Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Antonio Realli fashion designer designs doll fashions too

Featured are repainted celebrities Cate Blanchett, Brooke Shields, Jennifer Lopez, Marilyn Monroe, Jaclyn Smith, Whitney Houston, Cher and Farrah Fawcett all repainted and restyled by artist Noel Cruz of

Antonio Realli is a Brazilian Fashion Designer who not only creates fashions for 1:1 women but for their 1:6 scale counterparts. His fashions can be seen on Flickr, Facebook, and Instagram on dolls and women all over the world. Realli’s vision for fashions and fabric have made him a stand apart and stand out with bold color choices and fabrics that give lift and light to those that model his creations. Here is a short Q&A with the designer who enjoys the simple things like lunch prepared by his mom every day in Brazil.

A little Questions and Answers with Antonio Realli. 

1. What inspires a certain dress? Is it a fabric or a memory or a theme?
I've watched many fashion shows in order to know what designers are creating. I create designs that reflect my personality. I look for inspiration everywhere to come up with and create a new dress that is dynamic, original and beautiful.

2. Can you describe the process for your designs from pattern to sewing? What is the typical method to your madness (as it is)? As a designer, not just for dolls, I often times have fabric left over. I want to create a dress because of a certain material. I sketch ideas and designs constantly and select those that best fit the doll and image of what I’m feeling at that moment.

3. What is your earliest memories of Barbie? 1988 “Estrela,” a licensed manufacture of Barbie in Brazil launched a doll collection which were extremely detailed and had a variety of dolls. I fell totally in love with them.

 4. Did you play with Barbie as a child or other dolls? No. I viewed dolls as a work of art. I displayed mine in cabinets and enjoyed admiring them as displayed, but not as toys.

5. Do you yourself collect Barbie’s or other dolls? If so who and why. I collect model Barbies (Muse and Silk-stone) however, I have dedicated more of my designs and collection now towards Fashion Royalty. The FR line better represents me and my designs. I think, though, that the newer generation of Barbies will eventually lead me back to them

6. Who inspires you as a designer today? Working in fashion I have a wide appreciation for multiple designers and fashions. I developed my own style and, for me, the designs reflect and have more to do with my personality and the way I’d like to dress women in general.

7. Do you follow fashion? If so who inspires you and why I do view fashion shows but I’m not following any trends, they do not influence my designs. Fads come and go and I want my dresses to reflect what I envision as beautiful and timeless. I do think the work of Ralph and Russian is fantastic!

8. What design are you each most proud of and why? I’m proud of all my designs. It’s impossible to pick one over the other as each is a favorite in its own moment.

2016 fashions worn by Cher, Jennifer Lopez, Farrah Fawcett and Whitney Houston
9. What is your favorite color palette to work with? I used to work with a very minimal color palette, neutrals. It wasn’t until a friend on Flickr said I should expand my color base to include all hues that I started developing designs in every color under the sun!

10. What do you both do outside of sewing dresses? Designing is my life. At some point I want to retire and live on or very near the beach but it will be a while before that happens.

11. What has been the most challenging in being your own salesperson? As a collector and a salesman I try to meet the demands and expectations of buyers as I can relate being a collector myself. I know the importance of meeting those expectations and I challenge myself to deliver items the way I’d want to receive them.

12. What is the most satisfying compliment you’ve received? I’ve received several compliments and for me, all publicly posted or stated compliments are great and equal! I’m always extremely flattered and thrilled with the kudos I’ve received.

13. Are you constantly shopping for new fabrics and ideas or do you have visions of what you want to do next? I’m always searching for new fabrics, ideas and things that inspire me to create. Sometimes collectors will tell me about a dress they like and I will research that gown or dress and make an item that is in my own style but influenced by something recommended

A Black Label Jennifer Lopez as repainted and restyled
by artist Noel Cruz in a gown by Realli.
14. What line of doll was your favorite or is your favorite now? Currently it is Fashion Royalty but I started with the Barbie Model Muse many years ago. That line still holds a special place in my heart.

15. What would you like to see in a line of Barbie or other collectible that isn’t available but you think would be amazing? I’d like to see less animated and child like expressions as well as better articulation for dolls in general. I suspect the articulation is occurring.

16. You seem very aware of the seasons and holidays when you design and post new dresses. How far out in advance do you plan or is this truly a labor of love? I don’t follow seasons I just design dresses I want to create for a certain collection.

17. Favorite time of day and why? Lunch time is my favorite time and I love to eat! Every day I eat at my Mom’s house and I wouldn’t change that for anything!

18. If you’d like to share a little history, where did you grow up and favorite memory of the Christmas Holiday or favorite holiday in general I have a memory that many collectors will relate too, my boyfriend Felipe, who is always by my side was seemingly indifferent to my hobby. At one time I was perusing eBay and made a comment that I found a beautiful doll and it would be interesting to have her but I didn’t purchase her and I actually forgot about it completely. I really thought he wasn’t even paying attention, however, a month later he gave me a gift, I opened it and it was that doll! Isn’t that a great example of someone who loves you and supports your passion? I am grateful every day that he is by my side. I don’t mention dolls I like now though as I don’t want him to keep doing that!

Antonio Realli laces up 
19. What is something other people who want to sew should focus on? First and foremost: Quality. Second: Humility. View other designers as artists and not competitors. For example, I am very passionate about the work of Cholo Ayuyao and the professionalism and creativity of Ryan Lyang (Shantommo). In general I’m a very conservative person but I’m enjoying this time in my life. Other designers will emerge and have their moments too and I celebrate artists in general.

20. Is the scale of dress more difficult than say sewing for a person? Nothing beats the scale of a person as the details to dress them can take days to develop in addition to passing the dress/gown/design to several others such as a dressmaker, seamstress, embroiderer. In short a design for a person is very labor intensive. Dolls are much simpler.

21. What are three things you want to do in 2016? Time to travel if work permits that and I want to have more time to devote to my partner, family as well as purchasing more dolls

22. Thank you so much for your time. Please add any additional thoughts you’d like to share. Thanks for this interview! One last thought: Everything in life is a phase, sometimes we feel on top of the world and then suddenly we're down, because human beings have an absurd need for new things and what is new today will be old tomorrow. So enjoy your time doing your best because even when you aren’t the most celebrate and center stage: your name will be remembered with respected for the quality of work you did present.

  You can see more of Antonio’s designs and photos on his web site at
He is also on flickr and Instagram and facebook

ICONS Whitney Houston, Farrah Fawcett, Jennifer Lopez and Cher in Antonio Realli. Farrah Fawcett as repainted, re-rooted and restyled as well as a repainted and restyled Cher, Whitney Houston and Jennifer Lopez all by artist Noel Cruz for

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Monday, March 21, 2016

40 years today

Today, March 21, 2016 marks the 40th Anniversary of the TV-movie Pilot of Charlie's Angels. 

Visit for more about the Angels and Farrah!