Posts Tagged ‘doll making’

New doll and fun with paper

Saturday, May 9th, 2015

I’ve been working on a new doll that I’ll be teaching later this year.  Her working name is Lady Jennifer.  Even though some of her “parts” don’t seem in the “lady” theme I think I’ll stick with the name.  The photo of the skirt shows a different doll body.  I didn’t have Lady Jennifer’s body done when I took a break to make the skirt.  Soon I’ll have the whole body done and I’ll show her here.

Arm for Lady Jennifer

Arm for Lady Jennifer

Skirt for Lady Jennifer

Skirt for Lady Jennifer

Summer happenings

Thursday, April 30th, 2015

John and I just returned from an amazing 5 day trip to the Navajo Nation.  Canyon de Chelly, the Hubbell Trading Post, the mountains, scenery all breathtaking.  But, the Navajo women we came to service – no words can express our feelings. NavajoCanyon10NavajoApr25Craft5


Canyon de Chelly, Arizona






At Broken Arrow Bible Camp, working with the Navajo women having fun making things to beautify their homes.





We are back home and I now need to prepare for two fun projects.  First, an online class on Dollstreet.  I’ve not done an online class in years, but know this is important.  So many can’t get to venues where we teach, so this is the next best thing.  This class starts in June.

Maridrial is a free standing, wired all cloth doll.  She’s 18-inches tall and full of fun techniques.  This class is great fun and one I know you’ll enjoy.  Here’s the link to sign up:









And, my next “in person” workshop will be at Piecemaker’s Country Store in Costa Mesa, CA August 7 & 8, 2015.  I’ll be teaching one of my favorite dolls – Helen.   She’s on the cover of my Creative Cloth Doll Couture book, but also included in the combined book Creative Cloth Doll Collection.   To get more details contact Piecemaker’s at:,  or 714-641-3112.



July workshop

Saturday, April 18th, 2015

Due to lack of interest I’ve cancelled the July 3-day workshop.  It was short notice and I know it takes a bit of planning.

I will be teaching Helen at Piecemaker’s Country Store in Costa Mesa, CA the beginning part of August.  You can contact them for the details:

Helen is from my book “Creative Cloth Doll Couture”, and is also in the large book “Creative Cloth Doll Collection”.

Presently I’m working on a new doll and will be teaching her in January.  That will be a 4-day workshop.  More details soon.

And, in September I’ll be teaching Peony at Fobbles in Cumbria, England.  One of my favorite places.  The shop is wonderful, as is the owner.

The dates are Sept. 24-26.  Beautiful weather that time of year up in the Lake District.





Master Class

Wednesday, April 8th, 2015

My next in-depth master class will be July 16-18, 2015.  This is a 3-day workshop in which we’ll focus on faces, hands, clothing, embellishments.  This is also limited to 4 people in the class which guarantees personal instruction from me.

What will we be working on?  Elizabeth from my book – Creative Cloth Doll Couture – but an updated version.

Elizabeth has several wonderful techniques – heat transfer dyes, applieque, found objects, simple beadwork, just to name a few.  She also wears a fabulous pair of boots.  If you are interested in this workshop, email me and I’ll send you the details.

The cost of the workshop, per person, which includes all supplies, instructions and lunch each day is $850.00.  This is limited to just 4 in the class.




Changes at PMC Designs

Saturday, March 28th, 2015

Many of you know that the retail end of my business is being retired.  You’ll still be able to purchase my patterns from several companies.  I’ll be listing them in the newsletter I’ll be sending out early next week.

The final days for the retail website are now until April 1.  At midnight March 31 it will disappear.

Why am I doing this?  Several reasons.  I want more time for designing new dolls;  I want more time to do short term missions like the two I’ll be going on in late April and early May.

April 22-26 we’ll be going to the Navajo Nation in New Mexico to do a retreat for 120 Navajo women.  Really exciting.  Then May 3-6 we’ll be going on a work trip to Hume Lake to help get the camp ready for the summer programs.

Cloth Doll Inspirations DVD

Cloth Doll Inspirations DVD

Also, I need to work on the design for my next master class which will be in July.  That has to be done within the next week so I can get the information out.

In the meantime, keep making cloth dolls.  And, do come back here often as I’ll have time to update my blog.  About time, eh?

Newest creation

Saturday, August 14th, 2010

Sometimes things work out for the best.  I had sent a doll to Australia for an article in their Dolls Bears & Collectibles magazine.  That was in April 2009.  The doll is still missing and the article was never published.  Which means, I now have her back.  At least the pattern.

Now, to the things working out for the best, I've had to remake the doll, which enabled me to add more step photo's to the pattern.

This is Ilmaria, Guardian of the Stars.  She's 16-inches of pure enjoyment.  She has a simple body, which means she can be embellished up the yahzoo.  Along with the pattern, with quite a few color step-photo's, I'm including the various laces and trims used on the sample doll.  

Ilmaria is the newest pattern on my website.  And, remember, January 2011 my website will be going bye bye.  I'll be moving everything here to Typepad, and shutting down the retail end of my business.  My patterns, books, etc., will still be available at Dollmakers Journey, Joggles,, etc.

By the way, her hair was formerly on a jacket I found at a thrift/op store/shop.  It is Tibetan goat, which is my favorite fiber for hair.  It was the trim on the jacket.  The jacket cost me $4.99.  There's enough of the fur left to make dozens of dolls.

This is a short post as I need to get myself organized.  We've been entertaining a lot lately.  This evening we had our pastor and his wife over for dinner.  I was forced to give my kitchen a thorough cleaning yesterday when my food processor got too full and spewed cheesecake fixings all over the place, and me.  The cheesecake turned out just fine.  Both Barry (our pastor) and my husband devoured a couple pieces each.

Shoe help

Wednesday, May 5th, 2010

One of the frustrations of doing a book is some of the instructions and illustrations get cut due to space.  This was true with Helen's shoes in my book "Creative Cloth Doll Couture".  
HelenforTutorialClick on Helen's picture and she'll take you to a larger image.

HelenShoeCloseUp The shoes, and Helen's outfit, were inspired by the fashions of the 1940's.  You can't see them, but she's got silk stockings on, with garters on her camiknickers.  I would have loved being in my 20's during the 40's.  The music, hair styles, clothing, accessories were dynamite!  (That may not be politically correct today, but that was the word used for something that was outstanding during the 1940's).

For those of you struggling with Helen's shoes here's a little tutorial for you.

Following the instructions on page 36, complete Steps 1 & 2.  Cut out both pieces after you've sewn the toe and top seams, as shown in figure t.  The tricky part comes putting the shoe together.
HelenShoeStep3   Turn the shoe top, right side out (the red fabric in the photo).  Finger press the seams to smooth them.  You can see that the toe is now finished as is the top of the shoe.  The sides are still unfinished as is the heel section.

HelenShoeHeelPinned Open up the main part of the shoe top (red fabric), and the lining fabric (green) and pin them right sides together.  The sides of the shoes are still going to be left open.  You are going to finish the heel part of the shoe top in this step.  It looks odd, I know, but it works.  It would help if I had a video of it, but we still don't have a digital video camera.  Someday.                                                 Once pinned, sew down this seam.


           I've used white thread in my machine so you can see the stitches.  You will use matching thread.

HelenShoeStep6 Turn the shoe so the main fabric is outside, as shown in the photo to the left.  Finger press the seams to make them smooth.  You now have a finished top.  Next is sewing the sole of the shoe to the top.  This can be tricky, too.  More fiddly than tricky.

Follow Steps 5, 6 & 7.  What isn't clear, due to the photo, is what to do with the sole lining.

You'll need to pleat and pin the toe part of the shoe top in order for it to not get caught as you are sewing.  I think this photo will help due to the colors I used.

HelenShoeStep7 You can see the pleated toe part sticking out through the slit made in the shoe sole lining.  Follow Steps 8 & 9 on page 37.
                                When you turn the shoe through the slit the lining is right side out. 

HelenShoeStep8 You'll need to turn it again to get the right side of the shoe on the outside.  To do this, turn it through the slit that is now on the bottom, sole.
HelenShoeStep9                 You now have a shoe finished.  Except for the heels.  Those instructions continue on pages 37 & 38 and are easy to follow.

Cute shoes, right?  I may use these on my Ms. Maddie Hatter, although I think her feet are smaller.

I do hope this helps and you can make dozens of shoes for your Helen's, or whatever doll you are making.  Remember, all the dolls in my books are 18-inches and these shoes will fit any of the "girls".  But, you do have to have the Couture book for the pattern.

Happy doll making! 


Wednesday, September 2nd, 2009

Even though I should be working on new designs, which I am, I've been taking some workshops from people whose work I love.EvieMae1

This is a doll I made in Cyndi Mahlstadts class at Piecemaker's this past weekend.  Her name is Evie Mae.  She's a quick and extremely fun doll to make and Cyndi is an excellent teacher.

Barbara Willis, Betts Vidal and I were in the class and that had to be intimidating to Cyndi.  I'm not sure how I would react having 3 doll designers in one of my classes.  Cyndi handled us like a pro that she is.

Evie Mae is 12-inches tall, if you have her legs straight.  She's wire covered with batting then wrapped with wonderful stuff.  Her skirt is a silk flower that is taken apart and slipped onto the wire that created her torso. 

If Cyndi is ever in your area  you have to take a class.  Better yet, invite her to come.  Her blog and website are listed in the sidebar here on my blog.  Her company name is Meadow Bug Studios.

One of the classes I'll be teaching is my Creative Cloth Doll Making.  This class shows how you can mix and match body parts from my various books.

The red-headed doll below is a sample of what I'll be teaching.  She's a combination of 3 of my books – Creative Cloth Doll Making, Creative Cloth Doll Faces and Creative Cloth Doll Couture.

You don't have to have all three books to take the class.  Just one, but two would be better.  What I'll be doing in the class is showing how you can mix and match body parts to make a doll that is uniquely yours.  I also show how to create your own clothing by using the draping method.  Accessories are explored, too.  You can see this version had some fun shoes.  I'll show how to make those.

Marley1 Another thing I like to do is show how to use a simple square piece of fabric and turn it into different shaped embellishments.  You can't see the square very well in the photo, but it has made a wrap for her necklace, an accent piece for the center of the necklace, embellishments on her shoes, ankles and wrists and also for her hair.

To see where I'll be teaching this class go to my website, which is also listed on the sidebar. 

Doll making is a very relaxing art/craft form and a great way to use up scraps leftover from other projects.

This Saturday I'll be leaving the bright side and going to the dark side.  I'm taking a workshop with Michael deMeng.  I have his extremely interesting book "Secrets of Rusty Things".  It has been fun collecting odds and ends for his class along with a Dremel, Dap Kwik Set, Liquid Nails and E6000 glue.  I'll post pictures after the class so you can see if I can work with rusty things.

Dolls and aprons

Monday, August 24th, 2009

Today I picked up my new pattern – A Stargaze Sewing Apron.StargazeSewApron72   I'm trying to learn how to do my own updates on my website.  Got the details uploaded and the shopping cart done, but the photo isn't loading.  Do keep checking my website and the photo will show up.  You can buy the pattern now via my website, but the place where the photo is suppose to be is blank.

I wanted an apron to hold my tools so I wouldn't have to go looking all over the place.  The pockets hold two sizes of scissors, hemostats, stuffing forks, turning tubes, colored pencils and pens, tape measure, ruler, and anything else you can think of.  The pattern has photos and illustrations on putting the apron together.  And, rather than tying at the neck it has a back and ties at the waist. 

One of the things I really love is Little Lily, a needle case.  She's kind of a cross between a Hopi Indian and a Chinese country girl.  She also has a pocket for embroidery scissors on her back, along with a pin-back in case you want to wear her.

StargazeSewNeedlecase I used several of my rubber stamps to add to the various pockets.  On the bib is a fairy and a human girl representing the friendships we make in our doll making/sewing world.  The fairy and girl are templates that are included in the pattern.

StargazeSewCenterPockets The pattern has two size options, even though it is designed for a one-size-fits-all.  I find that those of us that are closer to the ground do need a smaller apron than those that are height challenged. 

This was a fun, and really quick project to make.  Writing the instructions was another matter.  I do have to say that writing the books I have has helped make me a better pattern writer.

As you know I love sharing photo's from those of you who have made dolls from my patterns and books.  Here's a couple I want to share today.

ValerieMichaelsElysia1 Valerie Michael took my Elysia class in Albuquerque last month.  This is Valerie's first attempt at one of my patterns.  She made the most beautiful doll.  I love the face and how Valerie incorporated the lace and the organza.  Check out the wings, too.  Fabulous.


Gulya Langfields from Australia made this terrific doll from my "Jewelberry" pattern.  This was Gulya's second doll, ever.  Another really beautiful doll.  Lovely face and do check out the shoes.

Both Valerie and Gulya are new doll makers and are creating fantastic dolls.  I hope they continue.