When I created that big mess with my unwound skein of wool over Christmas, I suddenly remembered the yarn dolls we used to make in school.
As I then had hours of fun (well, not exactly hours and not exactly fun, but hours of fun sounds better) making some with my children and nephew and nieces (well, my daughter and my niece only, but a big crowd sounds better) using a model I had found online, I decided the world (well, not exactly the world, but you know by now how this works) is in need for not only a simple blog post on Scrap Sunday but also a tutorial (I am considering to post this again on Tuesday for Tutorial Tuesday) how to make a yarn doll.
To be honest, I don’t quite remember how we did this, I think not like the ones that I found online, so this is about my version plus what I have seen online and how a dear friend of mine used to make them (just the inspiration, I am far to lazy to even go and get the yarn out, let alone the camera)
All you need is scraps of yarn, scissors and something to wind up your yarn depending on the size of your doll (a book, a postcard or simply your hands).
Then, you wind the yarn around a book for a slightly bigger doll or a postcard or even just your fingers. The latter will result in a tiny strand of yarn (especially if you were using a child’s fingers), this would be good for the arms of the second type of dolls.
Carefully remove the book, making sure the yarn doesn’t collapse to a big mess. Tie a knot around the top to keep everything together and a round head.
Cut the whole bunch through opposite the knot to get open ends. You could do this at a later stage but I find it a bit easier.
Tie a knot around the whole bunch close to the top to form the head. You want a nice round and fairly firm shape. Not like in the next picture, that wasn’t mine 🙂
Separate the ends into 4 portions to form arms and legs.
Tie knots around those 4 portions, leaving the legs longer than the arms.
Cut the ends to get neat feet and hands. Done.
I am not sure if this is how we did it, I have this vague memory of a pompom in connection with the doll. Maybe we used a pompom as a head. Oh, the possibilities are endless!
The versions I found online, use a separate strand to make the hands. So you will need a shorter one than for the body. You could do this by wrapping it around your fingers.
Bind off both ends for the arms and put the whole thing aside for a moment.
Make another doll body as before and bind off the head. For this model, I did not tie a knot at the top to keep the bunch together. As you can see, this results in a slightly floppy head.
Slide the arms through the body, just under the head.
Bind the body strand off, just under the arms to form the torso.
Form two legs and bind them off at the end.
Cut all the ends open to get neat arms and hands.
You could as well make a “skirt” version instead of the legs by not separating the strand. Another variety would be to pleat the strands. You can play with colours, having mixed strands or keeping them in one colour, using contrasting yarn to bind off the body parts. Oh the possibilities are endless. As I said. Hours of fun on these cold cold days.
My friend told me they made octopuses. One big head with 8 pleated legs. (Or arms?) The queen of yarn dolls. I might make one one day. But not today.