Welcome to the final part of our Sprig sew along! If you are new to us today, you will want to head to our very first installment of the sew along here.
Today we will be learning how to do our dolls hair and finishing touches! But before I start, I am going to show you something quick!
These bodies were cut from the *exact same pattern*. The one on the left is lined with an additional layer of knit, the one on the right is unlined. Do you see the difference in stretch?
My superhero knit is lightweight and 4 way stretch. This is awesome. However it obviously makes a huge difference in the doll! If I were using the unlined version I may want a slightly larger head (although hair makes a massive difference in head size!).
The lined body is much more firm, the unlined body is softer and squishier. Neither is better or worse, just wanting to show you the difference.
To line your doll, use a knit with similar or slightly less stretch (I use cotton fleece). Sandwich your outer knit with the lining, pin, and trace out your pattern. Then sew and cut as you would have without the lining.
Now, if you are making a girl doll, or want to use the same “sew on” method to attach a boy doll’s hair please follow the tutorial that is HERE. This tutorial is done on my traditional doll, however it is exactly the same method you will use for your Sprig! Once you have the hair attached, return back to this tutorial so that you can see how we do our finishing touches (blush, freckles, etc).
For this tutorial, I am going to show you how to make the popular ‘wild’ boy hair using a crochet cap and a rug hooking method to attach the hair.
Step 1: Crochet a small cap to put on your doll. I don’t have a pattern for this, but if you are just crocheting in the round until the cap fits. I usually start with a magic circle and then continue going in rounds until it is the approximate size I want for a wig. I use a small crochet hook so that gaps don’t appear.
Lets be real here though. I went to coffee night last night with my homeschooling mama besties, and lovingly convinced my good friend Christine to crochet this wig while I was embroidering the little guys face <3
Once you have the wig, try it on to make sure it fits!
Choose your yarns! I chose two wool yarns – the olive green roving (100% wool) and the black handspun merino wool with teeswater locks as an accent. I like to use the handspun as accent rather than the complete wig, since handspun is a very very expensive option (this skein alone was approximately $50).
Now, you will want to cut lengths of yarn that are approximately 3-4″ long. I think I ended up using about 50 lengths of the olive and 15 lengths of the accent.
Now, you wrap a length of yarn around the crochet hook, then you will put a crochet hook through your cap as seen in the first photo. The next photo shows that you will wrap the tails of your length of yarn around the hook. You then pull the tails back through the cap and loop that was formed. This will knot your length onto the cap.
Continue working from the crown, down to the bottom of the cap. Fill it in as thickly as you wish, keeping in mind that you may be using an accent colour, and leaving space for that!
Add your accent colour, and then try the wig on your doll!
Next, you will be sewing your cap directly onto your dolls head. I chose a thread that matched my skin tone, but you can also use a thread that matches your hair colour. Stitch the cap on, using tight stitches. You need to go around the head at a minimum of 2-3 times. Little ones tend to carry their dolls by their hair, and with 5 boys, I know little boys tend to fling their dolls and let them “fly!”.
Okay! Your doll has hair! But chances are, the hair is insane looking, and probably needs a trim! At this point, I hide from my children because I never want them to see scissors and their doll at the same time because it is *inevitable* that they will want to give their doll a haircut if they see you doing it!
Using small scissors, I trim each of the ends of the hair individually. I don’t like all the strands to be the same length or it doesn’t have a natural look to it. This guy is being left a little shaggy, because I feel like his inner spirit is mischievous and that he doesn’t want short hair!
However, hair trims usually mean tiny fibers (especially if you are using wool) that end up covering the doll’s face. To fix this, I wrap my fingers in tape and remove the fibers before the next step!
Now comes the fun part! Bringing life to your doll!
Using a piece of skin knit, darkly colour on it with a beeswax crayon. DO NOT ever colour with the crayon directly on your doll’s skin.
Using very very light pressure, gently dab/rub the colour onto your doll’s cheeks. There is no coming back from this step so believe me, use light pressure. A little goes a LONG way.
For boy dolls, I tend to use slightly less blushing than on my girl dolls. But this is completely personal preference. You do whatever you feel looks best to you!
Because this doll has no nose, I like to add the illusion of a nose using the blusher. To do this, I use a lip brush (not ever used for real make up) and rub it on the colouring.
Then (once again gently), use the brush to make a light arc over where the nose would be!
Now you can step back and admire how adorable your doll is!
At this point, your doll can be complete, unless you want to add freckles!
I asked my girlfriends last night at coffee if this little guy should have freckles. My bestie Liz told me not to ruin him with freckles and to leave him as he was. But of course, being the most annoying “askhole” friend ever, I didn’t bother listening to her LOL!
When I do freckles, I use a fabric marker with a paintbrush tip. The tip comes to a very fine point. I get my markers like this at Michaels, and they run about $5 each.
Using a light hand, make small dots where you would like the freckles to be. I suggest practicing on a scrap piece of skin.
And then you are done!
Thank you for participating in my sew along! I had a lot of fun watching your dolls come to life.