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Topic: Crazy Haired Waldorf Doll (somewhat image heavy) Now with *Full* Tutorial  (Read 61420 times)
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I made you a bag lunch C:

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« on: February 11, 2006 08:28:23 PM »

It's only about 75% Waldorf doll.. the stuffing is synthetic recycled scraps from other sewing projects. (I make hideously cute hats and hawk them at cons.. lots of leftover polar fleece bits for stuffing).   I've been making dolls like this since I was 12ish. This is my favourite so far, though she doesn't have all the accessories I like to put with them.

The hair, as it was being looped in, and after I finished it. Hair is mohair, the technique for the hair I got out of the Sunnhild Reinckens (likely spelled wrong) book on making dolls.

Naked! Note the flowery button (yay!) arm hinges Cheesy Arms and legs move. No pattern for the body.

In her panties, note the snap on the back of the lacey bra Cheesy I had a half hour argument with my roommate while playing scrabble in swedish (which I don't speak XD) about whether or not the panties should be lacey. He won. Also, since taking these pics I've trimmed the atrocious loose threads. Also got a bunch of wierd looks and comments from my contemporaries who think I'm wierd for making undies for a doll XD

Fully clothed. Front, Back, Zombie shot XD The pants aren't hemmed.. I know T_T I have a bad habit of never hemming anything if I can help it. (my favourite skirt is hemmed with safety pins.. so lazy XD)

Close up of the face, hopefully you can see the labret piercings. No mouth. The reason being that the style of doll really isn't supposed to have a face put on it at all. The child (though this is definitely not a children's doll) is supposed to imagine the face of their doll.

It's a bit of a self portrait.. made for the "diy twin" challenge. I'm all anti-establishment with my Waldorf Doll entry. They're the unbarbie of children's toys XD

Comments and criticisms welcome.

Thanks for your interest.

Edit: first part of tutorial: making the head

First you start of with a stretchy knit fabric (see 1). I believe circular bandage material is waldorf standard but any will do really. I use light coloured ribbing. Cut a piece that is as large around as you'd like your doll's head to be when stretched out. Don't forget a seam allowance if you're using a sewing machine. Make sure to have the "Vs" of the knit going vertical.

Now sew this piece of fabric into a tube (see 2).

Tie a double length of thread around one end of the tube (see 3) a few times. Make sure it's tight. Waxing the thread will make it hold to itself better. For this beeswax works much better than parafin. Tie off into a secure knot.

Turn inside out (see 4).

Stuff to desired firmness (see 5). It should be about as firm as an orange: solid but with a little give. The standard stuffing material for waldorf dolls is natural fleece (ie sheep's wool cleaned and carted). This is because it's firm, natural, responds well to body heat and retains its shape in the wash (in fact gets stronger because the fibres felt together). I however, am a poor bugger and can't find proper fleece anywhere. I use fabric scraps to stuff my dolls. I wouldn't suggest using synthetic fleece. It's difficult to get it to have the right weight or form, and the doll will loose its shape in the wash. If you're using real fleece  be sure to leave enough hanging down to give your doll a sturdy head. If you're using scraps try your best to leave some hanging down for a neck, but we'll talk about how to get a sturdy neck without the bit hanging down later.

Enlist an assistant for 5 minutes.

Tie off the neck (see 6) the same way you tied off the top of your tube.

Tie the eyeline (see 7). There should be a visible indent where the eyeline is. On a child the eyeline is less than halfway up the head. On an adult the eyeline is at the halfway mark.

Tie the earline (see Cool. This is the line at which the ears would fall on the head. You've probly noticed a nice indent in your head already made by your tubeseam. Use this as part of your earline. This tie helps to define cheeks and chin.

Release assistant to go back to playing/working/sleeping/etc..

Where your two ties meet sew them down with an X (see 8 or 9). Make sure it's sturdy, tie each one off individually rather than sewing one, going through the head, sewing the other and then tieing off.

Pull down eyeline to form back of the skull (see 9). You'll have noticed (if you're like me) that your doll's head is a bit lopsided (if not, then go you XD). Use this to your advantage.  Use the end that sticks over neck further as the front of your head, and the other as your back.

edit: more (and the rest) of the tutorial! yay!


Sew a nose if desired. You can do this a couple ways, none of which I can illustrate clearly. 1: pinch where the nose should be then tie around it creating a ball that pokes out from the face. 2: Sew a lump out of the face where the nose should be (best way to describe it.. it's what I do usually to make a nose) 3: use hot glue to bulk up a nose ( make sure it's smooth on top when you're done).

Here is where you'd re-enforce the neck if you felt it was too flimsy. I find wrapping a bit of polar fleece or a bulky material like that around the neck a couple times then sewing the end to the wrapping and the top to the chin works very well.

And now just add face (see 10). Take your flesh material and cut a similar sized rectangle as your initial tube rectangle. Sew this on to the back of the head using a hidden stitch. You don't have to sew all the way up or down because you'll need to make small adjustments to make it fit the head flat.

Pull material securely over face (see 11). It shouldn't be overly taught, but it shouldn't be flabby either. Fold over and sew second edge to back using a hidden stitch.

This is the part where you adjust the skin to fit the face. You obviously don'y want wrinkles in wierd places in the fabric, so you're going to be negotiating with head and face for a little bit to get it to work right. Don't worry too much if the back of the head is cris-crossed with facelift lines. Just try to keep them where the hair would cover.

Once you're done with that sew the top down as flat as you can (see 12s). You want to sew it like you'd do the sides of a wrpped present; in the same order (back down, sides down, front down). Use a hidden stitch here as well.

Now you can add the face if you so desire. Decide on the placement of the eyes (and mouth) relative to the nose (if you did a nose) you can mark these with a pin or just wing it if you feel confident. Now there's a couple different styles to choose from when doing thew face. A more traditional style is simply embroidering the eyes and mouth with one colour of floss. You'd go from right ear to right eye to left eye to left ear and back once or twice until you're happy with the shape. For mouth you'd go from ear to mouth to other ear.  You could also paint the face on with either textile dyes or acrylic paint. For this you'll want to make an indent with thread of a similar colour to your skin following the sewing pattern as described above, but only going over it once. Afterwards you'd paint the face on however you like. Red crayons, blush, or thinned paint can be used to create a rosy cheek effect.

You should probly do shoulders (if you're going to) before you do hair, as you'll have less stuff to get in your way. Shoulders cand be done simply by stuffing what's left of the tube for the head with what's left of the stuffing (and extra to make it look nice) and pushing it about a bit to look more shoulder-like. Again you'd stuff to desired firmness and sew up with a hidden stich. Here you'd also sew the edge of the flesh material with a hidden stitch to the shoulders.

An aside: you don't need to make shoulders, but it does make sewing the head and body together a lot easier.

Now you add hair. Again it's best if the hair is a natural fibre (mohair is a pain to sew on, but it looks nice). There's a lot of different ways to do all kinds of hair. However, I'm not sure if anyone's going to get this far in the tutorial before I update again. If you do and want advice for the hair PM me and I'll help as best I can Smiley
« Last Edit: June 19, 2015 01:43:38 PM by kittykill » THIS ROCKS   Logged

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« Reply #1 on: February 14, 2006 01:26:25 PM »

I really like the way the hair color and eye color work together. Well done.

Don't hem if you don't want to... just call it a deconstructed edge.

« Reply #2 on: February 14, 2006 04:41:35 PM »

I remember this from the challenge, I like the "implied face" a lot.

Ce qui embellit le dsert, dit le petit prince, c'est qu'il cache un puits quelque part...

i guess i'm jumping off the bridge:
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I made you a bag lunch C:

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« Reply #3 on: February 14, 2006 09:55:31 PM »

er.. yeah.. it's still up there too.. I just wanted to post it somewhere that it wasn't being compared to nine million barbie mods, to get opinions and suggestions Cheesy

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« Reply #4 on: February 15, 2006 06:00:36 AM »

Oh, I love your doll!!! I too have perpetually changing hair color, so that is a perfect compromise. I have been dreaming of making my boys dolls similar to this since they were born, but I haven't gotten the nerve up to doing it. I think the hair is my biggest scare, they all have fairly short hair, but I can't think of a way to make it look nice, yours looks perfect!

And her in her underwear is perfect!!! I love it! Great job!

pinterest- http://pinterest.com/ezrib/

Looking to increase my 1.5 in scraps for a rainbow project. If interested in swapping let me know!
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I made you a bag lunch C:

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« Reply #5 on: February 15, 2006 02:19:40 PM »

They're very simple to make Cheesy It's just a series of tubes sewn together. The head is a tube of cloth stuffed and shaped, the body is a tube stuffed and shaped and so are the arms and legs Smiley for the face you tie the head where the eyeline should be horizontally and where the ears should be vertically.. sew where the ears are and then pull down the back to form the back of the skull. That doesn't make it sound easy o_O But trust me that the head is the most difficult part after that it's all easy Cheesy

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You can never have enough yarn...

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« Reply #6 on: February 15, 2006 02:41:22 PM »

I have a waldorf doll from my childhood that is no way as cool as yours/
What kind a fabric do you use?

If you have time could you give some more detailed directions?


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Wanda in South Texas

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« Reply #7 on: February 15, 2006 03:22:42 PM »

Oooh...that is such a great doll! And I absolutely LOVE her hair!!!![/color]

Wanda in South Texas
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Misanthropic, you got it.

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« Reply #8 on: February 15, 2006 03:32:45 PM »

That's amazing!

I love it!

(I voted for you in the craft challenge. you know. randomnly.)

http://javastain.etsy.com is now open!

Come check us out for period goodness!
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I made you a bag lunch C:

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« Reply #9 on: February 15, 2006 03:55:45 PM »

I guess I could do a bit of a tutorial on how to do them.. but not tonight (4-6 point perpective homework shall eat me x_X) I'll do some doodles to go with it and try to have it up tomorrow.

edit: and thank you for voting for me Smiley

edit again: the fabric I used for the skin is a wierd loose cotton knit that was like 4 bucks for 2 meters of it. I couldn't find any of the peach/tan that my mum used to have so I went for the closest to and most versatile skintone ish colour I could find Cheesy
« Last Edit: February 15, 2006 04:01:03 PM by teddybearbones » THIS ROCKS   Logged

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