The Little Darlings have lots of adventures...
Sometimes with their friends, especially the Chris Miller and Robin Woods boys.
And sometimes with other little children, like Gabby....
It's Dolltown after all. And my Little Darlings live with a variety of dolls, from babies to Barbies, from vintage to bjd's.
Blog stories with our Little Darlings below.
For more photos of the Little Darlings, together and alone, go to Little Darlings Gallery...
From an early blog post...
It's time to talk about the Little Darlings.
These pretty dolls are sculpted by the oh-so-talented doll designer Dianna Effner. Dianna has sculpted many dolls, in porcelain and cloth, and vinyl. The Little Darlings are a 13" vinyl doll with 5 points of articulation. They have painted eyes and brushed bodies.
Dianna has several artists working with her, or who have trained with her, to paint these dollies for the many doll lovers who have discovered the Little Darlings, and want one. Or more.
The dolls can be ordered from the artists, and with each artist the wait time varies from a few months to about two years (for a Little Darling painted by Dianna herself). (At times, the artists close down their wait lists when they have too many orders to fill)
Also, one can purchase a Little Darling on eBay, from one of the artists themselves occasionally.
Or when an owner decides to pass one along. Or decides they need a little cash for life's many demands.
The Little Darlings come in 3 sculpts, for a little variety. But the eye color and face paint, the hair color and style, and the wonderful clothing made for the Little Darlings provide a lot of variety.
Dolltown is lucky enough to be home to several Little Darlings. They form the core of all the action here. Whether they are in a story (the focus or bit players) or not, our choices for what happens next here revolves in some way around my Little Darlings.
Here they are! All the Dolltown Darlings this summer.
We headed to this ocean beach late in the afternoon. The lifeguards are on hand, even though there will be no swimming. The tides...
We came in sundresses and sandals to get the point across. And we made sure Tink didn't sneak on a bathing suit underneath. And, to make it easier to stay out of the water, I promised we would go to the swimming hole near Dolltown. Soon. Okay, tomorrow. :)
The sandals came off for the most part, but that's understandable.
Back: Evie, Lula, Scout
Centre: Indira, Anna Zoey, Pearl, Birdy, Rosa, Chantal, Fig
Front: Jiyoon, Maggie, Tink, Xennia
I brought them to the beach to play, and for sundress photos, in two's and threes, so they it would be easy to keep an eye on them...
(Although, all of us know that Little Darlings are generally well behaved.)
First up, Anna Zoey and her study buddy Pearl. In the first two sundresses that arrived in Dolltown three years ago. These two have worn these sundresses before! They like habits, consistency!
Next, Fig with her big Joyce Matthew blue eyes! And Chantal, her sweet friend. They are thrilled to wear sundresses and come to the beach.
What's up Jiyoon? You look sad! Here's your friend Maggie!
And no worries, Maggie is not going anywhere...
She's decided to stay in Dolltown to play with all her friends.
Here's Rosa and Birdy wearing almost matching sundresses from Pachom Suesewan.
They love the hot pink!
And Indira joins them in a very sweet two piece outfit...
Look at these two cuties, Tink and Xennia, in their colorways two piecers. I should have taken a photo of the matching bloomer shorts underneath!
Evie Stevie arrives first, then Scout with her long red locks, then wavy haired Lula. This little vintage Mexican sun hat is a hit! We need more!
We made it through the whole afternoon without one Little Darling getting caught by those waves! (I'm sure the promise of real swimming helped a lot. "Tomorrow is another day.")
And we did make use of the brush and comb the Ellowyne girls brought when they arrived for lifeguard duty. Thanks girls! (They are siting on a bench nearby absorbed in gossip since our time here is done.)
But first, catch up...
Dolltown's Little Darling Maggie traveled to London last year with our daughter Tasya. Maggie lived in a small flat with Tasya and her cat, Lhasa.
Maggie had to be kept out of Lhasa's reach for the months she lived in London. Maggie looked like a play toy to the scratchy cat.
When Tasya returned for a visit, she brought Maggie home to her Dolltown friends. And Maggie arrived with her own cat! Not as scratchy as princess Lhasa!
This photo shows Maggie in a grad cap. She has been wearing it since Tasya's own graduation. There was a celebration, with Maggie participating from a high shelf...
All the girls were happy to see Maggie, but none more than Jiyoon. Jiyoon and Maggie had formed a special bond and both talked for hours after Maggie emerged from the travel bag...
Jiyoon and Indira were already dressed for the garden when Maggie arrived, so they waiting patiently in the garden for their Little Darling friends to join them!
Especially for Maggie, Jiyoon's bff...
Here she is! Ellowyne Taffy brought her to the garden after she changed out of her London blacks. Maggie didn't seem to mind choosing a colourful sundress from the pile the LD's laid out for her.
It didn't take long for these two to disappear with their friend Indira. They all wanted to see what the cat would do in a big garden to explore. (There was no garden to play in at their home in London, just windows to look out of.) I don't think we'll see these girls for a while...
Rosa and Birdy watch the birds in the garden while two settle nearby them. Birdy has heard that we live in the bird watching capital of Canada. Now, I don't know if that's true, but I know Birdy and her friends watch the birds in the garden all the time- Robins, Chickadees, Mourning Doves, Crows, Stellar's Jays. Sparkle birds, sequin birds, bird brooches and charms, birds in cages... And birds of all kinds are are drawn to Birdy and bff Rosa. Look at these pretty ones!
Tink and Xennia come to the garden and are thrilled to find a bunch of little birdhouses. And as Xennia and Tink often do with anything around them, they overturned all of them. Why? They wanted to find the little birdies inside them. But they didn't find any.
(My guess is the little birds heard they were coming, flew out, and are hiding in the bushes. What? These girls would only love you up, kiss you, ruffle your little feathers, attach you to their hair-do's as ornaments... That's what they did to the little trolls! Who wouldn't want that?)
Here's Pearl and Anna Zoey! These two are always sorry when school ends as they are voracious learners. They actually set themselves up a summer school program, choosing their own lessons. Like dreams, rocks and minerals... They have brought out a variety of books to the garden to help them set up their self-directed learning for the weeks ahead. Way to go, girls!
I thought this trio would show up ready to garden, check the flower spray for dangerous chemicals, plant some vegetable seeds to help supply food for the food bank. Either that or embark on a tree climbing expedition, hunting for risky pests (even in their pretty dresses). But today these three are also into the books, because Lula is on a mission. It's Jasper's 1st birthday soon, and Lula has decided they must all learn songs and rhymes for him. "We want to make him laugh.", said this serious bunch. Go for it, girls!
Fig and Chantal meet up in the garden, and Indira joins them, bringing a pretty lantern she found in the flowers. A lantern! Then two lanterns! They plan... a night garden visit, maybe during the full moon. Light the lanterns, sing some songs, maybe put on a play. Maybe A Midsummer Night's Dream! Wouldn't that be fun! Invite the boys! And the little girls! Maybe the BJD's would come down from Dolltown Abbey! Wow, girls, active imaginations! From a pink lantern to a community production of Shakespeare! Dream on...
Where did you girls find that? That's Shuswap Jim's painting! And I thought it was out in the Dolltown Doll Studio.... But that's all the way across the garden! And it was up on a hook! How...? Nevermind. Jiyoon is showing Maggie the details, talking about the way the little leaves have been painted. And how the trees are overlapped over the clouds so it looks like 3D. And how each tree has it's own shadow, so you can imagine where the sun would be... Phew! Jiyoon! You have been paying attention in your art classes!
Sweet... All of them.
My mind is whirling with imaginings of a Dolltown Midsummer Night's Dream!
But get practical...there's weeding, berry picking, prep for company... And is it true that baby Jasper might be coming? We'd all have children's songs and nursery rhymes to learn! Not Shakespeare!
Jiyoon's the early bird today. The sun is shining, the flowers are out....
The Little Darlings are finding their shoes and toys, ready for some garden play.
In the meantime, Indira and Fig make it in to the garden.
Fig finds Jack getting a little fresh air too! A little mingling...
But it's time for play, isn't it? Surely the other girls are ready?
We'll go check...
At Christmas, all the Little Darlings (well, almost all) had their photos taken with our Eiffel Tower model.
They stuck an angel on the top while they waited for our real tree to show up!
Here, some of the girls show the Tower to Indira and tell her all about the arrival of the model-in-a-box a whole year before, in 2016.
They shared the story of the month of dedicated coloring it took to prepare the Eiffel Tower, and the exciting summer build. And finally the 2017 Christmas photo shoot....
"Pretty!" Indira said...
Yes! We think so!
April, famous Fashion Doll Stylist, sent a package of French goodies to the Dolltowners for Christmas. There's the Eiffel Tower model...in a box!
Here are the girls coloring the birds, butterflies, and flowers that cover the Eiffel Tower. It took close to a month to get it done!
Last summer, we put the Tower together before school's end. The girls and their friends worked in teams, until the last piece went up!
Then all the Dolltowners headed out to the garden to admire the months of work. Even Conner, attending April's Fashion Design School for Girls in Detroit, made it for the event.
Christmas 2017! In December, the Little Darlings decided to pose with their Tower gift for their photo shoot.
Xennia (Where's your shoes, Xennia?)
Flo (Yes, it's Faith, as we have known her...or Fig as we know her now. Sheesh!)
And Rosa, who missed the shoot!
The girls are happy to see their festive Eiffel Tower photo shoot posted.
But I had barely pushed the Publish button, when they clamored for the next Christmas post.
Yes, there are definitely more photos.
And we'll get to them!
And here she is.
We have called her Indira...
Each Little Darling has arrived under different circumstances. And this is very true of this Sculpt Four pretty brunette.
Dianna added a new sculpt to her original three last year. I had the opportunity to spend time watching this new sculpt of Dianna's take its place with the doll collectors I chum with online.
This sculpt is a special mold, with its great big eyes, and comes in a variety of skin tones.
We scanned the Fours coming in to collectors from the different Little Darling face painters, and created a collection of some favorites.
And when an opportunity came up with one of my fav painters, Helen Montgomery Skinner, along with an irresistible offer, I deliberated and then succumbed.
And requested this sweet look, with dark eyes and hair. She surpasses our expectations.
My thanks go out to Helen.
Indira joins Tink, Scout and Xennia, her Helen sisters. And the rest of the Little Darlingss and Dolltowners.
Now, who was around to welcome Indira when the box arrived?
Xennia, Tink, Birdy, and Fig...
Our Scout by Helen was nowhere to be found.
And that was Indira's welcome.
Hugs all around after finding her shoes and a sweater for our northern clime.
You'll notice our girls are dressed in a motley collection of clothes, from winter dresses, to pj's, to jeans and sweaters. That was our January...a free for all.
Now though, it is time to get these girls ready for Valentines Day!
I have my work cut out for me!
Gifties! How exciting!
While the slumber party was going on, a package arrived in the mail, from our friend April, Fashion Doll Stylist. And from Conner, our Little Darling attending April's Fashion Design School for Girls. (It's Conner's second year! That's another story...)
Now, we have seen photos of Conner over the past months in the cutest shoes! They make them at the Design School...especially for Conner! So we were very excited to find, not only cookies and candies from Paris! But some Conner-designed shoes! Four pairs!
And after an afternoon of lounging, eating, and trying on shoes, Fig chose the pair that matched her pixie hair, and found herself an outfit to go with them.
Way to go, Figgy! How cute is that!
Thanks, Conner! Nice shoes! Thanks April...what a good design teacher you are!
(And I know it was you who packed the eats back from Paris, and mailed the package. We are truly grateful! Even though the treats are gone....)
Now, the packages aren't done!
Another one has arrived! A familiar box.
We haven't seen a box like that in Dolltown for ages!
Gather round girls! I think we have to find a new letter,
for a new name, for a new girl....
Fig and Chantal...
While the cat's away, a new doll character shows up.
More than one!
For all of January, I was distracted. With life itself, fundraisers, artist processes, new art shows, watching reruns of my grandson's Christmas videos...
(As cute as a doll!)
But it seems the Dolltown world doesn't stop just because I am not around to observe, abet, and record it.
The Little Darlings wanted a slumber party during our lazy January, so there were changes into pj's...
Birdy and Jiyoon started the pj party off, and we posted some of their photos.
Some of the girls, like Pearl, stayed up in their day clothes, but popped in and out to see the pj'd girls play slumber party games...
Like makeovers. Here's Faith, cozying up to Fluffy, and the girls have changed her back into her original sunkissed golden blond wig,
Faith, on the left, as we have known her for ages in her wispy wig.
And on the right and below, after finding a whole bag of wigs in their wardrobe basket, more looks on her.
And as soon as this pixie red wig was on her little head, our Faith said, "This is it."
And the other girls agreed, including Lula. (That clinched it.)
The pretty platinum mohair wig was added to the wig bag and returned to the basket of clothes.
Hey wait a minute! How about my opinion! I love Faith...
The girls were prepared to argue. So to keep the peace I got out the name book and started reading "F" names.
Now, we have a rule here in Dolltown, to accommodate my brain's predilection to put all names into alphabetical rooms in my head.
Every Little Darling has their own alphabet letter. And if they want to change their name (or if I do!) it has to start with that letter.
As soon as I read "Fig" (yes, it is on a name list!), our now pixie haired Faith jumped and said, "That's it!"
I laughed and carried on reading: Floss, Forsythia, Francine....
Two weeks of name suggestions!
Meanwhile, the other girls called her Fig, or Figgy, or Fig Newton.
And ignored my tries for a reasonable name.
Fig? That's not a name, that's a food!
"I like figs.", our new little red head says.
That's not the point, I reply.
No one is listening...
Some of these girls, including...Fig, were on hand when a box arrived.
With a Detroit address! We know what that means!
Conner and April have sent us a package!
Christmas Dolltown fun!
We carried on bravely, taking photos of our holiday events, while waiting once again for our year of tech troubles to come to an end, so our stories could be posted! And here we are in February, catching up.
All the Little Darlings and friends dressed for the occasions as soon as Xennia returned from her month long Arts Gallery adventure...
For 2017, Jiyoon got to wear our one new Christmas dress. And it's a beauty, from Erin Green, at Darling Lil' Bee.
Here are a few of the early birds, ready for some action.
Before our Christmas tree went up, we brought out our colored Eiffel Tower...a fabulous gift from last year. And all the Little Darlings got their photo taken with it.
But first...Valentine's Day!
No wait! Before we can post our Valentine's dressup,
we must introduce you to our new arrival, Indira!
Pop back to meet her! We haven't had a new arrival since summer!
Except...shoes! From Conner and April! So much to show...
(Okay...backdating now that I have a laptop, with my photos available. Catch up on life in Dolltown!)
Lula and Pearl headed out to the Fall Tree early. Half dressed! They couldn't wait to meet up with the other girls!
We are coming with your shoes! Wait up!
And Lula can't stay. She is off to represent Dolltown at a community event. Shoes required!
All the girls dressed up for a Dolltown Halloween party...
Well, the party was lots of fun, but we didn't take photos that night. But the girls loved their outfits so much they asked for some individual shots.
We complied...Stay tuned.
It's the Little Darlings!
During my Hiya Dolly hiatus, the girls had the run of Dolltown. Of course they had their caregivers running after them, making sure they were safe and didn't eat too many caramels francais, or climb too high in the trees...
After a while, as the weather turned cool, several of the girls decided it was time to change and get ready for school. So, with a little help, they dug through the boxes and found the sweaters, shirts, and plaids. And they convinced even the reluctant, the hold outs (can anyone say Tink and Xennia?).
And when they were all dressed and ready they came to me and asked, in their polite way, for photos before they fill their lunch boxes with balogna sandwiches and settle in with their books, atlases, and math counters.
Now, that all sounds very...responsible. And I was understandably impressed!
But I noticed that, while the fall clothes were gathered, every possible Halloween outfit was also sorted into a neat pile, ready for action. And I overheard discussions of how I was to be convinced to buy them some orange tights...
(I can't remember ever wearing orange tights! Do you?)
Zoey, those glasses give you a studious air, I must say.
Here they are together! The Dolltown Little Darlings all dressed for fall and school!
(Two of our girls have gone international and continue their time in other countries.
Maggie is still with her doppelganger, Tasya, in London...where she shares a flat with a cat.
And Conner continues her internship with April in Detroit (and soon back to Paris),
where she attends Fashion Doll Stylist's Design School for Girls.)
Will we pull off a Dolltown Halloween event, after the girls begin their studies for the year?
(I have a policy of "No promises", even when appealed to by the appealing Little Darlings!)
While we are waiting for a laptop fix, here are a couple of photos from last year's summer....
Right across the street from Dolltown is a hive of charitable busyness! While chatting about a hornets nest terrorizing the neighborhood we discovered our neighbors have a hall full of hats!
Real Canadian toques! Mounds of them on their way to...two dozen countries!
And Andy, the man who ended up saving us all from the hornets, is the man who makes the toques. It's true!
A man of courage, talent, and generosity!
And I have discovered that Joan, his wife, manages the collection, packing, and distribution of piles of soft good for the poor, unhappy, and toque-less! A woman with a big heart, motivation, and organizational skills. And she is tech savvy at 70 years old!
Scout overheard me talking about the neighbors and the project they are busy with. And she convinced me to take her, and her buddies, Lula and Evie, to see these good deed neighbors.
And the Gang of Three made a delightful discovery...
Piles of toques! Scout is impressed!
These toques are traveling over the mountains where they will be packaged up to go to needy people.
But we see something in the bag behind Scout!
Lula and Evie catch up to Scout and they all marvel at the toques made by their neighbor!
But, who is peeking from the bag behind the girls?
That's not a toque!
Little knit dollies!
Look at them! Knit dolls with toques! And is that a knit bunny?
The girls want to play with them... How will they do that?
The girls make a plan.
And it involves Lula climbing up to the top of the bag the knit dollies are in!
Of course it does!
Evie gets ready to hoist her up...
There you go, Lula!
I think the knit dollies are excited!
Lula falls in...and helps Evie up.
Scout, stay where you are!
The girls toss the knit dollies down to Scout.
Wow! Scout is smitten with these little dolls!
And Evie finds a knit bunny!
As Lula finds more knit dollies to drop down, Scout gathers them on her lap.
And Evie jumps down with the blue bunny!
What has Lula found now?
Not sure what to call this knit creature but she brings it down to her friends!
All the knit creatures are happy to spend a little time with the girls!
But wait! There's more!
The girls notice another bag full of knitted creatures.
Oh my goodness.
I better think fast or Joan's hall will be filled with creatures on the loose...
Okay girls! I have an idea!
Wouldn't the purple bunny we see up there like a friend to travel with?
That makes sense to the girls!
How will they get the bunny up there?
Evie, and Scout hoist the bunny up...then it hops!
And when I remind the girls what the dollies and creatures are for,
Lula puts one of the knit dollies back.
Blue bunny and the purple bunny look very happy! Friends!
Way to go, girls!
Then the girls get stubborn.
They still want to play!
Come on! We can't sit in the hall all day!
We just came to see toques heading out on their way around the world!
Neighbor Joan pops a little knit basket in front of the girls and tells them they can take their new friends home....on a sleepover.
She says the girls can take as many as will fit in the basket!
The girls don't want to put any more knit dollies back!
How are they going to get them all in the basket?
But two to go!
Well, we know the knit dollies don't mind squishing into small spaces together!
And Evie ties the last dolly on to the side of the basket...
Good job, Evie! How creative!
Lula and Scout say goodbye to the other knit dollies in the bag...
They pose for a last photo with the toques and toys.
Saying...Way to go, Uncle Andy and Auntie Joan!
Now the girls want to go back to Dolltown and show their friends.
They'll get to tell the story of the good deeds happening right across the street from Dolltown!
And they ask me to carry their basket home for them.
Be careful! they say to me. Don't drop our knit dollies!
The bunny buddies say goodbye.
And as the girls leave...
...more dolls show up!
These dolls must have heard there was something going on!
Looks like Joan and Andy have their own little Dolltown, and we didn't even know!
And our girls missed these dolls...
Should I tell them?
Would my dolls start running across the street to play with the neighbor dolls?
Hmmm. I don't know! I'll have to think about it!
What I do know is we had a wonderful morning!
Our Dolltown trio of good deeders found themselves in a world of fun.
Who knew we had such charitable acts going on right in our neighborhood!
Well, it's actually not uncommon in our little town. But we didn't know piles of toques were being created right across the street!
Here is the knitting wheel that Andy uses to make his toques.
And the little knit creatures are made by the dozen, by Diane Magnussen... Love them, Diane!
Joan and Andy Bisson collect the items and drive them over the mountains to Penticton. And from there the packages are shipped to many countries.
Joan and Andy are volunteers for the Canadian Food for Children Okanagan Division.
The CFFC is a Non-Governmental Organization working to relieve the suffering of the poor in over two dozen deveoping countries worldwide.
Way to go, Joan and Andy! And Diane!
Thanks from all of us!
Now how easy is it going to be to get the little knit dollies back to the neighbors,
after a sleepover in Dolltown? Will our girls let them go? They have to!
(Uh oh! I have had experiences with "sleepovers"!)
Best not to even show Tink and Xennia! Now how do I do that!
I'll get back to you...
Chantal arrived in Dolltown first. But Douglas and his brother Chris were here soon after.
And right from the beginning Douglas and Chantal formed a bond. Douglas lives in a world of his own, even when he is with the other kids. He has his own absorbing interests, like planes, ships, history, and building models. He's kind of brilliant.
And Chantal, our little songstress understands him. She is often lost in her own musical world! And she is very gentle and kind, even when others become a little impatient with him.
They spend time in libraries and the music room. Douglas admires Chantal's piano skills, and hums along when she plays, while he cuts balsam wood into shapes, and glues the shapes into models.
So, it's not surprising, with their friendly history, that they chum together on outings, like to see le tour eiffel, built by the children. We posted the photos of their visit, with Faith and Geoff, earlier.
But I snapped more photos after Geoff and Faith left.
And I'd like to know what you think! They seem very...fond!
We are used to a little hand holding.
And a little "I'm still taller than you." (That could go on for years!)
But...aren't you two standing a little close?
Isn't it a little hard to talk like that?
Miley! Say something quick!
Douglas and Chantal almost look they are going to...kiss! Stop it!
I do NOT need dolls acting older than their ages.
And especially these two innocents.
Somebody call them to go play...please! Hello?
Fine. I'll do it myself...Douglas, back to your boy basket.
Chantal, go change for the beach. Sheesh! Disaster averted.
And this was one pair I thought I could leave alone....
Jiyoon shows us around the local Art Gallery.
Here is a framed painting of the heritage Courthouse Arts Gallery nearby Dolltown. Close enough for the girls to walk to, if I would let them out in the alley by themselves.
So they have to wait until I pop them in my tote for a little company while I do my shifts as Art Gallery Director.
Today it was Jiyoon's turn. I think Jiyoon was hoping to do a little painting while she was there. Not today, Jiyoon!
You wander around while I do a little filing...
Art isn't all fun and games, you know!
That's true, Jiyoon!
Did you like the art show?
It's time to go. Let's check for clouds...
Little Darlings Birdy and Rosa! And Jiyoon!
Birdy heard that Miley was enjoying all the boys joining the Little Darlings to see the Eiffel Tower. She heard that Miley was watching all the hook ups, listening to the conversations, and was giggling with Floora about the flower Badger gave Scout...and the looks Chantal and Douglas were giving each other.
So Birdy decided she would bring their favorite babysitter Hal. Hal is a very handsome doll. And Birdy thinks maybe Floora and Hal might...like each other.
So Birdy, Rosa, and friend Jiyoon stay for a few minutes and then they leave Hal there to chat with Miley.
Way to go Birdy! This we have to see!
Wow! Who knew Hal was such a talker!
We thought he was the strong silent type.
He is such a great listener with the children!
Although it is hard to get a word in edgewise with girls like Tink and Gabby around.
Speaking of Gabby, Hal had to leave to look after her and her friends.
But it looked like he was enjoying himself with Miley!
Good thinking Birdy!
And look at Miley! She is looking positively flustered.
For older posts...
go to the My Little Darling Archives 2015
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