There are many steps involved in the creation of Xenis designs. Each doll goes through a design process that includes sketching, sculpting and mocking up many samples.
Once a sample is completed we can begin creating the finished pieces.
Each design starts with a sketch. The sketch provides a guideline to follow and a goal to achieve. The transformation from a 2D drawing to a 3D doll can be amazing.
An original sculpt out of clay is made for every design.
Depending on the design, we will sometimes need several sculpts. These can include head, hands, feet, limbs and/or torso.
Once the sculpt is finished a resin cast is made. Resin is much more durable than clay and is necessary for the next steps.
Once the sculpts are cast in resin they are ready to be turned into wooden dolls.
The carving machine is manually run and roughly cuts out the pieces from blocks of wood.
Machine is easier to picture as a giant key cutter. The model is placed under a stylus, and four blocks of wood are placed under rotating cutters. As you follow the model the same shape is cut out in blocks.
The models that come off the machine are quite rough and will require hours of hand sanding.
Once removed from the carving machine the pieces require an amazing amount of hand work.
Using rotary carving tools, chisels and sand paper. Each piece is sanded down to a smooth finish with no detail forgotten.
Once sanded the heads are ready to be sealed and painted. We use a beautiful sealer that gives the wood a very warm feeling.
All the faces are painted with very light washes to allow the beauty of the wood show through.
All pieces are now ready for stain and any finishing touches. Many of the stains are mixed in house to guarantee we get the perfect colour.
(The Little Tramp is almost ready to be assembled. He is just waiting for his hands and shoes!)
Many of our dolls have music boxes hidden in their stomachs.
Putting the finishing touches on some pieces. Tania cobbling buckles onto Epic St. Nicholas’ boots.
Tinkerbells are patiently waiting for their wings to be attached.
A partially sanded pair of shoes next to a finished pair of shoes.