Freeze is coming

I took these sometime late last year when we got our first (and pretty much only) snows. I had a whole story to go with them but ehh, I’ve forgotten most of it. Main point was that the winter came and Naenia was forced to abandon her tail and don some legs until spring. She loathes winter with every fiber of her being as she also hates wearing clothes. But now that it’s cold, she has to put on layers and layer of clothes to keep warm. Can’t win here. xD She’s originally from the tropics and just can’t handle the cold, whereas my siren will just dive down to the bottom and hibernate where the temperature stays at a nice and steady 4°C.

I had two wigs for her in this shoot as neither is perfect. The dark brown one is a bit dead from the lake visits and the red one is not styled properly yet, so they both make an apprearance as I was figuring out which to use.

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Unassembling and stringing a (Withdoll) BJD

I still have photos to post. I promise I’ll get to at least the one shoot I did in the early winter when there was still hope of… getting an actual winter. We haven’t had snow for most of this season and it’s been warm and wet and just generally uninspiring. I have those photos edited and re-sized so those I can get up. But before I do that, I’ll post these guide-video-things I took yesterday.

Just uhh, be warned, I don’t have a proper video camera. I can’t see my viewfinder from in front of the camera and my DSLR does not have an autofocus when shooting. So some things aren’t quite in focus or properly centered. Putting on the head of the doll was cut out cause, yeah, went off the frame. Still, made these cause there were some people in the Withdoll thread on DoA having trouble changing the new body’s hands and I’ve seen some general mentions to not knowing how to string the body (or being afraid of not knowing how to if taken apart). General rule of thumb: keep track of the body parts and put them back the same way they were on. Pay close attention to elbow/knee nuggets especially.

The body is pretty generic in the way it’s strung. I have a few ooold stringing tutorials with photos & text that could be used as a reference just as well (though apparently only in Finnish). Mostly the differences in stringing comes from whether the doll is strung from neck to feet or foot to foot with a separate torso string. Sometimes the strings cross in the pelvis to make it appear as if the legs are strung from foot-to-foot, though they’re not. But all of these are things that are not hard to adjust to once you know how to string at least one doll.
There are exceptions, of course, like fairyline dolls from Fairyland where it seems that most limbs are strung separately and just snapped on in the torso. Honestly, wouldn’t wan to have to change the string for one like that… seems like a lot more work and annoying fiddling with things.

Anyway. These videos are not great, I have no video editing software other than ffmpeg and ehh, would’ve taken me ages to do anything fancy with a command-line only program. xD Still, they get the message across, I hope. Turn on captions for some extra commentary and use the shortcuts in the video description, if needed.

These are named like it’s only this specific body that they can be used for, but like I said earlier: most BJDs work with the same principle and you can definitely use these for other dolls too. I made sure to assemble the body so that it’s easy to see how to keep the tension even and not get one foot/arm loose and the other really tight.

The bottom line is: stringing a doll should not be hard. It shouldn’t be a chore that leaves you in sweat, blood and tears. If it is (has hapened to me too: I’m looking at you Souldoll and your Zeniths), the string needs to be changed, asap! You should always be able to do it by yourself, at the very least by holding the doll down with your foot and pulling with one hand with the other ready to insert a hook or a stopper. It shouldn’t take up all your strength. If it does, the string is either A) too tight or B) just not good. It should have a good elasticity (not too much!) and tension.
For the correct length of the elastic, it varies a bit from doll to doll and the thickness of it. I personally try to put in as thick a string I can fit without it interfering with the joint movement. As for the length: I make it long enough to show from both knees and both elbows before it’s pulled. Or at the very least have it reach the knee/elbow joint. Then it should have enough elasticity to be pulled all the way to the wrist/ankle and still be pinched between your fingers or held in place with a string puller long enough to hook the hand/foot in place.