Monday, 20 February 2012

Rag Doll Tutorial

rag doll tutorial

The photograph above shows a rag doll that my 9 year old daughter made with only a little help from me to attach the hair!  These really are very easy to make and can be done by hand in a couple of hours or by machine even quicker.  It took my daughter a little longer as she isn't very fast at hand sewing. I have written below a tutorial on how this doll was made.

Items needed:
  • Fabric for the doll (I used white but it really doesn't matter!)
  • Needle and threads
  • Wool (for the hair)
  • Stuffing
  • Fabric pens (for the face)
  • Fabric (for clothing)
  • Bows/Ribbons/Hairbands (to decorate the hair if required)
  • Clothes for the doll (you can make your own!)

rag doll tutorial

Step 1: Find a doll template (many are free online) I used this one:
Step 2: Print out all your pattern pieces onto paper
Step 3: Cut out your fabric templates
Step 4: Draw a face onto your doll (you could do this at the end but I prefer at the beginning!
Step 5: Pin the matching pieces together (eg: front part of head with the back part of the head). See my diagram above.
Step 6: Start sewing the legs and arms (eg. sew around the leg leaving gap at the bottom to insert stuffing and to attach to other body parts!
Step 7: Attach the legs and arms to the main body, making sure to leave a gap to insert the stuffing later. Turn the body inside out to the correct way. For the pattern I used there is a video you can follow, but I did it differently to the video as I didn't quite understand the video! Here is a link to the video showing you how to make the rag doll: dollchamber video
Step 8: Start inserting the stuffing into the doll. I used a blunt pencil to push the stuffing to the ends but anything that is slim enough to go inside will be fine.
Step 9: Sew up the gap and you now have the main part of your rag doll!

rag doll tutorial

Step 10: Now you need to attach some hair: I found various tutorials online which show you how to make the wigs to attach to the dolls, I just used the easiest version because my 9 year old was making this doll. Decide how long you want your hair - then find something similar in length that you can use to wrap around your wool. I used a container and wrapped the wool around until it was thick enough for what I wanted. Remove the wool carefully and cut at the loops making the wool hair one length!
Step 11: Then place some wool around the centre of the wool hair and tie it securely.  Another option is to attach the hair in the centre to another piece of fabric and sew across securing the wool to the spare fabric. You then attach the fabric to the head and hand sew the hair onto the head this is a much more secure way but a little bit too much work for my young daughter.
Step 12: Then hand sew the hair onto the doll (I helped to do this bit as it was a bit fiddly for my daughter!)Sew only into the centre of the hair so that you don't see the stitches.
Step 13: You can cut some of the hair different lengths for different styles!
Step 14: Attach ribbons or hair accessories to decorate the hair.
Step 15: Add clothes or make your own. My daughter simply used a rectangle piece of fabric and sewed up one side to make a tube dress - very simple and effective. She used a scrap piece of long fabric for the dress belt.

My daughter loves her doll, she has made some more clothes and changes the style daily. She can't wait to show her friends at school!

You may find me at the following parties:
  Pink Hippo PartyMonday Monkey Hop at Mommy of Two Little MonkeysKeeping It SimpleA Marvelous MessThe Girl CreativeMixitupmop it up mondaysThings that make you say:


  1. Its so cute :) your daughter will have fun with this sweet doll :)
    Enjoy ~

  2. Awesome well explained tutorial. The pictures explain it so well


  3. I love this doll - great tutorial. I am stopping in from TheStuffofSuccess - feel free to stop by and say hello. I am your newest follower. Have a great week - Athena

  4. Like daughter. Nice tutorial.

  5. So cute!! I would love to invite you to share at our Sharing Saturday at This week's closes on Wednesday and the next one opens Friday night. Thank you!

  6. So cute and lovable. I'm glad I found your blog. I'm a new follower with GFC and LF. I would love if you stopped by and followed back so we can stay connected. Lori

  7. What a great tutorial! The doll is adorable. I will keep that in mind for when my 4 babies get bigger. I imagine you can make it as a girl or a boy depending on how you cut the hair or make the clothes. My 3 1/2 year-old niece would love to have one of those now (though I would need to make it for her).

  8. Aww this is sooo sweet! Love how easy you made it look in your tutorial.. Great job! Thanks so much for sharing with the Pink Hippo Party.. can't wait to see what you share next!

  9. This is too cute! Thanks so much for sharing at Mix it up Monday :)

  10. I pinned this post. Thank you for linking up to Creative Bloggers Party and Hop :)

  11. Stopping by from the Girl Creative Blog Hop!

  12. This is fantastic! I'm a new follower, looking forward to going through all your stuff to do with my 4 homeschooling kids!

  13. This is so cute! Thanks so much for visiting my blog and for your lovely comment on the cake in a jar. got me to visit you. i really like your blog and am following you now on gfc and on linky. would be lovely if you would like to follow back, but no hard feelings if not :-)

  14. Love the doll...grt tutorial..thanks for sharing..

    1. Glad you like the tutorial - enjoyed making it!


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