The life and times of a home schooling mom of se7en + 1.

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Kids Rag Doll Craft…

July 29th, 2008 · 4 Comments

My kids just like arty crafty books and I leave tons of them lying around to inspire them. Mind you, I never promise to do any of the projects with them. I also never stop them if they are motivated to get going with something, the tools are readily available to them. In fact, I even prefer it if they can get round to a project in the early hours of the pre-dawn just so that I don’t have to be part of the ensuing chaos of se7en crazy creators!

Anyway who can resist a book from Dorling Kindersley by Jane Bull,  (this link takes you straight to her mini-site with a couple of examples of wonderful crafty things from her books). What I love most about her projects is: They really are kid friendly. Kids can be inspired and then do most of the projects without too much help – wonderful!!! We got this project from her Crafty Art Book:

The one project that grabbed all my kids was the soft dolly project. She had a bunch of examples of soft rag dolls: pirates; a ghost; a snowman; a cat and a girly girl… Well all my kids came to me and asked to make these so we had a couple of friends over and off we went.

I cut out the fabric according to the template using plain white cotton fabric. I had pre-washed the fabric to make sure the color in the markers and fabric crayons took to the fabric.

I left them to draw with fabric markers, fabric crayons and puff paints. Decorating to their hearts content…

Then we put them out to dry in a sunny spot…

And I couldn’t resist hanging them all on a line to finish drying, they just looked so cute flapping there!

Then in the dead of night, when all mothers lurch or creep around, depending on their level of fatigue, I ironed the shapes to fix the dye to the fabric.

Next, for each rag doll, place the two pieces of fabric right side together… then I whizzed round the edges with a sewing machine. Don’t forget to leave a small 5cm-ish gap (we all make mistakes in the dead of night!!!). Turn them right way round and put some stuffing through the hole… you can use beans, rice, lentils, whatever… I used soft toy stuffing because I knew I would need to wash them often. Once they are stuffed, hand sew the opening shut and there you are. This is a result: A family of soft rag dolls, waiting for eager arms to wake up and care for them.

Clearly, this project has lots of room for extension: buttons and ribbons and all sorts of extra’s could be added if certain people weren’t quite so desperate for ownership… But since they were made a number of shoebox beds, finger knitted scarves, nifty little blankets and other vital accessories have been added.

I love honest kids art and have quite an aversion to adult art in the name of kids art… you know the parent who can’t resist putting their mark on a project… so to prevent my fingers interfering with their project one of those dollies is mine!!! Talk about the true confessions of the blog world!

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Tags: Fabric Crafts · People/Puppet Crafts · Tuesday Art Task

4 responses so far ↓

  • 1 // Jul 30, 2008 at 6:02 am

    I love doll crafts and especially Moms who let kids make their own things and not control their choices. My first time on a word press blog and not sure why my name is my site?????

  • 2 se7en // Jul 31, 2008 at 1:56 pm

    Hi there, gogogluegunfun!!! thanks for the nice comment – I popped over to your site to see your fun projects!

  • 3 Katherine Marie // Aug 6, 2009 at 7:19 pm

    I just checked out that book from the library!!! Your rag dolls are delightful. This project is above my abilities— since I can’t sew, but I love what you’ve done!!!!!

    Is there any way you can post your photos larger?? I would so love to see all the glorious details from your projects– but on my screen, at least, the photos are tiny! I don’t want miss a thing…. :):)

    Any baby-to-be projects coming soon???? Only 53 days left!!!!!!!

  • 4 se7en // Aug 6, 2009 at 10:24 pm

    Hi There K-M, so good to hear from you! I loved your gumballs! But your photograph of the week has to be your little guy on the monkey bars. I can’t believe you don’t sew a stitch!!! You really need to find a friend who can stitch your projects together for you! Most of our images are on flicker what happens if you click on an image and the link takes you there… I know you are dying for a baby project and I am waiting for divine inspiration… waiting and waiting!!! It will come I just have to be patient! You guys have a great weekend!!!

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