After making two rag dolls from the Jess Brown book, I found that their skinny little legs and arms were very hard to turn right side out and stuff, not impossible, but time consuming. They are as cute as can be though. Even my husband says that they have an artistic look rather than a toy look.
That being said, I’m not much on making any one thing too many times. I like the variety and challenge of new projects. So, for my next doll, I decided to enlarge the Jess Brown Pattern 5/8 of an inch everywhere. This one was much easier to stuff!
I gave her a little up-do instead of the pigtails. She is made just like the little ones , but just a bit larger. I used upcycled and vintage cotton and wool fabrics, and polyfil. I really am please with how she turned out.
I also tried the Maya the Mermaid pattern by Abby Glassenberg who is a professional toy pattern designer, among other things, and blogs at Whileshenaps.com. She is an artistic and knowledgeable business woman who also hosts informative and interesting podcasts with guests that work in the field of textiles, sewing, blogging, business, crafts, etc. I never miss a podcast. I have learned so much from the different guests that she has hosted. I think you will too, and so I highly recommend checking out her blog, patterns, and podcasts.
On to Maya the Mermaid. For my version of the doll, I decreased the size of the pdf pattern to 80%. to make it just a little smaller. She recommends using fleece for the toy doll, so that it can be played with, and even washed. My version is made with cotton, wool, and organic cotton stuffing. I used a charm pack 60 5″ Luscious Freckles Tonals Charm Pack Sold by: Material Maven. I selected the pink to purple tones and used 4 squares of each for my version of the tail.
I followed Abby’s instructions exactly and the doll went together very easily. I even ordered the safety eyes from her too.
I’m glad I did because non of the local fabric/craft stores in my area had them. They were easy to apply too.
I’m very happy with how she turned out. The only thing that I notice is that the felted wool hair, tends to shed a little and the tiny fibers cling to the muslin. However, she can be quickly cleaned up with a lint brush. I like the sticky kind that you get at the dollar store.