Safia – The Favourite Wife


Safia is one of my earliest porcelain dolls, and one of only three dolls ever made using a wire armature and cloth method instead of ball jointing. Having made her, I realized just how unimaginative and inadequate the wire armature and cloth method is for capturing the beauty of a human body. It is unattractive and completely neglectful of the doll’s anatomy, focusing only on face and clothes and ignoring the rest.

Dolls made in this way cannot move and look ugly without clothes. They are basically figurines. Such limitations were unacceptable to me. I longed to make a complete doll with a beautiful face, an exquisite body and fluid motions, one that would be equally lovely with or without clothes. The cloth and wire armature method was a dead end. Ball-jointing was a way to get there.



Glass bead embroidery, Indian silk, 24 karat gold lined beads, Swarovski crystals, cubic zirconia. Porcelain, china paint, cloth, wire, mohair. 15.5” (39.3cm) tall.

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