I finally have enough supplies to start on customising my Blythe doll. I purchased her as she is: naked, pale and really tatty hair (this is the brushed version). I have no idea what she was originally but I am hoping to make her into a beauty.
Thanks to the lovely inspiration and information from Awusmgal I have finally got my mojo to get started. You should go check out her blog. She does so much wonderful stuff with dolls.
Also on surfing the net I found out about Kate. She also does customisation. She has the most gorgeous hand painted eye chips. You can see them at her Estsy Store here. I had already purchased new eye chips before I found out that you could buy clear ones and paint them.
I have purchased most of my tools and supplies from Cool Cat. You can also find them on ebay. Most of the tutorials on how to customise I am getting from the Puchi Collective. They are very helpful. They also have free patterns for clothes as well.
Opening up the head was relatively easy. There are screw at the back that need to come out and then I used a teeny tiny flat screw driver to open her from the sides. The head is in three sections: front, back and scalp. The scalp section is screwed to the front (inside and hidden) but I think this girl had a screw loose, because the scalp section fell off without any help from me.
This view is from the top with the front and back pieces held together. The eye piece needed to come out which meant using a screwdriver (with tape on it to prevent damaging) to push the entire eye section out. By this I mean the eyeballs and the eyelids. The instructions I read said that a lot of force would be necessary and to try and expand the head sides out by squeezing the chin and the forehead. Well that just didn't work for me. In the end I got a towed and used it to help push the sharper edges of the sides out, while I manipulate the screwdriver in and under the eye. It kinda of look like something out of a horror movie with the screw driver going through the eye socket.
I eventually got there and ended up with her head finally in pieces. Unfortunately there was more to come with the eyes. I had to remove the eyeballs. Each eyeball has four eye chips that also need removing (I hated the original colours).
This is a different angle of the eye mechanism. You can see the eyelids. Between the eyelids is a white clip that needed to be removed. It took some convincing but I got it there. Once this was removed I could take all the final pieces apart.
I didn't get photos, but to removed the eye chips, I soaked the eyeballs in warm soapy water for 30 minutes. I then got the glue stick from my glue gun, heated one end on a candle, and then stuck it to an eye chip. After five minutes waiting for it to cool, I was able to twist and pull and viol la - one eye chip removed.
Now we come to the scalp. There are two sections to the scalp: a soft rubber section the hair is stitched on and a hard scull dome. There are different types of scalps and apparent the one I have is the one the Puchi Collective really haven't given a tutorial on. Apparently I have a Radiant Blythe scalp. The soft rubber section of the scalp ans three wide fingers that slip into three grooves on the dome. In my photo below you can see where I have managed to pull out one of the fingers and half started on another. These were actually glued in place in small sections so I had to use a fine craft knife to saw it away from the edge. Consequently there are a few rough edges. I also had to use the small screw driver to help lever it out. Even without the glue there was a real hold on the soft scalp. Unfortunately there was no option for tape on the screw driver this time so there are a few war wounds. Luckily this section will be hidden.
Finally the soft scalp was removed. Removal of all that hair came next. Let me tell you I am itchy all over and I am sure all of it went in the bin.
Next I think I will try and paint some eye chips and see how they go. I also have to paint the top of the soft scalp to match the colour of the hair I will be adding. At the moment it is a hideous dark ash blonde colour which will not go well with the light blue/grey hair I have for her.
I am also going to try my hand at carving a smile in her mouth and also angle the eyes a bit. I wouldn't recommend this for anyone else's first one but I have had experience in carving wood, clay, and soft concrete.
Will post more later. Right now I need a shower to wash of the invisible doll hair.