In the last two articles I gave you some background on the reborning process, a list of supplies you will need and showed you 2 photos of my doll in the process. In this article we will begin work on the doll. The first step is to take your doll apart. I know, this just goes against the grain for doll lovers, but it must be done. You will find that it takes a little muscle, but it's not as hard as you might think.
The process of reborning a doll can be done on an older doll, or a new kit that is purchased specifically to reborn. If you have purchased one of these kits, then most likely you will be able to skip the first step, because they usually are free of any paint. If you are working with an older doll, or a doll that was not originally intended for the reborning process, you have to remove all factory paint from the doll. Even if your doll appears not to be painted, you will be amazed at the amount of "natural looking" paint you need to remove.
All the websites that I researched suggest using acetone to remove the original paint. You can certainly use that, but I had nail polish remover on hand so I used that. Regular nail polish remover is basically acetone. Just be sure you don't use the non-acetone kind.
Use a cotton ball, or the cotton make-up round pads that you will also use during the painting process, saturate it with the acetone and gently rub where you see paint. I had to do this over the entire head of my doll because the hair as well as the face was painted. After you are satisfied that you have removed ALL the paint from the head, try removing paint from any other parts of the doll that you are going to use. You never know where the factory might have put a little blush.
When all the paint has been removed it's time for your baby to get a "bubble bath". This step removes any acetone residue as well as dirt that will be in all those tiny creases on an older doll. I used Dawn dish soap and an old toothbrush. Unfortunately, the doll I am reborning was a companion for my Mother before she passed from Alzheimer's. No amount of talking to her could convince Mom that the doll did not need to be fed, So I had to scrub a little more thoroughly than you might have to. Some websites recommend baby wash, anything that gets your doll clean, in the gentlest way possible is fine.
Now your doll is ready to start making it look like a real baby. In the next article we will start painting, so gather the supplies you need.