It’s time again for an interview with an upcoming and very talented OOAK designer. His name is Tsuki Chan (Christanto Juni) and he comes from Indonesia. I first spotted his designs on Flickr and immediately noticed the beauty of his gowns and other creations. He has graciously agreed to talk to me about his life, his designs and his passion for dolls. I hope you’ll enjoy this interview as much as I have.
1. Please tell my readers some things about you.
Firstly at all, I am Tsuki with Original name Christanto Juni, (Yes, I am a boy! Many people thought I was a girl!) from Indonesia. I am a fashion doll dress maker, to doll size 11 “. I always try to make excellent dresses for my dolls. Not easy, but I still able to survive among many dolls dress makers here. I come from an normal family and I began to like Dolls when I was a child, but because of the influence of gender I could not get any until I could buy them myself in high school.
2. How did you discover your passion for couture doll gowns?
Well, I must say this work actually came suddenly, it happens when I had a Barbie doll and I got bored with her dress, always “pink” and something like that. Coincidentally my aunt is a tailor so I decided to make a dress for my doll with her help. Then I slowly learned how to make doll clothes by copying Barbie original dress patterns, kept learning with a little help from my aunt’s patterns, as well as a little help of the internet. Then I realized that this is my passion, a hobby as well as my pleasure, so I continue to make doll clothes to this day.
3. You must have an inspiration, a muse. Who is it?
A person who has inspired me is my mother because she was the first to support me. Yes, there was a lot of opposition in my family (we are mostly boys) and my father was especially angry and embarrassed, but due to my mother’s encouragement, I keep doing what I love.
4. What are your favorite materials that you use for your creations?
My favorite materials for dresses are:
1. For fabrics: I love the Duchess Satin and Shantung, the fabrics are not as difficult as Satin fabric and the other to be sewn. I also enjoy using a variety of fabric lace, brocade and etc.
2. For the embellishment: I always use a variety of mini sequins, seed beads and various Swarovski. You will always see this thing in my dresses.
3. Zippers. For a while now, I prefer to use it because the clothes will look better with them than with the snap.
5. Who are your clients and what makes them buy your creations?
The buyer of my dresses are mostly doll collectors from Indonesia. Until now, my creations are still not available in worldwide shipping. (Sorry for that news ) The things which makes them buy my clothes is my neatness and the way I beaded the dress, most of my costumer were happy with my beading. (I also think I am less creative than others, but Thank God, I still always have client waiting for me.)
6. What is your absolute favorite creation all time? The one you are most proud of.
My all time favorite creation is an evening gown that I made from Robert Best, Pink Tribute Barbie. I thought about the patterns for a whole day but then had some problems in making the actual dress so I had to ride around town looking for an embroidery place to help me because most of them refused me because the dress was too small. Thankfully I found a place that was willing to do help me.
7. Tell me a bit about how you create a look for a doll. Do you start with a sketch?
When I plan to make a dress, I would start to think about the materials and the color, whether it will good and match. Then I think about a doll suitable to wear the creation and what is the suitable hairdo for her. I never really sketch. I just think in my little brain and then draw and scribble. I am not really good at sketching . Then I will start to make the patterns just like making human dresses.
8. What dolls do you usually like to work with and what face and body mold do you prefer for your doll models?
I always loved Barbies and have some plans regarding the Kurhn dolls right now. I like Mackie, Goddess, Lara, Louboutin and Lea facemold because their makeup are usually great for make over and, at this time, I only work with Model Muse body. Hopefully I can work on FR, Silkstones and other 11″ dolls someday.
9. What other doll designers do you admire? 10. As a conclusion: tell you what design you are working on or are planing to work on.
The doll designers I admire are: Ninimomo. Oh God, look at their beading and make over, they are totally amazing OOAK artists. I always love their creations in no matter what, I just LOVE them! They are my inspiration. Other artist I love are Magia2000 for their repaint and Madonna dolls, Artist Creations for their OOAKs and right now starting to love Cho:lo.
10. As a conclusion: tell you what design you are working on or are planing to work on.
I am dreaming about working at Mattel and becoming one of their designer! It will be so nice, I think. Hopefully I can work there. Hahaha. Now, after graduating my school I started to be interested in making human dress. I’ve been learning how to make human clothes and I plan to continue my studies in fashion school so that I could be a both a real life and a doll designer!
I hope, my dear, that all your dreams will come true and I also hope that soon your design will be available world wide. i would love to own one of your creations.
In case you haven’t seen her on my Facebook page, here are the IRL images of the new 2014 Silkstone Bride Barbie from the Atelier series.
The images are from the Spanish doll shop Juguetes Damaso and you can already purchase her for 119,99 € ($165.87). What do you think about her? I know there are a lot of collectors that are not very impressed with this year’s Silkstone dolls but I so love their vintage look. This doll is a must for me.
I’ve been drooling over the images from each of Doll Attic‘s auctions and have always wanted to purchase thier catalogues but never got to do that because I just hate the high shipping rates from the US to my country, Romania. Plus I get to pay VAT when I go and pick up my packages that come from outside the EU. Grrrrr!
But now I’ve discovered that you can download their catalogues in a PDF format. YEY!!! For $25 you can now drool all over your tablet or keyboard. Lol! Order your copy HEREand check out the covers of their latest auction catalogue below. Gosh, just look at all those beauties.
It’s time to vote! The Luncheon Enseble Barbie has been used, so far, for two doll conventions so I was curious to know which variation of the doll you preffer: the original, the PFDF 2013 variation or the GAW 2014 variation?
You can vote below or leave a comment in the comments section.
My dear, dear friend Muhammed Bagci from Fashion Doll World has shared with me some great info and images of the upcoming playline 2014 dolls including the new Glam Luxe dolls, Fab Life series, Barbie and sisters series and others. Here’s a list of dolls:
Barbie My Fab Family:
- Barbie & Sisters Surf 2-Packs: Barbie/Stacie, Skipper/Chelsea
- Barbie & Sisters Comping Trip: Barbie, Skipper, Stacie, Chelsea (3x)
- Barbie On the Go Playsets
- Barbie & Sisters Winter Fun: Barbie, Skipper, Stacie, Chelsea (3x)
Barbie and the Secret door:
- Alexis singing dolls – Friends Summer (Mermaid) and Teresa (fairy) dolls
- Prince doll – Princess Malucia doll
- Budget Versions of Alexa, the Mermaid and the Fairy
- Fairy Horse
- Smaller Horses assortment (2x)
- Princess Castle (small)
- Princess Castle (big)
Barbie Fab Like I:
- Barbie Curl doll
- Barbie Glitter Designer doll
- Barbie Fashion Design Maker
- Barbie I can be Rockstar & Buisness woman
Barbie Fab Life II:
- Barbie Glam Luxe Barbie (2x) Raquelle, Midge (Nikki?)
- Barbie Party Fashionistas Barbie, Teresa, Raquelle -Barbie Party Fashionistas 2-Pack
- Barbie Fashionistas Barbie (2x), Teresa
- Barbie Malibu Avee Playsets (3x)
I love the playsets with the boat and the sledge. Also the new Glam Luxe dolls look nice but I think they can do better with those.
I believe most of you have already seen the new Barbie Look dolls for 2014 that have been previewed at the GAW convention. I’m sorry to be so late in posting this but I’m not feeling very well. My back is soar, my little one is kicking all day long and hiting some very important organs (lol) so I just lay around all day doing nothing…
Anyway, back to the dolls. The image below has been floating around the internet yesterday so I just cleaned it a bit. Btw, I can’t find the original poster of the image. If that’s you, please let me know so I can credit you.
I love the girls and love their face molds. This is such an elegant collection. Kudos to you mr. Bill Greening for creating these wonderful dolls. Speaking of Bill, at the convention luncheon there was a Q&A session with Bill and Linda and here are the answeres and the questions via Alison from The Fashion Doll Review.
Does Mattel have plans to make the dolls easier to remove from their boxes?
Basically, yes. Bill is a collector himself, so he understands that having hair sewn into the box really does damage the doll. So he is doing his best to remedy this issue as best he can. The sew strips have been eliminated, and most items are tacked in with as little as necessary. He realizes they still need work, but they are working on it.
What was the inspiration behind the glamour wizard of oz collection?
The design team jokes about the wizard of oz line being an initiation for being a “real” designer at Mattel. As it was the 75th anniversary for Oz, they wanted to breath a little life into the collection. Linda loves how the Glam Witch came out.
What’s the deal with vintage repro?
With the prices of vintage having dropped so much, the need for vintage reproductions have really dropped as well, but they do have some in the works. Bill was very pleased with Skipper’s sales, and of course has a brunette Skipper coming soon, plus Allan on the way, too. They also have additional vintage-inspired items planned as well, such as the Holiday Hostess line.
How many dolls do you design per year, and are you sad when they don’t all get produced?
The team is much, much smaller than it has been in years (Robert Best is the leader) with three designers working together now, and they make about 80-90 dolls per year. They joke among themselves about having a desk where “good dolls go to die,” for those dolls that won’t get produced. Bill was sad about a pivotal disco series that didn’t get produced between Jazz Baby and Pop Life, mind thinks he might bring them to auction one year.
What was your first doll to be produced?
Bill’s first doll was Cool Clips Barbie, which was produced and sold at FAO Schwarz.
Which designers or celebrities would you like to work with or would you like to make as a celebrity doll?
Linda said, Chanel or Madonna, Jackie O. Bill said, Kylie Minogue!
With the Hunger Games dolls, why is Effie wearing that dress, and not one of the more fancy event dresses?
It turns out that Lionsgate had to license Effie’s fashions from McQueen, as she is wearing McQueen fashions in the film. So to make these dolls would require a double license, which would require even more time. Dolls usually require at least one year to produce, and Mattel only had 6 months for these, as the film was in theaters very soon. So that’s is why that dress was chosen!
I wish people had asked them about the DOTW series. We want them back!!
On the Coleccionistas de Barbie en España group I found today the HQ image of the Atelier Mariage Silkstone Barbie 2014 page from the Mattel Barbie Collector 2014 catalogue. This catalogue was also presented at the PFDF 2014 and it shows the outline of the bride in the Atelier Silkstone 2014 line plus a short description of her.
With a very European style, this doll wears a lavish wedding gown, decorated with embroidery and crystals on the bodice and the petticoat. She also wears a diadem and a delicate veil. To complete the set she’s also wearing white gloves, a white placket and traditional bridal bouquet.
She sounds lovely! Can’t wait to see detailed pictures of her.
Mario and Gianni from Magia 2000 are featured in the lastest edition of Haute Doll Magazine with their amazing creations. Check out the interview below and be sure to go through the entire magazine. It’s really wonderfull.