Well, I've decided to try making one-of-a-kinds. Everything I see on Etsy is a OOAK, and I'm feeling inferior for planning limited editions. I did a lot of work for the first one yesterday. I may have messed up a leg and I DEFINITELY messed up an arm. But this is a learning process! Mistakes will be made!
I made a model for the cloth portion. The cloth portion will have a blank for the head and shoulder plate, and then full size lower torso and upper legs. The head and shoulder plate will be built over the cloth form, like an Izannah Walker doll. The arms and lower legs will be separate. I will sculpt on the shoes, I think, and glue human hair directly to the head, like in that Japanese BJD-making book (can't remember the name of it).
I think the most intimidating part will be the painting. I've never spent much time painting, so that will be my challenge. I'm going to try watercolor paints, maybe some pastels, but I'll experiment and see what I get.