Saturday, March 17, 2012

Lambs for Spring

I have been busy sewing these incredible lamb dolls lately. They are quite tall - at least 18 inches and the head is very large which makes a great pillow for a toddler. Every time I list one in my shop, it has sold within 24 hours. I am using a fabulous Lamb doll pattern from Dolls and Daydreams which can be purchased here.

First of all, these are amazingly well drawn patterns. I have purchased and tried many, many patterns in the time I've had my Etsy shop open and I love patterns that are not hand drawn which means use a computer program to draw and please use a ruler for straight lines! I like pieces that are symmetrical (circles should be round). These patterns are very good. They are probably not for the beginner sewer in my opinion because I have a lot of experience and I do find them a bit tricky on the final step - sewing the body shut. But I am experimenting and coming out with pretty good results each time. The key is to take it slowly.

A couple of tips I'd like to share:

1. I use the triple stitch on my sewing machine instead of just a straight stitch when sewing up the limbs and the body. The picture on this setting for my machine looks like 3 parallel dashed lines. I have found this stitch makes incredibly strong seams which will stand up to a lot of stuffing. The only con is that if you make a  mistake and you need to rip some seams, it can be time consuming. I think that the strength of the seams is more important.

2. Make sure you leave enough space at the top of the limbs - it really does make it easier to sew the limbs to the body especially when sewing the body shut.

3. I find stuffing that is really, really puffy works best for the body because it fills everything out nicely. It also means the doll is much lighter. I have used a stuffing that is more expensive in the past but it sort of clumps and makes a heavy doll. Experiment with different brands of stuffing to see what brings better results.

4. Before stuffing the body and closing the side seam with a ladder stitch, I iron the opening closed so that I have a nice crease showing me exactly where I need to insert my needle. It makes a really nice, straight seam. I use this same idea when closing everything I make!

And now for more pictures:

My favourite model. I will not lie - there was bribery involved in getting her to do this.

I will be trying more Dolls and Daydreams patterns soon: Fox, Monkey, Tiny Tot and Horse/Zebra

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