Hey, dollies! How is your weekend coming?
Mine is somewhat different.. I never touched a needle since Friday night! Haha!
Well, now it’s time to discuss about the top challenge that we came up with based on the sort of survey we had a couple of weeks ago – Storage!
Now, to tell you honestly, I don’t have an exact solution for everyone, but I am hoping that through this post, everyone can share their helpful tips to our fellow doll lovers. One can then pick a tip or two that they can apply based on their circumstances. Isn’t that neat?
Storage is, for me, the second most challenging aspect of my doll collecting. Budget will always be the top one, because I guess I still want more dollies LOL. There are dolls that I would love to join my pack, but it may take a while to fund them. Perhaps when I overcome the first challenge, which probably yielded a huge number of dollies to store, that is when Storage becomes my top challenge.
When I was young, I would put my collection on a display shelf in the living room. I’m not sure if this is a pan-Asian culture, but most houses here in my country back in the day almost always had a shelf for collectibles or precious items and used as a living room decoration. Here’s 11 year old me with my little ones at my grandparents’ humble wooden home where I spent my first 21 years in.
I remember being very proud as a child about my tiny collection, which immediately catches the attention of kids and neighbors who visit our home. Since I play with these dolls almost every single day during the summer vacation, the shelf is well-maintained and always dust-free. In the tropics, dust is common so we clean our open shelves very often. During school days, the dolls wait for me to pick them up on weekends so I can bring them to my improvised playhouse at the corner of our veranda.
Now that I’m married with a home of our own, having a shelf full of dolls in the living room may not be much of good idea. Aside from the living room being a really small space, I live with boys. For almost 9 years living here, I relied on a neutral, minimalist look. Since coming back to doll collecting in 2010, I just store my dolls in their boxes.
This was practical at that time because when I started building my new (adult-stage) collection, I came up with the idea that I can only continue with this collecting thing IF I had an additional income to support it with! That’s when atelierniSHASHA started. As I became a product maker mainly, my girls became more like my muses. And they had to be “readily undressed” all the time so that it’s easier for me to just pick them up for pattern making and fitting.
But then I really felt bad for my girls. As I mentioned earlier, I grew up to regard dolls as works of art and that they are sort of like the focal point of a room. And other than that, I needed a photoshoot setup that is almost always ready when I’m done with my tiny fashions. Setting up a backdrop every time I finish an outfit can be time consuming. And lastly, delicate Momoko dolls shouldn’t be in boxes along with other girls. I know now that was a bad move. And I only realized it when I saw them chipping. Their hands, ankles, even the head. Ugh, so so sad.
So I decided to commission a local cabinet-maker to make me a living room diorama box. I thought it would be nice to let my girls lounge in there while waiting for their turn at the atelier. I placed the diorama box near a window so it is well-lit. I made them a couch, placed one of my watercolors on the wall, and got some of my collected travel trinkets become their room’s art decos.
Finally, my girls have a nice home!
|Cece and Bree jammin’|
Then, came another sub-challenge. Since the diorama is in the living room, little kids (relatives and neighbors alike) wanted to play with them. I allowed it for one time or two, but since little kids are little kids, they do not play carefully and it’s a pain to see! So I put them back to their boxes. It’s for their own good. LOL!
Since January when I have finally focused on my miniatures, I am not anymore working from a corner of our living room but safely in my son’s vacant room. He’s 9 but still likes to sleep with Mom and Dad. I can now easily have the girls lounge in their living room while I lock them up when kids visit the house. Easy peasy haha! But since some of my dolls are not articulated, I still have them in boxes. I am planning to add a few more boxes when budget allows for it, so there will be a kitchen, a bedroom, a veranda, and who knows what’s next. Everyone will then be in their appropriate rooms (standing girls can cook in the kitchen or sleep in bed teehee)!
So basically, my diorama is also my storage shelf and a photoshoot setup when necessary.
There goes my doll storage story.
How about you guys? How did your doll storage evolve? How did you make it work?
We would really love to know and discuss solutions over here. Please feel free to reply to comments. I am so excited to join in the fun discussion!
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