I've been friends with Jeremy Rise for almost 4 years, over the course of which we've been able to boogie down at festivals and share some really incredible experiences. I'm lucky to have this person in my life and see the joy that he brings to myself and others, so as a token of my appreciation I hand-crafted a mini version of Jeremy.
This was my first time constructing a doll, so I learned a great deal about how to scale and fit everything together. I had a vision of how I wanted it to look, but I couldn't find patterns that fit my ideas. Naturally, this meant that I'd have to hack the process...
I was heavily influence by Cara Delevingne's crocheted Carl Lagerfeld doll because of its slender form and floppy movement of the limbs that give it character. Unfortunately, I do not know how to crochet and didn't have the time to learn. So instead, in my head I broke down the components and forms needed to imitate the construction, but with fabric. It had to try three different patterns before arriving at a good form where the body, legs and arms were their own separate pieces.
Another difficult aspect was constructing Lil' Jerm's micro-outfit. Having only worked on human-sized garments, learning how to make the smaller pieces required a bit of trial and error. Finding a good pattern that would fit the doll was impossible, so I challenged myself by only looking at patterns online for reference and making my own. There were a few errors in my sewing, but I decided that it made it look more handmade.
Overall, the process took me around 5 hours and involved pattern-making, sewing, stuffing, wire-wrapping, beading and hot gluing to pull entire ensemble together. I was targeting a whimsical look by using these vibrant blues and purples. I wanted to achieve a chaotic, yet balanced look through mixing patterns and textures, but keeping an eye on the cohesion of the color palette. I spared no detail in his features, including a light-up hat, necklace, and removable coat and glasses—'cause a guys gotta have options.
In the end, I think it was a nuanced representation of Jeremy's eccentric character and voracity for life. I'm very happy with how it turned out and I think this is just the beginning of capturing the unique characters in my life.
Here is a photo of Jeremy for reference and some shots outlining my process...