Tuesday, October 25, 2011

how to make a yarn doll

yarn doll
My daughter learned how to make yarn dolls on a class trip last week.This old fashioned craft couldn't have been more well received, since she's currently devouring the entire Little House on the Prairie series. These "are just the kinda dolls Laura and Mary would have made", she excitedly told me. And thus began a weekend of doll making. Right from the get go she barely needed assistance, and her pride in this new found independence led her to ask if she could teach "how to" to all of you. This was a first. She's definitely asked (as has every family member at one time or another) "are you  gonna blog that, Mama?" But never has she asked to lead a tutorial... of course, you know what I said!  My daughter varied her yarn but remained true to the number of pieces for each doll. I think you could easily add some more strands for a plumper doll, but wait.... this is HER tutorial. Here we go...
body: 8 pieces of yarn cut to around 14"
arms: 6 pieces of yarn cut to 6"

first 2second
And here's doll #3 Her name is Suzanne, and she's already had the honor of being toted around on errands and was even invited up for bedtime.
her new doll
Note #1: I tried to stay true to her words, and hope that the photos will help with clarification... if you have questions, don't hesitate to ask.

Note #2: You can split the "dress" yarn in half and tie knots around each side to create legs for a gender neutral doll or "boy" doll. Pin It


  1. This is really clear; I am impressed! Can she finger knit too? That's something my friends and I picked up at a textiles fair in London two weeks ago, and it's so easy. We taught my friend who is nine, and she has since taught some of the younger girls at her school. It's really simple and feels very 'Little House On The Prarie' to me--that kind of homely, warming craft.

  2. too cute! My daughter recently had a slumber party for her 11th birthday and the girls had such fun making yarn dolls.

  3. Que tutorial tão bem feito. Parabéns.
    Obrigada também irá haver bonecos desses por aqui.

  4. You were first on my blog list this morning just so I could see this tutorial! Move over Mama, she's got creative talent and she ain't afraid to use it....perhaps she could guest blog once a month?!? ;o)
    Nice work ladies, I know my daughter will want to try making these as soon as she gets home from school!
    ~ joey ~

  5. Hi Libby,
    Isn't finger knitting wonderful! She can actually use needles at this point, but we haven't pulled them out in a while. Maybe that should get on our list!

    You totally made me laugh out loud! Love the "move over mama"! Hope your girl enjoys some yarn dolling, too.

  6. Oh how I loved Little House books as a child! These are adorable. Great tutorial Maya. xoxo

  7. well i have a feeling i know what we'll be doing after school today!
    thanks for the wonderful tutorial!

  8. Too cute!! I just started making dolls. I'll try this yarn doll when my little one gets older.

  9. Wow, what a nice and clear tutorial. My 7 year old (who is also reading Little House) enjoyed reading it and is very much looking forward to making her own yarn doll after school tomorrow.

  10. this is the greatest. my little neighbor Skye will love this.

  11. Just a quick note to let you know that a link to this post will be placed on CraftCrave today [26 Oct 02:00am GMT]. Thanks, Maria

  12. Love this tutorial...love how you share so much, can't wait to share this with my girl...love to your's from mine! What is that adorable outfit she has on in the last image...love it!
    ~ sunshine & happiness

  13. Sounds like there is going to be an awful lot of yarn doll making during this week! I even got to see one made on instagram already! Go doll makers!

    Hey Kimm! She's wearing a little velvet jumper that is so small (but she loves it still) that it's now worn as a tunic.

  14. Thanks for posting! My daughter who is 11, makes kerchief dolls/ cloth dolls, this is a great version of a handmade child's doll- can't wait to try it!


  15. Oh this is so great, what a fantastic photo show and I love love her jumper? Dress? And the photo of the doll in your decorative weeds. xox Corrine

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  17. I grew up on the Little House books and the TV show :) I love the yarn doll... and that tunic is adorable, is the pattern available?


  18. Great tutorial! Really clear and easy to follow all the steps. Great job! :)

  19. When I was a kid, we would make giant yarn dolls - one time as big as our livingroom. I'm sure my mom loved it! :)

  20. Just a quick note to let you know that a link to this post will be placed on CraftCrave today [27 Oct 02:00am GMT]. Thanks, Maria

  21. Hi Maya, My children are loving making these dolls for the upcoming Red Hill Show (an agricultural and horticultural show which features among other things, crafts, and has special juniors categories)- Please pass on a thank you to your daughter for her tutorial which my 8 year old followed unassisted-

    I write to ask about the dress that your daughter is wearing in the last photo of the tuturiol. Is that a dress made from an available pattern (like Simplicity, Ottobre, Burda etc)- It looks like a jumper with an open front- Really lovely- Thank you- Robin

  22. Robin! Sorry I missed this comment! The velvet jumper is a hand me down without a tag. It's not handmade, but definitely has that look. Wish I could help!