Making a Reborn Doll
I first discovered these dolls when my mum bought one. After doing some research on the internet, I decided I would like to have a go at painting and making one myself. I love a challenge and learning new skills. It will probably take me a lot longer than the more experienced artists. There are two types of paint that are used, Genesis heat set paints, that need to be baked in an oven to set, or air dry acrylic paints. There are pros and cons for both. I chose air dry paints as I didn’t fancy having vinyl doll parts in my oven and the risk of the fumes, or the vinyl distorting. The disadvantage of air dry paints is that they dry quickly, which means mistakes are harder to rectify and the paint has to be thinned considerably and used in many layers to get the desired effect.
There are lots of kits out there, sleeping baby, eyes open, small, large and different expressions. Then there is the delema whether to buy the paints, doll parts, fillings and eyes seperately or as a kit. Luckily I found a full kit for sale, with a doll that I liked, at a price that I thought was very reasonable for a known sculpt. I will not go into great detail of how to mix the paints or apply them, as there are lots of tutorials online.
The kit is a Denise Pratt sculpt called Paisley
Before you begin painting the doll parts they need washing in washing up liquid and then thouroughly rinsed and dried. Next, the first coat of flesh colour is applied.
I then applied several more flesh coloured layers on top of the veins to give depth. The next stage is to define the creases in the skin with a blush colour.
Next, I did another flesh coat. Following this, I used the pink blush colour to add blushing to the areas where babies have a more pink colour. When that coat had dried I used the same colour on a sponge to give the effect of mottling in the skin. The first coat of lip colour was then applied.
I have now painted the eyebrows and lips and opened up the nostrils, which I should have done at the begining. It now has to dry for a week or so before sealing the kit.
Time to start on the hair. First, I marked out the hair line I wanted with taylors chalk. Then, I added a few hairs in the direction I want to root it. After that, I started to fill in the side of the head and working my way around the back and other side. Next, I worked towards the crown making sure I swirled it around. Finally, I filled in the spaces between and added side burns and softer hair around the front.
The hair is now complete. I now have to cover the inside of the head with glue to seal the hair in place. This can take a few weeks to dry.
While the glue is drying I have added very fine glass beads and toy stuffing to the arms and legs. This is to weight them. I have put a layer of glue on the top to seal them and I will have to wait for that to dry. Therefore, it will probably be a couple of weeks before there are any more updates.
Everything is dry, so it is now time to assemble the doll. Firstly, I weighted the legs with fine glass beads topped it off with stuffing and sealed them with glue. Next, I used the cable ties that were supplied to fasten the legs to the body. Finally, I added more stuffing up to the neck, weighted and stuffed the head before attaching it to the body. Jessica is now complete and weighs 5lbs 9oz.
Jessica has been sold.
This is the second reborn doll that I am going to make. The kit is Noah, a Riva Schick sculpt. She has been sculpting baby kits for many years.
The blank kit ready to be painted. Today I have washed the vinyl to remove any factory residues and put a sealer onto it. I will leave this to dry over night before starting to paint it.
I have opened up the nose. The following images are the first coat of flesh coloured paint. I then painted on the veins. There will be several of flesh coats over the veins, which I will do over a couple of days.
Today I have added in the creases using a pinky colour. I will let this dry and then add another flesh coat tomorrow.
The head, with the lips, tongue and eyebrows painted.
Taken a while for me to finish his hair, as this time I micro rooted it. Also, my wrist has been playing up. A bit of RSI from too much knitting.Joshua’s head has now had the glue added inside to secure the hair and the nose backed with black felt. This will take at least a week to dry. I must be patient. It will then be a case of assembling the doll.
Due to the warm weather the glue in Joshua’s head has already dried. So today I finished him. He is 20 inches long and weighs 7lb.
Joshua has now been sold. I liked this kit so much that I will be making another for me to keep.
A baby girl from the Leni sculpt by Elizabeth Steger.Finished on 03.07.14 @ 16:50. A twin sister for James, also from the Leni sculpt, but not reborned by me. Jemma is 22inches long and weighs 7lb 6oz.
A baby girl from the mix and match by Adriesdolls. She is a limited edition Lisa sculpt with a signed body. I ordered the kit directly from Holland. She is beautiful. Finished on 08.08.2014. Weighs 5lb 7oz and is 18 inches long.
A baby girl from the mix and match by Adriesdolls. She is a limited edition Carmen sculpt with a signed body of no3/100. I ordered the kit directly from Holland. Finished on 30.12.2014. Weighs 4lb 10 1/2oz and is 18 inches long.
This is the same kit as the first Joshua that I made. Noah by Reva. I loved the kit and missed him after I sold him. I used different air dry paints on him and his skin tone has come out as mixed race. Not what I intended, but he is lovely. Finished on 13.02.2015 weighing 5lb 8 and half ounces. 21 inches long.
October 2016. The air dry paint I used on Noah has faded and gone a blueish colour. Very disapointing. I have stripped off the paint and hair and will start again using baby fx paint. My favourite air dry paint so far.
This doll has taken me a long time to make, mainly the rooting of the hair. I used first clip mohair and it is very fine and hard to root, but the results are beautiful. The kit is called Joshua a Riva Schick sculpt. He is 19 inches long and weighs 5lb 9.25 0z. He was completed on 19.05.15 at 18:31. He is my favourite so far.
Parts of Joshua are also fading, so he will also have to be stripped back and redone.
I made another doll from the Leni kit because someone was interested in buying her. They changed their mind so now I have triplets. She was finished on 11.07.2015 weighing 6lb 13 oz and is 20 inches long. She has since been sold.
This is another limited signed edition from Adriesdolls no 21/100. She is one of a twin, that will be released later in the year. She weighs 7lb 8.25 0z and is 19 inches long. A New Year’s Day baby. Finished 12:01 am 01.01.2016.
Erin’s twin brother, another limited signed edition from Adriesdolls no 03/100. I used different paints for him, Babyfx from distictive reborns and I love it. It is a bit harder to work with but the result is fantastic. A more realistic skin tone and feel. Finished 29.05.16 @11:59am. Weight 6lb 1 oz. 19 inches long.
I have loved this sculpt by Adries dolls for a while and finally decided I would order it.He is not a limited edition, but he has such a cute face that I just wanted to paint him.He was completed on 11.08.2016 at 15:45. He is 19 inches long and weighs 6lb 15oz. I used mohair from a different supplier and it is much softer and less tangly. The trouble is they sell out of it quickly.
I saw a vulcan baby on ebay labeled as one of a kind at 895.00 pounds. I thought I would buy the same sculpt and have a go myself. She has turned out so good that I want to keep her for myself. I will order another kit to do and sell, at a lower price.
The kit is Clara fairy kit by Shawna Clymer and is limited to 300 world wide. She was completed on 22nd September 2016 at 15:10 and weighs 6lb 10oz is 21 inches long and is bald. I used my printer with T shirt transfer paper to make the Vulcan name badge. I have ordered another kit and it is no.174/300. Have not started it yet. Here are a couple of photos of T’Kell.
I have since made baby Hobbit twins and I am in the process of making 2 more babies. Names and photos to follow.
Finished on 12.09.2016 @ 19:30. 21 and a half inches long weighing 6lb 12oz.
Cherry was finished on 17.10 2017 @16:50 and weighs 5lb 13oz. Length 17 and a half inches.
Chobby was finished on 17.07.2017 @ 19:00 and weighs 5lb 7oz. Length 17 inches.
I have two more kits on the go and will upload when they are finished 2018
May 19th 2019
It’s been a while since painting a doll and the last two were going to be the last as they have discontinued the paint I use. However I have found a very similar one and I am giving it a go, because I liked another kit from Aidre that she recently brought out. It is a 16 inch prem baby called Mick. Not sure if I will keep that name as it may look like a girl when I have finished.
25th May. Because of the warm weather and an ingenious idea from Rob for the mottling, all the painting is complete. I will let it cure for a few days before rooting the hair. See photos of Mick below.
May 13th 2020
Here are my twins made from Mick asleep and Mick awake kits from Adries Dolls. The are Premature babies, measuring 16 inches long.