Make a beautiful 21st Century cloth boudoir doll using pattern pieces traced onto cotton to make the parts of the cloth doll. Then add stuffing to the doll, assemble it, create the face features and dress the cloth doll.
More in Decorating
1/3 yd. 100-percent cotton fabric in a pale color
1/4 yd. silk crepe de chine in natural or white
1 yd. silk charmeuse in natural or white
3 yds. each 4mm, 7mm and 11mm silk ribbon in natural or white
machine thread to match
Fairfield Polyfil stuffing
stuffing and turning tools — a pair of hemostats work best.
mechanical pencil and eraser
6 pipe cleaners
3' doll sculpting needle
upholstery thread to attach arms and legs
Jacquards Dye Na Flow #802 Golden Yellow, #809 Magenta, # 815 Cerulean Blue, #823 Ecru, and #830 White
Jacquards Lumiere #1554 Sunset Gold, #570 Pearlescent Blue, and #573 Pearlescent Magenta
Jacquard Pearl EX Stamp Pad Essential Color/Sepia, Two-Tone Color/Gold Violet
rock or sea salt
round paintbrushes in sizes 10 and 12
containers for mixing paints and dyes and one for plain water — an ice cube tray works great
Terry Medaris Art Stamps #DO01 Southwest Doodling
Prismacolor Colored Pencils Sienna Brown, Cream, White, Carmine Red, Crimson Red, Canary Yellow, Parma Violet, Light Aqua and Mulberry.
Zig Millennium or Micron Pigma pens, nib size .005 in black, brown, white
Sakuras Gelly Roll pens — red, black
Tsukineko’s Brilliance Stamp Pad #BRI-80 Moonlight White
Kandi Kane Hot Fix Applicator
Swarovski heat set crystals
size 11 seed beads in one color
beading needle and thread.
Note: There are are four downloadable patterns for the doll.
Cutting the Pattern, Stuffing and Assembling the Doll
1. Trace all of the pattern pieces onto the wrong side of a single piece of the pale cotton. Trace two arms and two legs. The Body and Head are only traced once. On the Head follow the arrow and place it on the grain of the fabric. Note that the leg pattern is split to fit on the page. Attach the Lower Leg to the Upper Leg as you trace. Double the fabric, with right sides together, and then pin to hold it all together.
2. Place matching thread in a sewing machine, and lower the thread length to 1.8. Most machines are set at 2.0. Sew all the pieces, leaving open where marked on the Body and Arms. On the neck, backstitch on each side as you sew. Cut out all the pieces. Clip into the curved areas on all the pieces.
3. Cut a slit in the top of the legs, where marked on the pattern piece. To guarantee that there is a right and left leg, place the legs on a flat surface with the knees facing each other and then cut the slit.
4. Turn all the pieces right side out, using turning tools.
5. The hands can have individual fingers. Pencil in the fingers, as shown on the pattern piece. Machine stitch along the drawn lines. Cut the loose threads as closely as possible.
6. Fill the Body and Head with stuffing. Fill the legs to the knees and then stop. Thread a hand-sewing needle with 1/2 yard thread and place a knot in the end. Anchor this at the back of the knee with a small stitch. Insert the needle into the leg and come out 1/4" from the knee seam. Take the needle up 1/2" and insert it into the knee and go over to the other side of the knee seam and come out. Move the needle down and insert the knee across from where you came out on the other side of the knee seam. Wrap the thread around the back of the leg and insert the needle into the stitch by the knee seam. Pull the thread and this pulls in the back of the leg, which will allow the doll to sit better. Finish filling the upper leg with stuffing. Close up the opening in the leg with a needle and thread.
7. The hands can have pipe cleaners inserted, which allows the fingers to be moved as desired.
8. Bend back just the tips of each end of the pipe cleaners using a pair of hemostats. Bend four pipe cleaners in half and leave two straight. Insert one of the bent pipe cleaners into the hand with each end going into a separate finger. Continue this with each finger. The straight pipe cleaner is inserted into the thumbs. To secure the pipe cleaners, push back the arm fabric so you can reach the pipe cleaners. Wrap the thumb pipe cleaner around the other two that were bent in half. Finish filling up the hand and arms with stuffing. If you want the elbow to bend, follow the instructions for the legs in Step 6.
9. Collect the 3" doll-sculpting needle and cut one yard of upholstery thread. Thread the needle with the thread and place a knot in the end. Anchor this at the hip where marked on the pattern piece. Push the needle through the leg, near the slit, and come out opposite the slit. Push the needle back into the leg, about 1/8" from where you came out, and into the hip. Go through the body and out the other side of the hip. Attach that leg as the first leg. Go back and forth through the body and legs two more times. Anchor the thread off under one of the legs.
10. Close up the upper part of the arms using a hand gathering stitch with the strong thread and a regular hand-sewing needle. Pull the threads to close the opening and hand-sew closed. Tuck in the raw seam as you pull and sew. Use the same needle and thread and hand-sew the arms to the shoulders, where marked.
Face Features and Starting the Clothes
1. Following the Face chart draw the features, using a mechanical pencil. Once satisfied, outline the main features with a brown Zig or Micron pen. Erase all the pencil marks.
2. Gather the paint supplies and place a piece of plastic on your work surface. Pour the Dye Na Flow into the containers. Mix a flesh using three teaspoons White and two teaspoons Ecru. Mix thoroughly.
3. Load up a brush with the flesh and color the head, upper chest and hands. Start with the yellow and brush onto the body. Next to the yellow add magenta and blue. Continue dyeing the body with the colors. When the body is dyed, lay the doll onto a piece of plastic and add a bit of salt along the areas where the different colors meet. Just a small sprinkling of salt is all that is needed.
4. While the doll is drying, the silk fabric and ribbons are dyed. First, soak the silks in some water. Remove from the water and squeeze out the excess water.
5. Place 1/4 cup Dye Na Flow Magenta in a container. Add 1/4 cup water and mix thoroughly. Into this container place the silk crepe de chine and stir to distribute the dye. This will leave some white areas.
6. In a spray bottle add 1/8 cup Dye Na Flow Golden Yellow. Add 1/8 cup water to the dye. Place the spray cap on the bottle and shake to mix the dye. Hang the silk onto a clothesline, or lay on a covered surface. Spray the white areas with the yellow dye. Let this dry.
7. Place the silk charmeuse in water. Remove and squeeze out the excess water. Place this silk in a small container. Drizzle Golden Yellow over the silk. The dye will puddle in the creases and run along the smooth areas. Remove from the container and rinse the container. Place the silk charmeuse in the clean container, making sure that it isn't in the same position it was before. Drizzle some diluted Cerulean Blue onto the silk. Remove and do the same with the Magenta. This will give you the look of a tie-dyed piece of silk, but with subtler coloring. Allow this piece to dry.
8. While the silk pieces are drying the silk ribbons are dyed. Wet the ribbons and place them on a covered surface. Using brushes dab the dye along the surface of the ribbons. Hang these to dry.
9. The doll body should be dry and ready to be detailed. Gather the stamps and Lumiere paints.
10. Using a brush, place a small amount of Lumiere paint onto a piece of paper towel. With a finger, dab on just a small amount of paint onto the stamp. Press the stamp onto the body. The sample doll has stamped images on the chest, arms and legs. When the stamping is finished, let the paint dry then heat set using an iron set to cotton. Press each image with the iron for five seconds.
11. Gather the colored pencils, pens and Gelly Roll pens. Following the color chart, color the face.
Dressing the Doll
1. The skirt is full so that when the doll is placed on a pillow the skirt will partially cover it. Cut the upper part of the skirt, from the silk charmeuse, in a 12" circle. To make it easy, use the lid of a cooking pan, or a dinner plate. Trace the circle onto a piece of paper towel then pin to the silk.
2. Cut two 7" x 22" pieces from the same silk. Sew these, right sides together, so it makes a 44" length.
3. Machine sew a narrow hem along the long edge of the 44" lower skirt. On the right side of the lower skirt sew the 3" lace. Fold the lower skirt piece so that the right sides match, and sew the short end together. Set the sewing machine for a gathering stitch and sew along the top edge of the lower skirt.
4. Gather the lower skirt to fit the upper skirt and pin in place, right sides together. Machine sew the two pieces together. Trim loose threads and turn, right side out.
5. Cut a slit at the top of the skirt, in the middle and slip onto the dolls body. Hand-sew the skirt to the waist.
6. Tear two strips of silk, one from each dyed piece, and cut in half. To seal the raw edges, paint with the Lumiere paints. Stamp the fabric if you wish, too.
7. Place two contrasting pieces of the above silk together. Do this again. You will have four pieces of silk with two together, twice. Wrap each one around each other, at the center.
8. Place this on the chest of the doll and pin in place. At the back criss-cross the silk pieces then bring the ends up onto the shoulders. Arrange them as shown on the doll and pin in place.
9. Cut a piece of the 3" dyed lace to fit at the waist. Pin this to the doll. Hand-sew the lace at the waist and also sew the bodice to the body. At the sleeves hand-sew the silk ribbons and some silk roses.
10. Plug in the Kandi Kane to heat. Place the heat set crystals in a container, crystal side up. Pick up a crystal with the Kandi Kane tool and allow the glue to melt. It will bubble. Place the crystal onto the skirt, where wanted. Continue placing the crystals on the clothing.
11. Trace two shoe shapes onto the wrong side of the silk crepe de shine. Sew along seam number one, leaving open where marked. Cut out and turn, right side out.
12. Place the shoes onto the feet and pin in place. Cut two pieces of silk ribbon 16" long. Find the center and pin at the center seam of the shoe. Cut the beading thread in a one yard length. Thread the beading needle ad place a knot in the end. Anchor this in the foot, under the shoe.
13. Come out and the center of the shoe, towards the toe, and pick up a size 11 seed bead. Catch the silk ribbon and take the needle back into the shoe and foot. Move the needle over 1/2" and come out and go back into the shoe and foot. Continue doing this all the way around the shoe's raw edge. When finished, wrap the ends of the ribbons around the ankle and up the leg. Tie into a bow. Anchor the ribbons to the leg.
14. The head wrap is 2" long pieces of silk fabric torn into 2" wide strips. The length of each strip is approximately 22" long. Cut another piece of silk wide and long enough to cover the head from the top seam to the nap of the neck and from one side seam to the other. Pin this in place and hand-sew to the head. Pin one raw edge of one of the long strips of silk to the back of the head. Thread a hand-sewing needle with 1-1/2 yard strong thread. Place a knot on the end. Anchor this to the head and hand-sew the raw end of the silk strip to the head. Start twisting the silk until it starts to coil up on itself. Arrange around the head and wrap into a circle on one side of the head.
15. Jiliana is now finished and ready to be placed on a pillow in a bedroom, or elsewhere.
Project designed by Patti Medaris Culea.