Make an authentic rag doll like your grandma played with when she was little. What you need:

  • yard natural muslin
  • 3″ Styrofoam ball (or wadded-up newspaper or foil)
  • small buttons (for eyes)
  • Acrylic paint, pale pink Yarn or craft hair Small straw hat or bonnet
  • Scraps of cotton print, lace, and ribbon (for apron)
  • Buttons, bows, and dried flowers Glue

Tear the muslin into 1 inch strips across the grain, from selvage to selvage. Pull off any hanging threads and smooth the strips flat. Cut 9 strips of muslin in half and set them aside.
To make the head, place a strip of muslin over the ball so that the strip is centered. Leave the ends hanging down to form the doll’s body.

Cover the entire ball, crisscrossing the strips over the top, until you’ve used all but the short ones you set aside. Tie the neck tightly with one of the short strips. Divide the body strips in half. Sandwich all but 3 of the short strips horizontally in between for arms. Tie the long body strips together under the arms with a short strip, making a w aist. Tie one of the two remaining strips around each arm, about 1/2″ from the end, to fashion the hands.

Glue on button eyes and daub on a little pink paint for blush on the cheeks. Glue the hair and bonnet or hat onto the head.

To make the apron, tear an 8″ x 6″ piece of cotton fabric. Gather along one of the long edges. Tear strips of fabric to make a sash and straps. Glue the straps across the shoulders and glue the apron to the waist.
Tie the sash around the waist and decorate with buttons, bows, and dried flowers.

Note: Make a boy doll by separating the legs and tying them at the ankles. Make a pair of overalls out of an old pair of jeans and a fishing pole from a stick and string.