Wiccan Star Goddess
Glam & Ritual photos by J. Morgan
In Process photos by C. Pennington
This doll was quiet the challenge to create on a number of levels. For one thing Tonner Dolls does not make a Mars Black base form. After an extensive web search by Jamie and myself, we found a spray paint that was designed to bind with vinyl and used that to spray her the pitch black on deep space. Since I cant be around harsh chemicals, Jamie took that task on for me, bless her! It was worth the effort though. The dolls skin is as smooth as though it came from Tonner’s shop, only the color she wanted to be!
I knew from the beginning that this doll was going to have beading for hair. I *thought* that would be a bit of a short cut since doing beaded manes on the horses I have made has been reasonably simple and quick. I can be silly sometimes. I missed the part about how I was using size 11 seed beads and maaaaaany more of them.
All told there are 162 strands of beaded hair, each of which is between 6 and 9 inches long depending on where it starts on her head. The strands made up of mostly glossy black beads with the occasional dash of matte black beads for the vast emptiness of space. To create the stars I used Swarovski crystals in various sizes and colors in red, green, blue, and yellow for the less common stars, and then lots and lots of clear and AB clear for the stars we are most used to seeing. Because the bead work made her head so head that she became literally top-heavy, I had to cut her open and fill her with small size stones to adjust her balance!
Her “dress” is shimmering blue silk organza cut into jagged strips and then glued in layers along her torso to help it fuse with her form.
Across her breasts, chest, ribcage and around to her back are flat back Swarovski rhinestones in the same color palette as the stars in her hair. Each of these was hand glued to the doll with heavy duty jewelry glue that sets over 24 hours. That doesn’t mean some of them won’t come off if things get rough, but they should hold through gentle petting and primping.
Around her waist, arms and forming the crown on her head is a light weight blue wire with more Swarovski stars, some glued into place, others left lose to move about on the wire.
The finishing touch is the base she stands on which is covered in a deep blue/black taffeta with dark blue ribbon swirled in for extra flourish and strength. The folds of the taffeta are attached in such a way as to allow for foot holds to help support the doll and counter balance the weight of her beaded hair.
The final piece of work was her face. Not much was needed as she is probably the most removed from humanity of all the Goddess dolls I have done to date. Her eyes are lined with deep purple to highlight their shape and then I added a field of stars where her actual eyes would be. For her lips, I choose a slightly darker purple overlaid with iridescent paint to give them a little bit of shine. Then a sealing coat of varnish over everything to lock the colors in place.
“Listen to the words of the Star Goddess; in the dust of whose feet are the hosts of Heaven, and whose body encircles the universe.”
Those are the opening words to the Charge of the Goddess written by one of the founding mothers of Wicca Doreen Valiente, and they are the words I heard in my head over and over as I worked on this doll. She was created for a ritual Jamie and I wrote for Pantheacon 2009 called “A Walk in the Garden of Polarity”. We focused on various aspects of the Wiccan Goddess and God and offered up a ritual to help other experience those energies. To give vision to those ideas I created two dolls, the Goddess and God for the main altar.
The Star Goddess currently shares a box with the Horned Lord. The box is decoupaged inside and out with images of the four elements: earth, fire, water and air. (I suppose one of these days I am going to have to work out separate boxes for each of them…)
The Star Goddess is vast in her ways and manifestations. She encompasses so many of the elements of our world that it can be hard to see all of her at one time, so often we focus on an individual aspect: the beauty of the green earth, the white moon among the stars. Since her overarching imagery is that of Star Goddess I worked with the idea of her as a field of stars ephemeral and enormous at the same time. She is the milky way and the star close to home. She is the comet and the supernova and the collapsing star, and all of these elements are nestled within the features of the doll’s form.
“For behold, I have been with you from the beginning, and I am that which is attained at the end of desire.”