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Thursday, August 30, 2012


Thursday 30 August 2012

ExtraCare auction night 

people gathered to place their bids at a special auction night in aid of charity.

The Swan pub hosted the night which raised £410 for the ExtraCare Charity Shop in the Priory Centre, which helps elderly people to live more independently.

The event featured a barbecue, karaoke and entertainment from singers including Natalie Parr.

Worksop ExtraCare shop manager Pauline Scott thanked everyone who donated generously on the night.
“It went really well and we were delighted with the amount raised for our charity,” she said.

“Thanks to Andrew and Tracey Parr at The Swan for hosting us and to Annie’s Babies for donating a reborn doll for the auction.”

Monday, August 27, 2012


Doll show not all child's play

Updated Mon Aug 27, 2012 

It is a dying art in other parts of the country but in Tasmania, the craft of doll making is still going strong.
Organisers of Australia's largest doll show, being held in Hobart, received 207 entries this year from Tasmania and across the country.
It took judges two days to inspect every detail of every doll.
Most are extensively researched, then cast, painted, and sewn by hand.
"We look at how well the shoes have been made, how well the wig's been made, how the costume comes together, as well as the painting," doll judge Leanne Vassallo said.
Most of the dolls came from Tasmania but some entrants travelled from New South Wales, Victoria and Western Australia.
"We're actually the biggest in Australia at the moment," Sue Lyden from the Hobart Doll Club said.
"Melbourne's down to about 20 dolls so we're doing very, very well."
This year's theme, stars of the silver screen, and attracted entries from dolls dressed as Elizabeth Taylor in her role as Cleopatra and Glenn Close as Cruella de Ville.
Some of the dolls are so lifelike they have been mistaken for the real thing.
"People have gone past and seen the reborn dolls in the car and thought they were real children and rung the police," Ms Lyden said.

Saturday, August 25, 2012


Bennington Health and Rehab adds doll therapy for Alzheimer's
Saturday August 25, 2012

Staff Writer
BENNINGTON -- On Friday, staff and residents at Bennington Health and Rehabilitation Center were introduced to a pair of life-like dolls that will serve as an addition to programming at the center for patients with dementia and Alzheimer's disease.
Studies have shown that "doll therapy" can have a calming, positive effect on the mood and behavior of individuals with a degenerative brain disease like Alzheimer's, improving their quality of life and reducing dependency on medication.
The two sisters producing the dolls, Kathi George, of Williamstown, Mass., and Julie Crosier, of North Bennington, said that what started as a doll-making hobby turned into a business after they began researching the therapeutic value of the dolls. The pair sold one doll and donated the second Friday, and said they had previously delivered a pair to The Center for Nursing and Rehabilitation at Hoosick Falls, N.Y.
The expressions of three residents at the facility lit up and their spirits immediately lifted when the dolls were brought in Friday. "It brings back a lot of good memories," said George. The therapy can be beneficial at all stages of dementia but works best when introduced in the early to middle stages.
Activities Director Marjorie LaFountain said the dolls would be incorporated into new activity programs for those in long-term dementia care. She said the therapy allowed patients to "have something that needs to be took care of, instead of (themselves) needing to be taken care of."

Friday, August 24, 2012


'I feel such a close bond to them': Mother-of-five amasses £12,000 collection of FIFTY fake babies because she can't have any more children

  • Alice Winstone has spent £12,000 in seven years buying enormous brood of fake children
  • She cannot have more children because of blood disorder which would make pregnancy unsafe
  • Lifelike dolls fill several rooms of her maisonette in Cardigan, Mid Wales - which she still shares with three of her five children
  • Most expensive doll cost her £1,200
  • Her obsession saw her husband move out because he 'couldn't cope' with number of dolls
By Chris Parsons

When mother-of-five Alice Winstone was told she could not have more children for health reasons, she remained determined to fill her home with babies.
And the maternal 39-year-old is so desperate to care for infants she has spent thousands buying 50 lifelike baby dolls which take up her entire house.
Mrs Winstone has spent seven years and over £12,000 filling her home with the scarily lifelike vinyl 'Reborn Dolls', even though three of her five real children still share the same house.

Maternal instincts: Alice Winstone cares for one of the 50 fake babies which fill her home in Cardigan, Mid Wales
Mother duties: Mrs Winstone, who is separated from her husband due to her obsession, changes the clothes of one of her 'children'

Her obsession with the fake babies, which cost up to £1,200 each, sees her spend £50 a month and has forced her long-suffering husband Chris to move out of their maisonette home in Cardigan, Mid Wales.
Mrs Winstone had bought her first fake baby, a £180 doll called Emily, after seeing her on the back of a magazine and 'falling head over heels in love with her'.

She went on to buy 13 more in quick succession, and admitted that soon after she 'couldn't stop.'
She said that despite the misgivings of husband Chris, she was 'astonished to feel such a close bond to a doll'.
Mrs Winstone had been told after her becoming pregnant with youngest daughter Jessica, now 12, that she had a blood disorder which would make another pregnancy unsafe.
Lifelike: The 'Reborn Doll's are made from a vinyl material and can cost up to £1,200 each
Care and attention: Mrs Winstone shows the rack of outfits she has bought for her fake children

Changing time: Mrs Winstone bought her first doll around seven years ago after 'falling head over heels in love with her'

Her medical issue also means she does not work, instead caring 24 hours a day for the 50 fake children she has collected since.
She changes, washes, sleeps with and 'feeds' her enormous brood of vinyl children - and even takes her favourites out for day trips in the car.

She readily admits she preferred caring for her dolls to having sex with her husband, who moved out of their home five years ago due to her growing army of pretend children.
Mrs Winstone said: 'I tried taking in kittens, and even fostering children but I couldn't bear the part where I had to say goodbye.
'I began looking after the dolls like I would my own babies - they are so life-like and I feel such a close bond to them.
'It's the best of both worlds as well - I get to dress them up, do their hair and wash their clothes without the endless dirty nappies and sleepless nights!'
Mrs Winstone became very protective over her dolls and worried about her children being near them, or the cat sitting on them if she wasn't around to keep an eye on them.

She moved the dolls to her bedroom, and bought cots for them to sleep in.
Eventually Chris moved out as he couldn't cope with her love for the dolls any longer.
She said: 'Chris didn't understand why I treated my dolls like real babies - he just didn't get it.
'I tried telling him how happy they make me but he just thought it was a stupid obsession.
'They soon started to affect our sex life as I would want some of them to come to bed with us, but Chris refused.
'We were arguing about other things in our relationship, but the dolls really didn't help - he said they freaked him out because they looked so real.'
'I wouldn't have given up my dolls for Chris - we come as a package. I like them close to me, and I'm never far away from them for long.
'After Chris left, I down-sized my double bed to a single and turned our room into a nursery. I didn't need the extra space and it meant there was more room for my dolls and their stuff.'
Mrs Winstone insisted that, while she 'does love her children more', she would still not give up her dolls for anything.

Attached: The mother-of-five says she now spends all her time with her 50 fake babies, as they 'come as a package'
Realistic: Mrs Winstone's most expensive Reborn Doll, a 'boy' called Rhys, cost her £1,200
Mrs Winstone regularly takes her pretend brood out for day trips near her home in Cardigan, Mid Wales

Her estranged husband Chris still visits their house to visit the couple's real children - Jade, 22, Ben, 21, Kyle, 17, Charlie, 15, and Jessica, 12 - as their youngest three still live under the same roof as the 50 fake babies.

She added: 'Of course, I love my kids more – I know these babies aren’t real. I’m not mental.'
Despite claiming this, the mother of five has admitted to dressing her favourite doll Rhys (who cost £1,200) up in Ugg boots and taking him on day trips to the zoo.
Mrs Winstone said: 'I've spent thousands on my dolls - but I also go to doll fairs and swap them for others when I've had them a while.
'Rhys is my favourite, I like him to sleep with me every night.
'I recently took him to Chester Zoo - loads of people came up to me and told me how cute he is, and they couldn't believe it when I told them he was a reborn doll and not a baby.
'I buy him Next clothes and UGG boots as I want him to look nice.'
Mrs Wintstone's reborns are so realistic, she was once stopped by police when she had four of them on the back seat.
She said: 'The police officer told me I needed to get car seats for my children as it was dangerous for them to travel without them.
'When I told him they were dolls, he wouldn't believe me - I think he thought I was crazy!
'Once he had seen the dolls close up he realised they weren't real babies, but it shows how much they look like real children - that's why I love them.
'No relationship will ever come between me and my babies, and I wouldn't give them up for my children. It's me and the babies - they're everywhere.'

 Obsession: The Reborn Dolls now take up several rooms in Mrs Winstone's home, which she still shares with three of her children
Expensive: As well as spending thousands on the dolls themselves, Mrs Winstone also buys prams, cots, and dozens of outfits

Sunday, August 19, 2012


Area sisters create ultra life-like dolls

By Lisa La Plante, Special to The Eagle

Tuesday, August 14, 2012


Reborn Dolls: a Balm for Infertile Women or an Insult?

Realistic baby dolls can help women going through IVF or baby loss, but others find them upsetting or a bit too realistic for comfort.
A few years ago when watching a television documentary called ‘My Fake Baby’ I discovered reborn dolls. These are dolls that are so realistic they look like newborn babies. They are painted to show veins, blemishes and milk spots that newborns typically have and they have micro-rooted real hair, or expertly painted on hair. From a distance, they could be mistaken for a real baby.

They can fetch hundreds of dollars in a booming, competitive market, where many women (and some men) are only too keen to part with their cash to own one.

Therapeutic Dolls?

Some women who are infertile and going through IVF procedures find them a comforting balm for the stress they endure through the gruelling treatment and some women say they have helped them to deal with the pain of a miscarriage, while others find the idea insulting and say that to hold a ‘plastic’ baby would have made matters worse and the idea of a ‘fake’ baby is creepy or wrong.

Personally, at the times when I lost my babies I would have found them very upsetting. I burst into floods of tears at the sight of every newborn and all the women in the world suddenly seemed to be heavily pregnant when they hadn’t been before. If someone had presented me with a reborn doll during those times in my life, I would have ended up a crumpled heap on the floor. I tried to avoid babies until I had a successful pregnancy and then they became less painful to look at.

Every woman reacts differently to miscarriage or infertility problems, though, and some have found cuddling a reborn doll therapeutic. One pregnant mother happily sold her collection of reborn dolls after her IVF treatments had finally worked. She used the money to buy things she needed for her child.

Are Doll Collectors Deluded?

For some reason this has created controversy and some doctors such as Dr. Ablow suggest that women who buy them have a mental illness and aren’t living in the real world. He even likened doll collectors to people who use street drugs.

Art Form of the Newborn

I say whatever helps someone get through IVF or grief is good and if owning a reborn helps, then great and I do think the dolls are fantastic art forms and not in the least creepy. If I had an artistic bone in my body I would love to make them myself but unfortunately God did not bless me with the ability to paint. I did, however, have one made to look like my son when he was a newborn. Why? Because it’s a beautiful way to immortalise lovely memories, just like professional photos or footprint pictures are, only better.

The truth is, the vast majority of women who buy reborns or any other doll do so just because they appreciate the art and not because they have a deluded fantasy that the doll is a real baby. If some find them comforting in times of stress, why is that wrong?

Men the world over collect realistic electric train sets and spend weekend’s playing with them. They disappear into the attic to play with their train set after a row with the missus and no one accuses them of having a mental illness. Millions of fully grown men are also obsessed by computer games such as ‘SIMS’ and ‘World of War Craft’, but they are not deluded or accused of regressing into childhood the way women are if they buy a doll.

Comfort for Women Who Lost Babies

As well as helping some infertile women and those who had miscarriages, reborn dolls are now increasingly being used in old people’s homes because staff find that elderly people with dementia are calmer and happier if they are given a doll to cuddle. One elderly woman who lost her newborn daughter years previously agonizingly relived the event day after day due to her dementia. It was distressful for the staff, too, who had to keep telling her that her daughter was dead over and over again. Eventually, they bought her a reborn doll and told her her daughter was asleep in her crib. Although this was fantasy, it gave peace of mind and happiness to an ill old lady in her last phase of life.

Dolls Used in Films

Reborn dolls are also used on television in films in addition to real babies. In the extremely popular TV series, ‘Call the Midwife’ (the true memoirs of a 1950’s London midwife), reborn dolls were used during the childbirth scenes.
Anyone who appreciates the beauty of a newborn should see the art in this form of doll even if they don’t personally like them and if it happens to help with grief in some people then that is just an added benefit. Maybe doctors should try it instead of over-prescribing drugs?


  1. Are These the Weirdest Dolls Ever? Lifelike ‘Reborn’ Babies Have Nails, Hair, Eyelashes, and Even Saliva. Daily Mail, 30th May 2011.
  2. Meet the Reborns: The Incredible Lifelike Dolls that Cost Hundreds of Dollars and Even Come with Birth Certificates and Human Hair. Daily Mail, 17th July 2012.
  3. Fake Babies, Fake Lives. Dr. Keith Ablow. Fox News, 28th June 2011.
  4. Reborn Dolls and Miscarriage Healing. Bella Online, Miscarriage News 2012.
  5. Midwife Terri Coates: If I cried they'd keep the scene. I couldn't help it, it was so real. The Sun, 28th January 2012.

Sunday, August 5, 2012


i make reborn dolls, and i frequently look at other artists renditions of kits i have done, or would like to do, and came across this picture.

she a kit im familiar with only online, i have never done her myself, but. thats not what impressed me about the picture.
it was her shoes. look at them! 

at first i thought, MAN! how much time it must have taken to embellish those tiny shoes just to sell a doll, AMAZING!

then i had a thought.
why couldnt she have bought material, that kind that LOOKS like it has sequins on it, but doesnt. 
comes in every conceivable color there is...

and make a pair of really cute bling shoes???

so, my quest brought me THIS online tutorial (not mine)

Tutorial: Fabric Baby Shoes

For this project you will be using 2 fabrics to create the baby shoes.  Choose your first fabric and iron the interfacing with the paper side up. (the glue web should be placed on the “wrong/backside” of the fabric).

I have trimmed the fabrics down to approx 6”x12” for this shoe size.

Iron each section for 3 seconds until interfacing is applied to the fabric.  Once this is done move to the next fabric and repeat the same steps.

Now that the interfacing is applied peel away the paper liner to reveal the newly interfaced fabric.

Then place your fabric onto your cutting mat interfacing side down.

Ok Now you are ready to cut.
I arranged the pattern according to the image below in order to minimize waste.

Click the send to Silhouette button, select your fabric cut settings and cut out your shoe pattern.

Now that your shapes are all cut out you are ready to put them together.

Pin both patterned arches to each other face sides together as shown in the image to the right.  This will form the top part of the shoe. 

Then sew the inside of the arches together.

Open the arches and bring face sides together at the ends of the arches and sew together. 

The next step is to turn the fabric face side out.  Then iron the arches together.  This will form the top part of the shoe.  The interfacing that you used will help the two fabrics to stay together. 

You will also want to iron the soles of the baby shoes together.  Place the interfacing sides of the soles together and iron for a few seconds.

Pin the sole of the shoe to the top piece inside out and sew around the edge.  Once that is completed turn the shoes right-side out.

You will also want to stitch the strap and hook and loop tape on at this point if you have not already done so.

Aren't these the cutest little shoes EVER!  *screech* I just need a little one to put these on. ;)  I will have a pdf posted on the website soon as well as more sizes in the online store.  

Wednesday, August 1, 2012


Lifelike dolls impress crowds

The Meeanee Hall was a sea of crafted colour last Saturday as the Hawke's Bay Handmade Craft Market was staged, and many large faces were intrigued by the very little faces of Napier woman Cherie Brown's remarkably lifelike little babies.

She has been creating them from imported vinyl and silicon components for about three years and, up until Saturday at the market, had been selling her life-like creations online.

The babies take about 60 hours to create - about 12 hours are spent on the hair alone.

They generally sell for about $350 to $450, and have proven popular with doll collectors, but also as soothing, therapeutic company for grieving mothers and even people battling Alzheimers.

All the stages of babyhood are created, from premature to toddlers, and Mrs Brown, who has a background as a mum and in the field of nannying, was planning to expand the global family with Asian and Pacific Island babies.

Her creations attracted a constant chorus of admiring "aaahs".

Also on display for the last market of the winter was everything from wood carvings, jewellery, paintings, herbal ointments, designer clothes and soaps - all made by enthusiastic Bay craftspeople.

The markets will resume on Saturday, September 24.


Making dolls, hats is therapy for some DeKalb Co. seniors
Posted: Aug 01, 2012 

DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. - There's a group of ladies in DeKalb County who are keeping their bodies and minds sharp, and they're looking fabulous doing it. Fashion design is usually thought of as a young person's game, but the ladies at the Lou Walker Senior Center are breaking all the rules by dressing dolls, and making some beautiful bonnets.
The senior ladies at the center know how to have a good time. They say they get together a couple of times a week because they need to -- they make hats and dolls with their hands.

"It's therapy for me because you're doing something with your hands. It actually helps my arthritis, I think," said Beverly Rich.

For most of them, it's the first time they have taken up the hobby. Versie Ward says as a kid she never had a doll. She says she took Coca-Cola bottles and pretended they were dolls. Thanks to Ward's instructor at the senior center, her dolls are much more life-like.

"Once I make them, I look at them and a name comes to me. Ok, you look like Cynthia. And I talk to them," said Ward.

The ladies don't stop at making dolls. Once their dolls have all they need to look their best, they've learned to outfit themselves. Instructor Ora Dabbey says those that come to her class will leave with a hat. The ladies say the hats they make help them explore their creative side.

"It's therapy for me. Every hat I make, I say well I'm not going to make another one. Then I get excited about the next one. What can I put on it, how can I shape it," said one lady.

The ladies say the hobbies keep their hands busy and their minds sharp, but most importantly it reminds them that one is never too old to dream.
The ladies have gotten so good at doll and hat making that some of them are now selling some of their creations.