a welcoming feeling.

I am no longer Dragan my attitude around the Dragon So if you are dragging around with you creative slump, keep on trying, I just about gave up but here I am,  at the completion on this project I am renewed and ready to dive into my sketch book and see which sketches  I can make come to life. By the way my husband loves his dragon. - Cyndy

Saturday, March 19, 2022

One thing leads to another!

Wild Eyed Willy 

The last new pattern I made is Wild Eyed Willy. I wanted to do something fun and totally different.  He was such fun to make.  It was released to Dollmakers Journey Pattern in February. It is available on there website 

You can purchase a as a paper pattern or PDF pattern right now. 

My goal is to complete a new pattern every other month. Life gets crazy sometimes and you just can't do what you want.  Instead I have been sketching out ideas for a Fall Halloween line when time allows. I wanted to be ready to hit my studio running.  Excited and creating a compete line of original characters for the Halloween season.  

I had originally made some little Bat Girls for a show called Merry Krampus and used the same idea for Wild Eyed Willy.  Although I love the Bat Girls and they did very well at the art show I was not totally pleased with them. I decided to revamp the design before making it into a pattern. 

 Keeping the bodies of the original Bat Girls the heads were removed. I love the change. Changing out the head and ears from skin tones to light grey, elevating the expression and adding the fuzzy top knot of hair made all the difference. I think you will agree she is almost the cutest bat you ever saw. 

I even gave her a new name


I also had the perfect back drop to for her photo shot. 

 It is funny how just a couple changes makes all the difference. 


Wide Bright Eyes, Highlighted Nose, Full mouth, Fangs, Fury Top Knot and most important the right Skin Tone.

Bat-Tina pattern will be available late summer at Dollmakers Journeys Online store and Etsy site.

After the pattern for Bat-Tina was written and tested I got excited and started sketching like crazy.  Making a whole line of new critters and characters for the Halloween season.  I hope to have them all released this late summer just in time for everyone make them for this fun season.  Write now I am working on my Cyclops family picnic. I will keep you updated with pictures and sketches as it comes along.

Sunday, January 9, 2022

Dragons for Christmas


The Dragon that made it in time for Christmas

Every Christmas I buy my husband and unusual dragon. This year I decided to make him a dragon 9 days before Christmas. I would make a small one....What was I thinking!  I worked on it in secret.  I would get up at night and work on it for several hours into the early morning.  I would work on it when he went out. Near the end when I was painting it finally I had to forbid him to be around me. It was finished December 24th! 

I thought just keep it small. Which I did, I drew a body pattern out only 10 inches long and the legs to match the size of the body.  I knew that the sculpting would cause it to reduce in size. there were 4 legs 2 wings and a basic head to account for also.. Every scale and indentation in the dragon was sculpted with needle and thread. Sculpting in the black thread have me a better visual as to the size of the scales. This way the size of the scales could be reduced as the went down to the tail.

The head was a bit different.  There was a base the eyes, eyelids, nose, lips, horns upper and lower head was added as I built it up with fabric and sculpting as I went. 

The wings were added after they were individual sculpted.  The dragons tail, body and head have a single armature the wings have their own armature.

I loved the way he turned out.

t turned out! He was surprised and added to his collection as right after he opened it.

Tuesday, December 14, 2021

Snickers and Nugget

 Just when I thought it was going to be a breeze!

 The making of
Snickers and Nugget. 


    Three years ago I made this pattern for myself to sell at Christmas Fairs.  They are simply adorable and flew off the shelves.  I drew the original pattern on thin cardboard and have been using those templates.  This year was the last year I was making them.  I decided to make them into a pattern.  

     I redrew the pattern out on the computer so that the lines are clean. I cut the out the pieces sewed them together.  Made a few adjustments to the bodies so that everything fit perfectly.  

    The Head! Oh my gosh the head. I have made hundreds of these heads over the years, Why couldn't I get the exact shape right? First time to small next time to big then too fat.  The face is what makes Snickers and Nugget so adorable. Finally I drew 5 heads each a little bigger or smaller. Finally I got it right.  


 I wanted the pattern to be at Dollmakers Journey this fall.  So I didn't finish it on time. But it is better to be happy with the pattern then on time! Maybe a little late, so you can have the pattern for next year. 

     If you like to work small it really is a fun pattern to do. Like I said I have made hundreds of these over the years and they are always welcomed gifts and sell well at holiday shows. 

The pattern is posted at Sale price through the holidays


Dollmakers Journey

Thursday, November 25, 2021

Merry Krampus

Next Stop Merry Krampus
Read all about Merry Krampus

This is only my second show of the year.  I am so excited.  I just created a brand new darling creepy doll for the show. 


Hope to see you there
Sunday December 5th 2021

10am - 4pm
401 W. Town Street
Columbus Ohio

Hope to see you there!

Monday, August 30, 2021

Frankenstein Goes Main Stream

Frank and Franky Frankenstein hit the news stands!

I am so excited about the New Special addition of Art Doll.  In April Stampington Magazine asked for submissions for Autumn Art dolls due to popular demand they were going to put an Autumn addition.  I sent in one autumn doll and two Halloween art dolls.  All three pieces of my art were accepted.  This is the cover of the soon to be released Art Doll magazine, coming out on September 1, 2021.  Figurative cloth and clay artist have missed the eye candy offered by different artist published in this publication.  I am delighted to be a part of this issue. 

I had so much fun making all of these.  The Punkin Patch, the autumn doll was made into a pattern for Soft Dolls & Animals magazine in 2014 and this year just released to Dollmakers Journey's online store. 

I love Halloween and am always making fun things to set about the house in the fall. Frank and Franky Frankenstein, and Marie Antoinette (proudly holding her head) are part of my own home Halloween decorations.

Making the pattern for Frank and Franky

After sending them in I thought I would try my hand at writing a pattern for Frank and Franky. Writing patterns for cloth dolls comes second hand to me after years of practice. This time adding that second element of painting was a new step I had to get it right.  I simply had way to much fun making them over and over again, using different color combinations. If you purchase Art Dolls Special addition you can see how the colors differ slightly and details change to make them come alive even more so then originally designed.

Two more sets of Frank and Frankie came in. this one is from Janet McMullen. This is from the mini class I taught.

The classes always help me clarify any information in the patterns. They were great students all around it was a fun day.  

I did have the bodies sewn and stuffed but they did all the painting.

Vicki Lamer made next two Frank and Franky Frankenstein.

They did a great job these were completely painted within 3 hours.

Made by my sister Patti Stedman LaPorte.

It is a no stress easy to make, pancake pattern. The instructions are easy to follow step-by-step painting with illustration. Before releasing the pattern, I had a few people take a mini class with me to make sure I worked out all the bumps and troubles that artist and crafters would come up against. First I tried the pattern out on my sisters who do not make art dolls. Then I chose a few of my friends who are artist to make them. Here are some of the results of the mini class. 

Made by artist Cindy Celusta

At last it was tested by Jody Miller who only had the pattern with no guidance.  She said it was Fun and Easy to do. Which is always a good thing to hear.  Within a couple of days from her testing. The Pattern it was released August 30, 2021 to Dollmakers Journey online store in both paper pattern and PDF format. 

What fun this was to make this notorious Frankenstein family into fun caricatures.   Originally these were made for my own enjoyment but they became much more than that.   I hope everyone has as much fun making these as I did constructing the pattern and teaching it. 

Tuesday, July 20, 2021

Art Doll -Stampington Special addition

 Very excited! Stampington Magazine contacted me told me 3 of the Art dolls I sent in got in the show. This is their special addition of Art Dolls.  Anyone that was a Art Figurative 3-D sculpture loved Art Doll Quarterly.  This is one of the 3 Marie Antonetta holding her head sitting atop a Cake!  Yes I know she never really said "Let them eat Cake".  It is a mythical quote, and it serves me well as I use the papier-mâché box as a wonderful excuse to house some of my sewing supplies.

Marie was originally created to use as one of 4 samples on how ruching could add texture and interesting elements to your art work in a class I was teaching.  The dress, the leafy base and the cake box all had different types of this method of ruching applied to it. 
Hope you get a chance to check out the copy- you can pre-order it too!

Hidden Treasures is the class that I taught to my Guilded Liles Art Doll Group.  The paper Mache boxes were decorated with acrylic paint,  ruching techniques, laces and trims.  This summer I wrote a pattern and step by step instruction along with illustration to well on Dollmakers Journey.  The pattern includes preparing the boxes, making and colorizing the face, and different ways of ruching.  There are so many things I use this on, fabric, ribbon and paper. The pattern is offered in hard copy or PDF format at

Sunday, July 18, 2021

Summer Project- Cloth Art Doll Patterns

I needed to re-invent myself since last June that is exactly what was up to.  

Patterns have been something I have wanted to get back to.  I during the pandemic I kept my self busy taking special care of family members and working on patterns. I am a visual learner. I prefer to teach so I can help my students but that is not possible these days. I set out to making new patterns, then I started turning classes into patterns and revising patterns with more step by step directions accompanied with illustration. Sixteen of these patterns are now on Dollmakers Journey's on line and all of them are available for in hard copy and in PDF format.   One pattern, Scribbles is free for Good deed doers.  

Here is one of them funny little guy.

Noot is a Hoot!

This is a fun and fast pattern.  I made over 30 of them for a Christmas show I am doing in Columbus, Ohio.  I bought these beaded blue eyes.  I wanted to do something with them.  Once I started I just could not stop making them.  The picture with the 3 of the Noots together are the traditional pattern but I added ones with other elements.  I have people that shop at my booth that like the little quirky things I do with my dolls so well as I said once I started I couldn't stop making them.  Both my sisters had to have one and my father wanted a picture taken with about 20 of them sitting on his lap. 

I had some gears, and odd metal pieces I have collected so I stiffed through them.  I sewed an old watch cover over the eye.   Instead of adding hair a small drawer pull and trim on top of his head.  I have to say one of my favor parts of Noot is his eyes and ears that stick out. 

The hair is mohair, and just a door metal door number 57!

Why? Why Not!  


I found these eyes in New York at a bead shop in the fashion district.  Dollmakers Journey is now caring them in their store.  Since they are beads you can direct them in any direction you want to.  

This little guy has a bee spoiling the party! 

Saturday, July 17, 2021

On with the Show!

 I signed up for the Christmas Fair and Merry Krampus show in 2019. Understandably canceled. Then delayed in 2020 to 2021.   I signed up again for goth in Dec 5, 2021.  I hope it goes and everyone is safe.  I've had my shots never the less I will be wearing a masks to make my customers feel at ease. I am not as scary as the things I make for the show.  (laugh).  My work is more "Adams family" scary.   Here is some of the work I will be taking to the Merry Krampus show.

Small table view.

Silent children and Pirate ornaments I will also be making some Goth Girls if I get a chance

These are what I call my Bleeding Heart Zombie's. 

Frank and Franky Frankenstein are a unique duo.  They were chosen to guest star in the the Special issue of Stampington Magazine "Art Doll" Sept 1, 2021. Along with Maria Antoinette in which Maria is holding her head standing on a round box adorn as a cake and Punkin Patch (a pumpkin boy).  I was quite excited to get these in there special All about Autumn special issue. Punkin Patch is a pattern sold on Dollmakers Journey on line store.  I am working on a pattern for Frank and Franky also.

My wine bottle holders are abnormal and water resistant. Made of fabric, which is gesso, layers of paint sanded in-between each application gives the feel and look of dyed leather.  Elements such as human or dragon eyes, wicked tails, horns and the fabric manipulation give theses covers spark a conversation. 

Thursday, December 26, 2019

Wine and Art going together

Dress up your Wine Bottles

What can you do with Wine bottles.  I love to create new wicked labels for my old wine bottles, Make weird and fun bottle holders and wine toppers for them.  Here is a look as to what I love doing with wine bottles. 

 I have 20 Wine bottle holders ready to be painted.  Often I don't take pictures of my work pre-painted but I am going to try and do better.  I have designed and sewn up 20 holders and hand sewn applying different eerie eyes, human, reptile and cat eyes to the holders. 

The Zippers are Heavy duty zippers designed for Jeans.  As you can see the holders are sewn by machine and all the seams have been fortified with a top stitch (zig-zag)
After all the machine work is done the selected eyes are incapsiled in fabric forming the upper and lower lid.  Then the partial frame of the face is sculpted and applied to the holder.

     The final work begins.  I turn all the bottles inside out and gesso the inside of the holders allow them to dry, then sand them.  Turning them right side out the outside is gessoed, sanded painted with a base coat, sanded and dry brushed with about 3 to 4 different colors in paint.  In this sample you see the colors chosen are rust green, sand and gold.

Now every holder comes with a bottle sporting a nifty label.

The gesso and many layers of paint make it water resistant.  The holders look and feel like leather.

I also make cool bottle toppers sculpted with epoxy sculpt.  This is a hard drying epoxy which can withstand just about anything you can throw at it. Including throwing it.  It is a 2 part epoxy that must be mixed.  The epoxy gives you about 3 hours sculpting time before it is so hard you can no longer work the clay.  

This bottle sits in a candle holder with the corks slipped into the tapered candle holders that surrounds the wine bottle.

The shrunken heads are only one of many heads I make along with trolls, Krampus, and other things that go bump in the knight.  

I am thinking of doing some that are a bit more merry and a little less scary but I have to have the inspiration hit me first.