On with the show!
- Large scraps of muslin (or similar cotton fabric) in your desired flesh tone
- Medium scraps of desired leg fabric (I use a different fabric for the legs so she has some built in tights)
- Stuffing (fiberfill)
- Pattern - I had to set up a site to host the pdf, so the link is here: Rag Doll Pattern
- Fabric scissors
- Paper scissors (No, they cannot be the same. Yes, you need different scissors for fabric and paper. No, I don’t follow every single sewing rule. Yes, I follow this one)
- Sewing machine
- Needle and thread
(This list is for the body only, for the hair and face you will also need embroidery floss, a large-eyed needle, yarn, tissue paper, and a DVD case. For the dress you will need thin elastic and large fabric scraps)
1. 1. Using your PAPER SCISSORS, cut out the rag doll pattern.
2. 2. Lay your pattern out on your muslin and pin in place. You need to cut two of the head/body, and four of the arms. Cut.
3. 3. Cut four leg pieces from muslin OR other fabric (my doll will have gray striped tights on her entire life).
Repeat for the other arm. Clip notches in the curved area and clip the thumb/hand valley close to the stitching.
[Note: You can see my mutant finger in this shot. The Pioneer Woman always talks about her mutant hands in her cooking pictures, but I actually have a mutant finger. It has to do with a quilting accident I had several years ago. A story definitely worth telling another day]
5. Sew the legs, right sides together using a 1/4" seam, leaving the top (flat side) open. Clip curves as you did for the arms.
(legs and arms sewn, clipped, and waiting to be turned and stuffed!)
6. Turn the legs and arms outside in and use something long and skinny to push out the thumb and hand.
Stuff the arms to your desired squishability. I don't stuff it too hard because I like some squeeze to the doll, but if you don't stuff enough, it will be too floppy!
7. For the legs, stuff halfway, then sew back and forth across the leg a few times to make knees. Stuff the rest of the leg.
(stuffed arms and legs)
8. Lining up dots on arm and body, pin one arm to the right side of ONE body piece (see picture for placement). Make sure the thumb is facing up! Sew arm onto body. Repeat with the other arm.
(arms when both attached)
9. Matching leg and body dots, pin legs onto the body, right sides together (feet should be near the head - ouch!). Sew back and forth several times.
(one body piece with arms and legs sewn on to it)
10. Next, you will be sewing the body and head in two stages Admittedly this is the trickiest part of the process. Flip ONE arm into the body of the doll and place the other body piece over (Right sides together), making a doll arm sandwich. Pin along the side of that arm, around the head, to the shoulder of the other arm (see picture below).
Sew where you have pinned, from the bottom of the doll, up the side, around the head, to the shoulder of the unpinned arm, using a 3/8" seam allowance. Backstich or secure the end of your sewing as you see fit. Check to make sure that all layers got stitched, especially where the head and body connect. Now fold the other arm into the center and pin the remaining side of the doll.
Since that first arm is already sewn, it is easier to manipulate it inside the body to make room for the second arm. Trust me, I know this from experience. Sew the remaining side of the body, leaving the bottom of the doll unsewn. Phew! You made it through the tricky part!
11. Clip all curves. Turn the doll inside out and stuff to your desired fluffiness.
(doll stuffed and waiting to be sewn!)
12. Turn the unsewn bottom edges under and whip stitch closed. If you don't know how to whip stitch, there is a video tutorial here: Whip Stitch Video