Friday, January 13, 2012

Details of a Rosie head surgery

I got some questions about details on altering a regular Barbie head to fit the Rosie ODonnell body, so I grabbed another spare head and took some closer, clearer pictures.  I'm bad about forgetting to take pictures while I do something, so maybe this will make the process easier to follow.  You have to start with one of the bigger headed barbies, otherwise the head will look too small.  I used Raquelle because the skin match is so good, but any big headed playline barbie head will fit. 
 I'll assume most of you have beheaded a Barbie before.  If not, How to Play with Barbies has a great tutorial that shows you what the inside of a Barbie head looks like (let's have a minute for the Pop Life Christie that was sacrificed).  So to make a regular barbie head fit Rosie, you have to remove part of her throat (the visible underside of her head) and part of the column of rubber inside her head. 
Where the green line is drawn is where you will be cutting.  You're basically cutting a crescent moon shape from her throat.  Stick the exacto knife in far enough to go through the rubber column in her head, OR shave the neck down and then saw the column out--neatness isn't really an issue here.  You can always neaten up the cut later, OR ignore it since it's under her neck.
Mine came out in two pieces, and it really looks like my finger in this picture, but the thing at the end of my thumbnail is the half of the plastic column with the piece of her throat at the top.  What you pull out of her head will look something like this, but it may be in pieces.
This is what the inside of her head should look like now.  The back of her head/neck is untouched, but the front has part of the skin removed and the front half of the rubber column inside her head.
Here you can see the difference between the new Rosie head and an uncut barbie.
This shows Barbie's carved out head sitting on Rosie's neck.  This head could probably stand to be shaved down a bit more, and is obviously the wrong color.  I also wrapped a bit of duct tape around the neck post to give the head something to grip to. 

And of course, here's Rosie's actual new head, the lovely Raquel. 

Now go forth and re-head those Rosies!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

New find and a head for "Rosie"

Went to Walmart for cleaning supplies and took a quick jaunt down the doll aisle.  I was looking for another Raquelle to separate into body and head.  I found Raquelle (last one) for 10 and some change, so I went ahead and got her.  I also saw something interesting in an unexpected place--apparently there's a new "Barbie Mermaid Tale" movie coming back, and they have a variation on the face of one of the dolls I've never seen, so I grabbed her too.  I put a different head on her body and will give it to my kids.  Don't have a body for her yet, but I really like her face.

The Raquelle, meanwhile, has come home and her body given to a Model Muse who is over there showing off and shouting "Woohoo, look at this!" to all the other poor Model Muses who are still stuck in one position.  Raquelle's head became sort of an experiment, but she turned out great.
I love the Rosie O'Donnell Barbie's body size, but hateHATE the Rosie head (I don't dislike Rosie, but the huge teeth on that head are very offputting).  So I've looked for other options for her head, with two problems: 1.  Her neck is bigger than a regular body, so you can't fit a normal sized barbie head on it.

  2. Because her neck and body are bigger, some barbie-sized heads look way too small.  Luckily, the newer "big headed" barbies are a decent size for her, so the only thing I had to do was adapt the neck hole. 

The first few tries involved splitting a barbie head up the back--which works but will not stay without some gluing.  I have one Rosie hybrid that I did that with, and while I like her, the neck looks sloppy.  But the other day I had the idea, instead of making room at the back of the neck hole, why not make the room at the front of the neckhole?  I used a practice head:

This is the mark around which I will carve with my exacto.

This is after the cutting. 
This is not the same head (this is raquelle) but you can see the size of the holes compared to the holes on a normal barbie head. 
 This is the practice head on the body--it finally sits on, but is obviously too small.
And here is Raquelle on the body.  Great color match AND the right size.  I'm really tickled.  Not a bad day when I manage to finish a doll AND get a new victim, er, doll.