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Making Waldorf dolls?

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
I would love experience and tips on this. I am fairly crafty, in a limited but patiently stubborn way. I can crochet well and will hand sew my fingers to the bone if need be. I have a machine but am not terribly familiar with it and really would like to take a class. I love doing crafts, although I find following patterns very difficult.

I would really really love to learn to make Waldorf dolls. I just adore the ones like Bamboletta and DFH, but to put it plainly, we cannot afford them. I have googled and cannot find any classes anywhere nearby.

Do I really need a kit? Especially since I would want to make two, would buying just the materials be cheaper? Are there any websites that give really good step-by-step instructions? And does anyone know of a truly comprehensive list of materials that are needed? Thanks for any advice, I know a bunch of you guys are real pros at this!
post #2 of 15
Funny, I came here to post the same thing! Except I knit and don't do much crochet. This tubular gauze stuff seems to be hard to find. I'm wondering if I can use pantyhose from the dollar store, or is it not even close to the same thing? I have some organic, unbleached knit t-shirt material that I could use. Maybe a sock? I tried making one last year and quickly gave up. I think I had trouble with the head part. This is the website I was leaning towards, the instructions seemed clear.

http://www.make-baby-stuff.com/Waldorf-doll.html
http://simmy.typepad.com/echoesofadr...instructi.html
post #3 of 15
Could I use regular gauze from the drugstore and just seem it up the sides to make a tube then cover it with knit or a sock?
post #4 of 15
..
post #5 of 15
I have made 2 dolls this year and never crocheted before or used a sewing machine! It was definitely a learning curve, but I loved the process. The first doll I made, I used a Joy's kit. For the second doll, I purchased the supplies from A Child's Dream Come True (they have everything!) and used the Joy's pattern. I have enough supplies left to make another 16 inch doll and will be starting her soon. I would be happy to post my supplies list if you still need it.
post #6 of 15
I just made my first ever Walorf-style doll, and it was not nearly as hard as I was afraid it might be. I was surprised at how the majority of the sewing was by hand instead of by machine. It's a little tricky to get all of the seams at the neck and shoulders nice and smooth, but I think it would come more easily with practice. I did not use a kit but bought supplies from www.weirdollsandcrafts.com. I was also surprised at how inexpensive the materials actually were. I found several tutorials online, but what I ended up following was this: http://www.flickr.com/photos/2918458...th/3508162491/
It's a photo tutorial and was so easy to follow. You should definitely go for it and make one. I was very proud of myself when I finished mine : ) Now I'm in the process of making clothes for her. I found a really cute crochet doll dress pattern that worked great for her (if I can find the link again I'll share it), but I want to sew some fabric clothes too. Honestly, the clothes are more challenging to my limited sewing skills than the doll was!
post #7 of 15
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by tngirl11 View Post
I just made my first ever Walorf-style doll, and it was not nearly as hard as I was afraid it might be. I was surprised at how the majority of the sewing was by hand instead of by machine. It's a little tricky to get all of the seams at the neck and shoulders nice and smooth, but I think it would come more easily with practice. I did not use a kit but bought supplies from www.weirdollsandcrafts.com. I was also surprised at how inexpensive the materials actually were. I found several tutorials online, but what I ended up following was this: http://www.flickr.com/photos/2918458...th/3508162491/
It's a photo tutorial and was so easy to follow. You should definitely go for it and make one. I was very proud of myself when I finished mine : ) Now I'm in the process of making clothes for her. I found a really cute crochet doll dress pattern that worked great for her (if I can find the link again I'll share it), but I want to sew some fabric clothes too. Honestly, the clothes are more challenging to my limited sewing skills than the doll was!
Thank you SO much for sharing the photo tutorial. I didn't see that when googling and I love the steps so clearly shown. I'd love crochet pattern if you find it too.
post #8 of 15
Thanks for the tutorial link!
post #9 of 15
I made one two christmases ago using a Dancing Rain Dolls kit. Was sad to discover they are not in business now

I've been wanting to try my hand at making another, but a punkier version (like a fairy) with pink hair and such. I know I can pick up a pattern from somewhere else and sub the pink hair, but I liked how DRD had so many creative options for hair and such.

YouTube videos saved me on the crochet part. I just watched it over and over until I got it right.

XOXO
b
post #10 of 15
thank you pp's for the links and resources!
post #11 of 15
can anyone say about how long it took them to complete their doll? in terms of hours of work? I'm interested in giving it a try, but wonder how long it will really take if I'm just working on it an hour or so a day.
post #12 of 15
naturechick,

I think it depends on a lot of factors. If you are crocheting a cap and doing the hair (and you have to teach yourself to crochet), it can take a bit of time

I am going to use the starrysheep tute and sew the hair on this time, which will make things faster for me since I suck at crochet.

I will also recommend if you have never made one before (and esp. if you don't have a waldorf doll at home to compare to), to spring for a "premade inner head."

I used a premade inner head the first go around. This time, I'm doing the inner head myself, and I spent an hour last night just getting it firm enough and in the tubular gauze. I haven't even added the string yet. I think the premade head is worth the money to avoid the trouble. Also, if I didn't have my other doll to compare firmness to, I would have made it far too soft. As it was, I rewound the ball 3 times before I achieved the right firmness. I think it would be almost impossible to know this without something to compare to. I also had my husband there as a reality check when I wanted to pretend I got it right the first (and second) time.

I am feeling confident about the whole project since I already did it once before, but I think (for me personally) if I had to do the inner head last time, I would have done a bad job without the comparison of one that was "right" and also would have been overwhelmed.

Sewing the body and stuffing it/putting the doll together didn't take me too long if I remember right. I think I sewed the pieces and stuffed them in less than 2 hours?? The face takes time to do correctly. And you'll need to do some clothes which will take some time.

but for me, by far the most work went into crocheting a cap and hooking in the hair. I think using the chunky hair and doing the starrysheep tute way of attaching it will go faster. Look at my other thread in this forum to see what I'm talking about ("deconstruct this picture" thread).

I'm like you in that I plan to do an hour a night or so. There's something therapeutic in working with the wool too. I really enjoyed my "struggle" with the inner head last night even though I felt some frustration at times.

I think it is well worth it to do this labor of love. DD loves her doll I made two years ago. It still gets love. I fully expect it to stay in our family for generations. I am so proud of it. I can't WAIT to get this funky little doll made I'm working on now. For me, the most challenging part is managing to work on it in secret after my girl is asleep without getting tired myself!
XOXO
B
post #13 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by naturechicplus1 View Post

can anyone say about how long it took them to complete their doll? in terms of hours of work? I'm interested in giving it a try, but wonder how long it will really take if I'm just working on it an hour or so a day.



It takes about 15 hours to make a doll from start to finish, a bit more time if its your first :)

post #14 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by MamaWolfe View Post

Funny, I came here to post the same thing! Except I knit and don't do much crochet. This tubular gauze stuff seems to be hard to find. I'm wondering if I can use pantyhose from the dollar store, or is it not even close to the same thing? I have some organic, unbleached knit t-shirt material that I could use. Maybe a sock? I tried making one last year and quickly gave up. I think I had trouble with the head part. This is the website I was leaning towards, the instructions seemed clear.

http://www.make-baby-stuff.com/Waldorf-doll.html
http://simmy.typepad.com/echoesofadr...instructi.html


You can find the tubular gauze at a medical supply store, they sometimes even sell it by the foot, but its much less exspensive to buy a box.

post #15 of 15

Mine took about 30 hours.  It was 2 or 3 hours a night for about 2 weeks!  I used the book 'Making Waldorf Dolls' by Maricristen something.  I have gauze but it was too big I think, so I followed what the book said and used the pattern for the inner head out of the regular skin material.  I'll do that again for my next doll.

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