Meet Irisa Amora Encora No.2 – Limited Edition Collector’s Art Doll

Meet Irisa Amora Encora No. 2

Irisa is a Collector’s Art Doll – second of my new “Amora Encora” range – a limited edition of One of a Kind (OOAK) dolls made using up-cycled materials to celebrate the beauty of the natural world.

Irisa Amora Encora AE02 - Limited Edition Collector's Art Doll

Amora Encora is a certificated, limited range of art dolls – only 50 will ever be made. Each comes with her own certificate of origin. Irisa celebrates the beauty of Rainbows. Her name is of Greek origin, meaning “rainbow”.

Irisa Amora Encora AE02 - Limited Edition Collector's Art Doll - Certificate
Irisa's Certificate

Irisa - Celebrating the Beauty of Rainbows

There are few natural sights  more amazing than a rainbow?  You only have to watch the wonder spread across a small child’s face when they see their very first rainbow splashed across the sky.  They believe they can run and touch it – hold it and never let it go.

Somehow, rainbows are all the more special because they celebrate the sunshine that follows the rain and remind us that good weather always does return after a gloomy spell.

Irisa Amora Encora AE02 -Collector's Art Doll Celebrating Beauty of Rainbows. rainbow on Oldshoremore Scotland North Coast 500
Rainbow on Oldshoremore Beach

I have always loved rainbows, but never more than travelling along the North Coast 500 Route in Scotland.  The sun chased the rain all the way along the coastline for the whole fortnight we were on the road.  I have never seen rainbows quite so vibrant.

I guess those images remained with me and now provide inspiration for my second Amora Encora Doll – Irisa.

As I work on expanding the Amora Encora range to the limit of 50 collector’s item dolls, I aim to take the opportunity to showcase a wide variety of the textile art techniques I use to create the dolls on this site.  I want to share the creative process and the learning opportunity as widely as possible in the hope that it provides inspiration for your own projects.

Irisa Amora Encora No. 2 - Techniques Used

I used the same basic pattern to make Irisa that I have used for some of my previous art dolls.  You can read more about the first doll in the range – Aurelia – here.


Creating Irisa was a great opportunity to get my Babylock Embellisher out of the cupboard.  If you have never used an Embellishing machine before, it is really fun to have a go with one.  They use no thread – you just use the power of the machine and its 12 needles to fuse fabrics together – rather like the needle felting process

Babylock Embellisher
Babylock Embellisher

The video below shows you the process in action.

I had a small pile of rainbow coloured lace in my stash which had all the colours of the rainbow I needed.  I just needed a way of using them to make a piece of fabric and the Babylock Embellisher was the perfect tool.

I sandwiched pieces of the lace between red netting before embellishing and cut the bolero shape out afterwards.  The edges were already fused thanks to the embellishing process, but I ran some zig zag stitches around them to keep them firmly attached.

Irisa Amora Encora AE02 - Rainbow Lace for Bolero
Rainbow Lace for Bolero
Irisa Amora Encora AE02 - Embellished Bolero
Embellished Rainbow Bolero

Hand Dyed Rainbow Locks

I had some blonde teeswater locks available to use for Irisa’s hair.  These lustrous natural fibres reflect light beautifully – the perfect choice for the hair of a doll celebrating the magic of sunshine when it combines with rain.

To leave the hair blonde though would be far too plain for such a vibrant doll?  Mixing a small amount of Setasilk paints in a palette and watering them down to get a subtle pastel strength effect was the first step to getting the hairstyle I wanted to achieve for Irisa.  Gently dabbing the colour onto the teeswater locks in various places was the next step.  I left them to dry naturally overnight before completing her hairdo the following day.

Irisa Amora Encora AE02 Rainbow Dyed Hair
Mixing Rainbow Coloured Dyes
Irisa Amora Encora 2 - Rainbow Dyed Hair
Necklace from Upcycled Beads

Handmade Rose Trim

I aim to buy very little new when I make a doll because using upcycled materials is what the Amora Encora range is all about.  Now and then though, I can’t resist investing in something gorgeous to make a doll extra special.  A small length of handmade organza ribbon rose trim added a new dimension to Irisa’s bodice trim.  One or two roses also found their way into her rainbow locks – and her shoes.

Irisa Amora Encora AE02 Handmade Roses
Irisa Amora Encora AE02 - Handmade Roses Decoration
Irisa Amora Encora 2 - Shoes

Heart UpCycling

Irisa's Body - Made from a Rag Bag Top

The starting point for Irisa’s brightly coloured body was this top – salvaged from the rag bag at the local Charity shop.

Irisa Amora Encora 2 - Made from UpCycled Fabric
Irisa Amora Encora 2 - Made from UpCycled Fabric

It always gives me a feeling of great satisfaction to be able to transfer something that has been discarded as rubbish into something that can be enjoyed again.  That is why I called the new range “Amora Encora” – something that can be loved again.

Irisa Amora Encora 2 - Made from UpCycled Fabric
Amora Encora - Made from Fabric Loved Again

Vintage rainbow Buttons - Thanks Marion!

The buttons used to secure Irisa’s arms and legs were part of a very generous donation from my friend Marion.  Thanks again Marion – these rainbow buttons were just the job for this project!

Irisa Amora Encora 2 - Made from UpCycled Fabric
Irisa Amora Encora AE02 - Vintage Rainbow Button

UpCycled Beads

It took me a while to search through the stash of beads I have gradually been collecting over the last few years until I found some tiny blue heart shaped beads that coordinated well with the blue of Irisa’s rainbow bodice and finished off her wrists and ankles nicely.

Beads upcycled from a necklace I took apart were re-threaded to add a touch of glamour at the neckline.

Irisa - Amora Encora AE02 = Upcycled Beads
Upcycled heart beads decorate Irisa's wrists and ankles
Irisa Amora Encora 2 - Rainbow Dyed Hair
Necklace from Upcycled Beads

Net Fabric - Donated from Birmingham Conservatoire

Irisa’s underskirt is made from a piece of bright green net cut from a length that was donated to me by Birmingham Conservatoire when they were having a wardrobe clear out last year.  You never quite know when the opportunity will present itself to make use of a piece of fabric.  

It can be quite a challenge knowing what to save – and for how long.  I have an allotted space which I don’t exceed, so when it is full, I have to decide what to get rid of before I can collect anything else.  It can be hard to let things go sometimes, but I find it is a good way of managing my collection.

Irisa Amora Encora AE02 - Removeable Clothes
Net underskirts - Fabric donated by Birmingham Conservatoire

What Does the Future Hold for Irisa?

Irisa is now listed on my Etsy shop, waiting to find a good home.

I wonder what the future holds for her …?

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Marion

    Fantastic Margot. What an amazing labour of love. Great to see all the different techniques you use. Clever lady! Glad the buttons came in too. Remember there are always plenty more. X

  2. Marion

    Fantastic Margot. What an amazing labour of love. Great to see all the different techniques you use. Clever lady! Glad the buttons came in too. Remember there are always plenty more. X

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