How did this happen?? 1 Barbie multiplies to 34 in less than 2 years!

How did this happen? In less than two years one Barbie has multiplied to 34 individuals! I think they must have accumulated in the same way stray cats often do …

At the beginning of 2010, I was reconsidering my choice to be child free, I was also grieving the loss of my old life. In some ways, the loss of my childhood Barbie when I was moving around after my divorce symbolised this. It suddenly occured to me that I wanted to buy a new Barbie! It was a very strange inclination I agree, but for some reason I just wanted a new Barbie to replace the old one I lost, to start over again a new life, and I had the excuse I needed it to make clothes for to practice my crochet and sewing! David didn’t think it was too much of a crazy idea, so he took me to the K-Mart store and I chose a Fashionista doll. She isn’t a collector doll, but not the bottom of the range either. I chose a brunette doll, because when I was a child all my Barbies were blonde and I didn’t even know you could get brunettes, so it was nice to get something different and new. Opening the box and taking her out was like being a child all over again!

Then somehow, the hobby grew from there and now I have 34 dolls! Some were given to me by my mum, a couple of old dolls she found in thrift stores I think, and my sister sent me her daughter’s old and broken Barbies. Some others I found in thrift stores and markets for a dollar each, five came with clothes which I got for $3 each, one is in his original outfit. I bought a set of 8 on ebay recently, that included two dolls from my childhood including the one I had to throw in the bin because it got damaged (so sad, especially as I had kept her for so long, until I was in my early 30s). Last year before I got pregnant I was feeling clucky and bought a little mini baby born, and recently I bought a brand new Ken fashionista doll. I think I’d like to keep the 3 dolls I’ve bought new, and the two vintage dolls I’ve acquired that are the same from my childhood, so that leaves 29 to find new homes for!

I was planning on giving some to charity, but I’m now thinking I’d like to clean them up and make clothes for them all, and see if I can sell them on ebay! I’m not sure I can sell them, but surely a few might? I guess I’ll have to try and see! Seeing as I definately do not need 34 dolls!!!

Green Dress for a Doll

I thought I’d make a post today as I haven’t written for a while. It’s been challenging to do everyday things and feel normal again. Even though Thomas is being a perfect baby it’s still hard, I wonder how we would cope if he wasn’t!

I recently made this green cotton dress for a doll on an impulse. No reason really, just felt like finishing something quick. I have several projects on the go at the moment, and they are all rugs so are taking me a while to finish. For this dress I used a 3mm hook and some light green cotton that took my fancy. The doll is one of three I got in a bag for $2. I haven’t restored her hair because it’s too much of a big job, but she needed a dress all the same.

Another thing I did today to feel more ‘normal’ was to paint my toenails bright pink while I sat on the deck and worked on my vitamin D deficiency. When I was an early childhood teacher in Darwin, I wore open toed sandals so painted my toenails bright colours like green or pink and topped them off with some glitter. The children sitting at my feet would notice, it was all a bit of fun and seems like a life time ago. It seems like another life completely, but remembering nice things like that helps me feel more ‘real’.

Pink and Purple Dolly Blankie

It’s my niece’s 4th birthday today, and on her wishlist was a ‘Barbie Doll Blanket’, so I hope this is what she had in mind!

The rug should be pink and purple, apparently. Luckily I had just enough of these colours in my scrap bag to make it. I used up the tiny bit of variated white wool left over from my flowers baby rug, and the bit left over purple dimples yarn which I also used for the purple baby jacket. For the pink flowers, I had a small bit of yarn left over from my childhood when my mum had taught me how to crochet, so that wool is very special, as I’ve been carrying it around with me for a very long time! For the jazzy edge I used a bit of fluffy yarn my mum gave me last year some time. All of these yarns are probably acrylic. If this rug needs a wash, it would need to be gentle or it might fall apart.  It would be best to spot clean it, or a gentle hand wash in cool water and gentle detergent, drying flat in shade should be ok.

It took me a couple of hours to do up the 24 tiny granny squares, then a couple of hours to stitch them all together. I find stitching granny squares together the most tedious, there doesn’t seem to be a quick enough way to do it. I used some cotton and a big needle and tried to get it done in an efficient time. Putting the cute fluffy edge on it only took a few minutes in comparison. I used a 3.5mm hook and the end result measures 18cm x 28cm, just big enough for a Barbie to be able to use as a blankie!

I hope my niece enjoys the things I’ve made for her this year, which includes everything I made for yesterday’s post, as well as the child’s cotton sun hat and the pretty pink and purple bag!
❤ ❤ ❤

How to make shoes for a flat-footed Barbie

My niece is turning 4 soon, and an order for new shoes for her flat footed Barbie has arrived so I set to work!

These are now the 3rd and 4th pair I’ve made for flat footed Barbie dolls. The shoes for these flat feet are very hard to find, and when you do find them, they are overpriced. So I make my own, and it’s very easy. The first pair of flat-footed shoes I made were these slip on pink shoes which went to Darwin with my niece. The second pair I made were these orange sandals with ankle strap, which were for a flat footed doll I picked up at an op shop for $1. I’m most happy with those ones, they worked out quite well.

To make these doll shoes, I use some recycled black vinyl, I can’t even remember where I picked it up from. You sometimes can find this on packaging or old things you might throw away, so keep an eye out for it, you don’t need much. Any kind of flexible plastic you can pierce with a needle will do. I trace around the soles of the doll’s feet to make a paper template, then trace that with white crayon onto the vinyl, and cut out the soles with sharp scissors. Then I pierce the plastic with the largest needle I have, pushing it all the way through, 3 times each side where the shoes strap will go.

I then use my 1.25mm crochet hook, and push that through the needle holes to make sure they are big enough. Then using fine crochet cotton, the first row is three single stitches (UK dc), then 4 rows of 2 ch 3 dc (UK trbl). The last row is some slip stitches and singles again to attach to the other side. Sometimes I’ll add an ankle strap of chain stitches like I did with these red ones. I always put the shoes on before finishing the final stitch to make sure they’ll fit. They don’t take long to do, especially as I chose not to spend too much time fiddling on these ones.

In the package I’m sending to Darwin, I’m also popping in some doll knickers which I made ages ago using a pattern I found at crochetville. I’m not happy with them, they have ties but I’ll pop them in the package none the less.

So I had a go at making my own Barbie doll knickers, they are ‘boyleg hipsters’ so very easy to make. They simply pull on and sit on the hips, which will be easier for my 4 year old niece to dress her doll.

My own pattern for Barbie doll ‘boyleg hipsters’
1. ch 28, sl st to form ring, treble into ea ch (US dc), sl st, do not turn, 28 stitches
2. ch 2, treble into ea treble (US dc), sl st, do not turn, 28 stitches
3. ch 2, treble ea into next 5 treble, turn
4. sl st into next treble, ch 2, treble into next 2 treble, turn
5. ch 2, treble ea in next 2 treble, sl st into 3 trebles on opposite side of ring to form two leg holes
fasten off and turn inside out to hide the seam at the crotch.

Then I just had to make a simple pull on party dress, didn’t I?
My own pattern for a pull-on dress for Barbie
* using 3.5mm hook, gauge depends on the yarn and how many stitches it takes to go around the chest, check every few rows to check fit.
1. ch enough ch to go around chest, sl st to form ring, pull on over hips up to chest to check fit, ch 2, trb in ea trb (US dc), sl st in 1st trb, 23 trb
2. ch 2, trb in ea trb, sl st in 1st trb, 23 trb
3 – 8 repeat row 2
9. ch 2, 2 trb in ea trb, sl st in 1st trb, 46 trb
10. ch 2, 2 trb in ea trb, sl st in 1st trb, 92 trb
11. ch 2, 1 trb in ea trb, sl st in 1st trb, 92 trb
12. in bottom of row 1 using contrast yarn, ch 1, dc (US sc)  in bottom of ea trb, sl st in 1st ch, fasten off

 

Three Small Things – coaster, ornament, beanie

<<< Here is a quick spiral coaster I made in pink following the coaster pattern at crochetspot. This coaster is currently under our water bottle at our pcs to soak up any condensation.

>>> After a discussion at crochetspot about the first thing you ever made, I remembered these things I used to make as a child. I don’t have any of the originals left, so made this one recently. When my mum taught me how to crochet, she first taught me how to chain, then how to crochet into a circle. I have a memory of continuing the first round for as long as I could fit the hook into the centre, making the stitches over and over on top of each other, as I didn’t know how to start the next round! I didn’t know what else to do with them at the time, so I made a chain handle and decided they should be Barbie doll handbags! Now this one is hanging off my pc with the purple premmie booties I made!

<<< After spending a couple of hours window shopping for babies things on the weekend, I was inspired to whip up this little beanie while I recovered on the couch! It was amazing that I had the EXACT amount of yarn left for this, which was great as I wanted to use it all up. This was the last of the arcylic baby yarn from Lincraft. I used the lincraft pattern and a 4.5mm hook. This is the same pattern as my green and orange baby beanie and my purple and white baby beanie, but this one is the bigger size for a 6 month old, as my baby is due in summer and should be in winter clothes by then.

A Pink Outfit for a Kelly Doll

I just have to show again a closeup of this pink outfit I made for a Kelly Doll. I just think she is soo cute!
Here she is with her friends ready for a fun trip to the beach!
I found these dolls at a second-hand market and cleaned them up. I used crochet cotton I bought second hand from thrift shops to make their clothes.
This is my post for this week’s Pink Saturday hosted @ How Sweet the Sound.
Be sure to check out other pretty pinks @ Pink Saturday!
❤ ❤

Four Little Lost Angels

As I was taking them home from the market, I knew I would have so much fun cleaning up these second-hand dolls and dressing them in new crochet outfits, perhaps even with angel wings! In the end I settled on summer dresses complete with pretty bonnets and mary jane slippers. These tiny Kelly dolls are just 4.5 inches tall.

I first found the little blonde in a washing basket full of toys. The stall holder was busy selling a set of Dora dolls, so when I said I would like the tiny doll, she dismissed me saying I could have it for free. Well, I wouldn’t take something so special for free, it just wasn’t right! Her hair is in excellent condition, and she even has two near new shoes. I was thinking to give a dollar, but when we looked in David’s wallet a 50 cent coin was sitting on top so I grabbed that and pressed it into hand of the man that was helping her with the stall. I think it must have been Karma, because later on at another stall, I saw the three other dolls, all with different coloured hair and all just 50 cents each! It was so uncanny it must have been fate that these four tiny Kelly dolls should meet in this way!

Crochetting some clothes for these dolls turned out to be a lot more challenging than I first anticipated. I made several attempts before I ended up with a dress I was happy with. At first, I did a smaller version of the Barbie doll dress I usually do, using baby yarn, but I decided the result looked too bulky. Later, I made matching knickers for that dress using a free pants pattern I found on an old blog, again using the baby yarn. I made a top using baby yarn and a free ruffle top pattern, but I did not use the right size hook and yarn, and it didn’t fit. The problem was, I was using baby yarn when I should have been using fine cotton thread.

At first, I really didn’t think I would need to follow a pattern for this project, but I did. I had a little success with a free dress pattern @ Crochet Crafts by Helga, using fine cotton and 1.5mm hook as recommended. But I didn’t like the skirt, I thought it was too short so added more rows, which then made the result bulky. Finally, I made a dress I liked using the bodice from Helga’s free pattern, but adding my own skirt. Using the same cotton, I made some panties using Helga’s free pants pattern,shortening the legs by making just one row of sc. I stitched up the gap at the back of the pants as I don’t think it needs a button, pull on pants are fine for this small doll. I then made matching pull on panties for the other dresses I made, one each of pink, green, apricot and yellow. Each dress has one button on the back of the bodice.

Because you can’t see the panties underneath the dresses, I decided the dolls needed some little tops to show them off! Maybe these outfits can be PJs or summer beach outfits? The tops are just the bodice part of the dress, with every stitch in the bottom frill incr. The tops looked a little plain, so I crochet a tiny heart, clover, flower and sun to attach in contrasting colours to the front, to make them look more fun (hopefully!). The flower is just clusters to form 5 petals, and the sun is a round of 15 trbls, with a 2nd round of a picot in every 3rd trbl. I used the heart and clover patterns explained in previous posts.

Then I made them all matching Mary Jane slippers with my own made up pattern.

Mary Janes for Kelly Dolls by Teena Sutton
using 1.25mm hook, fine cotton
1. ch 7, trb (US db) in 3rd ch from hook, 2 trb, 2 db (US sc), turn
2. ch 2, trb in next 5 trb, 3 trebles in the stitch space at the toe, go round to the other side of the shoe and do trb in ea 5 trb, 1 trb at the heel, sl st in 1st trb of this round
3. ch 2, db in next 2 trb, sk 2 trb, trb in next 3 treble to form top of toe, sk 2 trb, db in next 3 trb, sl st in 1st db  of this round
4. ch 8 to form ankle strap and sl st in 1st ch

Finally, I finished the outfits with bonnets, again with a pattern I made up myself. When I found these dolls, their hair was mostly ‘fly-away’ and a real mess. After shampooing, conditioning, air drying and finally smoothing with baby oil, their hair came up very nicely indeed. The pretty bonnets help keep the hair in place.

Pretty Bonnets for Kelly Dolls by Teena Sutton
using 1.25mm hook, fine cotton
1. chain 10, trbl (US dc) in 3rd ch from hook, trb in ea next 6 ch, 5 trbl in last ch which is the bottom of the last trbl, trb in the bottom of the other 7 trbl, turn
2. ch 2, trb in ea trbl, extra 3 trbl in last trb, trbl in bottom of each trb, turn
3. ch 2, sk trb, (3 trb in next trbl, sk trb, trb in next, sk trb) twice, 3 trbl ea in next 3 trbl (9 trbl), sk trb, trbl in next trbl (sk trbl, 3 trb in next trbl, sk trb, trb in next) twice, turn
4. ch 2, (sk trbl, 3 trb in next trbl, sk trbl, trbl in next) thrice, 3 trbl in next, trbl in next, (sk trbl, 3 trb in next trbl, sk trbl, trbl in next) thrice, turn
5. ch 2, repeat (sk trbl, 3 trbl in next, sk strbl, trbl in next) seven times, each cluster of 3 is in centre of cluster below, turn
6. repeat row 5 except don’t turn, ch about 12 or enough to be long enough to form the chin strap, measure, slip stitch into the other side of the bonnet to form chin strap, don’t turn
7 (bonnet frill), ch 2, repeat the pattern from previous row, except each cluster has 5 trebles instead of 3, turn
8. ch 2, repeat the previous pattern, except each cluster has 7 trebles instead of 5, fasten off.

Making outfits for these four Kelly dolls was heaps of fun and very satisfying. I learnt more about adjusting patterns for size, and also how to make pants. These are such a joy – but I think they will be going in a box soon. One day I’ll bring them out again as a special treasure.

This is my post for this week’s Transformation Thursday hosted @ The Shabby Chic Cottage. Be sure to check out fun crafty stuff at this blog party!

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