My friend Terry’s son Max got married a few weeks ago. Over the years, Terry and I have worked together on so many fun projects, including these: wedding cake, baby quilt and community quilt. So, Terry and I conspired to make a special surprise for the wedding couple.
I couldn’t wait to make little Max and Beth dolls for the wedding cake. Max and Beth met when they both worked as engineers at the Jet Propulsion Lab in California. Since they helped design parts for NASA’s Mars Rover, it became their obvious prop. Terry found a set of Lego directions for making “Curiosity” and enlisted the help of Max’s cousin to put it together.
Beth’s dress was one of those strapless jobs. Way before the wedding, Terry sent me a photo of the gown, so I could replicate it in miniature. The biggest challenge was to make a smooth transition between the doll’s felt torso and floss wrapped arms. Usually sleeves or shoulder straps provide a break that hide any raw ends. You can see a couple of stitches on the top, where I fastened the top in place. I don’t know how real life women can wear this style, without the help of magic! In this close-up, her felt chest looks a bit fuzzy, hairy even. But that’s wool felt for you! Fortunately, it’s not so noticeable on the 4″ doll size.
I’m glad that Max insisted on wearing a blue blazer and khakis, which gave the wedding a relaxed Cape Cod feel. They both looked spiffy!
Before we go any further, I want to mention that my upcoming how-to book, Felt Wee Folk: New Adventures ( March 2015) will have many examples of wedding cake toppers for you to make. You can see other wedding dolls I’ve made here.
Terry was originally going to make a Mars cake for the rehearsal dinner, but decided to simplify things by constructing a non-edible “Mars” stand from an inverted bowl covered with fondant. It was tricky to get the color right and she ended up using beet powder, cinnamon and cocoa. Terry rolled out the colored fondant and made impressions with a celestial patterned sheet of plastic and a rolling-pin, both with raised texture. She then spread the dough over the inverted stainless steel bowl. At the dinner, Max and Beth were totally surprised to see their likenesses lounging on the rover. The pair of dolls also made an appearance atop the wedding cake the next day.
Both the rehearsal dinner and wedding were lovely events. Congratulations, Max and Beth!
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Oh, Salley Salley, What a fun project that you shared with us! It was done so beautifully and will be something that this couple will cherish forever! I have also loved making personalized gifts, so I know how much fun you and your friend had in creating these dolls. Well done..beautiful!!!!
Quite a stunning couple ! (both of them 😉 !)
real life women use something like a built in corset which supports the upper part of the bodice by holding it tightly around the waist. But I suppose a wee doll doesn’t have a waist?
Anyway, it is a brilliant collaboration between you and the mum!
It must have been such fun to make this couple’s replicas . I’ve always wondered about that frock style too.What if you had a wardrobe malfunction..aaaah!!! Too stressful. Give me straps anyday.
Very ingenious,both of you! Having a partner in a project like this makes it even more fun. And I’m with you on the strapless…they seem all the rage but it takes the right woman to wear one with grace. Beth succeeds.