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About Gretchen Lima

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Gretchen as child Technique
I have combined natural fibers in the hair as well as the hand woven or hand dyed clothing. I individually sculpt and paint each face using Sculpey inlaid with beads, pearls or pieces of turquoise.

Each design is conceived and executed by me. I first make a sketch from an idea, then a rough prototype. A final pattern for a piece is then cut from muslin. Each individual doll is different depending on the fabrics used to decorate it.

People at art fairs ask me how I got started in dollmaking. I believe it’s a 60–year old story, interwoven with a need and a passion to create, using detail, color and a sense of spirit.

My work is not only an expression of what I see, but of what I feel. I create the messages and give a voice to a girl inside who has patiently waited to be heard.

Education

  • B.A., Art, Northland College, Ashland, WI 1971
  • Teaching Degree, K-12, Northland College, Ashland, WI 1976

Professional Experience

  • Homecraft Teacher, Division of Vocational Rehabilitation, 1976-1985
  • Founder and Sole Proprietor, Designs by Gretchen, 1985-present

Professional Affiliations

  • American Craft Council
  • Michigan Guild of Artists and Artisans
  • Minnesota Crafts Council
  • Ohio Designer Craftsmen
  • Wisconsin Designer Craftsmen, past board member
  • Mental Health Association, board past president

Awards

  • Invitational Award -- Art Fair On the Square, Madison, WI - '88,'89,'90,'92
  • Award of Excellence -- Festival of the Arts, Stevens Point, WI
  • Fiber Award -- Morning Glory Art Festival, Milwaukee, WI
  • Award for Excellence & Celebrity Award -- Columbus Winterfair, OH - 1992
  • Award of Merit -- Art Street, Green Bay, WI - 1993
  • Celebrity Award -- Columbus Winterfair, OH - 1993 & 1994
  • Award Winner -- Village Fair, Milwaukee Public Museum - 1995
  • Award Winner -- J M Kohler Art Fair, Sheboygan, WI - 1997
  • Featured Artist -- Ann Arbor Winter Art Fair, Ann Arbor, MI - 1998
  • Award Winner -- 57th Street Art Fair, Chicago, IL - 1999
  • Northern Lights Arts Award -- Northland College Alumni Assoc. - 1999
  • Featured Artist -- Studio Art Crawl, Milwaukee, WI - 2001
  • Award of Excellence -- Morning Glory Art Festival, Milwaukee - 2001
  • Second Place Award Winner -- Powderhorn Art Fair, Minneapolis - 2002
  • Purchase Award -- Minnesota Crafts Festival, Minneapolis - 2004
  • First Award Winner -- Oakbrook Craft Fair, Oakbrook, IL - 2004
  • Best of Mixed Media -- Common Wheel Arts & Crafts Fair - 2007
  • Best of Mixed Media 3-D -- Tempe Festival of the Arts - 2008
  • Best of Mixed Media -- Common Wheel Arts & Crafts Fair - 2008
  • Honorable Mention -- Common Wheel Arts & Crafts Fair - 2013

Magazines

  • Contemporary Doll Magazine - Winter 1990
  • The Flying Needle - November 1993
  • Contemporary Doll Magazine - November 1993
  • The Sheboygan Press - Artist reveals her inner self, March 26, 1995
  • Contemporary Doll Magazine - June/July 1995
  • Doll Reader Magazine - August 1995
  • Family Circle Magazine - Holiday Crafts, Fall 1995
  • The Crafts Report - November 1995
  • Contemporary Doll Collector - June/July 1998
  • The Desert Leaf - Tucson, AZ, June 2006
  • Dolls United - Interactive Magazine - issue 18 - 2007

Books

  • "The Doll by Contemporary Artists", Krystyna Poray Goddu & Wendy Lavitt, Abbeville Press ©1995
  • "Anatomy of a Doll", Susanna Oroyan, C&T Publishing ©1997
  • "Batik for Artists and Quilters", Eloise Piper, F&W Publications ©2001
  • "Finishing the Figure," Susanna Oroyan, C&T Publishing ©2001
  • "Greta and the Magic Wand", written and illustrated by Gretchen Lima ©2004

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Email Gretchen at "Gretchen@GretchenLima.com"

This page last modified 11/30/15
Designs by Gretchen Copyright 2015