Beddy-Bye Dolls Tutorial

Before I go to sleep

 At our house, long gone are the days that I had to lie down with the girls to get them to go to sleep, I would wake up in their bed hours later, in the middle of the night and drag myself to my own bed. Bedtime was an ordeal, but we found that bed time rituals helped settle our girls down and get into the mind-set of going to sleep. At our house, the preparations and rituals include the very important glass of water by the bedside, brushing the teeth, saying prayers, choosing a bed time story that I would read to the girls (several years later, the girls chose a bed time story that they would read to me), tucking in and finally they would give me many, many kisses and I would tip-toe out of their rooms. I made these little Beddy-Bye Dolls with bed time rituals in mind, knowing that children like to pretend with their dolls, acting out the things that happen in their daily lives. 

But we're not sleepy!

These cute and poseable Beddy-Bye dolls are also great for children who are a little older (past toddler-hood). They are sweet and cute and can be used to act out fairy tales and bedtime stories and they’re perfect  just for pretend play.

 Dolls and Kits are available in my shop

sweet dreams

Pipe Cleaner dolls

 Materials for 1 doll, a pajama or nightgown and a bed:
3 pipe cleaners (each 10.5″/27cm long)
Wool for flesh (flesh colored Sheltland or Coringdale wool-a coarse wool)
Wool  for hair(merino wool, a fine, not coarse wool for  the hair)
Wool stuffing (for mattress)
Cotton tricot- for face, 2″x2″ square (5cm x 5cm)
Cotton (for mattress)
Tailor’s chalk or fabric marker
Pins
Fabric glue (to glue pocket and collar onto boy’s pajama top)
Felt (pajamas)
Sewing machine (to sew mattress and clothes)
Embroidery needle-small (face)
Embroidery thread for eyes and mouth
Thread ( to sew clothes and cotton circle onto face)
Sewing needle
sponge (needle felting surface)
felting needles (medium gauge)

Note: You can embroider the face onto the doll or use permanent markers

Note: There is a minimal amount of sewing required, you can ues a sewing machine or sew by hand .

Note: Once the wool is wrapped around the pipe cleaners, use a medium felting needle to felt the wool onto the pipe cleaners and to keep it from unraveling. Gently, felt to the sides of the pipe cleaners-felting directly into the pipe cleaners will break the needle. Once an arm or leg is wrapped and felted, roll is quickly between both palms to smooth the wool fibers. Optional: you can wash the wool-wrapped doll bodies in hot, soapy water, rubbing them between your hands for 5 minutes or so. Rinse the dolls and dry them in a dryer. This will make the wool even sturdier and smoother.

The Doll

  1. Fold the edges of 1 pipe cleaner to the center to make both arms.
arms

2. Fold 1 pipe cleaner in half to make a leg. Do this twice.

arms and legs

3. Fold the pointy end of the legs around the center part of the arms.

connecting the legs to the arms

4. The arms and legs armature is complete and ready for wrapping with flesh colored wool.

armiture ready to wrap with wool

5. Wrap pipe cleaners with wool. IMPORTANT: the ends of the arms and legs should be the looped side of the pipe cleaner-these areas will be the hands and feet. (the pointy sides of the pipe cleaner should be secured onto the center of the arm pipe cleaner). The wool should be tightly wrapped around the looped area (this keeps the pipe cleaner from showing through at the ends), then push the pipe cleaner stems together and wrap the wool around both stems of the arms and legs.

wrap looped ends of pipe cleaners first

6. Body: wrap the legs separately for 3″/7.5 cm, wrap the rest of the legs together (1.5″/4cm) to form the body.  Optional: You can make a small mound for the neck, I usually don’t make a neck.

legs

 

bend ends of legs up .5" to make feet

 

finished body

7. Head: wrap flesh colored wool tightly into and ball (3.5″ diameter/19cm dia.) and needle felt together. Needle felt a small nose in the center of the face.

head

8. Cut a circle out of the small flesh-colored piece of cotton. Place the circle over the nose and face and pin into place. Sew the cotton onto the head with a needle and thread. Sew the head onto the body with a needle and thread.

cotton for face

 

pin cotton over nose

 

sew cotton tightly onto head

 

ready to apply face and hair

9. Pull off a tuft of merino wool (a fine, not coarse wool) for the hair. Needle felt the wool over the head. Felt the wool over the edges of the cotton face; you can gently poke through the cotton with the felting needle.

felt wool onto the head

 

braids

10. For the face, you can use water-proof markers to make 2 dots for the eyes and a little smile OR you can embroider the eyes with 2 pieces of embroidery thread (instead of the whole strand of 6 pieces).

 The Girl Doll’s night gown:

  1. Fold the cotton or felt, pin the top of the pattern along fold, trace the pattern with tailor’s chalk or a fabric marker, cut out. Make sure to cut out the neck hole and a slit in the back.
lay pattern on the foldopened-neck hole and back slit

2. Right sides together, (this doesn’t apply if you’re using felt) sew the side seams of the night gown. Note: if you are sewing the nightgown from cotton, you’ll need to finish the edges (zigzag with a very small stitches) of the neck, back slit, ends of the sleeves and bottom of the gown) so they won’t fray. If you make the nightgown from felt, you won’t need to finish the edges, only sew the seams-much less work! Once the seams are sewn, turn the gown right side out.

for cotton-zigzag seams guide

 

finished night gown

 3. Put the gown on the doll, sew the back closed. To decorate the front of the night gown, use a needle and thread to gather the top of the nightgown. Gather the bodice of the nightgown by making 3 or 4 lines of a running stitch. To make a little rose, use a back-stitch to sew a spiral of pink at the neck.

sew gathers in the bodice to decorate

 

little girls ready for bed

 The Boy doll’s Pajamas:

  1. Pin the pattern onto a single layer of fabric or felt , trace, cut out. The pants pattern shoud be pinned to a double layer of fabric or felt. After the shirt is cut out, fold it over so the sleeves match.
cut out pajama top and pants

2. Sew the sides seams of the shirt together, do the same for the pants, turn pants and shirt right side out.

seams

 

pajamas right side out

3. Put the pajamas on the doll. Gather the waist with a needle and thread and sew closed. Sew the front of the pajama shirt closed. Cut a tiny collar and pocket and glue them onto the pajama shirt.

little boy ready for bed

The Bed:

  1. Pin the bed pattern to a triple layer of cotton, trace, cut out. Make a double fold at the top of one of the pieces of fabric, sew.
the blanket-fold edge down twice and sew

2.Sandwich the piece of fabric with the blanket ( finished seam) a fourth of the way down between the other two pieces of fabric (mattress pieces). Sew around the rectangle, leaving a small hole at the top for turning right side out. Trim the excess fabric away from the rectangle and turn right side out.

sandwich the blanket between the matress pieces

 

sew around leaving a small hole at the top

3. Stuff the bed with poly fiber-fill or stuffing wool, poke the stuffing into the corners. Steam the bed with an iron to make the bed more flat, less puffy. Slip stitch the hole at the top of the bed closed.

pouch

 

good night

 

sleep tight

Your little doll is now ready to read a bedtime story with you, to be tucked into bed and kissed good night. ZZZZZZZZZZZZZ

pajama patterns: Pipe cleaner doll pajama patterns

 

 

 

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6 thoughts on “Beddy-Bye Dolls Tutorial”

  1. That is awesome!!! Thank you so much for sharing. You make it look so easy that I think I’ll give it a try.

  2. Thank you for the great tutorial. I just finished a beddy-bye doll for my little one and it has been a great hit as well as fun to make.
    I just recently moved to Israel from Australia and I have just about used up the felting supplies I brought with me. Would you be so kind as to share your Israeli supplier’s details with me?
    Thanks in advance

  3. Hi Elise,

    Welcome to Israel 🙂 I’m glad you like the Beddy Bye dolls!

    There are two place that I get wool from here in Israel. omershop.tlv@gmail.com This is a fun little anthroposophic-Waldorf store with toys and lots of craft and felting supplies. It’s in Neve Tzedek in Tel Aviv. The other place is called Esse info@esse.co.il http://www.esse.co.il. They are in Haifa and they will mail you your supplies. Good luck in Israel and with your crafting 🙂

    Sincerely
    Laura

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