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  • Writer's pictureLonda

Wee Stitchers Doll Project – Perfect Sewing Birthday Party

Teaching VERY young girls (6-8 years) the joy of sewing is a very special privilege. For a young girl’s 7th Birthday Party, 7 of her friends (and a couple of parents) learned basic hand stitching skills as they made these dolls. I took some pictures along the way of creating the design, so that I could share it with you in hopes that you might make a memory with a young sewer during family holiday times or 'Nana Camps' ... you get the idea. I’ve included my preparation steps for this project as a ‘party’, though if sitting with a child one-on-one, you could guide them through the steps in a logical manner.

Doll Body

Cut the doll of 2 layers of appropriate color felt. The doll body is 7.5″ tall x 5.25″ wide (hand tip-to-tip). To assist the girls with regular -spaced stitching, I ‘dotted’ one side about 1/4″ in from the edge all around and every 1/4″ or so. This ‘side’ becomes the ‘backside of the doll. Note in the photo below the 2 horizontal lines on the right body side – this is the ‘NO SEW ZONE’ – allowing a place for stuffing to get inserted after stitching. This photo also shows the polar fleece hair stitched onto the body back. When stuffing with loose polyester fiberfill, using the pencil end of an UN-sharpened pencil works well. After stuffing, the ‘No Sew Zone’ is closed with more whipstitching.

I have found that a Size 18 Chenille Needle is both easy to thread, and to use on double layers of felt. For thread, I like to use Size 5 Perle Cotton. A good length to cut the thread is from their nose to an extended arm. Pulling the ends of the thread even, and knotting them yields a manageable length of double thread for stitching. The knot is secured between the layers, and stitching is done with the dotted side UP, bringing the needle UP from the bottom at a dot, then repeating which ‘whips’ the edge. I left a threaded needle in the doll from stitching around the head so that the girls could get a good distance around the doll before they needed to re-thread and start over. I actually taught all these skills on a simple green felt Christmas Tree BEFORE we started the dolls. I provided a Gift Bag with class information, and a bag with 5 buttons, thread, and needle for them to complete their Christmas Tree at home. My hope is that they were so excited about learning to sew, that they would want to do more, and to show their parents (of course, asking to take classes themselves!)

Face & Hair