Reborning is the art of transforming a vinyl doll (either whole doll or kit) into a sensible looking baby doll (usually of an individual baby- but sometimes elves or chimpanzees may be made). The one who makes this transformation is known as a ‘reborner” or reborn artist. The more realistic looking the doll is the more successful the artist is considered. Once completed the doll is known as a ‘reborn’, ‘reborn doll’, ‘reborn baby”or ‘fake baby’ ;.There are artists throughout the world who do reborning. Some reborn artists will have a factory made doll, bring it apart, repaint it and reassemble it.
In more recent times artists use a manufactured vinyl kit made especially to be reborn. The manufacture of kits is becoming an expanding industry with an increase of and more talented doll sculptors having their creations converted into vinyl kits. Kits are occasionally limited editions and in demand worldwide. Some reborners and collectors or reborns collect kits as keep these as prized possessions only providing them with up when personal financial pressure necessitates it or they trade them for only more desirable kits. New kits come out regularly and they are more and more detailed and varied. In very recent times we have seen some kits resold on eBay for 10 times their original value as they are limited editions, sold-out worldwide and in much demand.
‘Reborning’ begins with washing and then painting the vinyl parts with oil, acrylic or water based paints. Paints are being developed specifically for the art. Paints are applied with brushes and sponges to have as realistic skin tones as possible. This is actually the ultimate goal of the artist and the product range of techniques used is large and a person develops these techniques over time. The paint sinks to the vinyl and tints it (like water colour paint does on paper) rather than sitting on the top of vinyl. The paints are somewhat unreliable in their behaviour so the process required judgement to incorporate a paint layer, check outcome against what is desired then repaint another layer. The reborner needs a solid concept of what complexion or affect they are attempting to achieve.
Some paints require baking and there has been controversy over the ramifications of the fumes to the reborner. Artists paint on veins, capillaries, birth marks, 3d eyebrows, scratches and newborn red patches (ie stork bites) to have the absolute most realistic affects. Hair (usually mohair) is then micro-rooted to the dolls head a few strands at the same time so your head looks natural and realistic. For toddler size dolls high quality wigs may be used. Some artists may paint the baby’s head one hair at the same time to acquire a very realistic look.
Micro-rooting a baby doll size head will take a lot more than 40 hours to make certain a sensible appearance. Some artists can create exquisite skin tones on the vinyl and some who can create wonderfully realistic hair rooting pattern (painstakingly one hair at a time) including crowns and parts. reborn dolls UK Eyelashes are either applied by gluing to open eyed dolls or micro-rooting on sleeping dolls. The vinyl legs, arms and head are then weighted, filled and connected to a similarly weighted and filled cloth body. Once the top is connected the doll is considered to be ‘reborn’ ;.Belly plates, magnetic newborn belly buttons and other areas of the body could be added for realism. Reborn dolls are utilized in movies and advertisements and as clothes models.
Physiotherapists utilize them due to their patients and they are used extensively in old age homes as older people find holding a baby very relaxing and soothing (you only have to see what happens to the typical population when someone brings a new baby to go to great grandma in a nursing home- everyone desires to see the child and touch it- to comprehend the wonderful value they are able to have here. Most of them can’t believe they aren’t real. ‘
I personally am not overly maternal, don’t collect dolls (except for my daughter) however when I pop the top on a reborn for the first time- I will also have a talk to its little face- the identical way I really do to the dog. In the same way it’s proven that pets are therapeutic in nursing homes- so can be reborns. They often aren’t considered as suited to children. I disagree with this specific by the way!!! There are individuals who collect reborn dolls because they love babies, dolls or art. Many people are very potty about the dolls and the comraderie that the different forums that like minded people and artists frequent, provide them.
You won’t hear anyone on these forums calling them ‘fake babies” ;.They call them reborns” or just babies and many individuals have plenty of babies in their collection (also called nursery). The media try to make out there is something wrong with artists and collectors, but that’s just media hype. The collectors don’t take themselves too seriously and plenty of baby talk is tongue in cheek. What they do object to will be made out as ‘freaks” or they are actually wanting to substitute a desire for a genuine baby with a reborn (for example because they have an ’empty nest’). They know they are not real and treat them like porcelain doll collectors have prepared for a huge selection of years- that has been respect and admiration due to their beauty.
A not many number of reborners can create ‘reborns’ for folks who have lost their babies either at birth or soon after. Many people believe that a person wanting a toy that seems like their dead baby isn’t normal or is ‘sick” ;.I say to each their own. If I’d lost a baby (and I cannot even imagine the inconsolable grief connected with this), knowing now what I know, I think having a lifelike doll to put up would be or incredible physical and mental therapeutic value during the time of the loss and something lovely to have and value following the worse of the grief has passed. After expecting the physical have to nurse and hold a baby is really as basic since the physical have to chew food even if it was all served up as mush. I believe that this is an area where we will have more reborns utilized in future.
There are particular artists that are internationally renowned due to their work and they are more desirable to collectors. ‘Prototype’ dolls are popular, usually made by these artists and command higher prices. When a new kit (or sculpt) is first produced the artist will send the first few kits to the well known artists to reborn. They’ll then be put the finished dolls on eBay to increase sales and advertise the release of the kit.