November 5, 2011

Tutorial: How to make an EASY rag doll

Went to another great birthday party today for a one year old! There is just something special about your baby turning one! I asked my friend, Arren, if she had any gift requests for her little Lille, and she said she loved the pillow & friend I made for Charlie last week. So, on with the project this past week!


In my fabric stash is also a pile of "clothing". It's composed of donated clothing items, wool articles I've bought at the thrift store to "felt", and clothing items I intend to cut up at a later time. This skirt from Express was one of those items. I wore it a few times, and think it's very pretty, but think it would look better as something else.

I made the pillow out of this skirt, and decided to make an easy RAG DOLL this time to go inside the front pocket. Here are the directions:

Start with a square piece of fabric. Depending on what proportion you want the doll, is how big the square (folded in half) should be. Mine happened to be about 16"x16".  Note: this project is meant to be made with what you have....so, cut up old tee shirts, skirts of your own, or any material you have laying around. (I only finished some edges in the pictures, because I was sewing it for a baby, but it's really intended to be a non-sewing project). This project would be great for young girls to make themselves!

Place a small amount of fiber-fil or fabric scraps in the center of the square.

While leaving batting/scraps in the center, pull fabric up from middle (like you're making a ghost for halloween).

Now I have a "head" with stuffing, and a flowing body.

Now tie a long ribbon in a knot around her neck. I used double fold bias tape here. Keep the ribbon long at each ends, as that will become her arms.

Fold another scrap of fabric in half so the fold is at the top, and cut a shape out similar to this.

When the fabric piece is opened, it looks roughly like this. The hole needs only to be big enough just to squeeze the doll's head through.

Place the pinafore over the dolls head (kind of like creating a sandwich board sign).

Wrap another ribbon around the dolls waist and knot it in back.

Cut the arms to desired length.

For the hair, I cut 6 strips of fabric.

Then I stacked them on top of each other and sewed across the stack. (Note: The no-sew option here is just using yarn pieces and then adhering it on with fabri-tac glue).

I sewed the hair scraps to her head in the center.

And she can be done at this point, .....or you can add a face.

I chose to add a face. Stitched with embroidery thread. (the no-sew here is just to draw her face on with a non-bleeding marker).

And this was going to be Lille's only gift, until I decided last night at midnight that the doll just didn't look right in the pocket. So, back to my sewing area I went, and 20 minutes later came back down with a bunny.

I made a pocket in this one too for a blanket.

So, Lille ended up with this pillow and friend, & the rag doll, &......

this tutu. (My Mom had this one, so I didn't need to make it this time).

If you are interested in a tutorial on the Pillow and Friend, please leave me a comment either below, or on my facebook page.  Due to all your wonderful encouragement and this project's popularity, I also intend to put some Pillow & Friends up for sale in my Etsy store after the first of the year. Thank you!!!!!

5 comments:

  1. Your killing me!! You make it look so easy!! It would take me days!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Love the etsy idea!!

    Amy

    ReplyDelete
  2. God has given you such a talent with all things artistic :)
    luv ya!!
    Johanna

    ReplyDelete
  3. This is so great! My girls and I made them today and they loved them. My son wanted to do one too. Do you have any ideas/suggestions for how to alter this to make it into a boy doll? He chose some baseball fabric to use for the clothing. I'm not incredibly crafty, so thought I'd ask you.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Oh, I'm so glad you made these rag dolls! Certainly....for a boy I would gather/band the head, tie on the string/rope for the arms, and then cut straight up the bottom length of material and do another tie off on the ankles of each leg to create a boy. The boy would then need some basic wrap pants and a shirt (the shirt can be same as dress, just cut shorter. Hope you have lots of dun with this project!!!!

    ReplyDelete