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Australian Doll Supplies

Paint choices for reborn dolls

Ink or Stencil Paint

Good to play around with for your first attempt on a practice doll. I did not really take to them, but reborning is a very personal thing.

One thing I found with the Stencil Paint, is that it seems to harden and become unworkable as it ages. By added a little Eucalyptus Oil, the Stencil Paint becomes very workable and better than new, in my opinion.

Oil Paint

paint for reborn dolls

Easy to use and gives a nice result for a simple reborn project. A good colour for blushing, is Alizarin Crimson - I use oil paint by Winsor and Newton. It doesn’t dry quickly, which gives you time to get it right. On the other hand, the slow drying can be a disadvantage if you want a quick result. Also, over time, the oil will gradually be absorbed into the vinyl and you will need to touch up the blushing on the doll with more paint. Not necessarily a problem, as the dolls need cleaning regularly and it is very easy to touch up with the oil paint.

You do need to wear gloves when working with oil paint. The paints can/do have dangerous colouring agents and if you use a turpentine based thinner, you are exposing yourself to very nasty and dangerous fumes. I am particularly badly affect by turpentine products. I substitute eucalyptus oil for turpentine based thinners and have had good results. Once again, some people may be badly affected by eucalyptus oil, so it is best to work in a ventilated area. I’ve heard you can also use lavender oil, but I haven’t tried this, as I can’t stand the smell of it.

Acrylic Paint

acrylic paint for reborning

Acrylic paint is very difficult to get a good result with. I feel it is probably the way to go, but it requires a lot of mastering and I haven’t personally mastered it. I feel it is a lot safer to use, although once again, I think it is wise to wear gloves in case the colourings in the paint have some nasties in them.

I use Jo Sonya’s Warm White acrylic paint for the tips of nails. I find I can get a better result than with the Heat Set paints for the nail tips.

If you want to try reborning with acrylics, I strongly advise you to mix your paints to a very dilute consistency and use a retarder (delays paint drying time) to give you more time to work with the paints, as acrylics dry very quickly. An alternative to a commercial paint retarder, is glycerine from the supermarket. I don’t know what commercial retarders are made from, but glycerine should be safe to work with, for most people. Glycerine should be diluted 5 parts water, 1 part glycerine, to use as a retarder.

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