When I know that one of my handmade dolls is being truly enjoyed and fully included throughout the events of a child's daily life, it really makes my heart all warm.
Sometimes though, a makeover is in order to freshen up after having all those grand adventures together. I'm talking about the doll in this case, not the child.
This baby doll has been well loved by her little mommy and nothing makes me happier than seeing real proof of that. Really, I don't mind the wear and tare, as long as it is done with love.
And this doll in particular has also been lovingly given a beauty makeover that included a liquid lip gloss with glitter! Uh-oh.
Don't worry, most stains can be removed from your dolls or at least made a lot less noticeable. I heard from the little mommy's mommy, that this doll has even been washed in a front loading washing machine and I think she turned out wonderfully. Except of course for those pesky lip gloss stains and that is where I came in.
I started with lightly dampening the mouth and cheek areas with wet sponge, making sure to use a dabbing motion not a rubbing one to prevent the fabric from pilling. Then using a grease cutting liquid dish soap, I smeared a bit onto the stained areas. I let the soap soak in for about 10-15 minutes making sure it didn't dry on the fabric because that would leave a mark of it's own and would take us in the wrong direction.
After the time was up I then gently started to soak up the soap using a clean, wet sponge. Dab, rinse, dab, rinse, dab, rinse.. etc. until I felt like the soap had been removed from the doll. At this time the doll looked worse than it did before I started since the water makes the fabric turn a few shades darker when wet
I then patted it a little with some folded paper towels just to try and get as much water out that way. After that, I set the doll in a sunny area by the window and waited until it was dry. It only took about an hour and I could tell then that most of the stains were gone.
The mouth had the worst of all the stains and the lip gloss didn't want to budge for me so easily. I repeated the soap/rinse process again on the mouth area, and after waiting for it to dry a little, I poured a some corn starch directly onto the spot to absorb what the soap wouldn't 't get. The corn starch stayed on for a few hours and then was gently dusted off.
I was able to remove about 99% of the gloss and the mouth area stain was barley visible.
The baby doll also need a bit of repair to it's arm, and I applied some more stitching around the hair cap for some extra support as well.
I used the best stitch in the world (in my opinion), the ladder stitch or invisible stitch.
A new dress, a bit of hair brushing and a little blush brought this baby back to life so she can enjoy another year of adventures!
All ready to go home!