Sketch of the week 7- Agnetha

11 years, 3 months ago 8



Some of you have been asking to see Agnetha‘s sketches. There are several pages of Agnetha related drawings and doodles in my sketch book, but these three are the most relevant ones. From top to bottom are sketches for crown, collar and dress fringe. I did a lot of preliminary work drawing some aspects of the costume out, before actually starting it, making Agnetha one of the least improvised ball jointed, costumed dolls of mine. She was also the very first doll on 1:6 scale, I’ve made in my quest for a perfect doll.


To get symmetry in the violate dress fringe, I drew out a single matrix of the design by hand and then had Chad reproduce and tile the rest of it in photoshop, thus creating a repetitive pattern for embroidery. But, of course it got changed around once I began embroidering it.

Metal is not as permitting of improvisation as other mediums, such as embroidery. Such precision is required in sawing out a design with a saw blade the thickness of dental floss, that you can’t just change your mind about this or that right in the middle of it. The unforgiving hardness of metal coupled with a small size of the design and the thinness and delicacy of the sawing blade which tends to break with the smallest changes in direction, won’t allow it. Every single detail must be worked out in the sketching stage and once that is done, you’re committed to that design. This crown took me a week to design and get the necessary materials, about two hours to saw it out of a sheet of Sterling silver and about 12 hours to file, sand, solder and set with stones. Once I started making it, I didn’t stop until it was finished. Soldering was the most nerve wracking part, always is for me because of my fear of open flame and flammable gasses and the danger of making a mistake and accidentally melting the project. Or, having a leaky gas tank or a torch and blowing myself up. I actually did almost melt this crown. It’s so thin and delicate, I’m surpirsed I didn’t.

And there you have it, ladies and gents.

I just got a fashion magazine from Copenhagen, Denmark with a short, one page feature on Enchanted Doll. I’ll post it soon.

8 Responses

  1. Lumina says:

    wow! amazing… metal crown really sounds hard to make!

  2. miss LK says:

    It seems that you switched to the wax carving and casting method for other crowns that you made later. They all are exquisite.

    When you made the crown from sawing sheet metal, how do you create the tiny beading detail?

  3. annina says:

    yay Agnetha, thank you for sharing her main sketches, they are beautiful to see!

    ooh a danish magazine, i’m looking forward to hear which one, maybe i can get it as i’m in south sweden! how funny that you got a danish magazine on the day you are talking about Agnetha!
    i just thought yesterday how amazing it would be if one day soon i can go to a newspaper kiosk here and buy a magazine featuring your dolls! in my opinion all the huge fashion magazines should feature Enchanted Dolls!

  4. ~Mia says:

    000h ! Thank You for featuring Agnetha’s sketch! She is a favorite of mine !*!*
    Indeed , I think you have succeeded in your quest for creating a perfect doll ! She is Magnificent!

    I didn’t know you had used saw for this crown!
    I thought you had it casted in wax! Omygosh!!!!
    I am so impressed! Yes, I am quite familiar now with those blades thinner than tooth floss!
    and I’ve broken my share of them too ..

    Sawing is my fear!! I am ok with soldering, even enjoy it , haven’t used my Little Torch yet-but I am excited to whenever I can afford the two tanks for it… I guess I feel a little bit safe soldering since I have to still use my teacher’s studio for it, although the size of the flame is a bit too large for my projects…

    but.. sawing… it is like death to me.
    I am just so afraid of cutting a finger or two off !…….

  5. Anelise says:

    If the crown was silver, did you then have it plated? I have to say your metal work is exquisite, I to have broken my share of sawblades, but I prefer soldering to it. I am an admitted fire bug, I love soldering and enameling.

  6. Marina says:

    Miss LK: When i construct the piece in metal as opposed to wax, I solder all the granules on to the surface with a jeweler’s welding torch.

    Anelise: It’s very good that you don’t fear the flame. I, on the contrary, find sawing very, very easy. Enjoyable, even. Saw blades brake, but whatever, it doesn’t bother me. I love sawing out the detail in a sheet of metal. It’s like meditating…while concentrating very hard. I guess it’s nothing like meditating after all. It’s very hard on the wrist, but in my line of work almost everything is. I wish I was less scared of soldering.

    Mia: I’ve got a secret for you. Don’t buy those big oxygen and propane tanks. They need special regulators, they are expensive and they are like bombs. Setting regulators to the wrong pressure can have very undesirable consequences. Very dangerous. I also have the Little Torch and I buy small, disposable, oxygen and propane tanks at a hardware store. You will need to buy self regulators to connect them to the torch hose, but they are cheap compared to the complicated ones you need for big gas tanks. For me this is a much better alternative.

  7. ~Mia says:

    Dear Marina, Thank you for your input!
    I appreciate it very much!
    Yes, I think for the dolls size jewelry the little torch is much better flame output..I can’t wait to use it rather than the studio’s torch. I will go around the hardware store and price their small disposable tanks!
    I’ve been eyeing the small disposable tanks at Rio Grande.It would be grand if the prices are less!

  8. I simply want to mention I am new to blogs and certainly enjoyed this web page. Most likely I’m want to bookmark your site . You surely come with beneficial articles. Appreciate it for sharing your blog.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *