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Friday, July 1, 2011

Book Review- Steampunk Softies

Steampunk Softies is by the same authors as Zombie Felties, Sarah Skeate and Nicola Tedman.
Softies are a bit bigger than felties, but use a lot of the same techniques for construction, and can be hand sewn.
The book starts with an introduction to the materials that are used to construct the dolls, as well as some fantastic tutorials for aging and distressing the fabrics.
The dolls are just wonderful. Most stand about 6 inches high, and the props and construction methods are very clever. The materials are for the most part, very easy to find, and some of the supplies are things you might normally throw away. The diminutive scale of the dolls makes them perfect for small scraps of fabric and leather. Mini brads, scraps of leather, plastic from deli containers, beads, buttons and toy compasses are all used in the detail of these lovely little dolls.
The dolls themselves are fantastic. Fantastic in the literal sense that they are creative fantasies. A little undersea manikin  looks like he mutated or was genetically created to live in the water, Floyd Fastknight explores the world with a compass for an eye and a case of maps. Chasity Storm is dressed in a cloud of lace and has wings that are reminiscent of the very first airplanes.
All the patterns are in the back of the book and full size, you trace them from the book on to a sheet of paper to cut out the parts for the dolls. Some of the dolls are very simple, the biggest challenge is the scale. Some are a lot more complex. These are not playthings, they are lovely little works of art. The techniques and the accessories used in making them can inspire your own characters and creations very easily.
My son is a big steampunk fan, and he was absolutely charmed by this book. My daughter, who is the serious doll maker in the family loved the techniques and pattern ideas.
You can get this book directly from the publisher, Andrews McMeel Publishing You can get more information about my review policy here.

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