Lil Dumplins Nursery Air Dry Sealer Recipe

I came up with this method of sealing dolls from my own experimentation in 2017. As you can see, it was posted on my blog when I concocted the recipe and has been there ever since. I have been using it since then and many have passed it along. I no longer blog there as I have my own Facebook Group where I share my knowledge, experience and experimentation. However, I have left this up on my blog for anyone to use as long as they give me credit for coming up with it. With a recent resurgence of interest and PMs asking for my recipe, I thought I would create this post so that in the future it can be searched out here. Thank you all for your part in the journey and keep up the good work!


And thank you.I have been using your method off and on ever since you posted it.


I’ve tried the soft touch varnish and I don’t know what I’m doing wrong. When the coat dries on the vinyl, it makes it sticky and get stuck to blankets. I’ve tried with and without the corn starch.

Maybe you have a bad batch? Did you stir it up well first? Also you have to be sure your pieces are cured well so there is not water trapped inside causing the tacky feel. Using a lot of Retarder can also do this as well as using too much Super Matte Medium. Many have said they like to use Golden Super Matte Medium mixed with varnish as an Isolation coat first. I tried this per MGDolls method and got a tacky mess from that.
The other varnish that works well with this method is Golden Polymer Matte Varnish. I have used it
and I have also mixed the 2 varnishes together together and use them with the corn starch.

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Ah ha, that is what may be causing some people to feel like Liquitex is sticky, the retarder. :thinking:

I dunno…not tried it. I did try their varnish several years ago and it left the surface feeling tacky to me. I even gave it to a friend to try some and she said the same thing happened to her.

When stirring the varnish, is the soft touch varnish supposed be thick? I stirred a few times. I also put some on a paper plate. Today, I gently applied a layer with a paint brush:

The arm I put it on is a bereguner that I didn’t paint. I’m trying to practice varnishing before I do it on one with ghsp because I don’t want to ruin one of those dolls.

That may be a little thick for application. I usually sponge on 2 thin layers with a damp makeup sponge

You can paint it on like this as long as you sponge over it. It will have the texture of your brush strokes if not.

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This is applied WAY too thickly. It looks like you just used the straight varnish and did not thin it out with corn starch melted in water. Yes, the varnish is thick but some do like to use it straight out of the jar and pounce it out very thinly. You can even thin it down with a little distilled water even if you do not add in corn starch.


I forgot to mention I only put the thick stuff on the plate and dipped my paint brush in it. I got a little on my brush and tried painting it on like you would paint a picture. I did use it right of the package but I also have done a spoonful in some spring water with the corn starch. Maybe I’m putting it on too thick or not enough water? I don’t have any distilled water.

I also tried pouncing. Maybe i’m Pouncing too hard.

Try pouncing with a sponge and then a cheap kabuki brush, they wash out easily.

The recipe and method is explained in a lot of detail in the article above. I would try to do exactly as it says first, then adjust if you need to. It’s pretty perfect though.

I want to thank you for sharing your recipe. I have tried for years to find a sealer that works. They either lifted paint or was gritty. I tried yours yesterday and. Wow! Amazing! Thank you so much


So glad it worked for you!