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Wednesday, March 2, 2011

a baby doll for my baby doll - how to make a waldorf baby doll

Last Christmas I attempted making Waldorf dolls for the kids.

This is what resulted for little miss.
floppy head, arms, and legs....but a good first effort
This is what resulted for little man.
i like these two better. he named the boy flash and the girl daisy.
But this year I decided, with a baby coming, to make a proper Waldorf style baby doll.

True to form I started a few days before her birthday. Below is step by step in photos. Should you care to try this is a great, great link with complete directions. I should've followed the pattern more precisely. Instead I looked at it and sketched out my own. I also used an old jersey knit t-shirt (dying it in tea for a flesh tone) which made the limbs stretch way bigger than I wanted. I was aiming for an 8 inch doll that could be easly carried around by a toddler. I made a 14 inch doll that is big enough to fit in newborn clothes. Ooops. She loves it though. That is the point.

an old banana republic t-shirt. really soft. way stretched out
(i think i wore it every other day my last trimester with little man.)

it only took two tea bags and five minutes. rinse in cold water. in the drier

start your head with a ball of yarn for more shape.

my sketched out pattern

looping wool over the ball of yarn for the head. i ended up redoing it
several times to make it big enough....the directions say to wait
to make the head until after the body is completed, to gauge the size.
(a baby with a small head doesnt look right!)
they were right....

tying strong thread in a plus shape around the head to form the face

pull down the cross at the back of the head
(so the front is flat, the back round) this also
shapes the cheek more (this is a side view of the
head if you are confused)

the body pieces cut out and sewn. i didnt realize (because i didnt read
the directions all the way through first, a bad habit of mine) but you dont
leave holes for the arms and legs! they are just closed up and sewn on
with an X so that they are jointed. clever huh?

a finished arm.

so, her directions have you cut out a foot in two pieces and sew it on, for a shaped foot
i tried this and without the exact pattern (my printer is broken) i couldnt get it right.
i cut out just a sole for the foot and sewed in on to the bottom of the leg piece.
it looks terrible. sewing in toes helped a little.
you can also sew in fingers, belly button, even a butt crack, but i kept it to toes...
so, the head piece is a like an open toed sock that you sew,
then pull over the head to form the close fitting skin.
i stuffed more wool in to make a tighter fit and make
my head bigger.

sewing the top of the head hole closed.
baby doll ready to be sewn together.
kinda creepy looking huh?

the next day during naptime....little baby gets a face! keep it simple,
otherwise it looks funny. (this was my third face attempt)

jointing the arms. SO. first run a needle through the underside of the arm, then out the top of the arm. bring it back through to form one half of the X, but very closely to where your needle first entered. now run your needle through the body and do the same to the other arm, now back through the body into the first arm to form the second half of the X, now back again through to the second arm to form the second half of that X. got that??? HA. do the same to the legs. i actually think i am gonna go back and redo the joints so my X is doubled up. the legs have already fallen off once...  

oh, also, sew the head on first. i went around my head twice with a whip stitch,
which you can see here.

sewing on the arms. photo courtesy of little man.

finished baby!!!

giving her some hair. i used wool in three colors (raw, brown and yellow)
and felted it on with felting needles. it keeps falling off so i poke it in more.
you can also create yarn hairstyles.

she even fits newborn dipes that missy wore!!

all dressed up and ready for birthday girl!

singing and rocking her baby. YAY. even little man likes her and plays with her.
mission accomplished! although i may make an 8 inch version soon.
There you have it.

Questions? It really was easy, and fun, especially when the kids were asleep. HA.


  1. Oh my word I have wanted to make one of these but it looks so daunting- thanks for simplifying it! I might try soon...

  2. That is so awesome. Love the dolly, love that little miss loves it too!

  3. Oohh... I want one! (Do I want to MAKE one, I'm not so sure.)

  4. beth - you should try! it wasnt that hard and only took maybe 4-5 hours (uninterupted, which means it took me four days. HA) you should go snag some wool from my mom sometime!!

    allison - seriously, not that hard...your kids would love it!


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