Make a doll that can wear commercially made clothes for American Girl and Our Generation Dolls. Get the pattern here. Scroll down, or click here, to see the video tutorial.
This pattern can make other barnyard animals, as well!
You will need about a half yard of fabric. It can be anything that doesn’t have a lot of stretch. For this tutorial, I used an upcycled flannel pillowcase.
Materials for eyes and features:
I used commercially prepared eyes, some felt pieces for the hooves, mouth, and inner ears. The hair was cut from a skein of yarn I found at the thrift store. Get creative!
Seam Allowance: 3/8″
Print the pattern as its ACTUAL SIZE for best results. To learn how to do this, click here. It will still work if you forget, but it will be smaller than intended. Assemble the head piece by matching the back and front pieces at the shaded area with a little tape.
This pattern will make a variety of barnyard animals, so be limited by the gorgeous unicorn. The sassy goat makes a hilarious gift! The same pattern was used to make all the animals pictured! It’s all about the features. The animal without any embellishments makes a great sheep. Add horns and manes to make other barnyard animals!
Sew the hands to the arms where the notches match. Make sure you have two each that match with right sides together. Double check. It’s easy to end up with mismatched arms.
Place two arms together with right sides facing and sew the perimeter, leaving the top of the arm open for turning. Snip the points and curves of the hand before turning. Stuff the arms. For instructions to weight the arms, see this video.
Sew the foot tops to the legs (the smaller end). Snip the curves.
Fold the leg in half, and with right sides facing, sew the back of the leg.
Open the foot area. Arrange the foot soles left and right before sewing to the leg. Match the heel notch with the heel seam and sew. It is best to position the pieces together in the machine as they are sewn, rather than pin them into place.
Turn the legs right side out and stuff. For instructions to weight the legs, see this video.
Place the body back pieces left to right and fold up the bottom darts. Sew using a 1/4″ seam allowance.
With right sides facing, sew the back pieces to the front. Match the shoulder notches and sew only the shoulders and sides. Snip the curves of the shoulder and underarm seams.
Sew the ears with right sides facing. The outer and inner ears work nicely in different colors, but your doll, your rules. Sew the outside, leaving the bottom open. Trim the point and turn right side out. Press well.
Mark the eye placement on the side head piece. Fold the ear to preference and insert into the dart on the top of the head using 1/4″ seam allowance.
Sew the neck dart using a 1/4″ seam allowance with right sides facing.
This is the most challenging part of sewing the doll- connecting the center head with the side heads. The trick here is to guide the pieces together as they are in the sewing machine. DO NOT try to pin it into place before sewing- that will be a nightmare. See the video below as I demonstrate how to guide the pieces together. Always sew with the side head on top for best results.
Turn the head right side out and sew to the body. Find the center of the neck and pin the pieces together.
With right sides together, sew the back from the bottom to the tab at the upper back. Do not sew all the way up, you will need an area to turn the doll right side out.
Assembling the Doll:
Make sure the legs are positioned leg to right and insert into the body of the doll, with the toes pointing toward the face. Double check, you don’t want to sew them in backwards!
Pin the crotch first to make sure the center of the front and back bodies are aligned. Pin the legs into place before sewing. For best results, make sure some of the leg raw edges are peeking above the body raw edges. This will ensure both legs are sewn in securely.
Sew the bottom of the doll, securing the legs into place.
Turn the doll right side out and insert the arms. Make sure the thumb is pointing up toward the face. Sew into place.
Turn the head wrong side out and match the neck seams. Pin. Sew the back of the head dart, sloping the stitch to the folded edge for a smoothly rounded head.
Position and attach the eye according to package directions, or whatever you have devised as a master plan. It’s fun to get creative with this part.
Stuff the doll and sew the back closed by hand.
To make a mane, cut yarn double the length you would like for the drape on the neck. Sew the yarn to a strip of fabric about 1/2″ wide, and the length of the mane area of the doll. Do a small clump of yarn separate for the forelock. Use the strip to hand sew the mane into place, starting at the forehead and following the head dart seam on the back of the head. Sew the strip on both sides to secure to the mane area of the neck. See the video for a better view of this.
Mouth: Cut a strip the desired width and length out of felt or other non-fraying material. Use regular glue to place.
Horns: Adhere heavy fusible interfacing to the back of your chosen fabric. Fold the fabric in half and cut a triangle shape, leaving one side folded. Sew one side of the triangle and turn right side out. Stuff if necessary and hand sew into place.
Now it’s time to dress up and PLAY! Happy Sewing!