Dioramas: Manninkins

Ad-Free Blog
Making Diorama Mannikins for Vickie's Vintage.

I finally got my work spaces and all the storage sorted in the basement. The large craft room is still stacked high with labeled totes, but now I have a work table in there as well as two in the doll room, which are actually clear and organized. This means I can move back and forth between multiple projects while things dry or wait for additional steps.


My adorable mannikin for Vickie's took 
a nose-dive off a table and needed to be replaced. I received a Valentine Prize from In The Pink boardhost group of a tuxedo and a wedding gown...and knew I had to make a guy mannikin, as well a gal. I used the basic playline blond Ken.


And the gal I chose has the rubbery bend legs and the slimmer body. Hopefully she will fit all the outfits I use on the formal level of Vickie's. Since it's vintage clothes there, I need to be able to fit all eras of clothes. I did the hair in a simple up style, perfect for wedding attire and hoped the paint would work on it.


I cleaned the dolls completely with alcohol and let it dry. This removes any grease or dirt from the plastic surfaces. Using some gray craft paint designed for all surfaces, I gave them each a light coat of gray. The hair took the paint pretty well. Let completely dry at least an hour.


I did a bunch of touch-ups after a second coat. I'm using some EverAfter stands for them, because they are small and are gray to match the flooring 
on the second floor of Vickie's. 

 My prizes from ITP are in the new Barbie packaging. This package size is quite nice, and the sets come with accessories. The smaller ones, you can't even see exactly what you are buying. They will be re-useable for storage. Are they better for the planet than the old boxes??


While I was painting and touching up, I couldn't help but think of the movie: "Death Becomes Her" with two aging competitive characters/friends, Meryl Streep and Goldie Hawn. That hysterically funny film followed two women, who find eternal life, except their bodies need help--lots of help...and they end up spray painting themselves to touch up the...'flaws.' 


It's totally too funny.  Bruce Willis plays the frazzled husband plastic surgeon, and Isabella Rossellini plays the mysterious owner of the 'potion' for eternal life. 

I may give these two a sealing spray, if we ever get warm weather. 


Here is a close-up of the outfits.


Sweet and cute short gown...I think they will look divine, after the paint cures. 

Thank you In ThePink:

"In the Pink" is a Mattel Barbie forum with shared photos, info, dioramas. And FUN! I honestly wouldn't have made it through this year without In the Pink(boardhost) and Doll Divas (boardhost)

Painting Tips: Always Allow at least an hour between coats when painting on hard surfaces. Then let the paint 'cure' for a day or two, if damp conditions-longer. Remember the acrylic paint may still be wet, trapped under the skin, making it vulnerable to chips, scrapes, or scratches.

To do this project you will need:
Alcohol and paper towels
Q-tips to clean ridges and faces
Large and small soft synthetic brushes.
2oz size of Apple Barrel Multi surface paint
(spray sealer---I'll use a satin or matte acrylic sealer when the weather warms up to 60 degrees, LOL)

You'll have to wait until Vickie's switches over for the Spring Wedding season to see them dressed. 

Have you ever made or used a doll for 
something other than a doll?

Thanks for viewing and feel free to ask me any questions or inquiries, and I will get back to you. 



  1. Congrats on your win, cute outfits! Love the mannikin, I have 1:6 scale female dress forms, but the male is a great idea! Also like the neutral gray... Big snowstorm today, I'm looking for something to work on myself:@)

  2. The manikins are awesome! They look very realistic, and I'm glad that you have a male and female, cool!!!

  3. Now I see how the Mannequins were Created... very clever idea Sandi! A Friend made me a OOAK Set of my Favs from Barbies... she Created a Frida Kahlo Doll and a Yul Brynner Doll from The King And I... I just Love them, a lot of work went into the Transformations of regular Dolls to make my Iconic OOAK ones for a lovely Sweet Gift.


Thanks so much for each and every comment, and I will try and answer any questions you may have.