Rag Doll Patterns To Make Yourself

Rag Doll Patterns To Make Yourself

Sew Your Own Rag Doll

rag dolls

If you are a woman who is crafty and looking for a fun project, using rag doll patterns to sew a doll for yourself, a special child, or even to sell is a delightful option. Girls still love fabric dolls to play with. There are several options available to work on a project of making a rag doll today. It might even be a fun project for a sewing group to make up several rag dolls sharing patterns and donate them to a shelter for battered woman and children.

A Little History Of Rag Dolls

Fabric dolls or what is commonly known as rag dolls began to appear during the American Colonial period. Up to that point most dolls were made from corn husks, carved from wood, or made of wax. Creative mothers, grandmothers, and aunts began to fashion dolls out of scrap fabric or “rags” for the little girls in their lives. The body and clothing were made from cloth with the hair made from yarns, string, and sometimes lace. It was not uncommon for the doll to have a blank face. Some adults and some children painted faces on the dolls. It was an inexpensive way for a little girl to have a doll that she could love and care for.

A Few Examples Of Available Rag Doll Patterns

A modern version of the infamous Raggedy Ann doll is a wonderful option for a doll pattern. I particularly like the fabric dolls pattern in the second photo. It gives you the option of creating different hair styles and clothing for the dolls, too.

Raggedy Ann Doll PatternRaggedy Ann Doll PatternCHECK PRICE

Rag Doll & Clothes PatternRag Doll & Clothes PatternCHECK PRICE

 

 

 

 

Raggedy Ann Probably The Most Famous Rag Doll In The World

Johnny Gruelle created the fame of a raggedy old doll named Ann in a series of stories that have been loved by many since he first started to write and illustrate them in the early 1900s. There are several legends as to how he got the idea for Raggedy Ann. The one that I am most familiar with is the one that occurs in Indianapolis, Indiana when supposedly his little girl Marcella brought him a rag doll from the attic that needed some repair. Legend says that he penned a whimsical face on the doll and suggested she have her Grandmother sew another button on for her eye. There are other legends similar that say it happened in other cities that the Gruelle family lived in. It must depend on the area that you are closest to as to that part of the legend. It has even been suggested that Gruelle himself started that legend to add to the charm of the stories. Myrtle Gruelle, Johnny’s wife, was said to have told that Johnny himself rescued the doll from the attic and said that it would make for a good story. I think that it probably doesn’t matter what the real story is or was. What is important is that an adventurous little doll became loved by people all over the world and still is.

My first rag doll was made from a pattern for Raggedy Ann by a loving relative and I cherished her. Both of my daughters were given a Raggedy Ann and Raggedy Andy doll made by my Great Aunt. I think that there are probably a lot of women that remember that their rag doll was sewn from loving hands by someone who thought they were special. That is a wonderful tradition to carry through into today, don’t you think?

Of course the rag doll doesn’t have to be Ann, you can choose any rag doll pattern to make a doll for a special little girl to love, snuggle, and cuddle with. With the wonderful fabrics available today, the fabric doll can even fit the heritage of your family with the correct clothing to match the culture of your own lineage.

Cloth, Fabric, or Rag Dolls As A Charitable Gift

I love the idea of women coming together to craft items much like the old days when women met to quilt together. Wouldn’t it be cool for women to make several rag dolls and have them available to give to little girls when a disaster has befallen her little soul? Perhaps fire destroyed her home, a flood ruined the family belongings, or a tornado swept everything away. A doll made by loving hands could lift her little spirits. Rag doll patterns of a variety of styles could be used to make dolls for the children in Homeless Shelters or shelters for abused women and their kids. Perhaps you could use your sewing talents with some women you know to do this very thing!

DIY  Needlepoint Tartan Plaid Placemat

DIY Needlepoint Tartan Plaid Placemat

Plastic Canvas Project

Here is a fun project that you can do yourself to make festive placemats for your table. I have chosen to make these in Christmas colors for this tutorial but I have also worked them in other colors to fit a season of the year or the colors in a kitchen. They are fun and pretty easy to do.

tartan plaid placemat

Supply List For 1 Mat

  • Color A 75 yds yarn (I used white in this sample)
  • Color B 50 yds yarn (red in this sample)
  • Color C 50 yds yarn (Christmas green in this sample)
  • Color D 25 yds yarn (Dark Green in this sample)
  • Plastic Canvas (7 count)
  • Blunt tip needlepoint needle
  • Scissors

I usually make 4 to 8 mats in the given color combination. Because you are using plastic canvas, you can use regular yarn like you would crochet or knit with instead of the more expensive needlepoint thread. Just multiply the number of yards you will need for 1 mat times the number you plan to make to determine how many skeins of each color you will need.

A few tips before we begin

Although we are using the needlepoint technique you will not approach your stitches in the typical way for needlepoint. Plastic canvas does not have the warp and weft of the weave that standard needlepoint fabric has. We will be working with just the intersections and we will work the horizontal rows first and then go back and work the vertical rows.

You will want to cut some sections of yarn to work with. I typically cut about 36 inches of the color that I am working with at a time.

tartan plaid step one

We work the horizontal rows starting at the top right going into every other top hole and over the intersection into the opposite bottom hole (like a typical needlepoint stitch). To conserve yarn and to make your back look neater, I suggest that you go across the first row in this method and then when you start the second row go from bottom to top (opposite the direction of the row above). It is also important to stagger those stitches. In other words if there is a stitch in row one, there will not be a stitch in row two. See the above image for clarity.

Pattern For Horizontal Rows (going across the canvas)

Starting in the upper right corner work:
2 rows of Color A
1 row of Color D
5 rows of Color A
5 rows of Color B
2 rows of Color A
2 rows of Color C
3 rows of Color A
2 rows of Color C
2 rows of Color A
5 rows of Color B
5 rows of Color A
1 row of Color D
5 rows of Color A
5 rows of Color B
2 rows of Color A
2 rows of Color C
3 rows of Color A
2 rows of Color C
2 rows of Color A
5 rows of Color B
5 rows of Color A
1 row of Color D
2 rows of Color A

step two tartan plaid

Pattern For Vertical Rows (working up and down the canvas)

Beginning in the first available stitch in the upper right corner:
2 rows of Color A
5 rows of Color B
5 rows of Color A
1 row of Color D
5 rows of Color A
5 rows of Color B
2 rows of Color A
2 rows of Color C
3 rows of Color A
2 rows of Color C
2 rows of Color A
5 rows of Color B
5 rows of Color A
1 row of Color D
5 rows of Color A
5 rows of Color B
2 rows of Color A
2 rows of Color C
3 rows of Color A
2 rows of Color C
2 rows of Color A
5 rows of Color B
5 rows of Color A
1 row of Color D
5 rows of Color A
5 rows of Color B
2 rows of Color A

After completing all of the horizontal and vertical rows you will want to finish your placemat by going around the outer edge with two strands of Color D in a whip stitch fashion.

It is really kind of fun to watch the tartan plaid take shape as you start to work those vertical rows! As I said, you can use any color combination for your placemats. Have fun doing this fun DIY plastic canvas project! They are nice to have for your own home but also make unique gifts, too.

Mystery Afghan Challenge Completed

Mystery Afghan Challenge Completed

Challenge Taken: Mission Complete

afghan completed

Wow, that 10 week challenge seemed to just fly by! Those of us who took the challenge have worked each week adding the stitches to finally have a completed afghan. Remember, when we started we had no idea what it was going to look like at the end. What a fun journey!

This week, we received our last clue which was to add three more rounds to the luscious border. My goodness that border is just remarkable! Sure it was labor intensive at times but it is the most striking border I have ever made. The first two rounds this week were pretty simple, just a combination of SC and Chains. The last round uses an extended picot stitch that took some time to get all the way around but it really adds a lot to the already exquisite border.

I have to admit that picot stitches have never been my favorite to do. With Mikey’s (The Crochet Crowd) guidance, I finally get it! Now, I actually like making them and they do add a certain flair to many projects.

What I learned in this challenge

I really enjoyed this challenge to create an afghan with no idea what the finished product would look like when we began. I’ve said before that if I had seen the pattern for this afghan, it is not one that I would have chosen to try. Why? Well, completed I would think that it was way beyond my skill sets. Taken in small steps, I found that I can do projects like this.

I learned to read and use diagrams on a pattern. They always looked intimidating to me before and now I find that I look at the diagram first. Sometimes, they make more sense to me than the written directions.

I, also, learned that it is really kind of fun to step outside of my comfort zone and try something new. My confidence in my ability to work with complicated (or what looks complicated) patterns has soared.

Will I do another mystery challenge? Oh you bet ya! I loved the knowledge and confidence that I gained through the process but most of all I loved seeing what others were doing as we worked through this together. A group of fellow crocheters encouraged each other through the process and that was very uplifting. Seeing the color choices that everyone decided on was fun too. Even though we were all working on the same afghan, it is amazing how different colors can make it look totally unique.

Thanks for following along with me on this crochet journey! I hope you had fun.

Mystery Crochet Afghan Week Nine

Mystery Crochet Afghan Week Nine

Our mystery crochet afghan is almost complete

mystery crochet afghan wk 9

The clue for week nine of our mystery crochet afghan challenge was released this week bringing us to a point where we are almost complete in our tasks. This week we worked more on our lovely border. The stitches were not difficult to accomplish but step 2 of the clue was a little more time consuming to complete.

The first step in adding to our border was to take Color A, in my case Pagoda, and work around the edge with a combination of SC and Chains.

mystery crochet border step

That task did not take very long to accomplish at all and was really easy. It was step number 2 of this week’s clue that was time consuming. The stitches are not difficult to do but there were simply a lot of them to do across the four edges. Unlike most borders in crochet for this step we turned our afghan around and worked from the back. We created a series of Dc5togs which means 5 double crochets stitched together followed with a single Dc. The reason for the turning was so that our Dc5tog would have the puffed out side on the front of the mystery crochet afghan.

mystery crochet border step 2

The printed pattern called for us to use Color B once again but I did not follow the pattern. Mikey of The Crochet Crowd who does the tutorial videos for this Mystery Crochet Afghan challenge goofed when filming the instructions and used his color C. He explained this in the video and said he plans to substitute in next week’s clue. I honestly didn’t like the two rows being the same color so I went with what Mikey considered a goof. I like the result much better.

Since we have started working on our border the printed instructions have included credit to the book Around the Corner Crochet Borders by Edie Eckman. I actually own that book and found that we are doing border number 9 in the book. Edie does not have instructions to double up on the color like the printed Yarnspirations instructions does so I think the designer of the mystery crochet afghan goofed when typing the directions and that Mikey accidentally did it correctly.


Around the Corner Crochet Borders

If I am correct in the border that is being used, then next week in our final clue I will use my color D for one of the rows in the border. I really think it will make it more cohesive because then this exquisite border will include all 4 of the colors from the afghan.

Join me next week for the final clue and revealing of my completed afghan!

Mystery Afghan Crochet Challenge Week 8

Mystery Afghan Crochet Challenge Week 8

Clue 8: We begin working on the border

mystery afghan week 8

The clue was released for week 8 of our Mystery Afghan crochet challenge on Tuesday this week. It was nice to be able to work on it after having to wait for 2 weeks. If you remember, our last clue was the steps of joining the squares and everyone was given two weeks to complete the join.

So this week we begin what looks to be an elaborate border. With the afghan turning out to be so flashy, a simple border just would not do, me thinks. The first step was simple with using our color A to do SC (single crochets) around the entire piece.

step one border

That was a very easy step to take care of and really did not take very long to finish at all. Now, on to the second step of the clue for our mystery afghan.

Oh, I have to say, I really liked the second step of the clue! We crocheted Trs (treble chochets) around the edge but in a fun way. The treble crochet stitches are crossed over each other and that took a little more time to do. The result is really dramatic, though and well worth the time spent to finish this step of the border for the mystery afghan.

crossed treble crochet

We have two additional clues coming before our challenge is completed. Week 9 and week 10 will be additions to our border and I can hardly wait to see what comes next. I would assume that we will probably incorporate our other two colors in the border, but one never knows.

This has been such a fun process for me. I have learned to use the basic stitches of crochet in new ways to create quite a dynamic piece. Even though we are not completely finished with this project, I am looking forward to the next mystery challenge!

Progress With Mystery Crochet Afghan

Progress With Mystery Crochet Afghan

This week involved two clues

mystery afghan

This week was a bit of a surprise in our challenge for the mystery afghan. We received two clues from Mikey and Yarnspirations. That is kind of cool except that now we will have to wait for 2 weeks to get Clue #8.

When I first watched the video clue, I was a little intimidated but got my twenty squares out and started in. We are joining those squares together but in an unusual way. The stitches and the way we work with them create a braided effect. It was a little hard but once I got my rhythm going, it turned out to be pretty easy.

joined squares

Apparently, I was not the only one to feel the intimidation. Goodness there were some negative comments from the peanut gallery. Some didn’t even give it time to try it. One hour after the clue was released the negativity started. Now, the video was over 40 minutes long, so they couldn’t have given themselves much time to try to get their hooks in the groove.

The comments were really kind of sad because Mikey puts a lot of effort out for all of us and those comments hurt his feelings. Hopefully, there have been enough positive comments now and he is feeling better.

I am loving the braided look to the joining of these squares! Very different and unique! I will remember this technique and use it again, now that I know how to do it. Stunning!

I mentioned this before and now that we are close to being done, I will say it again. If I had seen this pattern available somewhere, I would have passed. Not because I didn’t like it, but because it just looks like it would be too difficult for me to tackle.

mystery afghan complete

Taking it in bite size chunks with awesome video clues along the way, I have discovered that it isn’t nearly as hard as it looks. I am also amazed at what a few tricks with chain stitching can create!

The border must be some kind of wonderful because it will take us three clues to get all of the instructions. I can hardly wait!

Mystery Afghan Progress Week 5

Mystery Afghan Progress Week 5

Reached the Half Way Point In Our Mystery Afghan Challenge

Well, we are half way through our 10 week challenge to crochet an afghan with no idea what the finished project will look like. So far, it has been a pretty amazing journey.

mystery afghan week 5

This week’s clue which was number 5 is a pretty easy one to follow as far as the stitching goes. We added what appears to be a flower petal to the center in our Color C yarn which in my case is the Passion or purple color. It really gives some dimension to the overall motif.

The way to make the flower looks difficult but all it is – is a series of treble crochet stitches made into a shell and then slip stitched into the front post of the Color B yarn layer. Looks hard but it really is easy and fast to finish on each square.

Mikey said in his video that next week we start to join our squares. It is hard for me to imagine that it will take us 5 weeks to join them so there must be some kind of trick involved but that is part of the mystery. Isn’t it?

crochet a long week 5

I’ll keep this post short this week since the clue was a simple one that added that interesting piece in the center. I am getting more and more excited to have it completed and I am really happy with the color palette that I chose. It is going to look really great in our bedroom.

The drapes match the wallpaper in our master bath and they have a little of the same colors as my afghan will have in it. This little exercise in crochet is just one way to add to the decor of our room and have something that I made myself. That is one of the fun things about DIY projects that will add to your look in a room.

Mystery Afghan Crochet Project Week 4

Mystery Afghan Crochet Project Week 4

Clue 4 Of The Mystery Afghan

Well, we are progressing right along with our mystery afghan crochet project and I have to say I am liking it more and more. Let’s see what happened to our squares after we completed clue number 4 in the mystery.

mystery afghan wk 4

This week’s clue consisted of two more rounds added to the squares which made them slightly larger than last week’s sample. The stitches involved are not difficult but remembering where to put them on round 8 was a little difficult for me to catch on to.

cal afghan square wk 4

I sat through the video clue about 3 times trying to set the pattern of round 8 in my head but it just wasn’t coming to me. That is when I thought it might be easier to follow the diagram. After all, Mikey is known for loving to use the diagrams for crochet patterns. One of the things that we should learn from this process is to actually learn how to read a crochet diagram. I figured that I might as well see if it would make sense to me.

Oh my goodness! Following the diagram made my progress on the mystery afghan squares so much easier! Now, I see why Mikey of The Crochet Crowd likes them so much! In future, I won’t be so intimidated by those diagrams.

Last week I had some trepidation over the green in my color scheme. It just seemed so darn bright but after using the MC (master color) for rounds 8 and 9 this week, it seems toned down quite a lot.

I’m wavering again on what these squares are going to produce when our afghan is completed. I first thought a flower, then I switched to a butterfly and now I’m back to thinking a flower of some sort. It might depend on how we fasten those long 20 chains in the corners next week. If they go toward the corners it could be a butterfly or an interesting flower but if we fasten them going towards the center of the square I’m not sure if it will be a flower, butterfly or something totally different.

There is definitely a difference between front and back on the squares of this mystery afghan. At first the back wasn’t very exciting but now it is growing some interesting appeal all on it’s own. Here is what it looks like after clue 4 has been completed.

back of mystery cal

I am so glad that I decided to join in this challenge to crochet a mystery afghan. I have had a few qualms so far but each week it gets more interesting and I’m learning quite a bit. I have to give some kudos to the designer of this pattern! Bravo! So far none of the stitches have been difficult, actually pretty standard stitches are being used. It is what she has decided to do with those stitches that make these squares so unique and interesting. I know that if I were to see this pattern (even at this stage), I would probably say to myself that it was too difficult and would pass it by. In future, I will be willing to try those patterns that appear to be difficult because I have participated in this mystery afghan crochet challenge.

As each week progresses, I get more and more anxious to see what comes next. Our clue next week will put us at the half way point. Can’t wait to show you the progress!

You might enjoy seeing the past week’s posts: