Spanish artist Lola of Atelier Momoni opened her store originally to sell doll fashions, but eventually couldn’t resist pursuing her own BJD sculpting ambitions. She has released multiple dolls, most recently 40cm Momoni.
Q: When did you first become interested in BJDs?
A: I was on a trip to Tokyo in 2003, and out of curiosity walked into a Volks shop. I didn’t know what a ball-jointed doll was at the time. They were beautiful, but since I was a student, I thought they were out of my price range. A while later friends in University showed me their Too & Bea from Dream of Doll. It was then I got really interested in them.
Q: What was the first doll in your collection? What was your vision for her?
A: My first doll is a Dream of Doll Dream of Child line Pitts. She was meant to be an albino girl, with the palest skin, red eyes, white or pale blonde hair, dressed as a delicate and romantic mori girl. But at that time white resin was rare and expensive so she ended being a casual mori girl, which I still loved.
Q: How and when did you open Atelier Momoni?
A: Opening Atelier Momoni was a bit of a happy unintentional accident. I got my first doll at the end of 2004, it was a struggle to find anything that fit her properly, so I put my training in Fashion Design and Pattern Drafting to good use and started sewing clothes for my doll. I also joined DenofAngels forum around the same time and shared my photos. After sharing my work, I ended up with commission requests. Soon after Atelier Momoni was born. All the clothing items I designed and machine sewed myself. Later I added accessories and shoes to the shop. My focus has always been on providing high quality clothes with a nice fit.
Q: How did this lead to making dolls?
A: I think for me as a person, as an artist, as a creator, it was inevitable. I really love the doll collecting aspect of the hobby, and I kept searching for dolls that fit my tastes and style, and that also fit Atelier Momoni’s design and style. To me it seemed a logical step to try to create dolls that I envisioned, those with the hard-to-find gentle smiles. Making dolls would never have been possible without the encouragement of my friends. They are always there to support me, I could never thank them enough, this way a new chapter started for Atelier Momoni.
Q: Which was the first doll you sculpted? When was she created?
A: Nena01 was my first complete doll. She was 1/6 scale, really tiny and cute. I started working on her in the December of 2012, but Nena01 cast in resin was ready for Ldoll, October 2013.
Q: Can you tell me more about each of the other dolls you have released so far?
A: After making Nena01, realized I really enjoyed making dolls. This time I wanted to work in the 16cm size, one that was cute and could be mischievous, and Melo came from that idea. Even though I loved Nena01, I wasn’t sure about her size, so from her plans I starting working on Nena02.
Nena02 was bigger, double-jointed and had features that more closely resembled my art style. This time I followed Gentaro Araki’s work on the Unoa Zero book as reference, and my results were much better.
Nena02’s first release had two faces, Rei and Reira, and for the second release there will be Chika and Vespa. (Hoping this year!) I’m working on another head for Melo and I’ve named her Coton. If you read both “melo” and “coton” together, it means ‘Peach’ in Spanish and I hope to release her this summer.
Throughout this time I had a vision of a doll that perfectly matched both everything I loved in dolls and my art style. I was inspired by several influences, Unoa, Nena02 and porcelain dolls. This time poseability was my target. I was really focused on considerably improving the joints and movement in each of my sculpts. Of course it’s with my doll Momoni that I have learned so much this last year, and I hope to keep improving and sharing my work with everyone.
Q: Are you working on any other new dolls right now?
A: Definitely! I can’t stop! I recently started on a little rabbit girl and a doll in the 1/6th size. I always have several projects on the go.
Photos above from top: Nena01 and Melo prototypes, Melo in 3 resin colors, Reira in 2 resin colors, Momoni head.
Atelier Momoni-company website
Nena02 – Reira and Rei:
Melo and Nena01: