Alice's Adventures in Figure Restoration and Repaints

This article was originally posted on MFC

A few weeks ago I purchased the Tea Party figure of Chino Kafuu from Gochiusa. She came quite scuffed up, which wouldn't be a huge problem if she didn't also have some really unsightly faded spots in both the back of her skirt and hair! I got her for $5.50 (USD) already knowing her ears/headband were broken so I can't be too mad, but it wasn't disclosed in the listing or pictures at all so it was still a major disappointment.

After some thinking I decided it would be easiest to just repaint the skirt and hair. The skirt has a teeensy pinstripe pattern which I simply could not replicate, so I went with a solid instead. I considered 3 options: dark blue to go with the ribbons already on her outfit, black to match her shoes, or brown because… idk it looked good in my head. I made some simple edits before deciding on the blue, and I'm glad I did because the other 2 simply would not have looked the best!

I started out by cleaning up the figure the best I could using some nail polish remover. It seems the safest to refrain from washing after painting, so cleanup should come first. After all her misc. scuffs we're gone I taped her up with some washi tape around the apron, vest, and inner skirt layer. Then I decided that masking tape would stick better… and retaped. (Masking tape should be mostly safe, but I wouldn't use it on details and hand painted areas that'd be hard to repair)

I went in with a blue that I mixed to match the bows, plain acrylic for the first few layers. After it was opaque and completely dry, I mixed some more plain acrylic 50/50 with duraclear satin varnish, to get a nice finish that imitates the usual mostly-matte look that prize figs have. It worked well I gotta say! That's the skirt finished. The surface is a little uneven, but in my defense it was my first try and I'm not the most adept at using acrylics. I did make sure to use softer brushes though, that'll prevent your brush strokes from showing as much.

Onto the hair, I painstakingly mixed a close enough color match and set to work. This time I mixed it all 50/50 with the varnish since I knew I was going to add some shading later and wanted it to all have the same finish. (Saves you some extra mixing down the line too) After the base layer I mixed some globs of paint in slowly lightening tints for the highlights. Tbh I don't really know how to describe how I did the highlights, darkest to lightest I guess. They're very subtle, but I think they look nice regardless and add some much needed dimension.

As a finishing touch I fixed up her headband with some of the blue paint and carefully super glued it back on, making sure to use as little glue as possible. I repainted where the glue was showing to make it look neater and she's all done! A quick fix but she looks so much better. Super duper happy with the result as well! She lives on my desk so I can admire my handiwork as I play Splatoon 💪

I also threw together a short video of the process for Instagram.

Or watch it here: