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Friday, January 27, 2006

Doll Baby on Parade

Doll baby, doll baby, come out and play! I've spent most of today working on this cute little redheaded monster! Something so simple was made so terribly difficult by having to put my brain back to the 1970's and use templates - GASP!!!!

This is one-fourth of a baby quilt being made, and the center sashings (not attached yet) connect the girls by holding hearts. The center sashing on this one will be where the pin is in her hand on the right side of the picture. Each doll baby's hair is different, too. It can be a bob, a little knotty, kinky style, or braids like this little girl. This little redhead was either playing in the dirt, or she has freckles all over her body. I think if one of the pictures is clicked, a larger view will show them.

The eyes can be buttons or embroidered, but since it's for a small baby, embroidery probably will be the best. I really don't like doing embroidery if I can help it, though. So instead, I thought using Eleanor Burns' technique for machine embroidery would work the best for her eye circles and her mouth. I like the way they turned out, too. That only left the iris to embroider, so that wasn't so bad.

Isn't she cute?

In case anyone has never used the old fashioned way of machine embroidery, I've included a simple "how-to" picture or two.

You simply draw the embroidery thread down through the fabric and back up, leaving both tails on top of the piece at the beginning point of the embroidery. Put the sewing machine needle through the ends and stitch a couple stitches forward, a couple back, stop with the needle down, then twist the thread one end across the other, left to right. Stitch one stitch through, stop, then twist the thread across the other way, right to left.

It sounds tedious but it's pretty quick. I like to use perle cotton, and regular embroidery floss works well, too. I also use a piece of Golden Threads tissue paper or tracing paper under the work for stabilization. You can either use an invisible thread on top, or a thread that matches the embroidery floss. I like to use a shade darker just for a little bit of dimension in the embroidery.


Rosanne said...

Your little dolly is adorable! But I have to ask...what's the story behind the gas mask???

Sharon said...

So many people have asked about my new profile is a RESPIRATOR!

I have a rule about sports that require special equipment. Things that require helmets, knee pads, protective vests, harnesses etc are not for me! Now we can add respirators, too! This picture was taken at a weeklong camp I took in OH with Susan Shie of We airbrushed onto fabric (wearing a respirator) and then when we pressed our work, we had to wear the respirator again. Safety first because of the fumes, doncha know? Well, I won't be airbrushing ever again, so this is the only known picture to exist of Quiltgranny in one!

Rosanne said...

LOL! Your use of a respirator sounds like a whole lot more fun than my previous experience with such a contraption... (gas chamber once a year while in the Air Force). Did you do anything special with the airbrushed fabric? BTW, I love your name; my DD is Sharyn. I liked how it looked written with a "y" instead of an "o".

Brit said...

soo cute.

Finn said...

Isn't it hard to think tmeplate again?? makes me wonder how we managed all those years without rotary cutters. The litte dolly look so nice Sharon..great decision on the embroidery.

Dawn said...

Well I got to learn something today! I never heard of doing the machine embroidery like that! Huh! I learned something again!

Bonnie said...

Darling dolly block!! I love the fabric you used for her dress, and the machine embroidery you showed is really cool! I've never seen that!


Darcie said...

Your profile pic is too funny! You've got a great sense of humor, Sharon!

This little dolly is adorable. Only thing cuter would be a little boy! Great tutorial pics, too.

Samantha said...

She's so adorable- and I say, freckles, not dirt... she is a redhaed, so freckles make perfect sense!