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Larry Fertick  Purveyor of one of a kind fetish dolls, steeped in Low Country folklore adorned with protective potions and poems. 🔮👓Inquiries: larryfertick@yahoo.com


This is Osmond. I have made only four of these dolls. I made three of them in the summer of 2015. This was a month or so before the Mother Emanuel church massacre and I decided against going forward with the black linen dolls because of a derogatory remark made by a stranger. I was asked to make Osmond by a person that I knew appreciated the black linen dolls for the tribute that I intend them to be. When I made the first one I remembered a person from my childhood. The community knew him as REV or the REVEREND. He walked everywhere and no one in our family knew much about him. He had a limp and his legs were bowed, probably from poor nutrition as a child. Rev was usually around in the warm months when I was out of school for the summer. My mother’s kitchen window faced the road and she would announce. “Here comes Rev. I knew that he would come to the side door because he always did. I and my mother would usually meet him there. The conversation was usually the same. “Mrs. Do you need any little project done”. “No Rev...I can’t think of anything”. The Rev would them begin to preach his sermon right there on the porch. He would tell the Bible stories that he had been told with such passion and fervor that the little mistakes that he made didn’t matter. Rev couldn’t read. His knowledge came verbally from church services and sometimes he would confuse the number of fishes and loaves or wine into water but his faith was unshakable. He was a small man and he always wore a suit, white shirt and tie and was as groomed as any pulpit preacher I had ever seen. After the sermon he would ask my mom if she had a cold biscuit or anything that he could eat. She always found something and then with a “thank you” he was on his way. One day we realized that the Reverend wasn’t visiting any more. We didn’t know his name or where he slept... no one in the community did. I always enjoyed his passionate and animated sermons...so much more that sitting still in church😎

This is Sister Nimah and she has relocated to California to live with Charlette. I get many requests to make dolls similar to Cameran’s doll from Southern Charm. I don’t do duplicates so they are always unique. I call them sisters. In my August 18, 2017 post I discussed my Aunt Blanch and her paranormal experiences and posted a photo of her house. Blanch had a sister named Ethel and after their marriages they were neighbors. The sisters were at Aunt Blanches house one day during the spring or summer months. I mention this because the house was open...windows and doors...screens and screen doors kept the insects out. Both husbands were away and the sisters decided to take a nap in the early afternoon. The house had two identical front bedrooms on either side of a central hallway, each room had a fireplace on the wall opposite the front windows. The sisters were drifting off to sleep when the front screen door could be heard opening and closing. There was silence in the house and then a few minutes later Aunt Ethel called from the bedroom “Blanch...who was that little man?”
Aunt Blanch replied...you saw him too!” “I did”. Aunt Ethel replied . “He walked to the mantle as if looking for something. He then left the room.”. Aunt Blanch said “That’s just what he did in my bedroom”. Both sisters got out of bed to search the house. They did not hear the little man open the door to leave. There was no one in the house except the sisters. They described the man as small and all gray with no distinct features. Like a vapor or mist. This type of thing was commonplace for Blanch but it was the only experience of this type that Ethel ever talked about.

Meet Missy Dean. Missy is my interpretation of a woman who lived in St. Augustine, Florida in the first half of the 20th century. She was the undisputed Voodoo Queen of St Augustine. Missy was adept a telling fortunes, making predictions and casting bones. Legend states that Missy was always correct and had a following spanning all economic brackets. I do not make portrait dolls and apparently there are no photos of Missy. The woman who commissioned Missy wanted a fetish doll to represent her spirit and presence in St. Augustine. Missy lived on Spanish Street and from the bits of information I was given she passed away in the 1940’s. The woman who wanted me to make a doll in Missy’s image also sent me fragment of a beaded lace collar that belonged to her mother to incorporate into the doll. At Missy’s death she was not discovered for several days and it was front page news (researching that is my next mission). Shortly after her death the house on Spanish Street was demolished. The mantle from her house was saved by a local collector, Kenneth Dow. The whereabout of the mantle are a mystery. I like to think that Missy leaves her current St. Augustine home at night and wanders Spanish St. searching for her belongings and returning to her new home before dawn.

OK......I don’t like cold weather and I only like snow for about 45 minutes. This is our third day as captives in our home. This little haint in progress slipped out early this morning and I found him making snow angels in the front yard. I have mentioned my friend Ada several times. She hated cold more that anyone I have known. She loved Summer and was never hot...she didn’t use air conditioning! When we had snow storms in Columbia she would call and invite me down for company and a drink. She had a roaring fire going, her tarletan cigarettes, a bottle of brandy and was wrapped in a long shawl. The most surprising thing was the absence of the Nino Rota movie Soundtracks that she usually played as background music. Ada was playing Hawaiian music and would until the snow melted. In denial. Stay warm.

So....Here we sit.....Contemplating this past year, which has been so much more than I expected. I am working on Deana but took the time to have a glass of Champagne.......Toady had to defile perfectly good Champagne with Orange Juice....We are not staying up ‘til midnight. Yawn!!! During this past year we lost some very special friends. That is what happens when you are our age. During this past year we made and reconnected with some very special friends. That’s what happens when you are our age (I consider myself middle age). Toady, Deana and I are toasting all of you and wishing you the best year of your life to date. Tonight when you toast your loved ones know that the sound of glass touching glass has many meanings including warding off evil spirits. Love to all of you. We will talk again in 2018. Thanks for hanging out with us for the past year❤️.

Here is the proud recipient of Leroux. Patrick was gifted the little prankster by his spouse, Matthew (behind the camera). I have known Patrick since the 1980’s and feel like I have met Matthew through our phone conversation and email. Now. Let’s answer the questions from yesterday’s quiz. HAIR- Ziggy Stardust/David Bowie. EYES- Alice Cooper. UPPER BODY- parallel lines by Blondie...Patrick’s obsession (seen and met her numerous times and even owns a pair of her shoes). VEST and PANTS- Steven Tyler. SHEER SHIRT and BOOTS- Stevie Nicks. The only one of the above entertainers that I have seen in concert is Alice Cooper. His “Love it to Death” album is the only album that I have purchased based on the album photo and song titles. My friend, Ada and I would sit out on the patio and listen to it over and over. Ada was in her late 60’s but was forever young and kept up with everything. She was important to me because of all that she had experienced and I was forever asking her questions about Billie Holiday, prohibition, places she had visited and life in the 1930’s, a favorite era of mine. Her favorite song on “Love it to Death” is the last track “Sun Arise”. Patrick and Matthew...Stay young at heart and I know you well enough to know that you will keep up with current trends. ♥️♥️

Meet Leroux. This fetish doll was commissioned by someone I had never met for someone that I have known for 30+ years ( a music aficionado) and was given as a surprise gift. The requests to personalize the doll went beyond the three included in the price of the doll so I agreed to do additional at an up-charge for each request. Now.....Doctor Wren’s first (possibly only) POP CULTURE Quiz. The subject is music from Glam to Punk to Goth and back again. I will list a part of Leroux and a question regarding the influence or reference to a musical personality or group No prize will be awarded other the the thrill of knowing you nailed the answer to each question. HAIR- ________ played guitar jamming good with Weird and Gilly. EYES- This Shock Rocker was well beyond the age of eighteen when he recorder “I’m Eighteen”in 1971. UPPER BODY- Vertical or Horizontal these lines are _________Lines. The title of a 1978 album by this Punk/ New Wave super group. VEST and PANTS- This dude said that the inspiration for his onstage look is the late Janis Joplin. SHEER SHIRT and BOOTS- This White Witch is famous for handkerchief hemlines and high boots. That’s it...easy questions. I’ll post the answers tomorrow. NO cheating.

Christmas left-overs are the best! One family tradition from years past was to take Christmas dinner and deserts to a man known throughout the neighborhood. His name was John Simmons and he worked for most families in Dixiana doing small jobs for $4.00 a day plus tips. Lunch should be provided. We also gave him morning refreshments or “freshments” as he called them...that was my job. John was older that you would think. You could tell by his eyes or at least I thought so. On Christmas Day our family would take a Holiday dinner and deserts to him. Usually more than enough for one. John owned several acres of land in Gardener’s Terrace, a community near Dixiana. There was no house... John lived alone in an old school bus. The bus probably had not moved in years and most of the seats had been removed. No plumbing, no electricity, warmth was provided by a kerosene heater. John traveled by tractor on the main highways avoiding the police and highway patrol for years. John was always appreciative for the Christmas visit and food. Sharing and fellowship...part of the season. Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays. I’ll post again this week end. ❤️

Christmas Eve. The CHANEY SISTER’S BAKE-OFF. Our Christmas tradition when I was growing up was to spend Christmas Eve at one of my mother’s sister’s homes or they might all come to our house. This was about 25 people crammed into a single family dwelling. Food was in abundance. Usually a Ham with rice and gravy, mashed potatoes, Mac and cheese, salads, vegetables, home baked breads and deserts. All sisters contributed something and a few in the family loved baking. Fruit cake, pound cake, Japanese fruit cake, orange cake and three “special” cakes my Mom’s six layer chocolate cake and a peach cake made with dried peaches rehydrated in sugar and water. The peaches were between each layer of the cake and a vanilla frosting covered the cake with more peaches on top. Yumm. My Aunt Juanita also made this cake and lots of candies but her specialty was banana cake. This was a white cake with bananas (pulverized with the tines of a fork) between each layer and also mixed in with the frosting. Yumm. There was never a clear winner but all left happy and ready to sleep until Santa came down the chimney. Merry Christmas and the very Happiest of Holidays.

Tomorrow night this table and all of the space underneath will be filled with Christmas gifts. There will be at least 13 immediate family members here for our traditional Christmas Eve dinner...Spaghetti and meatballs. We’ve done this for years. A German family with an Italian Holiday feast. When I was a child the crowd was much larger, uncles, aunts and cousins. Each family gave all of the kids a Christmas gift. Nothing expensive. You could always count on a new box of crayola crayons, a coloring book, chocolate covered cherries and at least one silver dollar. One of the Christmas gifts that I liked the most came all the way from Pennsylvania. Mabel D’Aras a former neighbor would send us “candy by the yard”. A long narrow pink and brown box with a wooden yardstick attached to the side. The box was filled with caramel, almonds, nougats, pecan clusters...all covered in Chocolate. It’s not that we didn’t have lots of other candy around it just seemed neat that it traveled so far from someone I knew. Merry Christmas!!!

Christmas past and a doll in progress. The ventriloquist puppet and the book “‘The Night before Christmas” are childhood reminders of my past Christmases. My brothers and I would wake and jump out of bed around 5:00 or 6:00 on Christmas morning to check out the haul under the tree and then descend on my Mother and Father’s bedroom. When my brother was in his early teens he wanted a crash helmet from the Sears Catalog. It was there under the tree and he couldn’t wait to slip it on to be sure it fit. Then....off to get Mom And Pop. My brother leaned over the bed and gently shook my Mom awake. She let out a blood curdling scream so there was no need to shake Dad out of his slumber. “The Aliens Have Landed “. Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all.

Mama Zulema, Blanch and Dorothea are helping with neighborhood Christmas deliveries. I still believe in Santa Clause and I am amazed at his accommodating nature. When I was in grade school I had two friends, Bobby and Mike who lived next door. Their Dad was the first Mister Mom that I knew. He took care of the house and cooked while his wife worked as a nurse. She was originally from Hendersonville N.C. Every Christmas they would all travel to visit her family...leaving on Christmas Eve. Santa was so considerate that he visited their house on the night of Dec. 23...one night early. I was always a little jealous and couldn’t understand why he wouldn’t just pop in to our house since he was in the neighborhood. Down the road in the other direction lived the Smith family. Mom, Dad and three sons. They didn’t have Christmas Eve at all. There was never any discussion of Santa Clause. They did receive Christmas gifts. After Christmas their parents would hit the sales and purchase toys for the boys. The boys seemed happy but to me it didn’t seem right that Santa didn’t visit them. I now understand that it was a financial thing...and I like believing in Santa. 😎

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