I was going to make a Waldorf doll for a friend’s baby for Christmas, but the kid is only three months old which seemed a bit young for a full-featured doll. Besides, all she probably wants to do with toys right now is snuggle something soft – so a knotty doll seemed like a much better idea.
I made the head first, using a tutorial from Living Crafts which I used to make my real Waldorf dolls, except the head is 8″ in circumference instead of the recommended 9-10″ because that seemed like a better size for a smaller baby. I also like my dolls to have noses, so I added one using a different tutorial from The Silver Penny.
I pinned several pictures of knotty bodies from different sources with notes on what I liked and didn’t about each one as I formulated my approach. I realized I wasn’t going to be able to tie actual knots as the fabric I had was far too thick, but I was OK with thread wrapped tightly around the ‘wrists’ and ‘ankles’ instead of knots. I sketched out a body shape I thought might work, sewed it up, turned it right side out, and put the head in it to see whether it looked right. I had seen reference to ‘generous’ blanket (body) dimensions in an Etsy listing so I wanted to be sure to start out too big, but I ended up cutting it down three times to get it to look proportional with the head.
Download the Knotty Doll Pattern template (printable on standard 8.5 x 11 paper), and head on over to Instructables for step-by-step directions if you need them. If you make this, I’d love to know how it turns out.
(Note: As with all blankets and toys, this toy is not suitable for an infant’s crib.)
I am giving away a Knotty Doll in a beautiful grey color – pictured at the bottom. If you’d like to be entered to win, just sign up to follow my blog using the link on the right side (if you’re already signed up, you’re already entered!). I’ll pick a winner at random after 5pm PST on Tuesday January 19th (not June, as previously announced – seems like a long time to wait!).
Update: the doll has now made its way to its new home. Congrats to Cassie in Missouri – hope your little one loves it!