Edit: Um..WOAH!! Usul's Baby Face Makeovers (Image Heavy)

Post finished and unfinished work here for critique and appraisal.
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Edit: Um..WOAH!! Usul's Baby Face Makeovers (Image Heavy)

Post by Usul_Princess » 13 Mar 2012 02:11 am

I have a very large doll collection called "Baby Face". An early 1990's doll line that had various dolls with more than one facial expression. I owned myself (So surprised Suzie when I was 6). have been collecting them on ebay since 2005. Since then I've completed 85% of my collection. Recently I've been taking duplicates of these dolls that are already in my collection, and been giving them makeovers. See examples.

**Disclaimer, the "Before" pics aren't mine. It's a shame I don't have them. I never thought I'd be so happy with the end results.

So loving Laura - Before

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After:

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She is sporting a new 60's brunette flip wig, and a gorgeous handmade valentines day dress. (The shoes and mary-janes are handmade by another seller)

Pictured with So Shy Shelia (After)

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Ugh, I would post a "Before" Shelia, but I can't find a before pic of my own, and she looked like a hot mess! She (had) platinum blonde hair in two frayed, washed out short pigtails that had fully faded from their pink dye. The "before" pictures I've seen online show her in her best condition, and mine was pretty dilapidated when I got her. She now has a cute Pippi Longstocking carrot wig in long braids. I bought an outfit for Shelia at Target. It's for your 18" American Girl doll knock-off. These dolls are 13" tall, so the clothes can be a bit long in places.


So Surprised Suzie Before:

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Suzie with a slight touch up (after):

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Suzie never really needed a huge improvement. Even the original garish 1990's red and white were a good fit. I gave her a dark curly wig, and a new handmade polka-dotted dress with hand made matching red mary-janes from the same seller with the pink shoes, and new white lace barrettes. Before she had more of a Caucasian tint to her light brown straight hair.

So Delightful DeeDee (In progress)

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I can get a "before" pic of her, since I can't get her outfit and hair right worth crap. -_- I love that cupcake outfit, (It goes will with her tongue sticking out. A good "yummy" factor.) but the updo in curls looks better than long curly pigtails. Just...not right now.

I never cut their hair to make the wigs fit. My own hairstylist braided their original hair down to a bald-looking base in cornrows. I sewed them in myself, and it was a pain in the ass when the wigs didn't have an elastic band.
Last edited by Usul_Princess on 16 Jul 2013 01:09 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Madge
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Re: Usul's Baby Face Makeovers (Image Heavy)

Post by Madge » 13 Mar 2012 10:54 am

Wow, it's always amazing to see the amazing things people on here get up to in their spare time. Those transformations are amazing and the clothes you've made look so nice!

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Re: Usul's Baby Face Makeovers (Image Heavy)

Post by Usul_Princess » 13 Mar 2012 12:00 pm

Madge wrote:Wow, it's always amazing to see the amazing things people on here get up to in their spare time. Those transformations are amazing and the clothes you've made look so nice!

Aww, thanks Madge. :) Choosing the wigs are the hardest part, because they need "soft" colors to offset their eyes. Nearly all of the white dolls have....very odd looking blonde hair, and bold, loud blue eyes (in several different shades) none of which look natural. (like Sheila with blonde hair) Laura was pretty easy because dark brown eyes go with every hair color.

I have 3 left to finish. "So Merry Kerri" is up next, and she's going to be a piece of work. I bought her from a retail international seller in deplorable condition. (I have to restring her, because her head fell off at an attempt to make her head tighter.)


...Don't buy international. -_-
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Re: Usul's Baby Face Makeovers (Image Heavy)

Post by Larkspurlane » 13 Mar 2012 12:34 pm

I agree with Madge :D this is a cool & unusual hobby. Plus it's just satisfying to see them get prettied up again when you get them in rough shape.

Do the dolls stand on their own or do they need to be propped up? I can't tell if they have stands. & what made you get into refurbishing them?
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Re: Usul's Baby Face Makeovers (Image Heavy)

Post by Usul_Princess » 13 Mar 2012 10:17 pm

Re: Madge, I didn't make any of those outfits. I just matched them up with dolls that looked the best in them. I'd turn this into a legit business if I could sew like that. The only thing I did was give them new hair, and sewed in a better looking wig than their original hair. Those outfits, shoes, and socks (except DeeDee's and Shelia's outfit) were made by other very talented seamstresses on ebay. The others I bought at toy stores.
Larkspurlane wrote: Do the dolls stand on their own or do they need to be propped up? I can't tell if they have stands. & what made you get into refurbishing them?
Yes they do stand up on their own! They have these monster flat feet, and can hold a pose because they are thickly stringed like a marionette on the inside. You can move their heads, hands and feet the way you'd like. But because these dolls are more than 20 years old, there's a good chance the stringing is weaker in the head or legs. Collectors tend to turn their nose up to ones in "played with" and/or abused condition.

I decided to refurbish them a few weeks ago when I decided to give up ebay for Lent. (I was getting hopelessly addicted to buying a bunch of crap I didn't need for them, or buying identical ones in better condition.) I did it because I saw other seamstresses use makeover dolls to model their dresses for sale. I figured since I couldn't buy/browse for more stuff for 40 days, I may as well have a nice fat Tuesday and appreciate what I already own. I bought some $75.00 worth of wigs and dresses before Ash Wednesday, and have only been doing it for 3 weeks.

This is what my collection looks like (85% complete):

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"Look at this stuff, isn't it neat?"

Being this materialistic is kinda cool and pathetic at the same time. I do fully intend to sell this collection for at least double of what I paid. The makeover dolls do fetch a pretty penny on their own, rare or not, but they' don't count as part of my collection because they're modified.
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Re: Usul's Baby Face Makeovers (Image Heavy)

Post by Usul_Princess » 21 Mar 2012 10:51 pm

Finished her today! Finally was able to get a good before shot, and her "bald" braided hair.

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Yaay!

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Re: Usul's Baby Face Makeovers (Image Heavy)

Post by Usul_Princess » 15 Apr 2012 04:04 am

So, Lent is over, and I have to say that customizing unwanted dolls is far more invigorating than collecting mint-condition ones. I don't really care if I finish the collection anymore (My wallet is much happier now).

More pictures for your viewing pleasure:

So Innocent Charlene (before and after):

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She's 99% complete. I haven't sewn in the wig yet. I was thrilled with the high quality tailoring on the dress. Charlene has to be the best makeover out of the entire set. She isn't a duplicate doll, but the makeover was so worth taking her out of the permanent collection.

Marie Antoinette isn't quite ready for the final shoot:
Spoiler: open/close
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(Had to put her in a spoiler tag because that picture is painful to look at).

Kerri's dress arrived today, and this was the first day I could actually look at her in months. ($88.00 down the drain, but I got lucky and had her replaced in my collection for half the price). I'll probably appreciate her full makeover once I figure out how to restring her head. No idea what her wig will be, but based on that pic, that's not really a priority.

The face recognizer on my camera cracked me up for a good 5 minutes straight.

(More to come. My camera died, and I still need to upload "So funny Natalie" in progress).

OT: Since when did Photobucket ask for PII data? I am very creeped out by this.....
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Re: Usul's Baby Face Makeovers (Image Heavy)

Post by Larkspurlane » 16 Apr 2012 12:05 pm

How much would you estimate it would cost to complete your collection?

I'm so glad I only collect virtual things with virtual currency, if I did it IRL I would be so screwed...

Anyway, great makeover, she makes an adorable brunette!

Marie Antoinette seems a little discombobulated :D
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Re: Usul's Baby Face Makeovers (Image Heavy)

Post by Usul_Princess » 17 Apr 2012 02:14 am

Larkspurlane wrote:How much would you estimate it would cost to complete your collection?
I'm guessing somewhere in the neighborhood of $3,000.00. The last 15% of my collection is worth twice as much as the 85% in my closet. I'm missing very rare ones, and the Holy Grail of all Baby Face dolls: So Daring Denny, the token baby face boy. He hit international shelves just before the plug was pulled on Galoob in the US. I would say he's worth about $1,000 by himself. So Silly Sally is another very expensive doll I don't have. She sells for about $600.00, as well as Black So Sorry Sarah. I *ALMOST* bought Black Sarah on a whim this past Christmas because she is my favorite. So sad and adorable. I would make her into a 6-year-old mini-me. :P

So Funny Natalie and So Sad Brooke in progress:

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Her hair has been braided since I took this pic, and she came with that handmade dress, diaper, and jelly sandals. All I need is the perfect wig. Wigs are an issue with her because I seriously doubt there's a way to tone down the "HERE'S JOHNNY!!" look.

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*insert Are you Afraid of the Dark quote here*

Edit: And I was exactly right. :( (After)

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There's no hairstyle, nor article of clothing on the face of the earth that will tone down that awful expression.


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You know, I never really cared for Brooke. I always thought her frown was hideously executed (Like Natalie's "laugh"). But this Easter pinafore reminds me of one of those babies who are 3 seconds from spoiling a perfectly good picture. :) Not sure if I'll make her over, but this dress is cute in a very over-the-top way.
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Post by Usul_Princess » 01 May 2012 10:11 pm

I decided to save the pinafore for another doll. I think Brooke looks adorable in the dress, I just like the all baby dolls just the way they are overall. The toddler dolls seem to need more tweaking.

Group photo! (and DeeDee's new dress):


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Note that Natalie is deliberately put in a corner at an angle so her Chucky mug won't ruin it. I like the way how Suzie "pops" up in the center. :)

I'll get a picture of white Natalie (who really will make you lose sleep). I have an extra balding one that has no intention of getting made over.
Kerri got a long black wig with very loose curls today, and I stuffed the hell out of her neck so her head would reattach. She's still not ready for an "after" pic because I don't care for that wig. Not a good fit.


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I got annoyed with DeeDee's cupcake onesie and detachable skirt. (3 petticoats weren't enough to support it.) I bought this dress from the same seller who made Charlene's dress. It was a weird pink pinafore with Christmas accents that I decided to cut off. (that came with a red and white Christmas headband ). The red dress underneath is actually a Valentines Day dress. To me, it looks like neither. She just looks damn good any shade of pink. I'll save the accents and headband for a real Christmas dress.
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Re: Usul's Baby Face Makeovers (Image Heavy)

Post by Usul_Princess » 13 May 2012 03:34 am

Kerri (after):
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The strawberry Gingham dress wasn't working for me. Kerri needed pants....something more trendy too. She's wearing American Girl knock-off clothes with custom hightops. Didn't care for for other wig that came in, so a longer ponytail will do.

Next up: Custom eyes! :)
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Post by Jamie » 17 May 2012 07:21 am

These are so cool Usul! i've never really checked out much in the Art thread before. My favourite I think from all the pictures is the front left Blue-Eyed Doll in the first picture you posted on May 02. Such an adorable expression!

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Post by Usul_Princess » 18 May 2012 06:29 pm

Aw, thank you Jamie. :) I'm starting to get better at coordination and sewing, so now I'm trying my luck out with creating "knock-offs". (A mix of mock prototypes that never made it to the shelves, ones I can't afford, etc.)

Imitation African-American So Sorry Sarah. "Before" and in progress:


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This is what Sarah looks like before being altered. Until I can justify spending a crapload of money on her black counterpart, brown eyes, a wig, and RIT dye will have to do.

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She's coming along nicely. (I'm still learning how to replace the iris. I can't take credit for those gorgeous eyes and new lashes, I bought her from a seller who enjoys gauging out the serial-killer blue eyes out and replacing them with more normal looking hues.) She came with that ballerina outfit (I just added the tights). It looks way better than the outfit I just ordered for her. -_-
Next, I have to dye the vinyl skin brown.


I had a bit of an achievawoe with this: My (fatter than average) paycheck got obliterated when I paid $400. in bills...and then I go splurge on customization.
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Re: Usul's Baby Face Makeovers (Image Heavy)

Post by _neo_kami_91 » 19 May 2012 12:09 am

Woah...$3,000 to complete the collection? That's steep even by my standards. O.o
There's a Denny on eBay at the moment with no bids...
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Baby-Face-Galoo ... 3a7482c25f

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Post by Usul_Princess » 19 May 2012 02:08 am

Oh yeah, I saw him. Just taunting me. :)

$600.00 is a pretty nice deal for him. I can't believe someone hasn't bid on him yet. (Probably for the same reason I won't). He'll just have to stay in France. I'd go crazy knowing he was somehow lost in shipping...floating off the coast of Greenland in a box.

$3,000.00 is retail. All 6 remaining, never removed from the box. Plus all the random merchandise for girls I've never seen for sale (The backpack, the slippers, etc.) I'm now seeing super rare ones come out of the woodwork. People are falling on hard times and are forced to sell. I think it was just an unwillingness to give them up, rather than uber-rare.

Trying the RIT Tan and Cocoa dye tonight, but So Happy Hannah will be put to the test before I try it on Sarah.
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