So I’ve been a bit obsessed with Waldorf dolls lately. I saw some on this website, and knew that I wanted to have one in the house. However, the dolls were a little out of my price range at $200. I was at my local library and saw the book Growing Up: Sew Liberated by Meg McElwee. It had a Waldorf doll pattern in it that I loved and had very detailed instructions on how to make these dolls.
It took me some time to find a place to purchase the materials for the dolls. I considered ordering the organic knit for the bodies from the Netherlands because the quality is raved about, but after seeing that it would cost $40 for just shipping, I declined. I ended up ordering my supplies from Weir Crafts. The materials came quickly and I bought my wool roving for the insides of the doll, the tubing, skin colored organic knit, and skin colored thread from them. I ended up having plenty of wool stuffing, which just means, I get to make some more crafts. I ended up with some leftover knit too, so another doll may be in the works.
In addition to looking at the library book, I also searched other websites for tips and tricks. Here are those links:
Starry Sheep has a wonderful collection of helpful links.
Waldorf Doll Hair:
Some things I learned while making these dolls. One, they are very much worth the money that you pay for them online. Two, I should have purchased doll needles in the beginning. They are long and I think that I would have had fewer holes in the dolls heads when making them.
I need to tweak my hair making techniques, at least with short-haired dolls. I don’t really like how you can see the bottom layer sewn down with the short doll hair. I need to learn how to make clothes because I really suck at my technique. Hand sewing these dolls were not hard. I had never done a satin stitch before, but some online tutorials were very helpful and I didn’t really have a problem with it. Next time, I will make the faces more round. I didn’t stuff them enough so their cheeks are not as round as I would have liked.
I spent around $61 on materials for both dolls. However, I have enough fabric left over for another doll and enough yarn from their hair to knit each doll a full body suit. I have extra wool stuffing as well and enough thread to make a handful of dolls. The clothes were made with fabric I had at home. So I guess the materials for these dolls were probably about $45 if you count the fact that I have materials to still use in the future. When you factor in the time though, that is where I can understand their online cost. A friend of mine asked how long I thought it took to make the dolls. I would estimate probably twenty hours for both dolls. It was spread out over a month time period with two days that I probably spent a good six hours each day working on them. For those that make the Bamboletta dolls or others that are similar, if they were getting paid $10/hour, you can see that they are making some profit on the dolls, but not a lot.
Here are some photos of their progression.
Frankie is on the left, he is Nick’s doll. Liam is on the right, that’s right, Liam named his doll Liam. 🙂