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Doll Making Tips
I don't claim to be an expert dollmaker, but I have learned a
few tricks along the way. I hope these tips will make your
doll-making experience a pleasant one.
1. To make curly yarn hair, knit up a ball of yarn in
stockinette stitch. Place the knitted piece in boiling water for
an hour. Allow to dry; unravel yarn.
2. Before painting a doll face on cloth, lightly starch the
3. Marketing tip - Baby dolls wearing bunny suits attract a lot
of attention. People tend to associate baby bunnies with
springtime - the season of renewal - maybe this is why.
4. When sculpting with clay, learn the properties of the
porcelain clay you are using. This knowledge will determine the
cones to use for greenware firings. Read the label on the slip
container and abide by the directions.
5. When making composition dolls, bake the doll parts in the
oven at 225 degrees for 2 hours. After the seams are removed and
the openings cut, and before attempting to detail the fingers and
other small parts or before using water putty, plaster, etc, the
doll parts can be softened again by soaking them briefly in water
or wetting with a sponge. Only the top surface will be affected.
6. When creating tight fitting doll clothes, make a paper towel
or muslin test pattern to fit the doll you choose first.
7. Turn a doll into an angel for Christmas by using removable
wires attached to the wings that are slipped through a very small
buttonhole made in the doll coat's back seam line.
8. When modeling or sculpting a baby's head, remember that a
baby has a very large skull when compared to the placement of its
nose, mouth or chin. Babies' eyes appear to be quite large, with
the irises and pupils being visible and only a tiny area of white
showing. On an adult, there is normally one eye width between the
eyes. With a baby, the distance is 1 and 1/2 eyes between the
inner corners of the eyes.
9. To make crocheted socks for small dolls, cut of the
fingertips of a crocheted glove on a slant from base of thumb up
to base of little finger. Discard finger parts. Seam the edge of
the remaining 4 sides figure to make one sock.
10. To replicate French buttons, cut off the very tip of the
crocheted glove finger, slip in a button and sew to shank at the
11. Coffee filters are absolutely lint-free, inexpensive and
absorbent for use when painting dolls.