I’ve had a passion for collecting and making dolls for as long as I can remember so naturally when I learnt to crochet I was drawn to doll patterns.
In 2012 I wrote the pattern for the My Little Crochet Dolls, the doll is designed to grow with the child, having no additional hair whilst the child is young and the possibility of adding hair at a later date.
Remembering my own childhood love of dolls I wanted to create a doll with the same sense of play and detail. As a child, it frustrated me when dolls didn’t have underwear, or pockets didn’t work. I also remember having lots of outfits for dolls and noticed the idea of buying doll outfits had stopped in modern dolls. I made this doll to avoid the stereotype of everything being pink, of outfits being gendered (I made an astronaut outfit rather than a spaceman outfit).
In 2012 I published the original MLCD pattern on Ravelry and Etsy. The first dolls I made were made from acrylic yarn and used safety eyes.
The Mermaid pattern works as an elasticated waist fishtail, it also adds instructions for working with polymer clay to make the seashell bra.
The Sunday Best outfit is a Victorian style outfit with cameo brooch, high necked collar and pantaloons.
The Cowboy outfit allows the doll to be both a male and female doll.
The Gorjuss pattern is based on the popular character, she also comes with a purple overcoat, hat and boots.
The Bedtime outfits comes with lace nightgown, nightcap and dressing gown
The Ballerina doll is one of the more popular outfits (along with the mermaid)
The Spaceman outfit added another extra craft, E-textiles. His front panel lights up and has a simple on/off switch.
As I continued to make the dolls and my doll making skills improved I re-published the pattern in 2016. An improved scalp patterning, and painted eyes improved the dolls. I also added a dowel in the neck.
In 2016 I also started my textile degree at Huddersfield university, It challenged me to look at the yarn I used for the dolls and in my final year I develop a series of hand dyed skin tones in British wool. I also changed the eyes again to a needle felted version.
My final university exhibition was a series of dolls made from the MLCD pattern called Northern Folk, these are a series of one of a kind dolls, each telling the tale of a lost part of our working class culture.