This sweet little doll is made from an upcycled sweater and easy to find supplies. It comes together very quickly and easily, with just a little bit of stitching and basic sewing skills. It is sweet on its own, but needle felted with vegetables and a flower, it provides a little bit of summer garden goodness to snuggle.
Print out two copies of the Garden Doll Template. Cut one at the neck line and leave the other whole.
One felted sweater
Flesh colored interlock or jersey fabric
Wool roving in desired colors
Cut out the templates and cut out a piece of the sweater material from each template. Leave a little extra fabric at the neck of the smaller piece of material. This will allow for stitching the head to the body once it is stuffed.
Sandwich the two pieces together, right sides facing, and stitch around the perimeter where they meet. Notice how I left the extra fabric as instructed above free from stitching.
Cut a piece of the flesh colored fabric approximately 6 inches by 6 inches. Place a ball of stuffing at its center.
Gather the fabric around the stuffing, forming a small ball. Secure the stuffing at the center of the fabric by wrapping it with a piece of embroidery floss. Trim any excess flesh colored fabric. Turn the body fabric right side out and stuff the body, up until the neck. This is also the point at which you would embroider some facial features onto your doll’s face if desired. If you wish to have a face on your doll, you should create it before attaching the head to the body.
Making the face of the doll is entirely individual and you have the option to make it as plain or elaborate as you wish. Some people care for a more limited expression when designing dolls and some like a bit of personality to shine through their creation.
Personally, I use embroidery thread to stitch the eyes and mouth. To do this, you will enter starting at the back of the head, so that the knots will be hidden underneath the hood. You may need an extra long needle, or doll needle, when doing this.
Once you have made the eye, you can exit near where you entered at the back of the head and tie a triple knot. Repeat on the other eye. A straight line or two is all you need for the mouth.
Make a well in the center of the body stuffing; this will allow for the head of the doll to settle into the body at the neck. Tuck in the head at the neck and fold the small flap of fabric at the top of the neck of the front piece of the doll inward as shown.
Starting at the left side of the neck, stitch the head to the neck using a running stitch and coordinating embroidery floss.
Once you get to the right side of the neck, you will fold the hat flap over the top of the head and begin to stitch it to the head using the same stitches. Be sure to pucker the sweater fabric as you stitch around, as shown.
Once you return back to the left side of the hood you can tie off the thread with the starting thread at the left side of the neck.
Cinch tightly and triple knot.
To add the needle felted produce and flower, you will simply take tiny bits of roving and needle felt them onto the front of the doll.
I decided on a head of cabbage, a gerbera daisy, a carrot, and a tomato; but you can make whatever designs that you like.
There you have it.
Julia Daby is a Registered Nurse who lives happily with her husband and little boy in the Adirondack Mountains of New York. She enjoys crafts of all kinds, eating good food, reading, and being outdoors. Most important of all….she enjoys spending time with her family and friends. She has a small store on etsy where she and her twin share sewing and fiber tutorials to inspire creativity in other Mamas. She writes about life, family and creativity at Happiness Comes and We Deserve This. She also can be found at Windfall Dolls, where she and her sister give away Waldorf inspired dolls to deserving little ones.
Rhythm of the Home is an online magazine for families that focuses on creating with children, nature explorations, seasonal celebrations, conscious parenting, and mindfulness in all that we do.