Virgil Cane’s my name

I just completed one half of my ‘Couple in Autumn’ dolls.

He is made entirely by hand. A sewing machine didn’t come near him! He is made of muslin and stuffed with fiberfill. I rag-stuffed his lower torso & filled him with beans. I enjoy old ways of doll construction & try to employ those methods when it is possible & sensible to do so. ‘Virgil’ has been painted, sanded, painted & sanded again & then treated with a series of washes to give him a truly beautiful aged patina. I needle-sculpted Virgil’s nose, eyebrows & mouth & hand-painted his facial features with premium acrylic paints. His wrinkles & highlights have been defined with oil pastels. Virgil’s fingers & toes have been needle-sculpted as well & his fingernails & toenails have been hand-painted. Virgil has been sealed with glossy acrylic sealer so that he can be dusted occasionally & kept for years. Virgil’s balding head of hair (authentic, raw wool) has been securely needle-felted to his head & his clothes have been hand-sewn. He wears a ‘wife beater’, flannel shirt & denim overalls. Virgil’s clothes have been lightly aged in a tea & lavender bud bath.

Virgil has harvested a large pumpkin which has been entirely made by hand. It was treated to the same process as Virgil–painted, sanded, repainted, sanded, highlighted, detailed & sealed. Twisted wires form the stem & were sewn onto the pumpkin. A bit of burlap forms the base of the stem & I tied a raffia bow at the base of the stem.

Virgil’s pumpkin is not attached. It is designed to sit in his lap.

I had so much fun making Virgil & his companion, Naoma, which I hope to complete tomorrow. (Aren’t men always ready before women?)

Virgil is completely my design, will never & can never be duplicated as I sketch my patterns directly onto fabric as I go. He required many, many hours of hard work & hand cramps but was such a delight. His little face cracks me up as he looks so much like so many old men I’ve seen!

Virgil will be available on EBay soon!

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