October 31, 2015

Rescued Dolls/Nancy Ann Storybook Dolls Makeover

I am GUILTY!...for being inspired by Beth Webber (link to her blog). It's all her fault I'm addicted. I hope you're happy now Beth, beacause I am. Thank you doll.

The dolls I have here are Nancy Ann's Storybook Dolls made of bisque. Click Here for the complete history of Nancy Ann's Storybook Dolls, that began in 1936 and lasted to early 1960's. 

 I was lucky enough to purchase at least one with jointed legs (pictured above). The one's I purchased all measure about 5 1/4" tall. I will be keeping two, giving two away to family members, and the rest I will sell.

I"ve airbrushed three of the 3 dolls with acrylic paint, flesh color. The jointed legs is one of the airbrushed dolls. I gave all the dolls fresh new eyes, lips, and shoes using acrylic paints also. Liquitex Professional Matte Varnish and Gloss Varnish is what I used to seal the acrylic paints. I also used Matte Fluid Meduim to give tooth to the bisque for the paint to grab on.

I've designed patterns to make them new clothes. The jumper is one of my designs and completely hand sewn.

They are all done, they are awaiting their hair and clothes.

She is still awaiting her snap, on the back of jumper.

Yay! they're getting rescued.

She's the ariginal but all cleaned up.

Their undergarments are made with felt and embellished with lace trm and ribbon.

This is my own personal doll that I own. I bought her for $5.00 brand new. She is porcelain. She measures about 6 1/2" tall. I also airbrushed her, she was too pale to me. I had to repaint her eyes and lips. Her underwear is her original except for the added lace, ribbon and bow on top, I added that. I've been wanting to change her look for quite some time, and give her new clothes...I'm thinking Victorian. I had her in my bedroom on my vanity...


Thanks for visiting.


  1. Carolyn, I am totally gobstruck by your repainted Nancy Ann's!! Their new faces are just gorgeous; your painting skills are remarkable, especially at this tiny scale.

    Did you give the faces a coat of flesh colored paint before painting the features? If I can screw up the courage, I may try to repaint one of my dolls. Inspiration is a give and take, and you have certainly inspired me to try!



    1. Thank you Beth, I am humbly flattered.

      Yes I painted it with the flesh color paint before painting the features. I applied the flesh color with an airbrush gun. I added liquitex matte fluid medium to the flesh color acrylic paint, it gives it tooth to grab on the bisque. If you're not using an airbrush and you'll use a paint brush instead, it's best not to add the matte medium in the acrylic paint. Instead apply the matte medium before painting it with the acrylic paint. I hope this helps.

      If you manage to do it, I will mail you two of my handmade outfits, for your courage.


    2. Thank you for the tips and techniques! I will give this a try on one of my bisque sweeties.

      In my latest blog post I have linked to your blog, and this page, so folks can see what an amazing job you have done with these dolls. And you know, they carry your signature style; I would recognize them as your work anywhere.




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