Adjusting the Elastic Tension

Beyond the Glass
Originally uploaded by sweetmilktea

When my doll arrived, she was strung very loosely. Ball-jointed dolls are strung with elastic, which gives them the tension to move at their joints and hold poses. I knew that she would arrive with very loose tension, as it stated such on the Rosette Doll website. However, I was unprepared for the actual task of tightening her elastic cord, since I have never owned a doll before or done maintenance on one.

I avoided it for a week or so, afraid of breaking her and unsure of exactly how to go about the process. Unlike most dolls that I have seen, the knot for the loops of elastic within her body is not inside of her head. It is actually inside of her upper torso. This meant that I could not (as I had thought) simply pull up the elastic a bit through the head, re-tie the knot, and all would be well.

Determined to avoid taking the entire doll apart and restringing her so that the knot WOULD be inside of her head this time, I spent a while peering at and examining her, trying to analyze how she was assembled. The guide book that she was shipped with had a diagram, but it didn’t initially make sense to me because I had so little experience with ball-jointed dolls. When I examined her body, I would notice all kinds of small pieces that made me even more determined not to take her full apart unprepared.

One day, when trying to pose her to take some pictures, I finally decided that I simply had to adjust her tension. Her knees continually buckled if I propped her up, and there was only so much interest I felt in taking photos of her sitting down. I took a deep breath and sat down to adjust her.

Luckily, it was not as terrifying as I had feared–although when I unhooked the elastic and her torso was separated from her legs, it was extremely unsettling to hold the two pieces of my extremely expensive doll! I realized that, although the knot was in her torso, this simply meant that I had to adjust the elastic just above her abdomen piece, and then pull the elastic up through the torso and head. (As opposed to either adjusting the elastic while the head was still on, or above the neck with the head removed.)

Her tension is much better now. As soon as I was finished, she was sturdy enough to stand! She might need further adjustment, but for now I am quite proud of myself~ ♥

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