Thursday, 24 April 2014

Dotty Doily's Dolly

Now here is a project I really enjoyed working on the whole way through. I work at the publisher of this great title by Isabelle Kessedjian called My Crochet Doll. I worked to drop in the translated text and prepare the book for printing as well as redesigning the cover for UK and US sales. Because of the hours I spent poring over the beautiful images of this gorgeous doll pattern and the amazing wardrobe of clothing options, I could not resist having a go and making one for myself.

Here she is! I really enjoyed making all the parts and sewing them together. The instructions were really simple and clear and there are lots of pictures in the front part of the book which show how the doll fits together. I had a slight calamity with the hair because I got so carried away giving her a thick mop of golden locks that I added too much yarn and the weight of it made her head sag down! I spent a lot of time unhooking random strands of hair to shed the ballast!

There are loads of outfit options in the book including various scenarios such as bedtime, outdoor wear, holiday wear and so on, dressing up clothes and accessories, and even some little companions for the doll. This video shows some of the cute little photos from the book to give you an idea.

I chose to use the basic wardrobe patterns to create my doll's clothes so that I could customise an outfit in the colours I liked. I may make some more later on but for now she has Trousers, boots, a jumper and even some knickers! I also made a few bits of my own design to accessorise her. There is no limit to using just the items from the book as long as you make things to fit the doll so I made a tiny beanie hat and then just because I could I made a weanie little cowl using this marvellous pattern from the lovely Annaboo's House blog.

I used Stylecraft Special DK yarn for the doll all the items and a 3mm hook rather than the standard size for that yarn which made the stitches a little tighter. The book suggests Bergere de France yarn but I love the feel and the range of colours in the Stylecraft range. Almost all of the patterns use just one stitch (double crochet UK / single crochet US) worked in an increase and a decrease to shape the pieces. It is a true masterpiece of amigurumi!

My crochet doll was finished around Christmas and yet she remains, chilling out in my craft room and generally looking cool and coordinating with things (over Easter she found a little friend to keep her company!) I have a lot of very tiny girl relatives who are a little too young for me to bear handing her over to just yet so I am keeping her although I am finding it a bit weird keeping dolls at my age! Maybe when one of the small girls gets a bit bigger and less hamfisted I will part with her, or if I have a little girl of my own I would make an heirloom of her.

If you are thinking of buying the book or have it but want to find out more before getting started on your doll, I will be taking part in a live Google Hangout session next Weds (30th April). You will be able to view the video on this page during and after the event but if you subscribe to the session here you will be able to ask questions during the discussion and I will do my best along with the help of my colleague Ame from Stitch Craft Create to answer them!


  1. Ms. Anna,

    I am from the Us and purchased this book for both my personal and public libraries. I really enjoyed your video tutorial on youtube, and gained a lot of insight. However, I am having some difficulty with the instructions on page 74 for the Pyjama top sleeves. "Working with invisible stitches with yarn A, attach the last row of the front to the last row of the back over 5 dc [sc in the US] to form the armholes." I am a visual learning and I believe I have the just of what is meant here, I just can't picture it in my head, and I want to be certain that I do this correctly. Any assistance or advice you can offer would be greatly appreciated. Thanks and Happy Crocheting!

  2. Hi Hooks in Hand! Thanks for your question. I had to do a bit of doodling to work this out but basically you begin by making one long piece which forms both the front and back of the pj top. Then you grow up from it in sections to make the front sections and the back section. The splits between them will become the arm holes when you sew the shoulder seams together. That is what 'invisible stitches' means I think. This text was translated from French so sometimes things are explained in a slightly unfamiliar way. Does this make sense? I'm sure it is easier for you to see with the pieces made in front of you too!

  3. Ms. Anna,

    Thank you so much for your quick response. It's the sewing the shoulder seams together that concerns me. There is a dc [sc in US] gap between each front and back pieces, so when I sew the top "shoulder seams" together, there is no dc [sc in US] for me to crochet in at the top with starting my working in the spiral for the sleeves themselves, leaving me short a stitch. So, I am not quite certain what to do. If I add another row of dc [sc in US] across the whole length to attach the shoulder seams, I will still be missing a stitch. Would it work if I just made invisible stitches across the front and back pieces, then made a chain at the shoulder seam gaps, then went back to invisible stitches? I have never made clothing, except a scarf, so this is all very new to me. Thank you for your assistance!

  4. Ms Anna,
    I am from Vietnam. I really like this book and start to my project after buying it. But one thing I don't get it how to make some stiches to create an ankle. I tried to imagine but maybe my English isn't enough well to understand them. thanks so much, Anna

  5. Is there a pdf for this doll pattern