Friday, July 19, 2013

Our most recient restoration

Hello everyone: We wanted to show you the latest restoration that we just finished on a very sweet late 18th century English wooden. She came to us in rather ruff shape, with poorly replaced and incorrect cloth arms and legs and quite a bit of damage to her face. When we removed her nailed on cloth stuffed arms and legs, in the legs we found an array of antique fabrics which someone from her past had used to stuff the legs. One piece even had a name written on it in pen.
There was one particularly nice piece of early glazed calico cotton which we ended up using to fashion her second bonnet which covers her wig cap and first gauzy cap. You will see in the photos below, some of the pieces found in the legs including the piece we used for the bonnet.
The restoration to her face was a difficult one as the major damage was right front and center and I did not want to have to competently  strip this old girls face and start from scratch. The lady we resorted her for also did not want this which is why she sent her to us.
I was very happy to have been able to repair all the damage and be able to replace the missing paint areas, with a perfect match to the original paint, without touching any of the original paint elsewhere.
Paul then did an amazing job carving her new “old” hands and legs. Then it was time for my other tough job! Matching up the paint / wash and paint loss, the aging, distressing and patina for the new correct hands and legs, to the 200+ year old original paint and patina of the torso and hip area. Again, I was so pleased with my results which you can see in the photos below.
I am so pleased when I am able to accomplish a patina and aging on the hands in particular that no one could ever tell did not take 200 to 300 years to develop. I pride myself in this accomplishment and all my aging and patina work, as no one has ever been able to recreate a truly convincing patina that does not look forced. The owner of this doll was also very pleased saying....
“Hi David,
Clearly you are a wizard!  She looks like she has been reunited with her original hands.  Absolutely amazing!
Thanks again for sharing! This is an exciting process!”
She is now back to her old self with proper and historically correct arms and legs so we can’t keep up with her as she is dancing all around the house here saying she has not felt so happy and spry for many many years!
Our client was thrilled with the results....some of her e-mails to us which were so nice to read so I included them in the post. Its so rewarding to see a sweet old doll like this come back to life by our hand and even more rewarding to hear how thrilled the owner is with the results.
“Hi David,
Wow!  She is incredible!  You two are beyond talented. I can't believe she is whole again.  I don't doubt that she is dancing around your house. Good luck getting her into a box to ship her home to me!
I can't wait to see her in person.
Thank you, thank you, thank you!  I love the caps. They just complete her.
She looks great, just as I imagined she would be!  She definitely is smiling and very pleased!
Thanks so much!”
Hope everyone enjoys her story and photos from start to finish. She is now 24.5 inch's tall.
David & Paul