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Grand Rapids, Michigan, United States
Hello doll lovers! This blog was created to tell you about dolls I have made and classes I teach on doll making at Attic Window Quilt Shop in Comstock Park, Michigan (a suburb of Grand Rapids). My goal in teaching is to pass on the love of making heirloom quality dolls. Most of the dolls I make (and hold classes for) are designed by Gail Wilson - visit her website at . Page down my blog for some fun doll links including antique doll sites and hard to find doll supplies.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Finished Lottie

Here's Lottie!  After last post, she was just getting her nose sculpting done and a coat of half water, half skin paint.  We let her dry (thanks to NPR for the entertainment while we waited), finished her face embroidery and then moved onto hair. 

Following the easy instruction in the kit from Gail Wilson, we made her wig.  
See for kit or pattern details.

There is one scary part to making wigs from mohair....that is the thinning part.  I'm always afraid I'm going to take too much out and have bald spots.  But I have found that if you take some of the mohair you have left over, and lay it in under the hair in the too thin area, it hides the bald spot.  With a bit of experience, you get a feel for how much to take out.  

 Here she is in her handy wigging clamp. It's that extra set of hands that you need to hold the doll while you play with her hair. 

Side parts are fun too - but since Lottie will have braids, we'll go with the center part.  I'll center the seam on the wig with the center seam on the head and pin in a few spots.  Then gently lift off the pins and wig and put a spot of hot glue down under the hair with cool heat hot glue gun. Just a small amount so it won't show thru the top of the wig.  Then press down that part of the wig on the spot of glue and hold firmly for a second or two until the glue sets. Then work your way from the top of the head down the back with a couple more spots of glue, and pressing that part of the wig down matching seams. 

When you have worked from the top of the head to the nape of the neck, then go from the top of the head towards the forehead. If you hesitate to use glue, you can always hand tack with thread instead of using glue.  Once the wig is firmly attached, you can start styling the hair, thinning more as needed as you work towards the braid ends.  As you braid the second braid, remember to check the first braid, so you are making similar braids as to thickness, length and placement.  Tie off the ends with whatever you wish, remembering to keep the tie small, not a huge thick ribbon on this tiny braid end, or it will slip off.  If you are worried, you can always use a tiny drop of glue to hold it all in place.  I used embroidery floss here.

Lots of leftover mohair!  If there was a bald spot, this could be used for filling in under the hair attached to the wig.  Or use it to stuff a small project.

On all dolls with mohair wigs, I like to protect the hair before I put her clothing on.  Just snip off the corner of a plastic bag and snug it over the top of her head.  

Lottie's clothing is a simple dress with cinched sleeves. You run a gather stitch around the hemmed edge and then once the dress is on the doll, you pull up and tie off.

Using your hemostats, push the ends of the threads inside the dress. You could leave a nicely tied bow on the outside if you wish.

I have a stand already made for Lottie, but the dowels are a bit too long, so I snipped off half an inch on the bottom of the dowel with some nail snips. 

For the stand,  I used a round piece of wood and drilled holes for the dowels.  Then I sanded, stained and varnished the stand. The tops of the flat sanded and rounded top dowels hit right at her shoulder blades after the dowels are placed in the stand.  I dressed Lottie in her clothing of dress, pantaloons, slip, apron and bonnet, then I slipped the dowels up inside the pantaloons, past the waistbands of her slip and pantaloons until the tops are under the bodice of her dress.  I added invisible hair holders around the legs and dowels and slipped it up under her pantaloons so no one knows it's there. Then I slip the dowels into the stand. 

If the dowels are a bit loose, you can use a tiny amount of museum wax and put it on the dowel under the place where the dowels begin to show. Then slip them down into the hole on the stand. The wax will fill the space and the dowels will then be snug.  I don't like to glue the dowels into the stand, because I cannot change the dowels then.  For example, If Lottie ends up sold without her stand, I can reuse the stand for another doll that might be taller just by switching out the dowels. 

Here are a few more pictures of Lottie.  And thanks for visiting - have some doll fun today! Julie

Yeah, she was here the whole time, trying to take off with my mohair and being her usual pesky self.....I'd kick her out and shut the door, but she has figured out how to open the door! Drat


  1. She is beautiful. Your work looks so professional!

  2. Thanks! How did your dying project go.....maybe you should blog about it, so we can see!

  3. Julie, such a charming little Lottie you've created. I love all the pictures, especially the in-progress ones (my favorites), not to mention the one of your hairy home companion :-)


  4. Hi,

    I really like your blog, I always visit it whenever I had time, I really like your posts especially those about dolls and I hope to see more from your blog, so excited to read your future posts.

    Anyway, I found this website that can create a super-realistic doll heads of anyone from just a photo. Imagine making doll of yourself, your kids, your boss or your favorite celebrity!

    Apparently they can make the heads in many scales to fit Barbie-like dolls, Tonner dolls or even smaller figurines like Polly Pocket.

    Anyway, thought it might be interesting to your readers.

    Best regards,

    ….here is the link for the pic:

  5. She is beautiful. I like how you make her hair.

  6. Thanks! I used to be afraid of hair wigging, but with Gail's instructions, it's easy. I made her Queen Anne doll in an online class and wow, so many good hair making options in those indepth instructions. I feel pretty confident in my hair making now.


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