OMFG, so sorry folks I’ve neglected to update this blog for so long!
I am more active on Instagram these days.
Anyway! I thought I would show you how I’ve made this BJD mod of a tunnel/gouge/gauche/plug (I actually have no idea what it’s called!) earring/piercing on my doll. Please note that this modification does not involve altering the sculpt in any way and can be completely reversed.
There are several methods of doing this, the more popular one is perhaps using an epoxy based clay and sculpt an actual earlobe extension using it. The good thing about epoxy is that you can sculpt directly on the ear and it hardens by way of chemical reaction even if you sculpt under water. You can also sand and carve and even attach more clay on top once it is hard. If you want to go down this path, I suggest using the Miliput Superfine in white. However, I was concerned that I would have a hard time getting rid of the epoxy clay once it’s on as that stuff is pretty strong. I would need to scrape it off and in the process I may accidentally scrape the actual head. A method my friend Elfgutz suggested to take off epoxy is to heat it up using heat gun, but I haven’t tried this yet so I don’t know (*to experiment on another day).
So what I did was pretty simple. I owe this to LifeLike81, itsfansea and pocketsizedvampirepandah who helped discussed and showed me the idea.
Step 1: It’s preferable to do this modification BEFORE you paint the faceup on. But it is possible to do it after as well. I used an eyelet for the tunnel/gouge earring. It’s cheap and pretty easy to get 🙂
Step 2: Take a sculpey clay and mold the earlobe around the gouge. You may want to mix your clay into a colour that is quite close to your resin’s colour but please be mindful that some clay may darken a bit after they are baked. I used 2 brands of clay: Kato Clay in “white” and Sculpey Living Doll in whatever default colour they have. I mixed it in a ratio of 1 white+2 flesh, this for some reason seemed to match my Venitu pretty well, who is in Oriental Pureskin colour.
Step 3: Once I had like an earlobe shape I basically stuck this onto my doll’s ear and continued to refine the shape. I didn’t cover the ear with glad wrap plastic because I wanted to get the shape to fit as close as possible. I didn’t use any corn starch powder either like some people have done, but instead to stop it from sticking onto the ear I just used a bit of water (I wet the side of the ear that it’s going to go on and this seems to prevent the clay from sticking too well to the resin). Also I stuck this several times in the fridge as I sculpt along. Cooling the clay hardens it a bit so it helps me keep the shape when I don’t want my fingers pushing too much on it.
Step 4: Once I got the desired shape, I removed it from the ear and carefully placed my ear piece on a loose tile. Let any excess water dry then I baked the clay for about 10 minutes at 150 degrees (fan forced oven).
Oh I also made several pieces so I have some to choose from.
Step 5: Then quite simply, I used PVA or Wood glue to stick the earpiece to the doll head. You may notice that the lobe hangs a bit low, but that’s because as part of my character design (he wears a specific type of piercing, some bullshit symbols that only mean something to him yadda yadda yadda — I don’t know) I am having double earrings on that lobe so I need all that space above the gouge.
I used the glue to not just stick the lobe on, but also to fill in the gap between it and the doll’s real ear, kind of like mortaring bricks?
Step 6: Once the glue was dried and I reached quite a good seal, I covered the metal piece with craft tac (see below). This is so when I do my faceup, I don’t end up spraying the metal with my sealant.
Here it is midway during the faceup painting. The metal is nicely protected from any spraying.
And we’re done! Because I couldn’t find anything that suited, I made the “X” earring above it out of a black cardboard which I glazed with gloss after I cut it into the shape I wanted.