I just made a doll and had a lot of the same issues.
This is Sona from League of Legends Body. I couldn't find the right pattern for giving her that hourglass shape so I made something up. Essentially I made a regular ball but instead of closing it the last two rows I just single crochet up until it was long enough and then began to increase into another 'ball' shape. I went through the back loops on the bottom going up, so that I could crochet her skirt right into her torso through the front loops I didn't use.
Okay this was the next step. Attaching the head, arms, and boobs! I made the mistake of not making her breasts with the initial torso, so I struggled to find a way to make them come out but not like balls. So I crochet two small circles, one peach and one blue, Then I sowed them together in like a flat cookie shape. Then I folded that in half so its color on each side. THEN! I sowed it to her body. I think they came out pretty well!