Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Wonderful Weebee

This is Bethany, made from Laura Tegg's freely available Weebee doll pattern.  Laura has several clothing patterns that are free for this adorable doll, and some paid patterns. 

This is a knit outfit that I designed for my Weebee's.  My dolls are small; they are worked with sportweight yarn and a size C (2.5mm) crochet hook, so they turn out about 7.5 inches tall.  My knitting gauge for this outfit is 6sts/inch in stockinette.  Here is the pattern, with some gauge recommendations if your doll is larger than mine:

Knit Outfit for Weebee

I have NOT tested the pattern on any doll other than my own, so if you make this for your doll, definitely try to check the fit as you go.  This is not as easy with knit as crochet, so you may find yourself making more than one garment to get the fit right.

I would suggest starting with the dress and/or the cap.  These are pretty simple outfits, so adding a few stitches would not be difficult, to get the fit you want.

This dress and cat hat are both from Laura's free patterns; the sweater is from my knit pattern.

And this adorable hoodie and the overalls are also from Laura's free patterns. 

Have a great day, and enjoy the crochet!

Friday, January 5, 2018

Mermaid Musings

Several weeks ago, I was asked by Kelly DeSandro to pattern test her new Jane doll, which is available on Etsy.  This is a revised version of her wonderful Jane doll, which I had purchased and have made several of.

This new version is an amazing refinement to the original doll.  She has a remarkable head jointing technique, and a more shapely body.  The resulting doll is simply beautiful. 

Kelly's instructions are meticulous and well photographed.  An amazing doll awaits you with this pattern!

Enjoy the crochet!

Saturday, December 30, 2017

Delightful Big-Head crochet dolls

My latest crochet obsession is a pattern which is freely available from Ravelry.  It is Laura Tegg's Weebee doll.  Not only is the doll pattern free, but Laura has several clothing patterns for free as well, in addition to some paid patterns.

My dolls were made with Knit Picks Brava Sport and a size C (2.5mm) crochet hook.  They are about 7.5 inches tall, with adorably large heads. 

I like to make my dolls with move-able heads, so below you will find a picture tutorial for how to do this.

Almost any crochet doll pattern can be adapted to make a move-able head. 

 In this case, this is Laura Tegg's Weebee doll pattern with a move-able head. Simply work the body pattern as instructed to the point just before you increase to make the head. Instead, make a neck stub seven or eight rows long, tapering the last two rows as shown above.

 Make the head separately beginning at the neck end with an opening that fits snug over the neck stub (same number of stitches as the neck stub before you taper it). Join in a ring so you have an opening at the bottom (as shown in the middle image at the top), then work the head increases as written, closing the opening at the top of the head (as shown in the upper right image).

 Stuff the head firmly, but make a hollow up the center that you can insert the neck stub into; the fit should be very snug. Joint the head to the neck with four strands of craft or carpet thread and a dollmaking needle, as illustrated in the middle row of images.

 Tie off the carpet thread at the top of the head with a secure double knot. The wig cap or hat will cover this.

 Finally, take the yarn tail from the beginning of the head and join to the first stitch of the head at the neck opening and pull tight. Bury the yarn end in the head.

 Olive and Owen and I wish you all a happy new year; filled with the blessings of crochet and kindness!

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Merry Christmas!

May your holidays be filled with joy and family; kindness and compassion.  
Merry Christmas!

Monday, December 4, 2017

The Adventures of Columbine Duskywing


On the trail of Giant Rainbow Snails is Columbine Duskywing, fearless freelance Malacologist for Hanover College, along the banks of the Ohio river.

Columbine is the daughter of Professor Horace S. Duskywing, head of the department of Invertebrate Studies at Hanover, an eminent Lepidopterist, and in 1869 elected chairman of the Society of Kentucky Lepidopterists.

Columbine's mother is the Lady Acadia Hairstreak, a woman of wealth and a notorious social butterfly of the lower Ohio river.  A longstanding question among the society of the Ohio river is how the dusty Professor Duskywing ever managed to beguile the lovely  Lady Acadia to be his bride.  Maybe Columbine being a seven month child had something to do with it...

Not having strong maternal instincts,  Lady Acadia left most of the childrearing to her husband;  a gentle academic with a vague fondness for this unexpected daughter.  He provided few rules of behavior, a shocking oversight in Victorian society.  He expected obedience, respect, and curiosity; he gave affection, and unlimited use of the university libraries.

From an early age, Columbine could be found sitting, crosslegged as often as not, on the dusty floor of the library, nose buried in some book of natural history or exploration.  Marco Polo! Amerigo VespucciJames Cook! Charles Darwin! Great stories of discovery, but no women.

Dust motes shimmered in the pale light of the one window in the library, but Columbine did not see them dancing.  No women.  Couldn't women discover a continent, or a new species, or sail around the world?  There was Ida Laura Pfeiffer, the Austrian woman who had traveled (twice!) around the world, documenting plants, minerals, and mollusks as she traveled, but no other woman on these library shelves.

What might she discover, Columbine mused.  The Giant Rat of Sumatra, Kraken of the Arctic ocean, Blue Mountains Panthers in the Australian Blue mountains?  Maybe the famed Rainbow Snails of Yellowwood Forest...

Quite unexpectedly, Columbine's mother realized that at 18, Columbine was quite a lovely girl, in spite of her shockingly unconventional behavior.  The only interest that Lady Acadia ever bestowed on her offspring was to plan her coming out season and ball, much to Columbine's dismay.  Columbine simply could not bear to be squeezed into a corset, and paraded to polite society like a prize broodmare.  Ugh!

So quietly, on a clear but moonless night, Columbine packed a small rucksack with her precious books on invertebrate zoology, journal, magnifiers, a spare shirt and a bar of soap, and some jewelry she would never wear.  Dressed as a laborer, she climbed out her bedroom window with the false dawn, and headed North.  Looking for Rainbow Snails and Adventure!


Looks like she found them!

Check out the links throughout the post :-)





Saturday, November 11, 2017

Frankensteining

My dear friend and kindred spirit, Joyce, coined this word.

Frankensteining: verb; to create a doll from elements of several other doll patterns.

Which is what I've been doing lately, and like the good doctor for which this verb is cognated (probably also not a word), I am well pleased with my final version.

This doll is a combination of the freely available Eva doll (available on Ravelry), the purchased Jane doll (available on Etsy), and my own Simply Ami doll, (available here on this blog), plus a bit of body tweaking.

The point is, if you have been making dolls for a while, you probably have a nice collection of patterns, and certain attributes of each doll that you particularly like.  Don't be shy about combining the bits you like to make a doll uniquely your own.  But keep in mind that this is not pattern design, and that credit to the original designers should be given.

So thank you, Jessica Doering, for the Eva doll that provided the size; Kelly DeSandro for the Jane doll that provided the shoulders, head, and dainty feet; Simply Amis, for the swing legs, and my own tinkering for the body shape and wig.




Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Isobel and Moira

Moira and Isobel in their knit finery

Moira, in the navy blue knit, and Isobel, with her fox ears, and the latest two Eva dolls I've made.  I love little knits, so there is now a knit pattern to share for their sweater, cap, and dress:

Eva Knits

Also included is Isobel's fox-ear headband, in crochet :-)

Enjoy!

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

What Eva has inspired

The Eva doll pattern, freely available on Ravelry, continues to inspire my dollmaking.  So does Suzanne Woolcott's Gorjuss Girls :-)

So here is a little Fox pattern, that makes a perfect companion for my foxy Eva girl, Isobel:



Foxy Friend 

And for your crochet dolls, how about a remove-able wig?  Once you've made the basic pattern, you can vary it to a short bob, long curls, even braids if you want.

You can make the hair strands longer or shorter.  If you want braids, make them thinner (use sl sts instead of hdc sts).  A whole wardrobe of remove-able wigs can be made for your doll :-)

And again, once you understand the basic pattern, the wig can be sized for any doll, or use any yarn.  How nice to have lovely, long hair that won't get tangled!

Remove-able Wig

Have a lovely day, and enjoy the crochet!




Monday, September 25, 2017

A lovely new doll pattern

Suzanne, Zoe, Audrey, Autumn, Evangeline, Bess

All of these dolls were crocheted from the basic Eva pattern, which is freely available on Ravelry, by Jessica Doering, aka Neogurumi.  The pattern is very well written and easy to follow.  And, there are no seams with this doll!  Legs and arms are crocheted in as the body is worked, making the doll very easy to complete.

Jessica has clothing patterns for Eva; some are free and others inexpensive.  She also has patterns for other dolls, so check out her store on Ravelry:

Neogurumi Patterns

Isn't this an adorable body?!

Eva is a great doll platform; you can create several different hairstyles once you've tried the hairstyle that comes with the pattern.  You can also crochet on her undies, if you like :-)

My dolls ended up being about 7 1/2 inches tall, crocheted with wool worsted yarn (Knit Picks Wool of the Andes and Berocco Vintage) and a size D, or 3mm,  crochet hook.  I did choose to make the dolls head move-able.  You can find this technique in most all of my doll patterns.  Check out this post:

Magdelena's Secret

Basically, you make a head with a hole at the neck end, and the body with a firmly stuffed neck stub.  The stub is jointed into the hole in the neck.  You can do this with any doll pattern, and the results are a lot of fun :-)

I hope you enjoy making this adorable doll!