08 July 2013

And then we made a Dolly.

Zoe the doll
The Wee Lass and I made a fabric dolly together. She's very interested in my sewing machine and frequently asks to do a sewing project. We used tea to dye some linen from a thrifted shirt (we needed only a small part of one arm of the shirt for this dolly).

I drew a pattern on paper based roughly on the shape of her bunny (amusingly, also made from a thrifted shirt) and then traced around it to add seam allowance. I made the arms a bit fatter (easier to flip and stuff) and added thumbs. We sewed up the arms and legs together and stuffed them full of "fluff" as she calls it. I added felt eyes and a mouth with some embroidery thread before sewing the body up and attaching the arms and legs. I attached a little loop of embroidered trim so we could easily clip the dolly to a bag or the stroller if she's coming out on adventures.

I added yarn hair, based on a simple tutorial that I found online. Since our dolly didn't have a perfectly round head, I found it worked better to start the "scalp" at the hairline and then spiral in, rather than the reverse. I wove in the loose ends of the braid to fill any gaps and secure it. I just added a little bit of long yarn hair to make pigtails and bangs, rather than covering the whole head.

This type of "flat" doll is quite approachable for a novice sewist and lots of fun to involve a little one in the process. Next time the Wee Lass requests a sewing project, I think we'll make her dolly a dress.

Photographs and artwork by Allison Gryski. © All rights reserved.