I don’t go to a lot of baby showers. But when I do happen to get an invite, I love making my gifts. I sometimes feel bad not giving the necessities, like diapers or bottles, knowing first hand how much you go through a pack of diapers. But I love that the doll I give will be a playmate and be a part of their memories. If you know a little about the story of why I started sewing, you’ll know that this thinking is the exact spark that got me going.
It used to be that my favorite baby shower gift to give was a pack of size 1 diapers and an infant nap sack. I swear by them. New babies are used to being in a tighter space and it comforts them to feel the physical boundaries of their world. With my first born, she slept much longer the nights I swaddled her in one. Every baby is different, of course, so this might not help other moms looking to that illusive memory called sleep.
Anyway, I usually like making security blankets with washable food grade silicone rings attached to them. I embroider or appliqué the baby’s name, as well. I love how they look! But this time, I decided to change things up. I love the way rag dolls look with their long skinny limbs. My dolls don’t usually have limbs.
One night, I just grabbed some of my daughter’s craft paper and a pencil and sketched out a rough pattern of the body shape. I did the same with her limbs and redrew to add in the seam allowance. I felt confident enough to just go with it, instead of making a prototype first. The design was simple enough. I have a stash of fabric that I want to create with but never get around to having the right pattern to use it for. (Who doesn’t have a stash like this?!) As my also do not have removable clothing, it was fun fashioning a little skirt.
I didn’t want to use button joints for her arms, so I sewed them them closed and folded over the excess. I went with hand sewing through the excess instead of through the stuffed part because I liked how the arm could extend straight up when held. It just appealed to me more, for this girl. Needless to say, I was pleased with the way she turned out. Her imperfection is endearing. My one year old laughed at the way her legs swing when you hold her. She looks so smart and wholesome with her stitched on collared blouse and leggings. She even sports a little heart over where a breast pocket would go and proudly displays a tiny T for her tiny owner.
I just know that they are going to be the best of friend! ❤