Susan Dennis (susandennis) wrote,
Susan Dennis

The Creation Story

About a year ago, I went looking for a cute doll I could sew up using fabric scraps. I tried several that didn't quite suit and then I found the Black Apple Doll.

Martha's website offers up the pattern PDF. And some tutorials.

I stuck to the plan for a couple of dolls but found the legs and arms too skinny and finishing at the top of the head too fiddly so I paved my own way.

Here's my step by step....

After making a bunch of dolls, I transferred the pattern onto easy to trace plastic and that's what I use today. I added the hajib pattern piece (the blue one) to the mix a while back.  I pick out the fabrics and pair them up and then cut out the pieces.

I buy the eyes from a vendor on Etsy - I just could not cut out credible small rounds.  I sew the eyes on and draw in the mouth using a template I made and a sharpie.

I sew the face to one dress piece.

And sew around each leg and arm.

I usually don't cut the thread as I go so at the end I have a string of legs and arms and head/bodies.

I top stitch to keep the neck seams in place.

And if this doll needs a collar, I sew it down with the top stitching. (Sometimes, it's a collar. Sometimes it's a necklace. Sometimes just a bow. I usually add embellishments while the doll is still flat. I sew them on or glue them sometimes.)

The hair gets tacked down with a long basting stich.

The dress gets a hem.

Ready for assembly.

I use a long roach clip (or hemostat if you want to get all technical) to turn the legs and arms inside out.

And also use that roach clip to stuff them with stuffing (not the cornbread kind)

Then I tack the arms onto the dress.

And then I layer the top and the bottom.

And sew.

Now we're ready to meet this doll for the first time when we turn her inside out.


She gets all kinds of stuffing. I hold it in with the roach clips so that I can stick the legs in.

Legs are held with pins until I can make the final seam across the bottom of the dress which attaches the legs and finished the doll at the same time!

I do some final hair cutting/shaping and she's ready for her closeup!!

I keep photos of all the dolls in Flickr albums. Each one is really different. Depending on what I have and what the fabric looks like and what I feel like and sunspots, she may have jewelry, she may have pigtails, she may have a collar and/or buttons. I love variations!

These dolls are fun and easy to make and could even be done without a sewing machine.

All of the dolls go to The Baby Bank of Seattle.
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