Crafting a Proposal (part 1): Acquiring the matryoshka
Crafting a Proposal (part 2): Sketching out a plan

After I had decided on my theme (Japan) and had briefly sketched out my concepts (remember this was my first time doing ANYTHING like this) I decided to flesh out the ideas a bit more. Things like deciding what colours to use and what order to lay them down in for it to look more polished. Things like embellishment, which I thought could play a cute role in the geisha doll, in particular.

So, in order of size I decided to do:

Geisha, Mount Fuji, sumo wrestler, Hello Kitty and two text-based dolls (...but more on that later)

Because it was the largest and the exterior stacking doll, I was able to put the most embellishment on the geisha themed doll. I visited a few stationers here at home; Notables and Evergreen Stationers as I had seen origami and washi paper there before. (Note, there is also a large selection, some direct from Japanese suppliers, on Etsy)

Washi paper is a bit more pulpy and sturdier than other papers, and it comes in amazing designs and colours. I thought it might make the most convincing kimono for my geisha kokeshi/matryoshka.

The sheets were huge! And expensive, considering how little I was going to be using. But the paper was lovely and I know I’ll find a use for it later. I got two designs, but ended up using a cherry blossom paper design.

This is a small section of a piece 12" x 36"

After a stop at Michaels, I picked out my coordinating colours; blue, pink, black, buttercream, white and grey. I also got three brushes, and some sealant.

Before I painted, though, I had to sketch things out on the dolls.

My bonsai tree sketch

My bonsai tree sketch

And the Hello Kitty sketch

Hello Kitty sketch

Up next…the painting, and some last minute design changes.