I’ve always been obsessed with skulls in general. But with the Calaveras/Sugar Skulls, that just took my obsession to a whole new level. I find them so beautiful and fascinatingly delicate, I could google calaveras online and pop them into my Pintrest folder like there’s no tomorrow. Having said that, I thought it would be such a wonderful idea to make Caramelpops Calaveras. Even though calavera themed Blythe dolls (or dolls in general) isn’t something new, I’m still determined to make a calavera that is more candy themed, rather than floral. So I made my first Candievera (Candy+Calavera=Candievera, in case you’re wondering how I got the name) called Sugardrops.
Many people asked how would my doll making process look like and I thought it will be fun to share how Camila was made. She’s the 7th Candievera made and very different from the rest. Reason being she’s the first ever floral themed skull girl I made.
Camila started out like the other Candieveras, I was planning on giving her a beautiful neon pink mohair wig made by SleepingElf, paired with a super cute jelly beans dress which I made. I really liked how she looked initially like this. But as always, the end result never turned out to look like what was planned in the first place. Camila started life as Asha Alvira, I love her tanned skin and knew that the skull white on the face will stand out on that dark skin.
I always start with the scallop eye patterns around her eye first and I usually don’t have a colour scheme in mind. I started with candy pink and painted outwards. Adding colours as I go along. But somehow, it just felt like something was missing or not aligned. I placed the jelly beans bow nearby to determine if the scallop designs gel with the overall look that I planned initially. At this point, I was already feeling a bit unsure, even though nothing went wrong. It just didn’t feel right.
It then struck me on why I felt uncertain about the progress so far. Camila’s pattern was geared towards the floral look, even though it wasn’t what I planned in the first place. I then decided to take a step back and rethink her look. She was left in the scallop eye stage for awhile because I felt I needed to get a fabric that is bold, extremely colourful and floral to match her look. I found something at Chinatown a few days later and knew, this was the look Camila was destined for. I bought the fabric, went back home and continued painting her. Its like I had a direction now, this fabric was the answer.
I went ahead and made her that dress because I was so eager to see how she’d look like with it. I knew I was going the right direction because the creative process flows so much easier now. Happiness. That’s the word I’d use to describe how it feels to put her together at this stage. And she’s not even completed yet!
I don’t always wait till a doll is completed before proceeding to the next stage. I do like to stop the painting process and start making accessories. It helps me visualize better as a whole which eases my creative process in the later stages. At this point, I had to pick a hair colour for her. I tried many different colours, from navy blue to ash grey, to platinum blonde and regular blonde. She was already too colourful as a doll and I wanted something neutral this time, a more natural colour. After much thinking and asking for opinions online, I settled with Asha’s stock hair. Another plus point is that Asha’s hair is a center parting style, which is great because it avoids blocking Camila’s face paint art.
After deciding on her hair colour, I was already thinking about her hair accessory. She’s wearing Frida’s succulent pomband here which I made and I’m loving the look of it. Though I was wondering if a Trio Flowerbomb would suit too. I’m an avid Trio Flowerbomb collector, I own many of them and somehow knew I MUST have something that will suit Camila. DECISIONS.
Painting the other side of her face was a tricky process. I got some tracing paper and tried to trace the floral patterns onto the other side of her face. I cannot remember how many times I tried to trace and even so, it is still not symmetrical. It was already slightly misaligned when I started on the left side of her face so no amount of tracing will make it symmetrical. I did my best and finally, achieved the best balance I could.
Torn between a Flower Bomb or a Caramelaw Pomband…it wasn’t long long before I decide that a Caramelaw floral pomband would work as well. I started felting the first flower using some royal blue wool as the centerpiece, then worked my way outwards. The felting process took me around 4 days to complete. Along with some refining and adding more elements as I go along.
After completing Camila’s look, its time to move onto her garden stand. I bought some really pretty fake succulents for this and was really excited to try to put it together. The pairing of the fake plants was really quite enjoyable.
Little Camila is almost ready at this point. I added some small candy decoras onto her succulent stand because the succulents I used were a bit too muted in colour. I needed to sprinkle a bit of bold colours somewhere in there.
Camila began her life as Asha Alvira. She comes with a hand-made dress and floral pomband made by yours truly and her beautiful garden stand.
She is now available for adoption on my wesbite :