I have not made much videos about Francie in the last two months. The reason was that I had problems to find a tlc Francie for this project. I came across a body without a head and then suddenly there was a perfect Francie offered, perfect for this project. The seller said she was tlc but even tlc is not for free. I bought her.
Some days later she arrived in her parcel. I must say I expected her in a shape worser than you can imagine but this was not the case. In fact I see her potential. Yes, this doll is almost in her 60s but does it stop me to repair her? The answer is no. I sometimes really enjoy these bigger projects where you can use a lot of creativity to restore them.
As I already mentioned in my last repaint video I don’t recommend you to start without the correct material ( link http://barbie.final-memory.org/what-you-need-for-a-good-barbie-repaint/ ). Buy everything you need for the project in advance or simply have it at home when you plan your project. It’s good when you have a time schedule in advance. For making this video I needed at least 2 weeks. It’s not the pure time you need but you need to consider that things like hairs have to dry at least for 24 hours when you want them to be dry for your next step.
I also have a little endoscopic camera for my projects so you can think of buying one before you start ( if you want to work with one). Then arrange to have the hair at home. I know this may sound weird but I prefer to have a big box with hair at home before I do anything. This gives me a creative feeling. I need some positive vibes before I start. In my case this vibe is created when I can have a look into my hair storage or my acrylic paint storarge or my brush glas. I have all my brushes in one glas. I think it’s a handy dandy way to start. Have everything at home before you start.
Before I actually started with my video I made a plan how to start what to show, what to do at first, what to do next and so on. I wanted to have some logical steps in a plan before I started to film. So I could make sure that nothing was forgotten.
I my case I started with the head but as you can imagine I wanted to have a look into her head before I started to reroot her. This was a kind of safety insurance not to expect anything unexpected. I checked the pattern of hair in her head way before I started to reroot. When you see there is a destroyed pattern in the head you have to repair it before you can replace missing streaks. Then continue with the hair. After having inserted the new steaks you have to flatten the new streaks.
For this you need at least a day for the drying. Good. After that you can cut the hair. I recommend combing the hair before you cut it. Use a good pair of suitable scissors. I have a professional pair of scissors for cutting hair but it’s for right handers, not lefties. That’s why I use my pair of embroidery scissors here. Works.
After cutting you can curl if you want to. I did this in my case to have the hair out of the way for the repaint. So I used the hot and cold bath method for the curlers and started one day later with the repaint. Before doing the repaint I put my brushes and colors on my desk and prepared my wet palette. After finishing the repaint I waited 24 hours before I used my sealer. After another day I took her curlers out, finished the styling and prepared everything for the final scenes.
You see it’s a lot of work. Being well prepared is never a mistake.
You have probably never heard of Tutti and Todd. No wonder. I also never heard of them for a long time. Even after starting to collect Barbie dolls I was for a while not aware that these dolls existed.
What’s the problem? Well, they were stopped to be in production almost a decade when I was born and I think they were not as wide spread as Barbie and the grown up family members.
D has always nice pics of a ton of Barbie dolls. But what makes Tutti and Todd so special that I dedicate here an article to these two twins? I recently bought a package with repair parts and among these dolls was a Tutti with a green leg and an open arm. So I was able to show you the wire inside the body. It’s the wire that causes the problem concerning the green arms and legs these dolls have often.
The wire reacted with some kind of liquid, often water. I think this
problem is so wide spread because these smaller dolls were produced in
one step while Barbie was produced in several steps. For Barbie you
needed to produce the torso, the arms and the legs separately plus the
head. For Tutti and Todd you needed only body and head. Here was at
least a potential to save money and I think that these dolls now suffer
I recently saw that lots of you are interested in the topic of repaint but I found no good video summing all thing you need in a video up. Some videos only show the direct repaint. Some videos only show the brushes, palettes or color but there’s no video where you find all parts combined in one video and giving you some bonus beginner mistakes to avoid.
What’s easier than doing it yourself when you don’t find the correct video for the topic you want to cover. If you want a video showing you an actual repaint, no problem use this here
From my experience I can tell you it’s not always easy to have the right things for repainting at the same time at home. That’s what I have within some years and I think it’s useful for most of you. I don’t think neither have heard about Liquitex ( when you are living in Europe neither from Da Vinci artist brushes). That’s why you should update your knowledge. It is useful to think about these items first, then you buy them and don’t have any negative surprises while you are working.
I bought mine over the last couple of years. I had no idea where to start neither where to buy. There were no videos on youtube. Of course there are some bigger channels than mine here doing repaints. On some channels you have millions of viewers but I don’t have them but want to inform you about repainting as good as I can. What is really helpful for the hobby of repainting is to get yourself a wet palette. I can’t tell it often enough but this little thing is a game changer. You can keep your colors liquid for at least a week. From my experience this is enough time for doing a proper repaint. I hardly needed more than a week. The sponge is great for this. The costs you have are around 25€ for this. It’s always a little depending on where you buy it.
Then you have the colors. I can’t recommend it often enough to use good quality color. The reason why I show here Liquitex colors is that when you use the cadmium free version of this color you don’t have any fear that the color will leave permanent color traces in the rubber of the head. You can see this sometime on Barbie dolls like my Jewel Hair Mermaid Teresa. She’s a nrfb doll but after 25 years somehow the color started to bleed into the adjacent rubber. Have look about what I talk about.
I know it’s very subtle but it’s happening and I simply want to warn you that this could happen to you too in case of using cheap or incorrect color. It’s not that everything is perfect in the Barbie world. I never said this but for future projects we can avoid the problem when we know where it comes from. That’s at least what I think here.
The biggest problem I had when I wanted to start with repaint was the brush question. I heard from other collectors what they used. I bought the brushed, made my first strokes and found out that they were way to thick for my problems. Later I accidentally came across very fine and thin brushes suitable for the project. I use a lot of Da Vinci Micro Nova brushes. They are not cheap but I’m satisfied. Since 2021 you can also buy the bend versions you can see in my videos.
Another problem I had when doing repaint was the color consistency. For most of the projects the paint was way too thick. I only use undeluted color for the white dots in Superstar Barbie eyes. For all the other projects I thin the color out. The wet palette is your friend here. Even if you have used way too much water it’s no problem. You have to wait a day and then the color will be okay again. Very helpful for beginners. So I hope that this little article gives you some more background information to understand what to do and what to avoid when going shopping or doing your very first repaint. Keep in mind what you need for a good Barbie repaint.
When I come across problems with broken Barbie necks there are mainly two things, very wide spread in this area. One thing is that you can find the older neck joints very often in the head of the dolls. They simply left the body and popped somehow into the head.
That’s also the first problem I ever came across when I kept my childhood dolls, got them from the attic a while ago and one of my Skippers hit the floor. So the problem that the neck joint disappeared into the head happened. The head fell off and I thought she would really be broken. I think it happened some 20 years ago. I really thought she was broken and threw her away. To be honest this was one of the biggest mistakes I ever made since starting to collect these dolls. There were no guides or indications that simply hot water would have saved this Camp Fun Skipper to be thrown away. I learned all the things that I teach you here much later. Another Skipper, my Teen Skipper was sitting for years on a stair head. One day she fell of. The head, the joint and and the body stayed intact. The only thing she got from this adventure during my absence is a very thin hairline crack. I know she has it but I ignore it and nothing will happen. She’s in one of my showcases.
But what to do when you have a case like mine? Throwing the doll away? Possible but unnecessary as I learned later. There’s a very easy solution to get at least the neck joint out of the head again. You only need a bowl with hot water, a towel and a little patience to get the joint out of the head again. The head itself is made out of rubber. When you heat it up a little bit the head becomes very flexible and it is very easy to get the joint out of the head again. That’s what you can see in the first part of the video. I recommend not to treat the broken hairline cracks if you want them to stay invisible. Often you hardly see that there are cracks when the head is back on.
What do you do when a big part of the neck is broken smoothly out of the neck? Does it make sense to throw the doll away then?
I would say no. If you don’t have the stuff to repair the body immediately it’s no problem just store the broken out piece and the body together so that you know where the body as a whole is. Maybe store it in a zip lock bag?
Good idea! That’s at least an idea how to fight against broken Barbie necks, missing joints and a solution to attack this wide spread problem. But when you want to leave this ” I put her in a zip lock bag” -status? That’s very easy said with a few words. Get yourself MEK to solve this problem. The background why not to use normal glue is that I was told by a lot of collectors that they got problems with using glue. Their arm and neck joints literally crumbled away within the years the dolls were glued. That’s why I recommend to melt it back on. MEK or 2 Butanon is a solvent. We careful when using it. It is said that this stuff can lead to cancer when using it too often. It also needs 24 hours to dry completely but I think it’s okay when we have a normal doll back after the time. For the missing joints I can recommend to replace them. Often you find replacement joints in bundles/ lots with lots of heads. In the last year it was no problem to get them. What do you think? Let me know in the comments.
Sometimes it’s just an idea and sometimes you put things into reality. I already had the idea to dress my new Supersize Barbie in December but the time was lacking. You know we were just preparing for the holidays, taking our annual X-mas vacation to see your parents. Bad time schedule but January came and so the time to put this plan into reality.
I don’t know how you do these things but I need time to work these things out properly. I hate it to be interrupted during my creative process so I do these projects mainly when I’m alone at home. It’s always my most creative time of day. I admit I’m a morning human. I prefer to do all the important things in the morning to make sure to get them done. I know there are different types of humans but my most productive time is the morning. So I used the last weekend of my holidays to begin with this project.
Sewing projects are always time consuming. It doesn’t matter what you do so you need a good schedule, prepare things in advance like marking and cutting the fabric, do the sewing the next day and continue so on. I prefer to have all steps to be planned in advance when I’m working so that I have a certain thing to do every day but on the same hand I can be sure to get things done.
I can give you the advice to plan more days than you will actually need because you don’t know how the result will turn out. From my experience I can tell that I had stress with finishing projects and videos more than once.
It’s a big advantage when you have several projects to work on simultaneously because you can always release at least one video a week. If you can produce in advance do it. I will have to improve my skills here because I’m always short on time. I hate it but it happens more often than planned. Don’t let anything interrupt you. The filming I did was at least two hours and I think I had to cut 10 hours to get it down to 20 minutes, correct the tone, the lighting and so on.
Nevertheless this was a project I wanted to do from heart because I don’t like my dolls to be naked. So I got to work and made the markings, the patterns and prepared the whole fabric for my sewing machine. At the end this project was very nice because my technique works so well that the Supersize Barbie has clothes now, is not naked anymore and the clothes only need a few adjustments for the perfect fit. I have to read a little bit before doing the final adjustments but for now I’m satisfied and it happens seldom enough to say this.
I was already asked by other collectors if I got new Barbie dolls or Barbie family dolls for Christmas and I can say yes. I got some new dolls but I did not find as much as in 2020. I think that’s not so much of a problem as long as you really searched for them and wanted them for a long time.
I never expected for example to find an affordable Supersize Barbie. Supersize Barbies are hard to find in the meantime and they are really expensive. Something is always missing. No matter if it’s the dress, jewelry or shoes. Sometimes when they have a function the function is not working anymore. It’s what stopped me from buying the doll you see in my latest video with the hair function. Often the hair piece/ hair part is simply gone. I think one could repair the hair when you have a doll showing you how the mechanism works. That’s why this doll screamed “buy me” when I saw her.
The function of the hair will be covered in one of my next videos. It’s very easy but was not covered in any video yet. Let’s change this in 2022. She will also get some clothing. You know it’s not the problem to taylor something once you understand how to take the correct measurements.
Francie came along my way in November. We made an online doll convention online and there she was offered. So I bought the two of them you can see in my video.
You know I’m not the biggest fan of Fashionista Barbie but the one in the wheel chair somehow fascinated me since she’s black and she was available in Germany. I observed her the whole year but the price was too high for the quality so I had to wait until I found her for a good price.
Last month I had my silver Barbie collecting anniversary and I didn’t even realize it. I think it happened due to a lot of work in the pre-December time. December is always the month with the biggest amount of work. I have holidays around Christmas and I have to pre-produce my videos for December/January in advance. So time is short and the time schedule really tight.
That’s how I completely forgot about my silver Barbie collecting anniversary. It all started by the end of November 1996 after having seen a Barbie Collectibles catalog with all these great Barbie dolls from the Great Eras collection, BobMackie, Escada, The Hollywood Movie series, Wedding Flowers collection with a lot of porcelain Barbie dolls that are unfortunately not produced anymore and other great Barbie dolls.
These dolls made me start to collect although they were very expensive at first and were marketed exclusively through only very special toy shops. You were not able to find them in every toy shop. So at first I had to drive with my parents to Hamburg, Germany or Bremen, Germany to have a chance to see any of them. I was living back then in a province near the North Sea. We had toy shops in town but they had no Collectibles. The Dolls of the World ( like the one below) were the only Barbie dolls to be found. With 50DM (25 euros) of costs for one doll they were pretty expensive while normal playline Barbie dolls were only up to 35 DM (17 euros).
In times when the internet just started it was impossible to buy online especially when you were under age. I was only eleven when I made the decision to become a collector. This was a very intentional decision. Through all my collector life I was able to learn a lot of things. I learned more than other fellows in the same age. For example one of the first Barbie dolls that inspired me was the Victorian Lady Barbie ( one of my very early gifts from my parents) and made me interested in this time period concerning fashion and other things. It’s not just this one doll that inspired me to look beyond my own nose. I not even improved my English for understanding the texts on the boxes better but also inspired me to learn more than just one foreign language. I focused my learning habits around what interested me and it made me pretty successful in school.
By the way I think I often made my parents mad because my interests were not the interests of a normal teenager. My ideas were always different and I made my parents often to drive to special toy stores in the pre-Christmas time in the hope to find one of these very special dolls. Sometimes we were lucky and sometimes not.
I don’t know how many dolls you have at home but I saw this phenomenon among my Barbie dolls. I have a Jewel Hair Mermaid Teresa at home nrfb and for some time I observe that her lips started to bleed out even in nrfb condition.
I think I could fix it when I take her out of the box but I don’t want to do it. I heard from another collector that this could have been caused by Cadmium in the paint itself. I recommend you when you repaint dolls – avoid Cadmium in paint. No good, seems to be the material to bleed.
How to solve the problem doing repaints?
In the last years the industry obviously worked on the problems of bleeding. There are for example now some red tones from Liquitex that are free of Cadmium. So when you don’t paint it on the dolls, it can’t start to bleed, right?
How to deal with little paint jars with a cap you simply can’t get open
So and when we talk about paint here at the moment I had the problem recently that I wanted to use some of my little jars filled with paint but the caps were stuck. Man, this really left some blisters on my thumb. It’s very unpleasant to have such a situation. Nevertheless I found a very easy solution in the model making corner.
It’s always good to a pair ( or two) of pipe tongs at home. They come in very handy when you have small jars with the cap problem.
You haven’t heard anything in the last weeks from me but here I am. Many things came together in the last weeks that kept me from blogging. Often I was only home for two hours a day and for sleeping at night. Not enough time to blog anything…
So I thought hey, why not wait until the time-consuming phase is over and then blog again? That’s now. Well, we had a lot of work in the last weeks due to the marriage of a befriended couple that we know from the dancing staff. It was their wish to let us participate with some dance interludes. This was of course partly unknown to the couple. They only wanted us to participate in only one but we had planned even more which they were not aware of. As you can imagine leaving home after work just for dance training two or three times a week is time-consuming. The schedule for every day of the week was planned, when to leave, when to practise and so on. We did everything outside and this here permitted again since several weeks.
Help! DaVinci Resolve ….
After the marriage I found out that my main PC was not crashing anymore after choosing Windows 10. For more than 1 year the problem occured that the system forgot its graphic drivers with every new start. This gave me the opportunity to improve my skills in video cutting since I got DaVinci Resolve last year but have not been able to test it ever since. Within a week I had watched a course with the most important features and used it almost immediately. After doing so from Monday – Friday I was away on Saturdays so that only the Sunday was left for filming activities and cutting which was in fact not very much. At least I wanted to have a little rest from my weekly work.
That’s why I’m a little bit late in these weeks to blog anything new. My parcel with some donated dolls came. I have a few new Barbie dolls, really Vintage from the early years. I’ve been searching for some for a while now. On the literally hottest Friday evening of this year I find the time to finish this post.
I’m back for the moment. Yes, it’s the crazy Barbie collector again. This time I have no pics of new dolls at the moment because I found none in February. Sometimes this happens to a collectors and yes, it’s okay. It happens once or twice a year. So don’t worry. That’s no problems but it’s not that I haven’t tried to get some Barbie dolls. Call this real life. It’s okay with me but I used this month to find other little things for future works in February. Do you know where to buy these teeny tiny zippers and buttons Mattel used for Barbie clothes in the early days? I did not actually search for them but I found them in February.
I found out what else my goals are for 2020 beside the things I already told you. Maybe some of you have realized that I’m a lateral thinker. I question things if they don’t work out the way it want them to. I try to consider problems not just from one side but from all sides and then see solutions other people can’t or simply don’t want to see. It’s always been in my nature to try things out, see how they work, realize how I can change them or what can be done in a better way to improve them.
Combining hobby and professional work
This week was a very busy week at work and I was sitting in my bus to work when I saw it very clear. It’s not that my ride by bus is a very long one every day but the ray of sunlight I saw on Tuesday made it clear to me. I want to improve my skills, not just the ones to write here but also to do better videos, to cut better videos but also to gain more viewers so that I don’t have to fight with any stupid algorithms anymore. My plan?
I did it on Wednesday. I put my plan into reality and found a platform where can hopefully what I want. I’m very ambitious when it comes to learn something. The good thing is that I can not only use it for private stuff but also for my profession. I do all the Social Media stuff for my employer and he likes my ideas but I have to stick out from the mass to sell things. In my opinion from what I’ve learned and know so far little things make the difference but they are important. So what is better to combine areas of knowledge?