Researching sideshow mermaids was an interesting little task. A quick google mostly made reference to the eponymous Fiji Mermaid. A macabre splicing of a monkeys head and torso, sewn to a fish’s tail. I fancied something a bit more glamorous so kept on searching and began to uncover stories of simple illusions involving a trick of perspective. A girl made up in finest mermaid garb would position herself behind a small tank and appear to interact with rocks and plants within it. When viewed from the right position, she appears to be submerged in the briny deep.
Having always had a bit of a thing for mermaids it seemed the ideal excuse to get out my sequins and start sewing a little aquatic siren of my own, here she is!
Bryony Tide has never seen the sea. She grew up in a mining town in the Midlands on a diet of Bovril and artichokes, with nothing much to do except play tricks on the neighbour’s elderly and frankly quite flatulent dog. She despises water and hates even to get her face wet in the shower, the consequence of which being a constantly Bovril stained face. Ironic then that she secured a job in the sideshow as their resident fake mermaid.
And so, I find myself halfway through my sideshow ten-in-one. What a motley crew they make:
Hello there fabric fans! I hope you’re all having a lovely Easter, albeit a little chilly here in the UK. We’ve had a restful weekend here at Monster HQ, and Mr Monster has been beavering away producing a logo for my new line of creations. I’m planning on having them made up into labels to sew to each little Miss.
I had a little trip to the craft shop yesterday and like the Magpie that I am, I gathered some lovely, shiny, pretty, and colourful bits and pieces for some forthcoming members of the Dollface Collection so keep your eyes peeled over the next few days.
Strongmen were a mainstay of many a turn of the century sideshow, much rarer however was the strongwoman. There were several of note, often lifting men above their heads or offering a sum of money to any man who could beat them in a weight-lifting competition, as well as plenty of other odd displays of their inordinate strength. I figured my Ten-in-One wouldn’t be complete without a glamorous strongwoman of its own, so here comes Barbara Kettlebelle.
Despite her scrawny appearance, Barbara possesses unnatural strength for a woman having grown up wrestling with her fourteen older brothers. The circus offered her a place after witnessing her performing a clean and press with a baby elephant in the strongfolks Olympics. As you can imagine, a lady of her abilities needs a lot of fuel and her daily diet includes eight whole chickens, a gallon of chocolate milk, and her bodyweight in peanut butter and jam sandwiches.
I’ve been searching for a suitable branding for my new style of creation. I was toying with the idea of a total rebrand, but I’m rather attached to my pseudonym now so it’s here to stay. Instead, I’ve decided to give the dolls an umbrella name of their own, so from here on they will be known as
‘THE DOLLFACE COLLECTION’ By The Mistress of Monsters.
Anyone who sees them seems surprised by the size of them, so I thought it would be a good idea to give you an idea of scale by having a photoshoot with my little darlings. Nothing beats the feeling of having an armful of things you’ve made!
Mr Monster is busy designing me a logo for the collection so will be able to show you that soon too. I love it when a plan comes together!
Another new addition to the sideshow arrived today. Introducing Ms Juliana De’vine.
Juliana had a very successful career as a stockbroker, until she was a little TOO good at predicting the next big money-maker, leading her to be investigated for insider trading. No one would believe that it was her ‘gift’ which was her secret to success and so she was forced to leave the profession. After the circus came to town one fateful day, she realised that with the sideshow she could make her fortune by telling punters their own. And so the rest is history.