Friday, October 15, 2010

Niblet & Biscuit Doll Tutorial


You've met Niblet. You've met Biscuit. Now you can make your own! Like I said before, these dolls would make a great gift for a little girl (or boy if you make some pants) or a baby shower. The holidays are on their way, and these would make super cute and quick gifts or stocking stuffers. Picture those sweet little faces peeking over the top of a stocking!


Let's get to it...

Materials you will need to make one 7 inch doll (either Niblet or Biscuit):
  • Flannel for head, ears, arms, and legs – ¼ yd
  • Cotton for body – fat quarter or large scraps
  • Felt – small scraps (black for eyes, pink for Niblet's inner ears, tan for Biscuit's inner ears and muzzle)
  • Embroidery floss (black, pink, tan)
  • Polyfill
  • Coordinating thread
  • ¼" hole punch
  • Optional: ribbon, buttons, fabric scraps, round cord elastic, and ¼" elastic for dressing up
Remember to backstitch every time you start or stop a seam.

Click below to download, save, or print the templates for the dolls.


Part I: Sewing the Head, Ears, Arms, and Legs

Step 1: Print and cut out all templates.

Step 2: Trace templates onto flannel and cut out. You should have 2 head pieces (template A), 8 arm/leg pieces (template B), and 4 ear pieces (template C or E). Trace template D or templates F and G onto felt and cut out. You should have 2 inner ear pieces (template D or F). If you are making Biscuit you should also have one muzzle piece (template G).

Step 3: Place two arm/leg pieces of flannel together. Sew around ¼" from the outside edge. Repeat for the other three arms/legs. Turn all four arms/legs right side out.


Step 4: Take one flannel ear piece and center one felt inner ear piece on top, lining up the bottom edges of both pieces. Hand sew the felt to the flannel using 3 strands of embroidery floss that match your felt. Repeat for the second ear.

Step 5: Match up one blank flannel ear piece with one felt/flannel ear piece. Line them up with right sides together (felt should be in between the two pieces). Sew around ¼" from the outside edge. Repeat for the other ear. Clip your corners. Turn both ears right side out.


Step 6: Now it's time to create the face. Use the face templates provided for placement of eyes, nose, and mouth. For eyes, use a ¼" hole punch to punch two circles out of black felt. My punch didn't go all the way through the felt, so I finished the cut with scissors. Hand sew black felt eyes onto one flannel head piece using 3 strands of black embroidery floss.
  • For Niblet, embroider the nose using 3 strands of pink embroidery floss and the mouth using 3 strands of black embroidery floss.
     
  • For Biscuit, place the felt muzzle on the flannel face. Attach using 3 strands of black embroidery floss to make three French knots on either side of the muzzle. Embroider the nose and mouth using 3 strands of black embroidery floss.

Step 7: Place a small amount of polyfill in both ears. Don't over stuff or you'll have trouble sewing them on. Leave about ¼" of the ear empty at the opening to make sewing easier. Place the blank flannel head piece down. Place your ears down on the blank flannel head piece as shown in the picture below. Place the embroidered flannel head piece on top of the ears face down. Sew around the head about ¼" from the outside edges, leaving a 2" gap at the bottom of the head for turning.

Step 8: Turn your head right side out. Stuff the head with polyfill. Tuck the raw edges of the gap inside the head. Sew the gap closed. You now have a complete head!


Part II: Sewing and Assembling the Body

Step 9: Trace template H onto cotton and cut out. You should have 2 body pieces (template H).

Step 10: Stuff all four arms/legs with polyfill. Don't over stuff or you'll have trouble sewing them on. Leave about ¼" of the arm/leg empty at the opening to make sewing easier. Place one body piece right side up. Pin one arm and one leg on top of the body piece as shown in the picture below. Place the other body piece on top, right side down. You can only sew two arms/legs at a time or it gets too puffy to work with. Line up and pin the layers together.


Step 11: This is probably the most difficult part of the project, so take it slow. Things get pretty tight inside the body with all those chubby arms and legs inside. Here we go... Looking at the orientation in the picture above, carefully sew along the left side about ¼" from the outside edge, making sure you don't sew into the leg coming up from the bottom. Turn your fabric 90 degrees and sew ¼" from the bottom edge just until you sew over the leg on the bottom. Backstitch and remove the body from your machine. Line up and pin your other leg between the two body pieces. Line up and pin the layers together again. Return the body to the machine and finish sewing along the bottom where you left off. Remember to backstitch. Remove the body from your machine again. Line up and pin your other arm between the two body pieces. Line up and pin the layers together again. Return the body to the machine and sew ¼" from the right edge. Leave the top of the body open for turning. Clip your corners.


Step 12: Grab the legs from inside the gap in the body and pull to turn the body right side out. Stuff the body with polyfill. Tuck the raw edges of the gap inside the body. Sew the gap closed. You now have a complete body!


Part III: Finishing the Doll

Step 13: Tightly whipstitch the very base of the head to the very top of the body. Double up your thread when you do this to make sure it's secure. Trust me, we've already had a casualty in our house.


Congratulations! You’re done! OK, technically you could be done, but what fun are these without some cute duds?!

Part IV (Optional): Dressing Up Your Doll

I'm not going to get super detailed here because it's pretty easy to make simple little clothes for these dolls. Here's an overview...
  • Niblet's attire: For the skirt, I sewed a band of elastic to the top edge of a strip of fabric. I then folded that edge over and sewed over it again, hemmed the bottom edge, and sewed the ends of the fabric together. For the flower hair accessory, I cut out a leaf shape from green felt, a flower shape from blue felt, and sewed them together with a button on top. I then tied a small loop of round cord elastic and hot glued it to the back. The elastic loop slips right over her ear.
  • Niblet's Skirt
  • Biscuit's attire: For the skirt, I used a strip of fabric almost twice as long as the strip I used for Niblet's skirt. I created a small sleeve by folding the top edge over about ½" and sewing along the very edge. I then hemmed the bottom edge of the fabric. Next, I inserted a piece of ¼" elastic in the sleeve and pulled both ends all the way through. To finish, I sewed the ends of the fabric and elastic together. For the ribbon hair accessories, I cut a small piece of ribbon for the two bow loops and wrapped a shorter piece of ribbon around the middle. I hot glued the ribbon together, then tied a small loop of round cord elastic and hot glued it to the back. The elastic loop slips right over her ear.

Why is it that every time I look at a picture of these two together I start singing the Queen song "You're My Best Friend"? "Ooo, you make me live. Whatever this world can give to me. It's you, you're all I see. Ooo you make me live now, honey."

Thanks for stopping by today! Hope you enjoy the tutorial! Please feel free to email me if you have any questions. And I would absolutely love it if you'd send me a picture of any Niblet or Biscuit dolls that you make. Can't wait to see how they turn out!





UndertheTableandDreamingPhotobucketThe DIY Show Off

18 comments:

Lu said...

These are SO cute. And small and (seem to be) easy enough that I can make them for all of my nieces for Christmas. They will LOVE them! Thanks for sharing your creativity.

Cecily said...

Awesome plushies and a great tutorial! I see Christmas presents in the making!

Sandy Ang said...

They are just adorable !

Andi @ Jane of all crafts said...

I laughed out loud when I read the Queen comment! Love that song and that group! So now whenever I see Biscuit and Niblet I will be singing that song! And what a great tutorial! Looks like Biscuit and Niblet will be joining our household in the near future.

KJ@letsgoflyakite said...

Great tutorial Gwen!!! They are precious!!!

and I have a "crazy little thing called love" in my head right now.

Amy said...

Really cute Gwen! Your tutorial is AWESOME! I can't wait to make these for my little chubby one for Christmas!

Mruna Mistry said...

These are so adorable! I love making little plushies! Thanks for sharing.
visiting from the tatertots and jello linky party.

http://ebony-ivory-rainbow.blogspot.com/

LambAround said...

Thanks so much for linking up to Not "Baaad" Sundays with LambAround last week! The Linky is back up and if you stop by, I think you'll be happy with what you find ;)

Hanna said...

Hi there! i am your newest follower from the weekend linky!!! I love finding new blogs and yours is lovely!! You can find me at www.bouffeebambini.blogspot.com

I am in love with these!!!! I fear I am not good enough with a needle to make these but GREAT JOB

Haylee said...

These are SO cute. I'm saving this tutorial so I can make these for my niece for christmas. Thanks for sharing it!

Clotilde M. said...

Really cute! And they look simple to make yet very ingenious. Good job!

elizabeth @ twelvecrafts said...

Love these as stocking stuffers. I'm imagining the pair in a doll bassinet. Thanks for coming by and linking up to stuff your stockings!

Papgena Made It said...

Hello I saw you on TCTC! Those dolls are very cute! I especially love the kitty!

Cook Clean Craft said...

How adorable! If only my bub would let me get near the sewing machine.

nicole / Twitter: BTHM1 said...

THESE ARE ADORABLE- REMINDS ME OF PIG AND ARTHUR FROM KIPPER SERIES, MY 3 YR OLD WILL LOVE THEM- THANKS SO MUCH! NEW FOLLOWER, CAME OVER FROM UCREATE!

Sara said...

These are so cute. Makes me want to squeeze them and give plush toy making a try. I LOVE your header design!

Suzi said...

So Cute! My dog (mini dachshund) is named Niblet!

Simone de Klerk said...

I am so happy I discovered your blog!!!
Yet another cute project.

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