By Marcene Harvey
There are no pictures to accompany this lesson.
Ceramic cleaning tool.
Ceramic finger tool.
Needle tool made from Ĺ ď dowel and darning needle pushed into one end. ( This tool makes a dandy Enameling tool too). Just thought I would throw that in.
Spray bottle of water.
Soft short bristled round brush.
Large 4 quart bowl and a small 2 quart bowl.
A picture of how you want your doll laced.
I prefer to cast and lace my doll in the same day and it will be an all day job. I never lace a dry doll, it is much too hard to get the lace to stick. I have everything ready so I can go from casting right into lacing.
If you donít cast your own doll, arrange with the person casting her for you, to leave her unattached and placed in a plastic bag to keep her wet. (Leather hard) If you cast her yourself donít put her arms and body on yet and keep them in a plastic bag. Cast your doll in flesh porcelain. If the doll comes in three molds, arms, head & torso, skirt, cast arms and head, torso in flesh and skirt in color you are going to lace her in or white.
Now we are ready to begin. Put warm water in large bowl and porcelain for dipping lace in small bowl. Porcelain like thin cream. Bath towel across lap, hand towel by water. Place wax paper on kiln shelf, kiln shelf on turntable and put doll skirt on the center.
Clean mold seams with ceramic cleaning tool and be sure you get all the crumbs off the wax paper when done. Your skirt needs to be same color as the lace so if your doll is going to be dressed in, say , a yellow dress and your doll has been cast in another color, you need to use soft brush and paint smoothly, three coats of yellow porcelain slip on the skirt.
Cut an 18Ē piece of lace and dip in porcelain ...make sure it is coated well... then pull it gently between finger and thumb so it isnít dripping and leaving it quite wet. Straighten it out and lay it over the fingers like a roller coaster on your left hand ( I am right handed so opposite for you who are left handed).
Begin in back bottom of skirt, brush small amount of slip where top of lace will be and place lace in it. With your needle tool push, press and gather about 1Ē at a time into brushed on slip, pressing firmly into place, making sure you keep bottom of lace at bottom of skirt, until you have this piece of lace in place. Donít gather real tight.
Look at your picture. If you get your lace too heavy there is a chance of it falling off in the firing. You will want to wash your hands off now as the porcelain starts to dry and crumb and these crumbs will end up in your lace, anytime you start getting dry wash and be sure to dry your hands well.
After each piece of lace take your needle tool and straighten out your lace so it looks like you want it to look in the end...you cannot do this after it starts to dry. Now do a second strip of lace the same way as the first being careful to hide where you start and stop so no raw edges are showing. Take care joining and it will never be seen. Carefully spray your doll with mist bottle to keep her damp, often!!
Make sure the bottom of second row covers the top of first row. As you proceed up the skirt try not to let the lace you are working with drag or touch in the finished lace below. Continue around and up leaving last row at waist undone.
Now clean mold seams on bodice and attach bodice to skirt by brushing water and slip to both surfaces and putting in place. You want to do this quickly so neither surface dries and make sure you get it exactly where you want it because it sticks very fast. Now paint three smooth coats of yellow porcelain on bodice of dress then finish lacing to waist.
I usually donít put much lace on bodice except around neck and sleeves. Now attach the arms the same way as the bodice except use flesh porcelain, try to get a smooth finished look to them. Be careful around the arms now as they are easy to knock off. Add lace to neck and arms according to your picture. Go back at this point and check all of your lace to make sure you donít have thin or thick spots, carefully and thinly brush some porcelain in any thin spots and carefully scrape off thick spots. If you move the lace after it has started to dry it will cause a crack and you need to brush it with some porcelain. I make roses and put them on now. If you donít know how to make roses you can glue purchased ones on when doll is finished. Let your doll dry for a couple of days then with your needle tool check your doll inch by inch and clean out some of the holes in your lace that may have gotten to thick. After you have examined her carefully remove as much of the wax paper as you can without moving the doll, the paper that is left will burn away. Fire her to recommended temperature in a very well ventilated place as it smoked a LOT!! When the lace starts to burn away. Now spray or brush clear ceramic, 06, glaze on only the dress. A good spray or 2 coats brushed. If you have to brush be careful the lace is fragile. Fire. China paint face and hair and try to do it in one fire, the less you handle her the better and brush a coat of mop or opal luster on her dress. Fire. You now have a beautiful doll. CONGRATULATIONS