Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Bratz Makeunder - Inspired by Sonia Singh

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Have you heard about Sonia Singh and her Tree Change Dolls®? Sonia is a Tasmanian artist who decided that she wanted to "rescue discarded and forgotten dolls, and give them a new lease of life". You can read more about her on her Tumblr page here. She has started a bit of a doll revolution in some circles - tribute and copycat groups are popping up all over the place. People are making moulds for feet (Bratz don't have feet - did you know this?! When you take their shoes off, they're left with stumps), knitting outfits, and dousing dolls in acetone like there's no tomorrow. I picked up a few (okay, eight) Bratz dolls on a while ago so that I could rescue them from their awful makeup and clothes. Here are the first three I received:

Look! No feet. I find that really bloody weird, to be honest.

 To remove the makeup from the dolls, you'll need pure acetone. Sonia suggests a mixture of acetone and eucalyptus oil, but I just used acetone and it worked fine. I got mine in my local Salon Supplies shop.

Now - pop some acetone on a cotton pad and remove her makeup.

Totally reminded me of this Buffy episode:

Wash the doll's face in warm soapy water. Wash her hair too and if it's very badly tangled, you can cut it (woohoo! my total pleasure as a child) or try and soften it with conditioner. To make clothes, try the method my sister and I used to use when we were little and make patterns. Lay the doll on a piece of paper, and draw around her: 

Cut the pattern out, lay it on your material (I used old pyjama bottoms), cut out a shape, then reverse the pattern and cut out another piece. 

Join 'em together and sew inside out. Turn the right side round and you're good to go - now what I totally forgot was the width of her hips, so I had to split the dress up the back to get it up over her thighs (a problem I've run into myself on occasion) so in future, I'll make the clothes to fit the widest part.

You'll need some acrylic paint to paint your doll's face. I picked mine up in Mr. Price for a few euro - they're readily available at any Euro shop or Craft shop. Here's how the blonde doll turned out - complete with the dress above and a jumper made from a stray fluffy Penneys sock. 

I outlined her eyes a little bit after those photos - I did it with the small end of a double-ended Sharpie. The rest of her face was just acrylic paint and a small brush. To seal the face paint, you'll need some matte varnish. I just had a matte topcoat from Wet n Wild, so I used that, but you can get proper craft varnish anywhere that sells art supplies. 

Here are the three girls after! 

Some difference, isn't it?

I like these a lot, and they were fun to do. There's so much you could do - if a child has a scar, or port wine stain, or birthmark, your doll could have one too. You could match the eye colour, the teeth, the freckles - these three were a very rough attempt when I couldn't wait to get started one evening and kinda rushed them - so I'll take my time with the next ones.

What am I going to do with them? Not a baldy notion. I'll pass one or two along to little cousins and I'll keep a couple for the boys - as important as it is for little girls to have positive images around them, it's just as important for boys.

This was so much fun - keep an eye out in charity shops and at car boot sales for poor neglected Bratz and give them a bit of a helping hand. Give them their youth back!


  1. Wow, Sharon! You did such a great job! I might get some of my daughters dolls and try it now! You made it look so easy! x

  2. Kicking myself I got rid of a full bag of them a few months back lol

  3. Love this idea they look much better!

  4. Love this idea.. They look so much better after the make over.. love the clothes too :)

  5. that is so cute! what a transformation!

  6. These look amazing! Great job and so much better than the orginals!

  7. I saw the link to this when I was getting into bed last night, goggle-eyed after travelling. Had to read but didn't have the strength to comment. Anyway, you did a brilliant job - I can only imagine how scary mine would look if I did this. The unchanged ones look like something you'd see on a Channel Four documentary about men with odd hobbies, crazy that they were so popular. I even had one!


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