What do you think is hard to find: Specifically regarding crafting materials or hobby peripherals?

Feb 6, 2021

    1. I'm curious to hear what people think is hard to find that is specific to their experience in working with or on their dolls.... NOT already completed clothes, shoes, props, wigs, or similar (there's a thread for those kinds of things, for reference).

      My question is really around things you need (or want!) to enable you to better participate in the hobby, whether your focus is displaying, photography, clothes/prop/wig/shoe making, modding, face-ups... or anything else that you would consider your active focus.

      A specific example might be that people have trouble locating craft materials for doll projects (like doll size findings such as zippers or buckles), carrying cases, storage or display options or any other things you think are less often considered as necessary components for doll companies to provide to enable the way you specifically participate in the hobby.

      Answers can be as creative or interesting as you want :) What's that one thing you've stopped and gone "gee I wish I had this right now?" or "for goodness sake! why on earth isn't it as easy to find this as making a simple google search?"

      • x 3
    2. MSC!!! This is a personal problem; depending on what part of Switzerland you live in, you need a permit to use MSC. I live in an apartment, so I'm pretty much 100% not allowed to use it.

      Doll-sized sewing notions are also difficult to get offline. Pretty much anything niche is super hard to get here. I use tiny snaps to hold everything together; it might look worse but snaps are easier to get than zippers or in-scale buttons, and I don't like importing things as simple as zippers.
      • x 2
    3. I'll second sewing notions. To scale buttons, ribbon, lace are all hard to find - especially for 1/6 and below.
      • x 2
    4. For me it's definitely 1/4 scale furniture! Props are a bit easier to find but not many people seem to make furniture or furniture kits at that scale, and the ones that do are always so far away that the shipping costs about as much as the furniture itself.
      • x 1
    5. Suitable elastic cord in colors other than white. White is fine for NS but for fantasy colors or tan I prefer a closer match, like my blue doll is strung with slate gray because that looks better in the shadows of the joint slots. I have access to the whole NY fashion district and STILL everything above 3mm only comes in white or black...
      • x 3
    6. I have to second/third the appropriate size sewing notions. Especially zippers. But I am just beginning in the sewing for my dolls, so maybe I just haven't looked hard enough????
    7. omg yes the elastic cord! I often have trouble finding anything above 3mm to begin with. I can only dream of it coming in colour different than black or white. I got to buy some cream-coloured cord once and I can't find a similar one anywhere xD

      Besides, fabric with small print that's not dog bones or cartoon characters. I mean, my dolls are adult women... and yet to find a patterned fabric that'd match their visual age and species and yet fit their scale seems impossible. Sometimes, I am lucky to find summer-spring flowers, but I'd love to have more of tiny paisley-shaped patterns (this is my favourite kind <3) or dark coloured fabric with stylish flowers like those of the victorian wallpapers with arsecnic lol :D

      @maxxxamillion great topic btw <3
      • x 1
    8. I'm from Switzerland too and I've never had problem to get MSC, I even order it from a national shop and I've never needed a permit to buy/use it (and never heard you needed one as well tbh :sweat). Of course it's extremely toxic, so I don't use it in my apartment, I use it outside with a respirator, far away from where people pass. I can give you the online shop I get it from if you want :)

      And for me it is also very complicated to find sewing notions that are small enough. :)
      • x 1
    9. Wait is this for real???

      I live in Switzerland too and I was thinking about trying out face ups :aeyepop:.

      Other than that I agree that it is difficult to find doll sized zippers and buttons. Oh and eyelets too.
    10. Right now? Respiratory protection. In the interest of not damaging my lungs I’m trying to find a respirator, and given the pandemic I’m having a really hard time getting my hands on a respirator with an adequate level of protection. My poor little MSD has been sitting naked and unpainted since October :(

      But in general? To scale fabric, especially kimono silk. There are so many lovely silks I want to sew with, but the patterns are just too big for the doll.
      • x 4
    11. @mohnblumendolls and @SaltedPretzel Just going to jump in for a second to say that I have gotten some pretty good mini finds at I Sew For Doll. They're a China based company, but the prices and international shipping are cheap, and they specialize in dolly notions (plus a lot of other doodads and gewgaws). Not sure they have anything as small as you need, but they do have lots of buttons and such at 3mm. Worth a look, anyway! :thumbup
      • x 6
    12. OMG thank you so much for the recommendation. I will definitely try them out. Their selection looks awesome.
      • x 2
    13. @laquaza Yep, they've got great stock, I hope you find what you need! :) Just keep in mind that they ship by China Post...which basically sucks, lol. You will get your stuff, but you'll need to be a bit patient - three weeks has been my average.
      • x 1
    14. Tiny buttons and beads and charms.

      One of my boys collects buttons in character and I'd like to make a jar of them for him, but it's so hard to find buttons small enough and flat enough. The few I have found have the same thickness (or thicker than) a regular button and usually look childish.

      I also want to use some teeny tiny silver or black beads to glue on as facial/body piercings. I haven't had any luck in finding them small enough to look right. I found some clear rhinestones but I really want balls, not all of my dolls are into sparkly.

      And lastly, charms for necklaces or bracelets. The craft stores around here have small charms, but in scale, they would be huge and tacky. I've ordered a few things online but no matter how I measure, they almost always still end up too big.
    15. This is a very me and my stupid picky problems, but military trim and shako cords has been a journey.
      • x 2
    16. buckles, buttons, Leather the right weight and grain scale, Fabric the right weight and scale ( printed, beaded, lace, etc)

      I love "I sew for dolls" but as usual, even with their amazing variety of things, there's always something I want, and can't find.

      One thing I REALLY wish I could find is suppliers for our "Little" needs that's based in the US, only because I am, and I'm impatient, LOL
      • x 1
    17. Mostly it's a problem for apartment dwellers. I think they don't really care if you have a house/garage. But my dad used some aerosol spray finish on something on our little apartment balcony and our downstairs neighbors reported us to the landlords who informed us that we may not use aerosol sprays in our apartment bc it affects the neighbors, and if we do, we'll be fined. So that's why I can't do it;

      I've tried faceup using brush on sealant though. It's.... okay for practice, but I wouldn't use it for a faceup you intend to keep on the doll.
    18. @mohnblumendolls and @laquaza: Fellow swiss here! Would it be ok if you ask permission from your neighbours first? You say you want to use aerosol that day from x to y, would that be alright with them? In my opinion aerosol is no different that another nuisance like excessive sound from a party and so on, so if you have nice neighbours, they may be understanding?

      Right now, I can't find leather of the right thickness for SD (hard to check in real life too, because of COVID restrictions), so if someone has a good online source, I'm all ears!
    19. I'm not actually Swiss, and I live in the German area, so my neighbors aren't big fans of us. I have no idea if the 'no aerosols in apartments thing' is a real Swiss law, but my neighbours and landlords certainly were very adamant that we're not allowed to use it. That could just be because they don't like us though; I have no idea. I agree though; it's no more obnoxious to use MSC than it is to hear loud partying or smell someone's cigarettes, etc. (Sorry, this is kinda diverging from the conversation at hand, I just wanted to clarify that IDK if this is a true rule or just a result of my nitpicky neighbors :))
      • x 1
    20. @mohnblumendolls : From what I understand, there is a federal article that says "no excessive nuisances". Aerosol being toxic and possibly getting into the neighbour's breathing space could possibly be considered excessive nuisance, in my humble opinion, but so are loud noises from a party. Ideally, you have to get permission from your neighbours, so you could hold it free of retribution.

      But yeah, no one asks everytime if they can smoke on the balcony and the smell is just as irritating and toxic!
      • x 2