Sunday, October 20, 2013

Meet Esi!  Elsi is Spring Valley Studios newest one of a kind Sasha doll!  Esi is an African name meaning"born on Sunday" in Africa.  Since today is Sunday and I have completed her today, it seemed an appropriate name!

 Esi was a doll I previously customized with blue eyes.  Looking at her on my shelf, I was unhappy with the way her blue eyes were lost in her dark skin at a distance.  So I have changed them, darkened all her features and worked with her wig a little bit - and when this gorgeous handmade dress by Dreaming Under the Lilacs arrived, I knew I had to do a total overhaul on her character and use some of Sasha's ethnic children as inspiration, using very dark brown as base in her iris color rather than a blue shade.

 Esi has pierced ears; inspired by one of Sasha Morgenthaler's African studio babies.  Her earrings can be changed out of course, but she will come with the pair she is wearing.  

 Esi has a "synthetic mohair" wig - which is very soft, very curly and can be styled in many ways.  I have added several yellow beads to match her outfit!
Esi began as a 1980's Caleb and has been thoroughly cleaned, disinfected and restrung.  She has a slight storage odor but there is no "mold infection" since she has been cleaned inside and out with an anti-mold solution and washed thorougly numerous times.  (When she arrived she had no visible mold, just a slight residual "basement" smell, so I thought it best to do a thorough inside out cleaning and restringing.) 

I hope you enjoy her photos, and a special "thank you" to Dreaming Under the Lilacs for providing this fabulous dress that unifies her entire look! 
Esi is $335 and Paypal is available as well as International shipping.  Contact me here  

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Harmony...A New Custom Sasha Dolls

(SALE PENDING) Meet Harmony!

Harmony began as an early 1980's Sasha with cut hair and playwear and has been transformed into a one of a kind custom Sasha doll!  In her adorable playdress in patchwork fabric (handmade by Dreaming Under the Lilacs!) she represents a little girl from the 1970's.  Handmade sandals and a real 1970's Knickerbocker Holly Hobby miniature doll complete her look!   We're having an unprecedented "Indian Summer" here this time of year and with her colors, she seemed perfect to photograph against the autumn background.

Harmony has an auburn  human hair wig that has been treated and styled for her.  She has been thoroughly cleaned and restrung and her features repainted and sealed.  She has light blush on the outside of her cheeks and nose, a technique Sasha used in creating some of her earliest dolls.
Her eyes are a dark olive with green tones.

Holly was thoroughly cleaned and disinfected and has a slight odor; but as she was not moldy smelling when she arrived, I'm not sure what the smell is.  I'm allergic to mold and this is not triggering any reaction; so I'm not sure what it is.

Harmony is $355 and international shipping is availble.  She comes signed on her foot and with a certificate.  (And her little Holly Hobbie doll too!)   I may be contacted here   Enjoy her photos - she and I had a lot of fun

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

(SALE PENDING) Lillie!  Lillie is my newest (re) creation, began from an early 1980's Gregor doll.  Lillie depicts a little girl from the 1920's and her names was selected as it was in the top 50 popular names of that era!

Lillie head to toe has a red synthetic mohair wig.  Synthetic mohair is fine and light, natural feeling and looking but with the durability of a synthetic fiber.  It is curly and tousled in a careless way.  Her features have been repainted and sealed and she has freckles. 

Her dress is handmade and can be worn with or without her pinafore.  I wished I had better shoes for her but right now she wears a pair of Mary Janes with a buckle.  They could be easily replaced by the buyer in blue, white or black as many sellers on Ebay are now selling Sasha fitting Mary Jane in many colors.  She has bloomers under her dress.

Lillie has been thoroughly cleaned inside and out; her parts dried and has been restrung with all new elastic so she's ready to play!  (I found a very very small very light brown mark on the fabric of the front of her dress between the folds and on the front of her pinafore, there is a slight fabric flaw. )

Lillie comes with her two "best friends"; a rag doll and her special porcelain baby doll.  

Lillie was a fun doll to create, pose and play with.  I hope you enjoy her photos!  She is $365 and she comes signed with a certificate.  Paypal verified; international shipping available.   Contact me at 

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

(SALE PENDING) Meet Desta!  Desta (an African name meaning "happiness") began as a damaged Caleb with falling hair.  She is now a whole new one of a kind doll! 
Desta's features have been repainted in a style inspired by Sasha Morgenthaler's Black dolls, with blue over and under the eyes.  Her wig is a natural fiber, mohair, and is braided with beads.  These can be removed of course; and it can be styled in different ways.   She has bangs but since they are mohair they can be easily swept aside to appear as if they blend in with the rest of the hair (in this picture to the right, I have pulled them down and mussed them up..) 

 Desta's outfit consists of old discards of other doll clothing.  Sasha Morgenthaler loved to piece together outfits from scraps - a friend's old coat, scarf, etc.  Desta's shirt is held closed by a scrap of fabric belt, she has a mismatched orange checked skirt and on her feet are real Sasha shoes in worn condition (although I think her brown bare feet in the pine needles are much cuter!)    She wears a braclet and anklet as well.  

 She is in good condition but has some very minor shiny places on her face.  Her new stringing cord ensures that she can hold a good pose!

I hope you enjoy Desta's photos.  If you are interested in adopting her, she comes signed on the foot and comes with a certificate of her origins.  She is $375 and international shipping is available.  Paypal verfied.  Please contact me at 

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Sasha Doll Repair Restringing Cleaning Services

For several years I had a Sasha dolls website which became too cumbersome to maintain, so now I just have this cute little blog! :)

It was suggested to me to remind Sasha collectors and owners whose dolls are in need of restringing, that I do offer this service.

I have been restringing Sasha dolls since the mid 1990's.  I know the correct method to restring both the hook and bar dolls and the more difficult plug and ring assembly dolls made from the 1970's to 1980's.   Both of these methods should ensure the correct tension so as not to put undue pressure on the inner joints, which can weaken or stretch and become misshapen over time.  Also, too much tension on the cord can cause caving to the top of the torso and also results in an "hourglass" shape at the waist, as the top and bottom of the torso are pulled closer together.

It is important to keep your Sasha dolls out of heat.  Some dolls were too tightly strung at the factory, and these misfortunes can happen regardless of temperature, but heat only softens the vinyl and can cause caving and warping to the vinyl itself.  Sometimes a doll will even develop a "ridge" at the neck knob, where it has been pulled down into the neck hole.

Some of these issues can be repaired.  Part of my restringing service includes re-shaping (using heat) torsos which have caved and then stringing the doll looser than it was strung originally, in order to prevent it from happening in the future.

I also offer a cleaning of the doll for $5 extra in addition to the restringing.  It is important to clean a doll while it's unstrung, in order to allow the parts to sufficiently dry, especially the head, where the inner rooting can hold water.   A mild shampoo is used - for human hair wigs, a good strengthening hair conditioner is used.  I do not wash the hair on brunette dolls, as water can become a catalyst for "falling hair" reacting with the dark dyes used and causing extreme brittleness to the hair.  I am reluctant to even wash a an early redhaired Sasha's hair as it can happen to them as well, and I avoid that as much as possible.

Dolls which have a moldy smell are a challenge to every doll lover!  Fortunately, disinfecting methods can be used inside and out, and while the mold itself will be gone, the original odor has seeped into the vinyl itself.  Vinyl is a porous material and it will absorb smoke, mold, mildew and perfume odors.  And please, never put your doll in or near moth balls or moth flakes!  This smell is impossible to remove!   A strong odor of any of these kinds is considered "damage" to almost any collector, and affects the value very much, so it's important to avoid it.

Services are priced as below.  Cost of shipping to and from are in addition.
For any Frido or Trendon doll:
Basic Restringing $25
Cleaning with restringing $5
For 1960's Gotz dolls
$30 Basic restringing
$5 cleaning
(may require replacement of neck knob if it has been exposed to moisture and deterorated, as it is made of lightweight wood.  Neck knob replacement $15)

OTHER DOLLS (Composition, etc)  $20.  My Etsy shop contains dolls I have restrung/cleaned.

American Girl Dolls Restringing:  $25

1990's and 2000's Gotz Sasha dolls.  These dolls are a nightmare for anyone to work on.  Due to child safety laws, they do not contain hooks, but instead have plastic inserts in the head, arms and legs and the cord is embedded in it.  These are a horror to remove, with extensive heat, time and strength required. I no longer work on these dolls unfortunately

Almost all of my custom Sasha dolls you see having sold (including Sunny above!) on these pages required extensive cleaning and restringing, so you can see some of my work in that way and references are available.
I may be reached at

Friday, July 26, 2013

Bettina...a new custom Sasha doll!

(SALE PENDING) Meet Bettina!  Bettina began as a 1980's girl and is now a spirited redhead with green eyes.    Her hair has been dyed with permanent dye and is a very unique shade!   It is her original hair (uncut, and rooted)  It's been years since I did a "Sasha dye" job and I forgot what fun (and stress!)  it can be!

  Bettina's features have been repainted and sealed and she has freckles.   In traditional Sasha style, her facial feature colors reflect that out of her outfit; a technique Sasha Morgenthaler liked to use!  Of course, she would look dressed in anything contemporary or traditional!

She wears a handmade dress, bloomers, socks and brown high top boots.  She has been cleaned and restrung and there is a very small green dot on her stomach that is a stain.  Fortunately it is not very prominent!  She has no other ink, mold, bad odors or scratches.

  Her hair is in great shape without frizzing.  As you can see in the photo, the roots are a tiny bit lighter than the rest of the hair, as tends to happen when I'm dying because I have to be super careful not to get it on the vinyl "skin" too long!  I think it lends to her unique look!

Bettina is $325 and international shipping is available.  :)Contact me at to adopt her!

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Meet Kai!

(SALE PENDING) Kai is a very special Sasha doll.  50% of her selling price will be given to Compassion International; a highly reputable ministry (which consistently ranks high in all watchdog studies) that seeks to release children and their families from poverty.  I highly recommend child sponsorship if you have never opened the door to such a blessing!  You can read more about Compassion here.

Kai is a universal child doll; of no specific ethnic background; dark skin, dark brown hair and blue eyes with a hint of Eur-Asian eyes make her a wonderful representation of the world's children, just as Sasha Morgenthaler intended.  "Kai" is a popular name in many cultures, with different meanings in each; one being the world "universal".

Kai began as a Sasha Marina with badly cut hair.  She was very played with - I have cleaned and restrung her and except for a very light ink line on the back of her leg, and a couple of light smudge spots on her leg, she is in good condition.

I wanted Kai to reflect the kind of children Compassion helps.  Her clothing has been aged and made to look worn; through a dying process.  Her jeans are real Sasha jeans that were damaged with a missing belt loop and cutting.  They have been trimmed into raggy shorts.  Around her waist is a "belt" of traditional beads or shells, as is her necklace.  Her shirt and pants have been stained subtly with permanent fabric dye.

Her hair is called "synthetic mohair" and is in reality just a very fine, lightweight synthetic fiber that unlike mohair, is very strong and durable. It can be styled in many ways.  It has been conditioned and trimmed to give it a more "real child" look.

Kai is $399 and half her proceeds will go to Compassion International.  (The buyer will receive an email receipt.)   International shipping available; Paypal verified. 

Sometimes once a doll is done, I change my mind.  For a few weeks Saige here has been sitting on my shelf, and each time I catch a glimpse of her, I wonder how she would look as a brunette doll.
I finally dug out a very sweet brunette with with no bangs, washed and conditioned it, and trimmed it as it was very long, and I think it is a perfect color combination for her.  The blonde was a nice contrast, but the brown blends and flows with the rest of her colors!  So brown it is!

So I have rephotographed her and am offering her this way! 

Saige began as an early doll; circa 1970 and has been one of those "labors of love" since she had quite a bit of wear and damage.

She had puppy chew on her feet which I have smoothed over somewhat; and she had a nick on the end of her nose which I have also been able to buff and sand, and a little nick on her leg (above).  She has the sheen seen on the early dolls as she was very well loved at some point by a little girl long ago!

I have removed her worn features and missing hair and she is now a new personality!

I love Saige's earthy tones in time for  Spring!  She wears a gorgeous handmade dress made by Jadwiga  McKinlay in the United Kingdom.  It is a soft brushed velvet gray dress with beautiful designs on it.

 I have given Sage brown eyes in a studio style and freckles, which help cover up her acquired facial shiny places where she was so well loved and played with.....

Saige wears original Sasha black oxfords on her feet and is ready to play!

Contact me to bring Saige into your Sasha family today.  I really felt that she deserved a "second chance" and not just put in a box to be used as parts to fix a "better" doll..... Saige is $275 and comes with a certificate and will be signed and dated on her foot for identification.  :)

Monday, April 29, 2013

Meet Marian! 
(SALE PENDING) Marian is the newest addition to the Spring Valley Studios Sasha collection.  She began as a 1970's girl with a caved torso.  (I tried to repair it, but the vinyl on the torso was just too soft and I was uncomfortable selling her as such, so I have replaced it with another 1970's torso that matches just fine.  So she's ready to go with no danger of caving again!)

Marian was inspired by Sasha Morgenthaler's studio girls with blonde hair and brown eyes.  Marian wears a brand new human hair wig, just like Sasha's studio girls that I have hand cut and styled in a carefree manner.    Her features are all handpainted in Sasha tradition and sealed.  I have given her light freckles and very slight cheek blush, as some of Sasha's studio girls had.  With all the brown tones, this gives a lovely bit of color to her face, and lends her coloring to just about any other outfit color you would want to give her.

Her dress is handmade by Diane's Delights and is handsmocked. 

Marian is in good condition with a small pink pin dot on one finger and some dirt smudges on her torso that are not a big deal, but that didn't come off with a washing.

I am sure she will make a happy addition to your collection!  Her "adoption" fee is $355 plus Priority postage.  Both Google Checkout and Paypal are available; International shipping options are available as well.  If you would like to adopt this girl, email me at