Creating and Producing the Reborn: A Step-by-Step Process

Creating a reborn is a work of art. The artist makes a careful construction of the reborn, step by step. It is a work that involves a lot of time and committed work. Each step is a small progress in the making of the reborn. A reborn is a unique creation and there are no two replicas. Reborn have their own unique features and are distinguished from others. From start to finish, the reborn requires intense concentration, as any flaw in work will destroy the ultimate outlook of the reborn. The reborn can either be a male or a female. There are many who would like to try a hand at making a reborn. These basic tips may help them.

Body Parts

There are various requirements to make silicone reborn doll. The artist purchases them and keeps them ready for use. As each step is a process, all requirements should be kept ready for work.

Body Base: The artist will have to purchase parts, to use as a base for the doll’s body. The body base can be bought as a kit and molded to form a reborn baby or can be purchased directly, as a molded form. It depends on the artist’s style of work.

Hair: Mohair is used to root the hair into the head of the doll. Sometimes, synthetic hair is also used. The artist also makes bald headed dolls, as some collectors prefer it that way. At times, the hair is also painted on the head, realistically.

Eyes: For the eyelashes, they can be purchased or can be micro-rooted. If the doll is open-eyed, you can use plastic eyes or glass eyes to give it a more realistic look. The eyelashes can also be handmade and fixed with glue for a more natural look.

Veins: The veins are painted into the doll, even when the initial layers are painted. Babies have faint streaks visible outside and so the veins are put on initially. Veins are usually found under the skin and this helps in giving it a realistic look.

Creases: You would have seen that new born babies have many creases found all over their body, especially at the joints. Even the face is all creased up, when it is just born. If the baby is a toddler, he will have creases in the arms and legs. Well! You will be astonished at how finely made, these creases are presented on the body of the reborn.

The Artist in You

The artist gives her best by using the techniques that she has acquired by experience and knowledge gained. There are various techniques used here such as:

Painting

It is painting that helps to give the most realistic look to the reborn. The paint used, to create the magical touch to the reborn is the genesis heat-set paint. This necessitates the use of various paintbrushes of various types and size. Each feature requires the use of a certain type of paint-brush. It needs flat brush, thin scripting brush, thick brush, wide mop brush and angular brushes, to name a few. A ceramic palette is required for this or a plastic one will also do. Paints are mixed on palettes to get the right color and right mix. Paint thinner is used to mix the paint to the required thickness. Various cosmetic sponges and sea sponges are used, to give the mottling effect, to the body of the reborn. They are dipped in paint, according to the requirement and dabbed on to the surface of the doll.

Tools

The reborn requires various dents and bumps on the body for making nose, nostril holes, ears, etc. To make holes for the nostrils and for ears, micro rooting tool is used to bore holes. Similar types of instruments are also used to give the body its ups and downs.

Heating

Heat is the main method of putting on the layers and to dry them. The artist uses convection or any other method, to allow the heat-set paint to set-in.  Ordinary ovens used at home, cannot be used for this purpose.

Process Involved

  • Once the body of the reborn is prepared, the artist first cleans all the parts of the vinyl doll. Warm water mixed with soap is used for this purpose.
  • Translucent paints of varying colors are used to be applied on the vinyl. Many layers are applied. Artists usually make up to 6 coatings of paint on the doll, to give it a good finishing touch and make it more realistic looking.
  • After each layer the doll is baked, so that each layer can set in perfectly. Sometimes, if a small error occurs, it can be easily removed, without affecting the underneath layer which is possible only if the previous layer is baked. Some artists prefer to heat after two layers. This is done according to the preference of the artist. Usually the baking is done at around 260 degrees Fahrenheit for around 8 minutes. Vinyl on heating produces heavy fumes and the oven should always be placed in ventilated areas.
  • The number of layers for mottling is also high. To give a natural appearance, similar looking shades and layers are baked together to get a natural look to the reborn.
  • Mottling is done to give a good and realistic appearance. Using paint, brush, sponge and other materials, the process of mottling is made on the body, with variation for each area of the body, on which mottling is done.
  • The finishing touch is provided by adding nails with perfectly natural looking nail color, on the nails on the hands and legs. Stork bites are added in the form of reddish-blue patches on various parts of the body, such as forehead and at the back of the neck. Freckles are added, if the reborn is a toddler. Capillaries are also added. Moles are then added. Tiny pimples or milia are also other additions made. The nails can also be painted with gloss to give it a real look. The eyelids are given a moist look to make them realistic. A matte coat is finally provided to give the doll a realistic look, so that it does not look shiny and unreal.

Assembling Process

The assembling process is finally done, to bring it into one single piece.

  • The doll is filled with small nylon pouches. Each pouch is filled with pellets for making them weighted dolls. The pouches are filled more on the lower parts of the doll’s body and on the head too. The pouches are then held in place using polyfils.
  • The arms and legs are also filled with pellets and packed with polyfil, according to the size required.
  • The shoulders and hips are then filled with polyfil.
  • Cable ties or string is used to then tie the various parts together, according to the structure and shape. They help to keep the parts together in shape and structure. They are tied or closed. The excess pieces are removed.
  • The final touch is given, by covering up loose areas and smoothening the rough edges.

Delivering the Reborn

The reborn is then sent to its collector. Each full body silicone reborn doll is packed in its own unique way. The artist can include any special item of their own, such as a dress, rattle, socks and cap, onesie, etc. Diapers and blanket are also included. Some even provide a birth certificate for the reborn. Some send them with a toy or rattle attached.

Whew! That is indeed a lengthy process involving some dedicated work. Yes the final effect of holding the reborn is worth every hard work put in to create a reborn.