Gala, Katrin’s drawing challenge

February 7, 2015

Oh what fun! Just in time to get ready for the Oscars…no?

I have to show you what I did as a little girl. Well, I got my first barbie at age 9. I remember we had just left everything behind us in the Czech Republic, and, as political refugees, immigrated to Austria where my aunt Vera was living at the time. My aunt Vera gave me a barbie doll when we got there. I thought she was the most beautiful doll in the world.
So what does every little girl do with a barbie doll? Take her clothes off and dress her in something else of course.
Problem was: money was extremely tight,barbie was not going to have a wardrobe.
Solution was: grandmother’s scarves!
I used to wrap the barbie in my grandmother’s, aunt’s, mom’s silk scarves, fasten the gown with a straight pin, and my barbie would saunter off into my barbie stories, happily ever after.
Here is one of Binky, Bunny, and Ziggy’s barbies in a vintage Hermes scarf. (Nothing is too good for barbie)

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The absolute truth is, we love us a good dress up! Oh yes we do! Years ago, my father gave me his old Dr’s bag, and it houses my collection of sparkly shinies, so we’re always ready.


But wait, this is a drawing challenge.

So I decided to do something I’ve always done for myself, for my daughters when they were little, and now will do for my granddaughters. Make beautiful paper dolls for them to dress up.

My girls really only got straight dolls, but Binky, Bunny and Ziggy are going to get fully movable and posable dolls like this one. Then they can learn to trace around the body and make beautiful gowns for wonderful gala evening.

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So just look! This snow white princess is joining flapper girl and mermaid, and Nick Bantock’s Man Descending thinks he’s died and gone to heaven. 😀

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But, what I wish I could do, what I really wanted to show you, is this dress I’m wearing. It’s about a million years old and hand sewn by one …I can’t remember…women family members (mom, two aunts or grandma). And worn by my mother to a gala evening. Do you see the design? My aunt Vera painted it!

Oh yes she did. Isn’t it the most fabulous thing in the world? She painted it with her oils, just like she painted a little childhood dress of mine (that one with sunflowers and a little caterpillar). My aunt Vera was the most amazing artist. I think I told you before…and I don’t care, I’ll tell you again…I used to bug her and bug her to be allowed to paint with her oils. I still remember the day she stopped painting and gave me her oils and her brushes. I’m still using them. She was my true inspiration and reason why I paint.


Well there we go. Are we all ready for our next gala evening? For us round here it’ll be the Oscars. Maybe we’ll dress up.

Speaking of dressing up, pop round to Katrin’s and see all the rest of the glamour and glitz! 😀

Hello from Sunday night, the gardening edition
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  • Reply sorrygnat February 7, 2015 at 4:49 pm

    wow, loved it all

  • Reply Patricia A. McGoldrick February 7, 2015 at 5:12 pm

    How creative!

  • Reply Kim Henkel February 7, 2015 at 6:27 pm

    What a beautiful gala inspired post! My Barbie’s were dressed in left over scraps of fabric from my mom’s sewing. I don’t think they ever looked as nice as yours though! Also love the paper dolls and what a beautiful hand painted dress! How special that you have it after all these years.

  • Reply tinyWOOLF February 8, 2015 at 6:34 am

    you are so ready to go galavanting; how stunning is that hand painted detail anyway. and the story behind it… what a treasure. the dressing up of the barbie brings back memories of my own i had long forgotten about. so, thank you for that! n?

  • Reply Carole February 8, 2015 at 6:46 am

    Barbie has good taste….Hermes! My sister and I played Barbies for hours, changing their outfits and events. My girls played with my old ones and soon the grand girls will if they wish to.

    I love your paper dolls, especially the mermaid! What do mermaids wear to their gala dinners? Lucky Man Descending!

    Everyone needs an Aunt Vera!
    xo Carole

  • Reply debrashewhoseeks February 8, 2015 at 7:27 am

    Love your paper dolls! My sister and I used to make paper dolls and outfits by cutting up the old Eaton’s catalogue.

  • Reply renilde February 8, 2015 at 7:36 am

    I wasn’t the kind of child that played with dolls a lot but i did made paper dolls and loved to make all kind of dresses for them so yours brougt happy memories, your ’20 doll and outfit with the long necklace is great.
    I loved to hear about your Aunt Vera( big hurray for the talented and inspiring woman i our families) and her bravery to embellish a gala dress…with wonderful result!
    Thanks for a very entertaining post Veronica.

  • Reply Gill February 8, 2015 at 11:33 am

    what a stunning Barbie, very chic. Watching the Grammy’s tonight, wonder who will be the best dressed; Taylor Swift or Katy Perry?

    Gill in Canada

  • Reply Marlene Stephenson February 8, 2015 at 1:55 pm

    Your Barbie’s were probably better dressed than some.I love what you aunt drew on the dress it is beautiful.

  • Reply Lucia February 9, 2015 at 12:20 am

    Oh Veronica, I love everything here. The Barbie-Story, your sparkley collection, the Paperdolls and the painted dress. Thank you.

  • Reply Pamela Gordon February 9, 2015 at 3:48 am

    You come from a very creative and artistic family, I can see. I love the evening gown and the Barbies and paper dolls. Lovely!

  • Reply daryledelstein February 9, 2015 at 7:14 am

    i always wear my nicest PJs to award shows .. i need to be comfortable to sit on the couch (usually with a cat or two for company) for 3 hrs .. x

  • Reply Deb @ Frugal Little Bungalow February 11, 2015 at 8:31 am

    What an amazing dress and woman!

    I used to dress my Barbies in scarves as well!! 🙂

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