1 Little, 2 Little, 3 Little, 4 Little Darlings…

I have gotten a few questions about the 13″ Little Darlings that I LOVE to sew for. Recently you’ve seen Janie modeling that leopard fur coat, so I thought I’d take time to show my small collection of Little Darlings to you… I only have four dolls. When I say ONLY, I sort of mean that in a sarcastic way, as I know some ladies who have 10 or 12 (or more) Little Darlings… Oh, how much fun that must be to get them all dressed and photographed. It took me a little while to just get these 4 little girl’s hair combed and a little “bralet” on a couple.

I should have put my dolls names below them, but forgot. Starting on the left, there is Isabelle, Janie, Lian and Emmie.

(Oh… Janie wanted to leave her boots on because she’s hoping for snow tonight and wants some pictures of her in the coat in the snow. I told her we’d have to see… :o) Well, here’s an update… just since I’ve sat down to write this post, (11:00 p.m.) the temperature has fallen from 64 degrees at 6:00 p.m. to 26 degrees now with a wind chill factor of 13. I can hear the freezing rain hitting the window as I’m typing this… oh boy, Janie…

Let’s start at the beginning. Dianna Effner is the artist who sculpted the Little Darling dolls. They are vinyl 13″ dolls that come with blank faces and are then painted by various artists who have been taught by Dianna herself. (this is a picture of Elin with a blank face and inset glass eyes and it’s the same sort of look with the Little Darlings… the artist has to bring the dolls to life, INCLUDING “painting” the eyes!)

The most incredible thing about these dolls are their eyes… They look glass, but they are painted… Isabelle was painted by Dianna, Janie and Lian were painted by Joyce Mathews and Emmie was painted by Lana Dobbs.

My girls eyes (except Emmie’s) look a bit dusty… I should have wiped them with a q-tip before taking my pictures.

In the beginning Dianna only had 2 sculpts…the #1 sculpt has the wider open eyes… like my Isabelle, Janie and Emmie, and the #2 sculpt has the squinted like eyes on my Lian doll. (Now she has a #3 sculpt that is a little smiling face and a #4 that has the bigger sort of sad looking (to me) eyes. )

You have the option when you order a doll of having the wig glued on or left loose so you can change your dolls looks. Janie took off her wig to show you how they look as a baldie! Thanks Janie…

I am showing my girls in the wigs they came in when they arrived at my house… I have never taken Isabelle’s wig off… she’s just my little brown haired sweetie and I didn’t want to change her looks… although I might sometime.

Janie is the one I change the most often… sometimes she’s a redhead, sometimes a blond and she’s even been know to wear a black wig…

Here she is in a few different wigs… one of my favorites first!

Lian is another doll who keeps the same wig on. I once bought a long black wig with bangs and thought it would be fun to change her looks, but she was kind of like Isabelle to me… I didn’t want to change her looks, so I generally always have her in her little black bob. I couldn’t find my pictures of her first day arriving at my house…but she certainly stole my heart…big time! Here are a few pictures of her doing what she does best… looking cute!

Emmie is my newest doll and this is the wig she came in… It called Bea by Monique wigs and I’m not crazy about it, but wanted to show you the wig she came in.

I’ve only made one outfit for Emmie, and here she is in a different wig…

The dolls are 13″ tall and just for comparison, here is Rebecca standing with them… sorry about the nudity… :o)

So that’s basically it… If you’d like to see all the different looks you can get from just a few different sculpts… you should just google “Little Darlings” or “Effner Little Darlings” some time and then click on “images” and see how many come up..You might even see quite a few of mine! You’ll see brown eyes with blonde hair, blue eyes with black hair, red hair and green eyes, and the combinations of eyes, wigs, skin coloring, eyebrows, etc. are just endless. Plus looking at all the different outfits is quite a treat too! It’s amazing when you see a whole page of nothing but pictures of little darlings and realize they all started out with the same (or 4 different sculpts) faces.

Dianna’s website is www.thedollstudio.com if you’d like to visit it… the Little Darlings are called Vinyl Studio dolls and you can see them by clicking on the menu at the left side bar… Each artist has her own creations you can see… and choose from. Most of the artists who paint the dolls for Dianna have their own websites now with all their doll choices on them… Lana’s is lanashandpainteddolls.com.

Well, I hope you enjoyed visiting with my 4 Little Darlings. I love and treasure them very much! EVERYONE should have one of these dolls!
When Dianna named them Little Darlings she was so right!

See you tomorrow,
Blessings, Jeanne

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  1. Charlotte Trayer says:

    Hi Jeanne! Loved seeing all your LDs; as you know, I love them too, and now have seven of them! Yup, it’s true….Seven! I have three #1s, three #2s (two of which are Asian) and a #3, my Heather. Now that I’m up to that number, I need to get them all dressed up and take some more family pictures! I do need to do something with Mariko’s wig first, though–the little ponytails are wanting to pull out, and I suspect the elastic is losing its stretch, as she was used as a model a few years back, I understand. But she does have the sweetest little face!

    Sounds like Janie is going to get some snow to play in after all!! We are of like minds when it comes to snow–I love it, too!–but out here in the Seattle area we don’t get it very often. This past year we had the first white Christmas we’ve had in ten years!

    • Hi Charlotte,
      So you’re one of those blessed with quite a few Little Darlings! I loved your talk of “family pictures! Sounds so cute.
      We got lots of freezing rain last night and it was all bumpy like outside…or so Rebecca told me… George and I stayed inside working on my moms files some more. There wasn’t enough snow to hardly make a snowball, so Janie never made it outside. Don’t tell her we only got a tiny bit of snow.
      Thanks Charlotte,
      Blessings, Jeanne

  2. The “dusty eye” problem isn’t just dust, it’s a problem with the glaze turning slightly sticky and various people have pointed out that “dusting” them increases the problem. Contact the Doll Sudio. They will have you send the dolls back and fix the eyes for you for free — they’ll be back right away and you’ll have the thrill of opening the box again and seeing your Little Darlings for the first time a second time.
    I guess you’ll have to contact Diana, Joyce, and Lana, but the repair doesn’t take long and they are very nice about it.

    • Hi Marilyn,
      I have read about a few dolls that had their eyes smear when touched… Yikes, now I’m afraid to even touch them…
      But thanks for the info about doing it… I might have to consider it sometime…
      I think Emmie will be okay. She’s my newest and I think she probably has the best glaze used on her eyes…
      Thanks Marilyn,
      Blessings, Jeanne

  3. The LDs are truly lovely dolls. I appreciate learning about them and the huge variety one has with them. Aren’t the eyes just “darling”?


    • Hi Becky,
      Yes, the eyes are the darling part of them. I could just look at pictures of them for hours… Such variety!
      Thank you Becky,
      Blessings, Jeanne

  4. Oh, I loved this post! Thank you. I did do a search for Little Darlings images. Wow, so many sweet dolls and outfits. I could look at them for hours.
    I don’t have one myself (“just” 15 American Girl dolls) but I sure love looking at them.
    Have a great day & stay warm.

    • Hi Deborah,
      I just told Becky I too, could look at the pictures of the Little Darlings for hours and hours. They are all so different and sometimes I try to figure out which doll I’d buy from each row! Silly, yes, but fun, YES!
      15 American Girl dolls.. Woohoo! You might be the winner !!!
      Thanks Deborah,
      Blessings, Jeanne

  5. Loved seeing your girls in the snow in their undies. Well mostly. Hee Hee.
    It would be fun to see everyone’s dollies. None of my LDs are appropriately dressed right now, but perhaps it may spur me on to locate something they can wear until I can start sewing for them. I know there must be a lot of varied collections out there and it would be so much fun to see them all. Such as seeing all “15” of Deborah’s American Girl sweeties. Or Marilyn’s new Jess.
    Hope you can take a few snow pictures this morning as I believe you may have some. 🙂

    • Hi Joy,
      Charlotte was talking about a family picture above and I was thinking…I’ll probably never have one…at least one with clothes on… Eep!
      Joy, we got freezing rain last night and until about 4:00 this morning. But instead of waking up to white fluffy snow on the ground, we just had bumpy hard crusty like sleet all over everything. Plus it was extremely cold all day… The wind chill never got over 6 degrees all day… So I never told Janie a thing about going outside… Sorry, but I’ll have to do snow pics on another doll sometime.
      Thanks Joy,
      Blessings, Jeanne

  6. It was neat to see all your Little Darlings together. I can’t get over the eyes…to be able to paint eyes that look like glass is incredible and a talent to be blessed with. I’ve always loved Lian. She is just too cute and wears your outfits so nicely.
    Yes, I am on a waiting list, only my doll will be done by Magalie Dawson or her painters. I don’t mind waiting because I can enjoy my American Girls in the meantime. Still, when I see the clothes you make for the LD girls…ooh…aah…oh dear. I may have to consider an outfit before I get my LD. What I’m afraid of, is she’ll surely need a friend amongst all the American Girls!! I have not heard of the waiting list group. How interesting.
    I just wanted to say, I really understand the dilemma over your mom trying to remember things as well as did she take her daily pills. My mother-in-law was very much the same. We lived closed to her and could check in on her frequently. We’d also call her often to remind her of simple things like what day it was, and yes, we saw that you took your pills etc. I’ll never forget pulling out a beautiful quilt she’d made, just something to talk to her about and she had no idea that she made quilted it. However, with my mother, her dementia moved fast and she lived many years quiet and silent and within herself. That was the hardest to see, but I know who she was with all that time.
    It sounds like a few of your readers have experienced dementia with their loved ones. It isn’t easy so I’m glad Jeanne, you have family to help.

    • Thank you, Paula,
      Their eyes are so incredibly small too…less than 1/4″ across… That’s tiny when you’re painting them… I can’t even imagine…
      I have had a few customers buy dresses for a doll before they got theirs… I guess they couldn’t wait… :o)
      I hope your Little Darling comes soon!!!
      I finally think my mom has gotten to where she can take the pills now… She was sure she hadn’t taken them, but I assured her she had if they were gone. She didn’t believe me… But I think she does now.. She still called me this afternoon and asked what day tomorrow will be. When I told her Saturday, she said “will I take some pills then too?” I told her yes, she’d take them and she said ok and hung up.. Maybe it will work… : o )
      Thanks Paula,
      Blessings, Jeanne

  7. What a wonderful post today! I loved seeing all the different dolls and their dresses. You are so creative to make so many different styles for the many dolls. Each outfit is so different from the last. Lucky girls to have their own seamstress. You’ve finally got me sewing again, this time for Ten Ping so I can finally get on to a Little Darling outfit. Thanks again for the tutorial on Little Darlings.

    • Thanks so much Susette,
      I’m glad you enjoyed seeing my girls! I hope you finished Ten Ping’s outfit… We want pictures, you know…of Ten Ping’s set and then your aliterate Darlings outfit!
      Thank you, Susette,
      Blessings, Jeanne

  8. I just loved seeing all your LD’s lined up in a row to show off their cuteness and individuality! I don’t think I could pick just one if I had to! I see now the differences when they are side by side, Jeanne. I can’t get over how the eyes look so lifelike! Are those real fake eyelashes? What a question, but what I mean is, those upper eyelashes aren’t just painted on, are they? They look so real!
    Now, I am mixed up again! You have Janie up for the current auction? So she has short red hair in the auction, and has the curly red hair above? How many wigs do you have for these dolls! I’m more confused that ever!!! I’d better stop before I confuse everyone else, but I have to say your LD’s Are the cutest little things.!!

    • Hi Linda,
      The eyes are painted AND the eyelashes too!!! I think the paintbrush the artists use have to be the size of a pin…the eyelashes and eyebrow lines are thinner than an ink pen line.

      Linda, I probably have 25 or 30 doll wigs… Different sizes for my different girls. The Little darlings and Nyssa take a size 7/8, Ellowyne and Elin take a 6/7, and ten Ping takes a size 5/6. It’s just a fun thing to have different wigs to change your dolls looks.

      Thanks Linda…I’m glad you enjoyed my girl talk today!
      Blessings, Jeanne

  9. I agree that they are just the prettiest little dolls. I have four also, and I really don’t have a desire to get anymore. Like you, I have three of the number 1 sculpts and one of the number 2 sculpt. It’s always amazing to me how different they can look just by changing the wigs. I don’t often sew for mine as I don’t enjoy making the tiny clothes as much as I do the bigger ones. You have made some lovely outfits for yours over the years!

    • Hi Carolyn,
      They are just the most fun dolls to own, aren’t they? I love sewing for them…it sounds like you used to. Not everyone likes the smaller dolls, but I think they are the absolute perfect size!
      Thanks Carolyn…for your compliments on their dresses I’ve made over the years.
      Blessings, Jeanne

  10. Oh my, I just love looking at your amazing LD’s over and over again. They have the most enchanting faces and like everyone says their eyes are just gorgeous. Now I’m getting LD fever! I have added my name to Magalie Dawson’s list about a month ago. I never received any kind of confirmation back – do you know if that is normal and I will just get an email from her one day or should I email again? I’m a newbie and not sure how the lists works.
    Thanks for including the artist info … maybe I should be on 2 lists. Yep, I think LD fever is setting in.

    I am jealous of your 64 degree day, we had 50 yesterday and now it’s 14. I just knew we would pay for the beautiful, long, warm fall we had. Well, it’s a good time to reorganize the sewing room.

    • Hi Leigh,
      Thanks for your compliments on my dolls today. I’m glad you enjoyed looking at them.

      Congrats on getting on Magalies list to get an LD. Each doll artist has different ways of doing things…so I’m not certain the way Magalies does hers. You might email her again and just say you hadn’t heard back and was just double checking.

      We had 64 yesterday, but the freezing rain hit last night and we never got above 20 degrees all day and the wind was blowing crazy hard today. The wind chill never got over 6 degrees today…
      No sewing organizing, but some sewing, nonetheless…you’ll see tomorrow.
      Blessings, Jeanne

  11. Dorothy in PA says:

    Dear Jeanne, Thank you so much for sharing your Little Darlings. I only have one, as you know – Sculpt 1. Her name is Charlotte Noelle. I am on a waiting list for a second one. I have bought several outfits for her as I don’t sew.
    I cannot get enough of looking at the Little Darlings. They make me happy!
    I can envision “sister” dresses for your little cuties in the Summer. I see each one a different color with some sort of different trim on each.
    I hope you get your snow.

    • Thank you Dorothy,
      Yes, sweet little Charlotte Noelle… What a cutie and now she’s going to have a sister! You will really love having two!!! They do make us happy, don’t they? I’m glad you enjoy yours like I do mine.
      Blessings, Jeanne

  12. Anne Johnson says:

    I’m late again, Jeanne, but maybe you are up late sewing and watching the blizzard! This was a very charming doll parade of Little Darlings, and I appreciated seeing your girls all together and reading all the details about them. You and other LD owners always speak so adoringly about their dolls. That is the main reason why I finally splurged and joined Magalie’s waiting list, receiving my first and only LD, Bella, last year. She did not disappoint and was well worth the wait! They truly are beautiful dolls, and I agree with your sister Cindy that they are the most realistic dolls I have ever seen. The painters are indeed skilled, especially when it comes to the eyes. They have so much expression. I am thrilled to be an LD momma, but will probably not get another and will just love on this one!

    Did I glimpse some pattern pieces in one of your pictures of Janie in her box? Do you have a surprise for us?!

    It is snowing sideways here, but I’m not telling you anything new, as you received this wintery weather in Illinois before we did here in Ohio. We have no definition to our driveway, and the cars on the street are buried. I am thankful to be inside where it is toasty warm. I wonder what the morning will bring? Perhaps you will have another doll parade to distract us all. Stay warm and well, Jeanne!

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