Wednesday, February 24, 2016


Hi All,
Well, it's that time of year again -- time to get started on the "TREASURES OF THE GYPSY" CHALLENGE.

This year's theme is, "ONCE UPON A TIME....PAST, PRESENT, & FUTURE"

The details of the challenge are printed at the end of this post.

So, I researched many fairy tales & folk stories before I found the perfect one for me: "THE FIRE BIRD".  The Fire Bird is an old Russian folk tale (which has been made into a popular ballet).

After more research, I found that, design-wise, there isn't much difference between a Fire Bird and a Phoenix Bird. (I think it's the same bird, just different cultures).
Here are some photos:

I'll probably add some more bead embroidery, when I have time.

Something else I found in my research is that both the Fire Bird & Phoenix usually have peacock-like tail feathers.

So, now that I've made the pattern, I would like to make another one as a Peacock. Then, in the future, I will publish the pattern.


Pamela Armas (aka Gypsy Pamela) is the owner of a store called "Treasures of the Gypsy", which sells exotic fabrics, trims, beads, ribbon, and little bits of everything, (mostly imported from India and other parts of Eastern Europe). She & her husband have a large vendor booth and travel to all the major sewing & quilting conventions across the country.

Every year, Pamela hosts a challenge for the Houston Quilt Festival (which is in Houston, Texas at the end of October). 1st, 2nd, & 3rd prize are gift certificates for fabric & trim from Treasures of the Gypsy. And, your doll will be published in a doll magazine.

To enter the challenge, send Pamela a check for $20. She sends you a small bag of her "treasures"-- a few pieces of fabrics, trims, and some beads or appliques. Plus, she will send you all the details of the challenge.

Dolls are due by mid- September. Your doll can be part of the theme, or not. You may use any medium you like - cloth or clay. There is no size requirement. The only requirement is that you use as much of the Gypsy's Treasures as you can on your doll. (You can even buy MORE and add it to the doll, as well!!)

Make $20 check payable to: PAMELA ARMAS.
Send it to: Pamela Armas, PO Box 748, Mountainair, NM 87036

Questions? You can email Pamela at: gypsytreasures@cs.com

Gypsy Treasures is on facebook:  www.facebook.com/Treasures-of-the-Gypsy

Sunday, February 14, 2016


Hi All,
Thanks to all of you who took the time to check out my new website. I appreciate that a great deal.

I started a new doll -- it's a "theater doll", for lack of a better name. The top of the doll will be a basic torso doll, and the bottom half will be a theater, complete with actors performing (I hope).

Here's some work-in-progress photos:

I started by building a basic theater out of a wooden box glued to a larger wooden lid (from Michael's), dressed up with some decorative molding & wooden "appliques".

Here it is, painted black & gold. The backdrop is an architectural drawing I found on-line and printed on card stock.

Here's the torso added. I added some padding to the top, so the skirt would hang correctly. 

Next, comes the skirt. I chose dark red velvet, as the skirt will also be the curtains for the theater. (Red velvet trimmed in gold fringe is what I think of when it comes to theater curtains.)

And now, I've started on the bodice and sleeves.

That's as far as I've got. The face will be a face-mask, cast in paper clay. And, I will have to make the miniature actors for the stage.

Stayed tuned for more photos.
Have fun!

Tuesday, February 2, 2016


Hi All,
I just got back from teaching the lovely ladies of the "Material Girls" doll club from Houston, TX. I taught my "Candlestick Diva", and we had a blast! Class was held in one of the members' beautifully spacious home, and delicious food was provided by my gracious host, Marlene Slopin, and other members of the club. It was a fun-filled 2 days that I will treasure.

Here are some photos of the talented women and their dolls (in various stages of completion):

Thanks ladies for a wonderful weekend!