What are these dolls?
These are ball jointed dolls, often abbreviated to BJDs. BJDs have a long history in the art world, however these in particular (often called Asian Ball Joint Dolls, or ABJDs) are a fairly modern and commercial incarnation of BJDs. A quick google search will lead you to a lot of the history of BJDs as well as this modern form which gained popularity with the company Volks.
How big are they?
My dolls all range in size from about 55 – 70 cm. This range in size is typically called 1/3, SD, or SD-13 if not designated by specific measurements. 62 - 65 cm is the most common size in this range. However, you can get dolls much smaller or much larger than this.
Where did you get them/Where can I get them?
All my dolls except for one were ordered online from various companies or on the secondhand market (the other one was bought in person from Volks USA which unfortunately is no longer open). Some of my sculpts are quite old and not available anymore. If you want a list of places to buy BJDs online, check the section down below. There are a handful of brick-and-mortar stores that keep dolls in stock, and some vendors travel to conventions or events. Joining a forum might help you understand all the different ways you can purchase a BJD as well.
What are they made of?
All my dolls are made from resin, a type of hard plastic. BJDs in general come in a variety of materials – porcelain, PVC – there are even different types of resin. The material will certainly affect the price of the doll, as well as the longevity of the product and the ability to customize it.
Where do you get clothes for them?
There are a lot of BJD clothing stores. The one I usually return to is Tata's Paradise. I also make a lot of clothes, as buying BJD clothes can be rather pricey.
How did you get all that money?!
By working - and there is no other way around it. However, saving up for a BJD can be easier than you might think! Check here and here.
How did you learn to make this/that/or the other thing?
Everything I’ve made over the years was a process of trial and error - I taught myself. Occasionally you can find tutorials which can be very helpful when making something new, but most learning is done by practice. If you are trying to make something new, don’t get discouraged! Being not very good at something is the first step toward being awesome at it!
Can I get a doll that looks exactly like yours?
A huge part of what makes this hobby so fun is the ability to create your own character. I’m flattered and happy that you enjoy my dolls, but by copying them, you are missing why we all love this hobby so much. Even though character creation and customization can be stressful the end product is much more rewarding because you have something uniquely yours!
Can I commission xyz from you?
I no longer take commissions, sorry! I’m flattered that you would ask, though. :)
Where did you get those tiny dolls?
Citrus’s BJDs are from Volks. I am not at all the first person to use this idea and other folks have done this WAY better than me, so check others out for more inspo!
Where does Pinotnoiricecreambar come from?
Not really from anywhere. I just like rhymes. And ice cream bars (though they don't like me). And Pinot Noir (which likes me too much). The name was created several years before the show ‘Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt’ came out so I am not attempting to make reference to the wonderful ‘Pinot Noir’ song Titus Andromedon sings. That being said, I freakin' love that song and I am totally fine if you have already created a mental association.
How/why did you get started on youtube?
Several reasons. I never felt super welcome at my ‘local’ BJD group and I didn’t have any friends who were also in the hobby. Youtube allowed me to talk about my dolls in a way that was much more fulfilling than typing on a forum. It took a long time to get where I feel like I’m really contributing to the hobby and having fun and interesting conversations. Back when I first was making videos, I was mainly doing responses to a lovely group called BJD addicts (this was back when youtube allowed video responses). My videos got some views, but it took uploading at least once week for about 2 years for me to gain consistent viewership. I’m still learning how to make the best content that prompts good conversation and entertains as well, so I always appreciate feedback and comments from you guys ^__^
What is your opinion on recasts?
First off, I made a video that I hoped would encourage everyone to think about this issue with a bit more empathy which you can view here. I do not support recasts and believe them to be unethical. In addition, I do not condone persecution of any individual based on their personal beliefs. I do not believe either of these opinions will ever change although some may find them contradictory.
Wig customizing and creation:
How do you make wig caps?
I made an entire video just about making wig caps here.
How do you attach the hair?
I use modpodge, a puzzle sealant you can find at almost any craft store. Check out my wig making videos for more information. I'll also use hot glue or thread to attach dreadlocks.
How do you get custom colors?
I dye the fibers myself. For alpaca hair you can use human hair dye, but be sure to always test it when it's dry to ensure the dye won't transfer to the doll. You can also use acid dyes to get custom colors in natural fibers. Synthetic fibers already come in every color under the sun but if you are customizing a white or blonde wig, I recommend using the sharpie method.
What is the 'Sharpie Method'?
Color on it with Sharpie and wash the excess away with warm water. Once dry, rub it around on your hands or some paper to see if there is any transfer. If there is, wash it again until there isn't. This method will NOT work with natural fibers, which is sad, because it is much cheaper than purchasing dyes.
Where can I get Alpaca fiber?
The simple answer is: anywhere. There are a ton of places to find alpaca fiber, Etsy is a good place to start. If you're a bit more ambitious or eco-friendly you can spend time looking to see if there is a farm nearby that raises alpaca - this will probably be your cheapest option if you can find it! Plus it's fun to see the alpaca in person. THEY ARE SO CUTE.
What fibers are good to use/can I use x, y, or z instead?
You can use just about anything to make a wig as long as you can glue or sew it to a wig cap. I like using suri fiber because of its very natural look and feel as well as its styling capability, but perfectly awesome wigs are made from silk fiber, synthetic fiber or mohair, wool, goat fiber, even human hair!
How can I make dreadlocks?
Further BJD Info:
My Dolls (past and present) are From:
Dimdoll (Doll In Mind)
Boy & Girl Doll
But also popular are:
Immortality of Soul (IOS)
Angel of Dream
And many more not listed here!
Doll Clothes, Shoes, Accessories
Most doll sites have a few items and clothes, if not a huge variety. I tend to make a lot of clothes so, unfortunately, I don't have many sites to share.
Forums and other hobby-sites
Disclaimer! I am not a huge fan of forums, they feel impersonal and I always forget to post on them. Also, I communicate more through vocal cues and expressions and hand gestures and all that is super lost in text. Forums do often have useful information and sometimes their own marketplace for buying/selling secondhand dolls.
Den of Angels is the granddaddy of all fan-based BJD forums
Castawaydolls is a popular recast-friendly forum
There are often smaller forums for more local groups, it never hurts to google!
((The Wisconsin/Illinois one is called Dairyland BJD))
Flickr, Tumblr, Instagram, and other picture sharing sites have strong BJD communities as well. And don’t forget youtube! I made a video on why yt is my favorite platform for doll-sharing (and other people gave their opinions, too) here.