Sunday, July 15, 2012

Project of the Week: Rag Doll

Do you have a bunch of leftover material and yarn from previous projects? Make a rag doll!
Here is what you will need:
material for the body (how much you need depends on how big you want the doll. If you are just trying to use up some scrap material, let that be your guide for the size), poly fil or pillow stuffing (how much depends on how stuffed you want the doll), scrap material for the clothes, yarn for the hair, thread, sewing machine (if you don't have a sewing machine, you can hand stitch the doll. It will just require more time and patience.), and needle, pins, any other accessories you might want to add.
1. Use newspaper or construction paper to cut out the pattern of the doll. Be sure to leave enough room for sewing (about 1/4 of an inch all around). The pattern should end up looking similar to a gingerbread man.
2. Once you are satisfied with the pattern, place the pattern on the material and pin it to secure it in place (it is sometimes easier to fold the pattern and the material in half lengthwise to help maintain semetry of the pattern). Then cut the pattern out of the material.
3. Place the two pieces of material that you have cut out together with the outside facing inside. Pin it in place.
4. Sew around the edges, leaving the part in between the legs open for stuffing.
5. Turn your material right side out. Stuff the doll to your desired firmness. Use a pencil, chopstick, or crochet needle to help push the stuffing into the arms and legs.
6. Hand sew the opening between the legs shut.
7. Now you are ready for the hair! For my doll, I created stitch lines all around the back of the head with yarn  (it looks like this on the head: - - - - -). Then I used a small crochet needle to pull the yarn through. I cut out yarn pieces, folded them in half, pulled the yarn through the stitch with the crochet needle, then looped the ends through the loop in the middle, and pulled to tighten it in place. Some people glue the hair on the doll. But there are many ways to add the hair. So find one that is best for you.
8. Now you can add a face. For this doll, I simply drew a very plain face with a sharpie marker. But you can paint a fancy face, use buttons for the face, stitch the face, etc.. Be creative!
9. After that, you can dress your doll. I used scrap jeans to make a simple dress. But you can use doll clothes or make simple clothes from any material you have laying around.
10. Now, you can add any finishing touches to your doll!

Have fun with this project. Be creative and play with techniques or designs. See what you come up with. This is the first doll that I have made, so I am still playing with ideas too. Please, share your doll, tips, or your stories with me to let me know how it goes for you!!

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