Inspired by a set of Babushka/Russian/Nesting Dolls I saw on Pinterest, I wanted to give this project a go. I thought that I’d give this traditional doll a modern facelift, and I LOVE the results.
So here’s what you’ll need to do to have a go yourself.
- A set of dolls (or many, like me. I got mine from eBay in bulk)
- Paints. I used general Acrylics.
- Paint brushes. You’ll need a couple of sizes, a bigger one to do the blocks of colour and a smaller one for details.
- Painters tape (it’s worth investing in a roll of the good stuff)
- Sand paper (Optional, some of the dolls needed a fine sand just to make the perfect)
- Primer (Optional, but the timber does soak up your paint a bit)
- Timber stain (Optional, depends on the look your going for)
- Spray paint (Optional, makes the block colours quicker if you’re doing more than one)
- Clear Gloss/Varnish/Estapol (Optional, but makes the finish nicer and longer lasting)
First, prime your timber if desired. I found by doing this I used less coats of paint later. I didn’t with my first set, but noticed the difference later on.
Then, paint your base colour/s. For this one I painted the tops white (with spray paint) and left the bottoms just primed. The primer itself brought enough of the timber features out that I didn’t feel the need to stain this set – but another set I used a darker stain on the bottom.
Using the painters tape, mask off some details. For this set, I wanted a single pink stripe. As the dolls are round, you need to be careful to stretch the tape around as you go, to make sure the edge where you will paint is totally flat and sealed. This results in the top of the tape ‘gaping’ as you stretch, but as paint isn’t going near here, this is fine. (see pic below) Make sure you paint all your coats and are happy with the paint coverage before removing the tape.
Once the paint is dry, remove the tape carefully to reveal a nice sharp edge.
Once you’ve finished painting your layers and highlights – time to give them a lovely sheen. I used a brush on gloss at first, but found the spray on version much easier, when you painting 5 dolls per set.
Ta Da! Before, during, after.
And the finished result. They look modern, fresh and very cute!
Some other designs I did. See the lovely gloss finish.
If you give this project a go, come back and share your results.