I would mix dark. brown and black fiber together and then
take thin strands and curl very tightly. When set unravel the strands
and fluff by pulling apart. You should have a big ball of fluff! You
can then compress it and glue on the head, adding layers if need be.
You could use curly rayon, it's a fabric I used for mini T-Bears. Or you
could use bunka and layer curls.
Beth Lane taught me that to make great afros or dread locks, use old
Halloween wigs - you know the coarse kind? It
comes in black, grey and white and
even grey/white blend. She showed me how to cut it about an inch
long and put in a pile. Then apply glue to the
dolls head all over and stick those
strips of hair straight up all over the dolls head. Looks like
a fright wig, then when it is dry, you can clip
it and mold it into whatever you
want. It works like a charm. Now I'm always looking for Halloween
I see a
lot of braid on these wonderful dolls I see passing through the list.
Each has their own way of dealing with raveling braid, I'm sure. My
favorite way to deal with that problem, is to dunk about 1/4" of the raw
end into Mod Podge and let it dry. That way you can clip/miter very
neatly. Do the same at the other end. Cut a little longer, dunk, dry,
and clip/miter to match first end. The extra effort is worth it if
you're after neat ends.
off the start of the braid with matching thread, clamp it to my table,
then braid away. Then tie off the end again. Then if the braid is too
long, you can tie it off where ever needed.
braiding hair: I use a corsage pin and the knee of my pants. I have
found that the tension between my knee and my hands keeps the braid tiny
and perfect. Start the hair by rolling the end with a dab of Velverette
between your fingers. Pin to your knee and start braiding. A dab of
Velverette at the end/rolled will hold it so you can tie or decorate or
add it to your hair base as needed.
braids on a little girl, by wigging her with long hair and a part. I had
the part go right down the back of her head. When the glue was dried, I
just gathered the hair at the base of the neck on each side and braided
it. Tied the end with a nice ribbon. It was easy once my fingers got
into the mini braiding mode.
all the talk about braids, I have a tip if you want real braids. I take
three very thin, long section of viscose, get them wet, then braid very
tight. When you have done this several times, and they are dry, glue
into position on the head. I have done this for corn rows (takes
awhile!), also added to the back of the head for a bun, etc.
be posting a picture to the list that shows a step by step for a double
braid up high. The process is similar to my Anne doll, except that
Anne's style is much simpler.
If you follow the directions on my photopoint site, just make the
beads/lines of glue go ALL the way from the front to the back base/neck
of the doll. Continue on in the same steps, and when it's dry you will
have two very perfectly parted sections just waiting to be braided.
WIGGING TIP - for incredibly tiny, and
smooth braids to do all that medieval fancy hairdressing, use embroidery
thread in the same shade as viscose! REALLY looks nice... gotta keep it
have found that the needles for upholstery and soft dolls work very well
for fine curls. They are long, thin, and come in different diameters.
Have fun, take care
Wire for curls
Question - where
can I get more of the wire you are using to
make curls?? I've tried to find knitting
needles (the very thin kind) but
they are hard to come by it seems in the right sizes and if I do find
them they are also quite expensive.
You are going to love this answer: Mechanic's
Wire by TRW it is 18 gage and it
came from Trac Auto. I use it because it is made for use in hot
situations...like engines and ovens.
Another source of
great wires for shaping curls is as close as your office
supply store! And cheap too! A little work is
all that is needed..... Hie
yourself down there and get yourself a box of small paper clips and a
box of large ones. I like the
plastic coated ones the best! I straighten them out
and use those like the knitting needles....they
make wonderful curls....wrap the
damp viscose around them and let dry...... I stick all of my covered
wires in a big block of Styrofoam
and leave in a shady window to dry..... Then
just slide the dry curls off the wires and you have
lots and lots of wonderful curls to
1. For curlers, I use the coffee stirrers that are like straws. Cut with
a sharp craft knife.
2. If you prepare your wig material by holding it at both ends,
twisting, pulling the fibers apart and realigning the ends it will be
easier to manage.
3. Touch up a completed hairdo with a damp watercolor brush.
Does anyone know how to dye silk mohair? You can use RIT fabric dye.
I have a roll (silk mohair) and have dyed it with tea coffee, and RIT
Sylvia in Big D
PLEASE DO NOT USE RIT DYE!!!!!! There is a company called Dharma
http://www.dharmatrading.com that sells Acid Dyes for silk. RIT is
usable on cotton fabrics. Acid dyes are for silk, wool, hair and
natural products. I use it on Tibetan lambs wool. I hope you didn't
ruin your silk mohair!
I have used RIT Dye to dye the silk hair, but you do need to rinse
Sylvia in Big D
Porcelain Doll Artist
Facial hair tends to be coarser than the hair on the top of
head so the mohair is more "scale correct" for beards unless the man was
Uncle Chester who sat in his rocker all day
splitting the hairs of his beard with his fingernails to make it
soft... he wasn't my Uncle Chester, just Uncle Chester to the
whole village.... always interesting to see the difference
between the color of the hair and the beard on some men... if you
the same in miniature every one thinks you've made a mistake
unless you happen to have a bearded man near-by.
fantasy style: Make a pony-tail with a length of viscose hair. Glue
tiny strung pearl beads in a coil around the doll's hair line, and
coiling towards the crown. Glue pony tail to head at this point, then
finish off gluing the beads to cover. You end up with a sophisticated
bead cap with the pony tail hanging out. You could also add a few tufts
under the beads over the forehead to make a fringe.
a Wizard of OZ set for a customer several years ago. For the Lions mane
I used curly chenille in a gold color. It worked great! I have used it
several other times even for a wild clown wig. It is very easy to use,
and because there is wire in the middle it conforms easily to the head.
Hair - Frizzes After the wig is totally dry, tweeze off the
frizzes with a pair of tweezers. Then spray with a good quality hair
spray (that comes out in a fine mist), while holding a tissue over the
dolls face and upper body to avoid shine.
Taming the Frizzy
tip comes from one of our experts on the list (Laurie) who gave me this
advice on how to get rid of hair frizzies when wigging your doll. Dampen
a soft paint brush and stroke the doll's hair in the direction you want
it to lay down.
Glue and Wigging
I find when I have to use my finger to press down the hair it helps if I
dampen my finger with saliva, the glue will not stick to finger. You
can also use a small knitting needle or large tapestry needle to push
the hair down and in place.
Glue and Wigging
Use Aleenes tacky for your wigging that’s ok, but use just a little all
over the head and leave to go tacky, (just a couple of minutes) when you
are putting the hair on try using a long pin or something like that.
Once the hair is on leave to dry , do not put more glue on, Aileen’s
glue dries clear.
always use Velverette for hair and clothes. It is a thick tacky
formulated for fabrics.
Glue - Hairline
I am going to put on the glue for a hairline around the face, I draw it
on with a hard lead pencil. Very faint. This way I can keep everything
even without having too much glue or not enough.
Bev in Colo
Laurie, by "mock wool fiber" do you mean the hair that used to be called
"Feel o' Fleece" and now is called "Pretty Hair"? That's what I use most
often. It is soft acrylic. Very soft and fine. I've been able to dye it
to some extent (the colors it comes in are very limited). I also use
mohair, silk and viscose as well as a few other things.
Debbie Olsen ~~ Porcelain Doll
can darken the roots with either RIT dye, or with your ever favorite
Be sure to dilute it, a lot, and apply sparingly (too much of any water
will loosen the glue on your doll's head). When I do portrait dolls, my
blonds almost always have that darker shading at the roots. It just
makes them look so realistic.
I go in
with a small paint brush dipped in a solution of 1/4 tsp of liquid RIT
dye to 1/2 cup hot water put the dark streaks where you want them for
high contrast brush on dry hair for a more subtle look brush on wet hair
only works adding darker touches to lighter hair.
I came across this site today - thought some (if not all) of you might
Well the only male doll that I have "successfully" added hair to is a
little boy doll but I cheated on this one. I flocked his head to make
him look like he had a shaved head. I built it up with extra flocking on
the top and even more in the front of his "do" so he doesn't look like
For a man, he usually has a part in his hair, so I pencil in the part to
give me an idea as to where I want it to be. Then put a line of glue on
part line, place the hair on the glue, with the hair going over the head
in the wrong way. After this has dried, gently bring the hair back over
the glued part, repeat for the other side. You will do this a third time
for the back of the head. You will have a lot of shaggy hair, but now
you can cut & style it. For sideburns use a small ringlet cut in half &
glued in place. I've also used fat ringlets cut in half & glued in place
for nice beards. There is a book, Dressing Dollhouse Dolls, By Sue
Atkinson that has good instructions for wigs. I also, use some of her
patterns a lot! This is my favorite doll making book!! I hope this
helps a little!
Gabrielle in NC
hair on the male doll is a very simple process. In fact there are only a
few things to know about wigging him. Number one, put glue every place
you want hair. Number two, don't put any glue where you don't want hair.
Divide the hank of hair in half lengthwise and work with one half of the
hair at a time. Cut four pieces one half-inch lengths. Pick up a pinch
at a time and glue a row of hair on the bottom of the back of the head,
glue the hair on the head one layer at a time, like shingling a roof.
You should have two or three thin layers on the back of the head. Do a
layer on the sides of the head. Cut two or three pieces one inch long.
The layers on the top of the head lay forward and are cut longer to
allow you to style the hair. Starting at the front hairline, pick up a
pinch at a time and press it into the glue until you reach the crown.
Allow the glue to dry, then finger comb the hair into place. trim the
hair neatly and finish styling the hair. When the hair is finished,
spray it with a fixative or hair spray with a lot of hold. Aqua Net
brand hair spray works really well for this. When the hair is styled to
suit you and you have sprayed it to make it permanent, it is time to do
the beard and mustache. The beard is done first and you use one of two
methods. The first is for a longer beard, and that type is applied in
exactly the same manner as the hair on the head. You apply the beard in
layers of small pinches of hair and trim it to shape when you are done.
The second method is for the short tight beard in fashion now. To do
that type of beard, you cut the hair as if you were trying to make your
own flocking. Cut it as finely as you possibly can. (Don't use real
flocking, it's too fine and regular to look real.) when you have about
1/4th Teaspoon of cut hair, you probably have enough. Paint the face
with glue, the glue should be fairly thick again, and pat the cut hair
into it. Let it dry a little before you tap or blow away the excess. If
there is a bare spot, fill it with glue and apply more hair. Once the
hair and beard are in place, you can finish the mustache. As with
beards, there are two methods of
mustache depending on
the style of mustache you want. If you want a tiny, short type of
mustache, the Don Ameche or 40's style, do it with the short beard
method. Don't worry if you have a hard time getting the glue exactly
perfect, you can gently push the mustache around to shape it perfectly
before the glue dries. If you want the longer, bushier, type such as the
walrus style or handlebar style, you cut a small pinch of hair, about
one-quarter inch wide and a half an inch long. Paint one end with glue
and flatten with your fingers. Lay this piece aside to dry. when the
glue is dry, you trim off most of the glued end, leaving a fringe of
hair attached to a very small glue strip. Cut the mustache shape out of
that. If I want a n elaborate styled mustache, such as one with curls on
the tips, I cut each side separately, temporarily glue it to a piece of
waxed paper on a pinning board and shape it to suit me. Then I spray it
with hair spray, let it dry, peel it off the waxed paper and glue it to
the face. You must take the time to do the final spraying, and tidy up
all the flyaways if you want the hair to look nice. It's especially
important on men with the tighter, more modern hair styles of the 1800s
to now. Don't worry, if you use Velverette or other flexible white
glue, you can peel it off and do it again.
Also for hair on men I sometimes use pipe cleaners. I cuts the fiber
off the pipe cleaner so it stays on the scissors, then transfers it to a
pre glued spot on the dolls head. If you do it carefully you end up
with a crewcut. Also works well for beards.
Use silk fringe for mermaids hair.
viscose? NO CONTEST!
When I started making and dressing dolls back
in the early days, I had a contact
that owned a mohair goat farm. I bought about 10 pounds of mohair
from her....do you know how many copy paper
boxes it took to fill 10 pounds? I
thought I would really, really love working with the soft, fluffy,
combed and wafted angora goat hair.
Well it was soft. It was fluffy. It was
beautifully combed out for me and wafted (sewn to a
strip).. Well I tried every way I
could to curl it, and it just wouldn't wrap around wires, or
anything for me. I tried using setting gels,
tried using hot rollers, tried
setting it wrapping it and drying it in the oven......nada....nothing
worked. Then I tried viscose wigging. I bought
many bags of it from Paulette
Stinson. I fell in love! At last I had wigging that worked for
me! Soft, Shiny, easy to curl.......what more
could I want. I'm still using and
loving viscose. Beth Lane sells silk viscose which is beautifully
dyed in many lovely colors, Paulette still
sells it, and many others
I have been collecting and repairing antique small dolls for many years.
The old dolls almost always have mohair wigs. I used to use mohair...and
still do for repairing old dolls, but it is too stiff to be in scale for
minis if you want the hair to look "human' rather than "dollyish". I
personally love dollies AND humans, but there is a place for everyone.
Mohair curls best when boiled, down to a #3 knitting needle is about as
small as it will curl. Viscose, on the other hand, is a scale minded
hairdresser's dream come true.. Its soft and shiny, curls with water or
hairspray (allowed to dry in both cases of course)
will curl all the way down to a straight pin
size, and is available in a plethora of colors. Some antique purists
will come to my table and still say Oh? this is (ick) Synthetic? ah but
I say its in SCALE. Unless I am at a
mini show. they think I'm nuts...actually I am proud of being nuts :0)
I use the viscose for most of the dolls that I make. But I like to use
mohair for the men dolls, especially for beards and mustaches. For
beard I look for a curl/wave then glue a thin layer in place. After
dried I trim to the shape I want. For the mustaches I use a
that will look like a handle bar mustache and twist the center
glue in place. I made the Three Musketeers for my sister to dress
they came out really good. I have found that the best way to learn
is to just play with the curls, even if you have to take it all
Gabrielle in NC
0r 4 strands possibly 6, and use a large hat pin to press the part that
is pulled back over the hair down to the hair. This is after you put
glue (Grrrip)on the side that will go down on top of hair going across.
You just don't want to use a big hunk of hair for the part.
Sylvia in Big D
are going to sew a part, you'll find it easier to sandwich the wigging
material between two pieces of tissue paper. Then sew through all
thicknesses. After sewing, just tear away the tissue.
Take one of the
hanks of hair that you prepped and lay it across the bead of glue with
the sealed edge facing towards her right ear (on your left). Press down
with a needle tool or an unbent paper clip to secure. Do not use your
fingers. They will stick to the hair, and also cause the glue bead to
spread, and ruin your perfect part. Let DRY!
request seemed to be a middle part. There are several ways to
accomplish this (As Viola will agree).
artists actually make a slit on the top of the head (in the greenware
stage, before firing). Then they can push two small hanks of hair in the
slit, and have an incredibly perfect part. Since I never know exactly
how my dolls will be costumed, and what look they will have till they
are painted, I don't usually opt for this method, but t is
foolproof. If you are ordering doll kits, ask your supplier for this
2). Sewing a part. Use your machine to sew a seam down the center of a
small hank of hair. Viola mentioned taking a small layer of one side and
combing it over to hide the thread, and then compensating for that loss
of thickness on one side by combing hair over on the underside in the
opposite direction. I think she explained it better, but it does work
nicely. Ah, but alas, I am a gluer, lol!
3). I don't do any thing fancy! The key to a perfectly glued part is
patience! Yep, plain and simple. You must wait for each side to dry
completely before giving into the urge to fold the hair over! That's
what gives the perfect (no gunky glue) part.
I take a small hank of hair. I use a very good quality of Viscose. I
pull out a length (don't cut it, or you will end up with lots of those
short fly away hairs, as Viscose is a spun fiber). I condition my
section of viscose by pulling it and stacking it back together. I do
this several times. It sort of stacks all of the hair in a more uniform
Now, to brush it
out! Hold on gang, I use one of my daughters Barbie brushes (every time
you buy a Barbie, she comes with a bright pink plastic wide tooth
brush). I have found this to be perfect. Or, you can use an eyelash
comb, or a tiny kids wide tooth comb, etc. Someone mentioned a
toothpick. You will be there forever, and never get nice smooth hair.
Plan on losing
a good amount of hair after brushing. What you end up with will be nice
smooth, silky hair that will behave better as you apply it. I used this
method for my Anne of GG doll on eBay right now.
Once you have your hair prepped: Divide the hair into two small sections
about 1" wide, and in a very thin layer.
If you haven't wigged before, you can apply a small bead of glue to one
end of each piece, and smooth it in to seal the ends of each section.
This will insure that your hair will stay flat, and in an even layer
along the dolls scalp. Let this dry. (yep, get used to that word "dry",
it will become redundant, but well worth the patience in the end).
Decide on the style. Will it be a center part for two braids? Or will it
be a center part with long hair worn down?
With doll facing you, Place a bead of glue just off center, to the left,
(your left, not the dolls), on the top of the dolls scalp ( a tiny
bead/line please) Off center is key, as you are working on one side at
Flip it over!
Amazing! A nice half of a part.
Add another tiny bead of glue right next to the new part line. Very
close, but not touching. Take another prepped section of viscose, and
lay this across the bead of glue so that it faces her left ear (towards
your right). Press firmly in place with needle tool or paper clip. Both
sections of hair will be hanging on the left at this point. Let DRY!!!
Now flip this
section over! Taa Daaa! You did it! A nice perfect part. I hope this
But what do you mean "sew in a part"? The directions I uploaded were
from Janna Joseph's book on wigging. NOT mine. What she means by sewing
in a part is to take a hunk of hair, spread apart a bit and sew (on the
machine) a line down the middle of the hair. Lots of folks do it this
way. I don't because I hate the sewing machine!!!! What I do is: Put a
line of glue down the center of the head, front to back, where I want
the part. Put the edge of the hair in the glue and let dry. When dry, I
flip the hair over the glue line in the opposite direction and put
another line of glue next to the hair and glue the edge of the hair to
the head ( Both pieces of hair are hanging on the same side right now).
When that glue is dried, flip that section of hair back over and cut and
arrange your hairstyle.
Bev in Colorado
I just wanted to add a little to the instructions for sewing in a part.
Here is what has already been said: >>>Thank you, Bev, for those
directions. But what do you mean "sew in a part"? How do you do that?
>>> The directions I uploaded were from Janna Joseph's book on wigging.
NOT mine. What she means by sewing in a part is to take a hunk of hair,
spread apart a bit and sew (on the machine) a line down the middle of
the hair.>>>>If you only do this you will see the sewn part, which
doesn't look nice. You need to flip over half of the hair from each side
and the sewing disappears. Or to say it differently, you need to take
the top layer from the left and flip it to the right and take the bottom
layer on the right and flip it under to the left. I also sew the hair
with paper underneath to keep it from getting pushed into the sewing
machine. Hope this helps.
There are 3 different sizes of pleaders that I use. 1. Take a section of
hair from hair bunch (keeping length as much as possible). Gently
separate and smooth out the fibers so you don't have lumps. It should be
a smooth, continuous piece. I take a plant mister, and add a drop of
downy in it to keep frizzes at bay. Next, spray long section of hair
with mister, making damp. Lay the section on top of the pleader.
Starting at the top, pleat hair, one row at a time, till the end. If you
do it right, the long strand of hair will make 3 'pleated pieces'. Each
of the 'pieces' should be 1/3 of the length of the pleader. So after
your hair is pleated, take a blow dryer set on low, and gently blow the
hair back and forth for about 2 minutes until TOTALLY dry! This is very
important in this product. If even slightly damp, your product will lose
its curl. Next gently lift one end of hair, and peal off pleater.
Do you know there are 3 different sizes that we miniature doll makers
can use? I use the 1_ for those big, loose waves on my doll hair -- also
to give shape to miniature skirts that gathering just won't do. I used
the 1_ for the Twins skirts. The 1/2_ I use for an all around doll wave.
This is good if you are putting up the sides of the dolls hair, or doing
men's waves (as in bangs). Lastly I use the 1/4_ for tight 'tendril'
spirits and ethnic hair. Pavan's hair was done entirely with 1/4_
Years ago I experimented with a thin fimo 'cap' actually baked to the
dolls porcelain head, then gently pealed off while warm, then glue the
hair on that.... not quite realistic enough for me however.
The other experiment I tried was covering a mannequin head with plastic
wrap, then putting a thick layer of glue where your hairline would be
and back. I let that dry, peeled it off and it was a cap, kinda to which
you could then glue regular hair on.
I used needlepoint canvas to make a Pate (or lining) for a wig.1.Cut a
small piece of canvas and wet it.2.Put over doll's head with a rubber
band or tied with a thread to dry. I put a piece of plastic wrap under
the canvas.3.When canvas is dry, trace the outline of the where you want
the hairline to be and cut off excess canvas.4. Then I put the liner on
something rounded with a little blue tac or white glue and make my wig.
When I dress dolls I always just glue their hair on the head, but for a
shop or if you want the hair to look like a wig, this is a good method.
Bev in Colo
To make a wig that is removable or just a practice one, I put plastic
wrap over the head & secure it around the neck with thread. Then apply a
layer of glue to the entire area where the wig will be, following the
hairline. Then place a layer of hair from to back, then side to side.
After that has dried, style the hair. After this has dried, you can peel
the plastic off the head, & trim underneath the wig so it doesn't show.
I like using the plastic as it doesn't add any bulk to the wig.
Gabrielle in NC
As to constructing a removable wig, I did that for my last one, since
this way I can do it over as many times as I want with no danger to my
poor doll. I used very thin leather ( cut up a whole leather skirt for
this but will be making wigs until I die from it) and made a pate on a
spare doll head ,glued it on then wigged as usual. I pried the whole
thing off with a stylus and transferred it to the doll I was gonna use
it on. Worked quite well for me I thought.
I have yet to try making a wig so this is just a thought that I am
tossing out. Why couldn't you take a thin piece of material and tie it
on a wig stand or doll with saran wrap underneath it so the glue would
not soak through and glue it to the wig stand or doll. Then build you
wig on top of it and when done take a sharp razor blade and trim it back
beneath the wig so it wouldn't show. You could even use aida cloth (for
cross stitch) as that might have more body to keep the wig from
To make the sausage curls, I wrapped about 3 inch lengths of hair
around toothpicks, then sprayed with a mixture of fabric stiffener(2/3)
to hairspray (1/3) like Dana suggested. After they dried thoroughly, I
glued curl by curl to her head, and added a smidge of bangs. Then of
course I trimmed up the hair to get rid of frizzes and even up the back.
Never, and I repeat, never throw out old used leotards (yours or your
kids) because when you cut the end off at the heal you get the perfect
item to hold down that newly washed, but going in every direction but
down hair. Looks like those babies are about to take a swim in the
puddle out back! Mine are for the big babies like Chatty Cathy and her
baby sister and the kids are for Thumbelina and the like. Now how do
you suppose we can adjust this concept for mini dolls... individual knit
toes, Easy! Remember those cool socks we all got one year for
Christmas, the ones with the VOILA!
Cheryl H. NS Can
To straighten or
smooth viscose hair, use a curling iron... you can also use the curling
iron to "heat-dry" a curl wrapped on a
tiny knitting needle if it is very small and near the end
wire will fit inside the jaws of the curling iron...
using the oven on hot days or waiting an hour or two for
curl to air dry. Don't use a plastic knitting needle
I did a
Rock Band some years ago and used hair gel to get the lead guitarist's
hair to stand in a spiked Mohawk...still standing. It has some give so
after packing and unpacking...it bounces back. Very satisfactory.
use Freeze hairspray. it really holds anything in place.
using hair jell then letting set ...Wrap up face and whole doll on
stand, Then spray with a firm hair spray and let set up good. un wrap
doll and it should hold permanently. Try - can't loose.
My very "low-tech"
wigging tip for newbies:
If you don't have a stand, just place your dressed doll's feet in an
empty film canister; unless they are very top-heavy this holds them up
just fine so you can use both hands to wig. If you are doing a man or
the dress is not too full, you can also use a baby-food jar, this is a
bit more stable.
I too thought I
was going to have a nervous breakdown when it came time to wig my
ladies. I didn't have a doll stand (Ruby stood on her own and the latest
one sits in a chair) but I did have problems trying to get the dolls to
cooperate with me while they were being wigged. On the latest one, I
simply wrapped a pipe cleaner around her and tied her to the chair. She
didn't seem to mind and it allowed me to have a free hand since I wasn't
having to hold her.
I too needed
and extra pair of hands for wigging. This is how I solved my problem.
I took Two 12" doll stands, and stuck them on a turntable (lazy-Susan)
about 6" apart, with prestick (for those who don't know this name, it's
that sticky putty you can use over and over again). I then wired a
crocodile clamp to the top of each of the doll stands. I took an
envelope, cut it so that when the doll is inside, just her head and
shoulders stick out. Then I clamped the envelope between the stands with
the croc clips, placed my doll inside, and there I had a doll holder
cheated a bit on the up sweep hairdo. I only showed you guys how to do
the center part. Keep in mind I posted this to the list at 2:00 AM this
morning, so I was working on it until the wee hours. LOL.
After I did the center part, I put a bead of glue around the whole
face/ears/back of head, and carefully laid prepped sections of hair in
the same manner as before (sealed ends facing inward toward center of
head). I was careful not to get any glue on my new center part, as I
glued the hair just under it.
I let this DRY!!!! Then I carefully swept it up (just like on a big
gal). Then I glue the back up first, and trim off the long ends, then I
chose one side that I sweep back/up, and secure with glue, and trim at
back. Then I leave about a 1 1/2" tail on the other side, and that is
swept back/up, and then rolled on a thin wire (unbent paper clip) until
it is a tight (not too tight) chignon. I carefully slip out the wire,
and secure with tiny dots of glue. Always remember to use a needle tool
or paperclip to do the pressing, not your fingers. I hope this makes
The tendrils and bangs are actually pulled down, just like a real person
would do. That's what gives the realistic, wispy look
tiny amount of fabric softener ( Downy ,etc.) in the water of a plant
mister and dampen the viscose before putting it in a pleater. Keeps the
fly-aways down .
For the wavy look to your hair dampen it and then braid it tightly, let
it dry and comb out. Also if you use the dreaded sewing machine with
short stitches, you can sew through the wigging material and make a
part. The stitches really do look fine.
Hair - Waves
fast trick to wave hair...I take a hank of hair (the bigger the hank the
bigger the wave...the smaller the hank the tighter the wave). Then
holding both end twist it and twist it until it starts to twist back on
itself. Make it very tight. Then pin it to your ironing board (best to
use glass head pins). Give it several shots of steam with you iron, make
sure the PC is heated. Do not press it though as you will flatten it.
Let cool. Then untwist and you have waves. I can turn straight hair to
wavy in less then 3 min
the type of mohair most of you have access to/ tried to work with is the
kind that comes in a hank, similar to viscose, has lots of short fibers
and needs to be dyed, I understand why it's not loved. Using mohair
locks, though, can give your doll pretty, curly, hair. These are the
individual curly locks of mohair which have been sheared off the goat,
and are unprocessed. I've experimented with some (since before dolls,
I've always had a fiber fetish). Mohair dyes nicely, and is easy to play
with, especially w/ plastic wrap to protect your doll/ use as a wig
base. Most of the "best" BIG dolls, especially antiques, have mohair
wigs. If anyone is interested in trying it out, but doesn't have access
to a goat ;), you might want t o try using those packets of curly
'fiber' sold at the craft stores, make sure to pick one where you can
clearly see individual curls.... they don't actually identify what they
are (wool or mohair), but I've dug through the displays and found a
couple nice bags here. Mohair and wool yarns and fibers can also be
used for fluffy trims, especially on coats/ jackets. Tack down as needed
for a fake "fur" collar, muff, etc.
Modern Boy Wig
certainly not a pro and I am still struggling with the wigging process
so I'm always looking for an easier way to "finish" a doll. This tip is
for a modern hairstyle on a boy doll but could also be used for an adult
male doll I suppose.
I needed to come
up with a way to wig a little modern boy doll for an outdoor scene and a
regular hair style wouldn't work as he was going to be playing in a
tree, hanging upside down from a branch. Even if I did know how to do a
"real" wigging job, it wouldn't have looked right hanging upside down
anyway so I used flocking for a short hair style.
The brown flocking I used came with a brown paint/glue which I painted
over part of his scalp so you couldn't see a lot of "skin" through his
hair. Then I covered it with the flocking. After that dried, I used a
clear drying glue to finish up around the edges of his hair style and
added more flocking. He still looked like a fuzzy bowling ball so I used
more clear drying glue to build up the area towards the front of his
head to make a more modern style. More glue, more flocking, etc until I
had it the way I wanted it.
Make sure to let the glue completely dry before you add another layer.
Guess how I learned that?
Anyway, it does work and is easy enough for a newbie to do although it
may not be as professional looking as a layered hairstyle from one of
the pros on the list.
infant dolls isn't an easy task as there is only a tiny space to work
with. You can use a bit of unraveled bunka (comes in all sorts of hair
colors and is easy to use) for short curly hair. It looks really cute. I
recently wigged a baby doll kit this way and stuck a bonnet on her head
so you can see little curls sticking out of the edges of her hat.
The hair on the doll sent to the picture list
was done with Kleenex and glue.
Tear Kleenex into small pieces and mix with glue till workable. I
mix my paint into the mixture for hair color.
Others paint after its dry. I then
use a pin or needle and apply the glue mixture to the style I want. I
kelp dipping my pin in water to keep it clean and help in
placing the hair Curls were made like you would
drag glue to make an icicle.
I shared this with another list some time ago and got back some
very negative comments.
Donna's Mini Emporium
accessories that all the kids are into now, small hair pieces etc they
come in a wonderful range of hair colors and would be great for punks
need to wig a doll and are out of mohair or can't find it in a bright
color for a wild child, cut a length of the silky braid used for curtain
ties. Unwind the fibers from the core, and presto! You have hair! It's a
bit slippery, but you don't have the many different lengths problem as
these are very, very long fibers. HINT - don't cut up your existing
The best two sources to have on hand (I think) for learning how to wig a
mini doll is a book called Crowning Glory by Parker Levi and a video
called Wigging Miniature Women by Viola Williams produced my Mindstorm
Productions. Everything that I do is what I learned from these two
sources. Also, check the list archives for more great wigging tips and
I've included some
photos to go along with this subject on the picture list.
I use viscose and sometimes silk roving for the wigs. I start out with a
little less than 1/2 inch thick hank of hair. (photo) I use brass wire
and rods to curl the hair. (photo) Some use a pleater but I like the
rods. Hold one end of the section of hair and dip in a bowl of water and
gently squeeze the water out by running the hair between two fingers.
Start wrapping and twisting the hair around the rods. If you want the
hair to be very curly use less hair and smaller rod. Less curly, use a
larger rod. Bake the hair on the rods at 250 in the oven for about 15-30
minutes. Let cool then slide the coils off the rods, cut the ends off
and separate the coil with your fingers until you have nice waves or
curls. Don't overwork it or you will wind up with a lot of frizzies. I
sometimes use a little curling "iron" to curl the hair on the doll
itself. I made one using a bobby pin and heavy toothpicks. (photo) To
heat it up, run the end of the curling iron in a flame but be sure to
wipe off the soot on a towel before curling the hair. Be careful, it
will be hot. Practice on spare viscose because you could burn the hair.
This is how I curled the hair on my 1940's pin-up to make those great
little rolls that they used to wear in their hair.
The best advice I
can give is don't use too much hair on the doll and use a pin to work
with instead of your fingers when the hair is on the head. Use very
small amounts of glue. I just use Tacky or Velverette glue. After the
wigging is done, you will have little stray hairs that need to be dealt
with. Use small scissors to snip the strays away. I spray my doll's hair
with hair spray lightly when all is done and the strays are gone. Be
sure to cover the rest of the doll that you don't want to be sprayed.
This wasn't a very
detailed wigging instruction. If it was, it would be a book. :o) If you
are new to mini doll making, I can't stress enough to get yourself some
good teaching resources. Hope this was a help to some.
Hugs, Cindy G.
step is to play with your hair for awhile and see how the curves work
and how the color of the hair works with the finished costume. Sometimes
you see something just lovely happen with a curve or curl and you just
have to glue it into place.
Make sure you aren't using too much hair material at a time.
Better yet, go look at the page I made for Miss 4th of July last summer
and the wigging page should help you get some ideas:
1. Since I always wig my dolls after I
dress them (keeps the wig from getting messed), slip your clothed doll
into a plastic bag that you have cut one of the corners out. Gather the
bag tightly around the dolls neck and tape.
2. Once the doll is in the bag (so to speak)! I use a helping hands
clipped to either sides of the bag so that I'm able to work with both my
If you want to make separate wigs for your display or to remove from
your dolls, before going on to the next step cover the dolls head with
plastic wrap so that you will be able to remove it from the doll.
3. Cover the entire head with tacky glue, follow the hairline you wish
4. The amount of hair in each separation that you are working with
should be minimal so as to just cover the head.
5. Place the first section (or hank) of hair horizontally across the
dolls head. Put a small amount of glue down the center of the hair you
just placed on the doll.
6. Allow a few minuets for the glue to dry somewhat.
7. Make a loop out of blanket sewing thread or regular sewing thread
doubled, the same color as the hair. Place the loop over the dolls head
from front brow around the head to the nape of the neck, pull and tie
the thread tightly.
8. Now take the hair that is hanging outside the thread and you may
style it any way you like. If you want braids circling the head, I would
add them as a separate piece.
length of hair on tissue paper,( paper to measure about 2" in depth)
make sure its even along the width then place another piece of tissue,
which has a pencil line of glue along the width, place this over the
hair. Trapping the hair in a sandwich. Let glue dry and sew with a
sewing machine just about 1/4" down from the glue line. Take the tissue
off carefully, pull one end of the cotton and the hair should gather and
become thicker. You put a small amount of glue on the dolls head and
then place the hair with the long length hanging down the doll, the
sewing line just above the glue and then this will not show. Cut where
the hair meets, The remaining hair is secure for use again. Make sure
the hair is attached to the glue. trim the hair not needed at the top of
the head. Wait until the glue is dry before arranging in your own way.
Now can anyone tell me where I can get an extra pair of hands when I'm
wigging......I usually place my dolls in a tall glass, tissue in the
bottom...and sit down with lots of daylight to work by. I only wig in a
After doing basic
wigging, and glue is set, gently pick hair 'upwards' with corsage pin.
When she looks like the bride of Frankenstein, lightly mist your fingers
with a solution of downy (1T to plant mister bottle) and smooth hair
upward. While hair is still damp, twist, turn or braid into shape as
desired. I use regular pins to hold buns in place, while glue is drying.
My top three rules for anyone having trouble wigging;
1)The more you mess with it, the more you muss it the more you FIX it -
generally the worse it becomes until the hair is all over you, your
clothes and the table and only bald spots remain on the doll.
2) When trying to do a complex hairstyle, don't think of it as one big
piece of hair! Do a general wigging hairline, pull it back into a bun.
Cut off the bun, twirl, twist and braid a prettier bun shape, glue it
on. Make spit curls, glue then on, do some of the fancy wire twists for
accents, glue them on. In other words, when viewing line art – dissect
Waves - don't think your hair is going to come out of ONE waving! I do
the main section of hair waves on say a 1" pleader, then do some tiny
side waves on a 1/4 or ˝. Add these side pieces on just like you would a
regular spit curl or so.**Funniest tip I can give you - is those old
lady pink hair curlers .... do a general wigging hairline, and then
'curl' a bunch of viscose on Q-tips (the pink plastic of course), and
spray mist to keep on. When dry, glue the Q-tip with curl right to the
I have looked at all the southern belles and was just in awe about how
well everybody’s hair turned out. How about telling us how you achieved
your 'look'. Mine was done by constructing a wig base on top of a piece
of saran wrap that I had stretched tight on top of the dolls head. I
used a lock of hair and glued it around the head in a way that best fit
the waviness of the hair. Then I made my curls( so easy) and glued them
to the side of the head to finish the style. It didn't turn out too bad
considering I had run out of two hair colors and spent two full
afternoons working on it. I have said this to other people, maybe my
mission in life should be to try and see just how pretty of a doll I can
make WITHOUT hair! Oh well, some day.....
First, I covered the head (hair area) with glue, and glued down the thin
strands of hair, as on Dana's web site
Basic Wigging instruction #1 to #4.I
let that dry (VIP) thoroughly... (truth is, this time I tried tying it
off with string, and go with the saran wrap, the string kept falling
off! what a pain!). The last time I wigged Pavan, I used saran wrap with
a rubber band, and will do that until eternity after trying the string
:))) hehehehe!I then pulled the hair into a bun at the center back (not
on top of her head, but a low bun). I had made curls with double-pointed
knitting needles size #1 (guessing about the sizes), sprayed them with
hair spray and water till they were dripping, and allowed them to dry.
This is a full day ahead of time. I cut three curls for each side to
drape on either side of her bun. Then I stuck her hat on her
In place of plastic wrap buy one of the flexible cutting
mats. They sell for about 12.00 in cooking stores. BUT the 1.00 store
had them, that's right for 1.00.I bought several. I marked them each for
Veggie's, Meat, Breads and bought several for the shop...one for Clay,
and they are great to use when gluing.. it peels right off when hard.
They are also see thru so you can transfer patterns. I stick mine right
in the dishwasher.
Wigging - General
had very, very good results lately with a tip from Michelle Mahler,
tightly twisting a hank of hair, then steaming it on the ironing board.
mine with alligator clips at both ends. I'd been having quite a time
getting good hair results, and I was frustrated. I'll admit they sat on
ironing board for several days (no, it's not used for anything else)
looked so ugly, surely, I thought, I can't have done this right, they
all lumpy and bumpy. But I finally decided my lady couldn't stay bald
she was going to the ball, so I gave it a try. I want you to know, I
nearly cried at the result -- it was sooooo easy, and soooooo pretty!!!
Wigging - General
What can we tell more about wigging miniature dolls? I think almost
about wigging miniature dolls has already been
said, so I thought to start with how to get good wigging information.
Like books and such. A really good book
I can recommend is the book from Beverly Parker "Crowning Glory". There
you will find a great variety of styles, how to make wigs and it gives a
good idea of fashion hairstyles through the centuries.
Also the book written by Sue Atkinson "Making
and Dressing Miniature Dolls" is a good source for inspiration. Janna
Joseph sells also an excellent book on miniature wigging too.
I think there are numerous of other good
books, if you know about another one, tell us about it!
Wigging a miniature doll is not that difficult
to do. What I do most of the time is I look carefully at a picture or a
painting to see how the hair is done. And then I try to approach the
same. Very important is the glue you are using. The best glue to wig
your dolls is Aleen’s's Tacky glue. This dries clearly and will hold
firmly. And you know, the best is, if
you are not satisfied with the result you can always remove it and start
all over again. But the way, a good Art
book is also invaluable to look for hairdo's and also books on costumes
and fashion books. Always remember you don't need much hair to make your
wig, we are talking miniature! As I like women with big hair, I am
always tempted to give my dolls big hair too!! Very important is also
the choice of color of the hair, it must go with the
color of the eyes and the clothing. Red hair
is very beautiful with green costumes, blonde is fabulous with pale blue
and pastels, brown hair gives a warm expression, etc..
And also important, where do we get our
supplies? A lot of shops sell wigging materials and also on this list
you will find good sources. You can
choose between viscose or mohair for your wigs. I prefer viscose because
it has a fantastic shine. Mohair I find a little dull sometimes.
Doreen Sinnett sells something different, I
don't know what material it is, but it works great for children and
babies. I always try to get special colors and a good source is the
viscose hair from Paulette Stinson. She
sells fabulous colors, you should try her dishwater blond [my favorite].
Deirdre in Belgium
Wigging - Basic Tips
Number One Tip: Don't rush, take your time, Don't use too much hair, it
doesn't look real and is hard to style. work with one pinch at a time.
Have a plan, Think it through before you start. Synthetic fibers need
heat to achieve a permanent curl. Take the time to do it and then you
can be confidant that the curl will last. Use only smooth plastic or
metal rods to make curls. Knitting needle in various gauges work great.
Dampen the hair before you put it in the Pretty Pleader. It will be much
easier to work with. (This applies to some fabrics too. ) Set it with
heat from an iron, then spray it with hair spray before you remove it.
Use hair spray to set the style and control fly-aways. Let it set for 2
or 3 minutes to get tacky before using your fingers to gently smooth
away the flyaways. Some male dolls look good bald. Bald with curly hair
at the sides is a cute look. Long sausage curls can be cut to any length
to be used for Victorian curls, Shirley Temple curls and kids curls. you
can pull the curl a little to make those fetching little tendrils
curling down the nape of a lovely lassies neck. When the character is
going to wear a hat, it often looks more real to apply the hair after
the hat is in place. Heating synthetic hair in an oven over 275 F. often
changes the colors. It can be interesting, try it. You can blend two
different colors of hair for a custom color that looks far more real
that either of the two original colors. You can and often must build a
hair style of separate, discrete parts. It is much simpler and looks
more authentic than trying to do an elaborate style with a big hank
glued to the head. Use lace, flowers and ribbons to enhance the
hairstyle if appropriate. Use Velverette or other thick white glue that
dries clear and flexible. Then you can remove the wig if you don't like
it and do it over, or use the wig on another doll. Do it over if you're
unhappy with it. You will never be satisfied with it and it's not that
hard to change.
Wigging - General
We can call this Wigging 101. First step is aligning the fibers.
Grasp each end of the approx. 4 inch hank and twist back and forth
gently pulling apart. Place the ends in one hand and repeat the
process. This is like combing without a comb. This is a basic way to get
rid of "fly aways" before you get started. I have found that many of
you aren't aware of this step and it can trip you later. There are many
ways to tackle step # 2. Basic ingredients are heat, hair, dampness and
a form. Dana likes to use a Pretty pleader to set waves. I use wire to
wind on the hair and dampen then heat in the oven. Either way, you are
heat setting the curls and your wigging result will be more
wigging with viscose and hairspray, remember they are both flammable. If
you singe fly always use caution. Where is Firelady (Lisa) today?
Wigging lesson using Loopy Loops
Since loopy loops is acrylic the glue I normally used did not work well.
I found Beacon's Fabri Tac was the answer. That takes us to glue, now
fabri tac is a great glue, but you have to learn how to use it. I think
it is the only glue to work with the acrylic hair. It dries very
quickly. With the loopy loops I was able to finish the doll's do very
fast, I like that especially when everyone is yelling for their do!!!!!
I think loopy loops are perfect for beginners, it will give you a very
nice hair do with out a lot of hassle.
Another great tip,
related to the "just try again" tip, is one from the archives: Wig your
doll first! I think the way you did it was to glue a piece of plastic
wrap onto the doll's head, wig away, then peel it off to re-apply later.
Kind of like a wig attached to a scull-
cap. This way no bits of viscose get on the clothes and you can twist
your doll all kinds of ways to get her hair right. Then you peel it
off, set the wig aside, and dress him/her without fear of messing up the
Wigging Southern Belle
To wig my Columbine
(southern belle), I wanted to do the "Vivien Leigh as Scarlett" style --
with a center part and the front halves twisted up and back. (Can you
picture it from that description? I'm
sure you know
the look that I mean, just can't describe it well :)) So following
Dana's step-by-step wigging FF, I glued hair on from front to back. Then
I sewed a part into another lock before gluing that on from ear to ear.
I agree, letting it dry is a big and important step -- or else the two
pieces shift and glue gets everywhere you don't want it, very
frustrating. Trash to tool hint: I put a cup cut from an egg carton on
her head to make sure it stayed put (she was not happy about that :(,
very unglamorous)! Then I twisted each front half (from the part to the
ear) up and back to the top of her head, securing with a few looping
stitches into the hair below so it wouldn't untwist. Voila! I was
actually very surprised that it came out the way I wanted it on the
first try! Usually I use up a lot of hair in two or three attempts.
That's why I had Columbine hold her hat, didn't want to cover up my hard
work:) but the hat is not fixed to her hand
a lovely pair of tweezers... with the skinniest little curved ends. They
only cost one dollar but you can pick up the tiniest curl, bow or bead
and place them exactly where you want them. The curve allows you to be
able to see where you are putting it too.
Joy and sunshine
Wigging Videos / Books
a treasure to share, and I know I have brought this up before, but a
true treasure is worth repeating don't you think?
For all us newbies who are constantly fighting with viscose to make just
the right hairstyle, you have GOT to get Viola's wigging videos. I have
seen the Men, Children and Babies video and also the Wigging Miniature
Women video and they are so helpful.
It is amazing how much easier it is to do something (at least for me)
when you can watch someone else do it first. Her steps are easily
followed and the videos are just a pleasure to watch.
need your Hand Held, while wigging (and I do ) I recommend Sue
Atkinson's Video dolls House dressmaking part 1.
Wee hugs, Patsy
Wigging Book &
best two sources to have on hand (I think) for learning how to wig a
mini doll is a book called Crowning Glory by Parker Levi and a video
called Wigging Miniature Women by Viola Williams produced my Mindstorm
Productions. Everything that I do is what I learned from these two
Hugs, Cindy G.
couple of good books on wigging are Crowning Glory the Complete Guide to
Miniature Wig making by Parker Levi and Mini Wig making by Janna Joseph.
You should buy Viola Williams video "Wigging Miniature Dolls". You can
purchase it from
http://www.mindstorm-inc.com You need to see what to do, it's so
much easier than having someone tell you.
videos on wigging are available from Mindstorm Productions:
Jean in FL
Visit Dana's site
Specializing in Dolls of Romance
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links to Annie