How to Make "Mini Me" Cloth Dolls
(Palm Coast FL)
Mini Me Beach Babe Cloth Doll
For this Mothers Day, I made cloth dolls for three close friends. Each doll is unique to that friend. Everyone has a hobby or something special that identifies their personality and so it is with these friends. One is a great crafter, another loves gardening and the other is crazy about the beach.
I designed this simple doll form and had so much fun creating them. I call them "Mini Me". I think they will make an unusual and cute gift. In this project I'll show you how to make cloth dolls like these.
Materials for Cloth Dolls
At times, I challenge myself to create something by only using materials I already have on hand. It makes a great way to clean out your stash and you will usually end up with a neat creation! So, here's what I used:
~ Doll Material (fleece and felt work great)
~ Clothing Material (your choice)
~ 2 small black beads for eyes
~ Doll hair or yarn
~ Decorative items
The two blue dolls were made from a sweatshirt that had shrunk in the washer. I kind of like that "smurf" look! Anything goes so just use what you have on hand.
How to Make Cloth Dolls
This basic doll pattern was used for all dolls. I stitched everything by hand, which is a lot easier than it sounds. The clothes are also basic and can be adapted to many styles by cutting shorter, tuck here, fold there and a gather or two. Body, Arms, and Legs
Here is my cloth doll template:
Click here to download template
Cut out doll body, 2 arms and 2 legs. Using a simple whip stitch or whatever you desire, sew pieces together and then stuff. Make sure on body that you leave areas open to insert arms and legs. Once arms and legs are stuffed, insert into body and attach by sewing. Head, Eyes, and Hair
Sew beads on for eyes. Start and finish in the back of the head since a hat or hair will cover it. Pull the beads slightly when sewing to indent them (i.e. pull the thread a little tight).
You can rub a little blush on the cheeks with your finger, if desired.
I used curly doll hair that I already had. If making a hat or kerchief, you will not need as much hair. There is no hair under the kerchief of the gardener or the bathing cap of the beach babe. Just attach what will show. I pulled the hair open after sewing on for that "wild" look. Clothing
Here is my template for the doll clothing:
Click here to download template
I made very basic clothing and each can be adapted such as cutting the pants shorter to create shorts or omitting the inner seam to make a skirt. The gardener has a turtle neck which I used the cuff from an old sweater to make.
The apron is just a rectangle wrapped around the doll and a square stitched to the front. You can cut the shirt down the front or add a collar and buttons. Earrings were made using jewelry loops and beads then sewed to the sides of the head.Special Touches for Crafter Minime Doll
I gave the crafter more hair because I wanted to stick several things such as miniature spools of thread to it. I also added buttons and little spring jewelry findings I had on hand into her hair.
The idea for the crafter was to put as many goodies on her and in her arms that she could possibly hold. This one was a special one for me to make and before I put the clothes on the doll, I sewed a red heart on her. I don't know if the friend receiving it will ever see it, but I know it's there.Special Touches for Gardener Minime Doll
Here is the gardener before she's holding her basket:
The gardener's basket was made by painting popsicle sticks and hot gluing them all around an empty tin can. I then made little things to fill it up with. I made a bag of potting soil using a bit of muslin. I sewed it into a bag and stuffed it, then drew on the front with markers to decorate it.
I also made a mini frame from a piece of cardboard egg carton and inserted a picture of my friend and I. I wrote "two peas in a pod" on it. I made a mini book from card stock and titled it, "Gardening in Michigan" and drew flowers with markers. I included a tiny wreath made from fresh branches and attached a woodsie to it with wire and wrote, "Welcome to my garden" on it. Finished it by filling in with mini artificial flowers.Special Touches for Beach Babe Minime Doll
The Beach babe is holding a towel which is a rolled up baby wash cloth. I made a simple dog from felt to represent her dog. A bottle of suntan lotion and margarita mix made from thick cardboard and colored with markers. A small square of rubber shelving liner rolled up that looks like a beach mat. I gathered a small circle of material and stuffed it for a beach bag.
I used a rubber gasket and wrapped it with yarn to look like a preserver and the bathing cap is made from a piece of sock. I made flip flops from thick cardboard and glued rubber shelving liner on them. I used thread on the tops with glued pom poms on.
Poems to go with Dolls
I also wrote some poems to go with the dolls. You're welcome to use them (just replace the name with whoever's name you made the doll for).
Poem to go with Gardener Cloth Doll
Here is a little Betty doll,
She was made with love for you.
It's amazing and most beautiful,
Of what her hands can do.
She spots her patch of chosen earth,
Of weeds and dried up twigs.
And with her trusty little trowel,
She digs and digs and digs.
Then into earth go seeds of love,
Blues and pinks and yellows.
Onto another patch of dirt,
Go her wagon and her shovel.
A vine here, seeds dropped there,
A tree and some flowers to hang.
A touch of her heart is all it takes,
To bring spring time in with a bang!
She waits with anticipation,
For the new life that will grow.
Buds pop up their little heads,
Beauty is what she knows.
So listen to Betty and she'll tell you true,
That one seed is all it takes.
To bring color and sunshine into our hearts,
And make the world a better place.
Poem to go with Beach Babe Doll
Here is a pretty Barbie doll,
She was made with love for you.
When the summer sun is near by,
It's amazing what she'll do.
Until then she waits impatiently,
For the cold to end it's chill.
She fills the time doing other things,
But this really takes some will.
She looks longingly at her swim suit,
As it sits tucked away in a drawer.
The summer urge is growing,
For winter is such a bore.
But time goes by, the sun comes out,
Her waiting is now at end.
It's time to gather the goodies,
There's much she has to tend.
Wipe cob webs off the cooler,
Wash towels and her suit.
Out with the flops and sandals,
Away with the winter boots.
Grab the lotion and the beach mat,
Fill the cooler with bottles of beer.
Towels, sunglasses, beach bag,
And off she goes with cheer.
You went looking, but can't find Barbara?
The answer I'll give you, my dear.
She's on the beach, under the sun,
Drinking lots of beer!!!
Anything else you'd like to share about your project?
These cloth dolls were really fun to make and the miniatures you can create are endless. Just use materials around your house and a lot of imagination. Keep the person you are making it for in mind and ideas will come. I sewed a loop on the back so the dolls can either sit or hang.
Have fun creating a "Mini Me" doll for someone special!
Check out more of Mary's craft ideas on her website www.craftingtales.com