In February we had another wonderful sewing seminar! Deanna Torigian was a superb student and already has her website up!
Deanna came to the seminar to learn all she could about making patterns and beautiful clothes for the fashion dolls, old and new. She wanted to specialize in clothes for Miss Revlon of different sizes, but has already discovered so many new as well as other old fashion dolls that she loves sewing for, she will be sewing for both old and new. She already has clothes on here website, Babette Doll Fashions ( http://www.babettedollfashions.com ) be sure to visit and see her great dresses and outfits, and also visit her ebay seller site, her eBay name is torigian.
First a picture of our house where the seminars are held . It is pretty scary to think of travelling across the country for a seminar, so here is a picture of our home in a Vancouver, Washington suburb. My daughter and I share the home. The sewing studio is in the large upstairs bonus room. My daughter runs Coburn Enterprises, which does website design and search engine optimization, as well as very small business consulting. She has one full time employee in our home office. We hope this will make you more comfortable in considering a sewing seminar.
Here are some pictures taken during Deanna’s seminar…
GOOD NEWS! Rubie is now doing restoration seminars!
The doll restoration seminars are to learn professional, museum quality doll restoration.
If you are looking for a doll repair and restoration seminar, Rubie is the only one I refer to because I know her work, her honestly and expertise.
I do NOT recommend anyone else for learning— there are plenty out there advertising seminars, be sure to ask EXACTLY WHAT THEY GUARANTEE YOU WILL FINISH IN CLASS. Some say you will finish certain things when in fact they have short hours and if you are slow you won’t get to do half what they advertise. Be sure to ask a potential teacher if they guarantee you will take home FINISHED DOLLS in a given amount. If they say ” it depends” it means that if you aren’t fast enough, too bad, they won’t extend the hours of class time to allow you to finish with the proper supervision.
When I gave seminars we would work from 10-12 hours a day– and sometimes longer– to be sure each student had completely finished work to take home, so I knew they could do it on their own– and so did they. Telling you you can “go home and finish them” is not what you are paying thousands of dollars for. That time you pay for should be dedicated to you! Don’t be fooled by photos of luxurious “free” accommodations— remember if you just want that, you could probably have more fun on a cruise that would cost you half as much! Rubie will also furnish you a bed and meals to a point but you will be getting training for your money, not a meal or fancy room. Some places furnish accomodations outside the house so you will be completely out of the house as soon as you have had dinner– not bugging the “teacher” with questions after she is done with you for the day. The money you pay for a seminar should go towards your class time and nothing else. If you don’t learn what you came to learn, you have wasted your time and money.
Nancy Ring, at http://www.nancysdollrestoration.com/ — Specializes in composition dolls, but also does fine work on your hard plastic and vinyl dolls. I don’t think she is taking in work at this time.
On this page you see a Toni doll restored by me, JoAnn Morgan. Go to Rubie’s site http://forgetmenotdollrepair.com/ to view dolls restored by her,you can see a samples of her work.
- Do invisible bisque and china repair, including rebuilding shoulder plates and fill in missing pieces.* (If you take the full seminar)
- Fully restore composition dolls, from just repairing cracks to completely stripping them to bare composition and making them like new.
- Completely restore hard plastic dolls.(See before and after picture of the Toni Doll) Restring dolls. Set sleep and stationery eyes Do iris transplants to restore crazed eyes in old composition dolls.
- How to clean dolls without damaging them.
- Repair leather bodies.
- Mend cloth bodies.
- Add colors to cheeks.
- Minimize crazing with craze control
- Rebuild fingers, toes and other parts including entire feet
- And this is just the tip of the iceberg.
This is CAREER TRAINING, something you can make a living at. If you are seriously interested, you may call or email Rubie for a free complete information packet.The packet will include information on what you need to bring, about accommodations,and a sample contract.The phone number is 214-403-7077.
You can email Rubie at
Seminars are scheduled at the convenience of the students.
Below are a lot of large, clear photos so you can see the details of the repairs, please wait for them to load and then scroll down to see before and after shots of dolls restored by the seminar instructor, JoAnn Morgan.
This very rare doll, a KPM, was brought to me for restoration.Even though she was badly damaged, she still has considerable value because she is not only rare but this one is quite a large size. Someone had rebuilt the shoulder plate, and filled in broken areas, with a material that resembled bread dough that had hardened. It had then been painted over with paint in strange colors, though I stripped off most of it you can still see some of it in these “before” shots. I had to chip away all this strange material and rebuild the shoulder plate in front and then refill all the cracks and holes front and back.
Below you see photos of an 18″ French Fashion doll that was brought to me for repair. As you can see , the front of her face had been broken off and glued back on. I soaked it apart and took photos of it before I put it back together and did an invisible repair.
Seminar Page 3
During the seminar you will actually restore several dolls from start to finish.
The Toni doll pictured on page one of our seminar information , and the dolls shown on page two of Seminars, were all restored by JoAnn Morgan the instructor. The dolls on,shown below in various stages of repairs, are dolls actually restored in class by a student. There are a number of pictures showing the progress of the work. Pictured are before and after pictures of actual work done by a student during a seminar.
The before pictures show the dolls/heads as they appeared when brought to class. The second photos are of the dolls in the second stage of repair. The last photos show the finished dolls after the restoration is complete.
Please note that the work shown on page three is actual student work.
Stages of a seminar repair:
Margarette, a pre-1920’s composition doll brought to the seminar by a student:
|Margarette before||Margarette before close up of head|
|Margaret stage 2||Margaret fully restored|
|China doll’s head before repair, shoulder plate missing||China doll’s head after shoulder plate rebuilt and finished|
|Stage two of reconstruction|
|Group of dolls at the beginning of seminar||Group of dolls after student reconstruction completed|
The sewing seminar is to learn how to make professional, well fitting doll dresses, for any kind of dolls–antique dolls, child dolls, baby dolls, fashion dolls, any kind of doll clothes where real sewing skills are important. The seminar is offered to any sewer from beginner to advanced. I DO NOT include play dolls and boy dolls in the seminar, as it would be a waste of time and money; however once you leave with your new skills, you can apply them to sewing for any doll you wish.
Each sewing seminar is on a first come, first serve basis, and set up at a convenient time agreed on by both the teacher and the student(s).
LEARN TO SEW BEAUTIFUL, HEIRLOOM QUALITY DOLL DRESSES
In my sewing seminars, you dress several dolls during the seminar–the number depends on how fast you work and what style clothes you make -(for example, little girl or baby doll dresses take less time than dresses for antique or fashion lady dolls). I do put some limits on the kind of costume you can make, as a very complicated one might actually take longer than the seminar!! You will, however, learn the skills you need to make complicated clothing when you are home.
I make suggestions as to what kind and how many dolls you should bring to dress.
You learn not only how to make your own patterns and how to alter existing ones.
You will make the patterns for all the clothes you make in class, beginning with the underwear and completely dressing the doll from the “skin” out.
You will learn little tricks like how to easily make socks for little girl dolls.
We don’t dress boy dolls, American Girl dolls or Barbie dolls in class. My classes are for making heirloom quality doll dresses, more dress up rather than “play” clothes. If you want to make simple play clothes for dolls, you really don’t need sewing lessons, they are fast and easy and there are many patterns available for them.
I like students to leave here knowing how to do more complicated doll dresses that fit well and look wonderful, and how to take any pattern or their own and make an original garment from it, or how to look at a picture of a dress and develop their own pattern for it. If the student only came and made simple play clothes they would not learn this important stuff.
You can choose which kind of doll clothes you are interested in–from antique dolls to baby dolls to child dolls to lady dolls, and you can learn to make clothes for more than one type of doll in one seminar! One student made a French style dress with pleated skirt and a bonnet for an antique doll, an organdy dress and bonnet for a composition baby doll, and a formal for her 1950s Miss Revlon doll, all in one seminar. These were three very different styles she was able to process and take home knowledge about.
When you do the different styles, you learn in the process how different fabrics and trims are suitable for different era and type of doll as well as which fabrics are not suitable and why.
I am always happy to answer any emails and questions! Just use our CONTACT US form to keep the spammers from getting our email addresses–yours and mine.
You will learn how to create your own basic pattern for each doll that you can change slightly to make dresses that look entirely different, as well as make new patterns of your own style.