2 Day Cloth Doll Workshop in Tottenham Hale Village, London N17. March 23/24 2019

  • £120.00


In 2019, I am holding the London March workshop at:

the Engine Room in Tottenham Hale village, N17 9FU.  This is a new community centre which is very well equipped, ground floor with parking.  It has excellent transport links being about 5 minutes walk from Tottenham Hale Station, busses, overground and tubes.  It also has a community cafe open till 3 each day.  We also have use of a kitchen.  Hours are a little different as the rooms are not available on Sunday morning so we shall be doing: Saturday 9.30am for 10am - 7pm ( of course leave earlier if you like)  Sunday 2pm - 6pm.  This gives a total of 13 hours including breaks.  

Parking at the venue: there is good parking very near the centre but has to be paid for.  This is 10.00 for a day ( Saturday) and 4.00 for 4 hours ( Sunday)  I have kept this in mind when working out the charges and I feel its pretty reasonable for London.  I'm afraid there isn't a free parking alternative.  We shall not be able to leave work in the room overnight on Saturday.  

You can choose to make a seated doll ( as the cover of my book 'An Introduction to making Cloth dolls') or a simple jointed doll as the doll with net skirt or a standing doll with a simple wire for the body which will keep it upright.  This can be stuck to a wooden stand or block. The blonde standing student doll and the dancer are made in this way.  If you are a complete beginner its probably best to stick to the jointed or seated doll. If you have been to a workshop before the doll with wired armature might be interesting to you.  I could send some fabric, pattern and instructions to get a start before you come. This class will be for 8 people maximum so plenty of individual attention.

On Saturday we will go over the basics of template sewing used for cloth doll making and discuss which doll you will make.  Firstly we will make and sculpt the four part head and draw the features.  We will then go onto the body pieces and the hands.  As we have a long Saturday and shorter Sunday we shall try to complete as much as possible on Saturday.  This leaves Sunday for assembling the doll and finishing the costume etc.

 I supply a kit to each person which includes:

An A4 folder of step by step notes with pictures of the various techniques 

A pattern to be used for your doll.  If you keep this pattern it can be adapted to make many styles of doll in the future as it has variations of limbs, feet and hands.

 Flesh coloured Pimatex cotton fabric – enough for one doll.

Chenille sticks ( for wiring fingers)

Bag of filling/stuffing ( enough for one doll)

2 x long darning needles for sculpting the face.

For anyone wanting to make a wired doll I will supply wire and a wood stand.

 I also bring for your use during the workshop, plenty of the following:

 Forceps and chop sticks for stuffing.

Long Doll Needles

Fine pens for drawing in all colours on the face.

Pencil crayons for colouring the faces.

Fine mechanical pencils

Vanishing fineline pens air drying

Quilting and extra strong threads.

Finger Turning tools.

For anyone wanting to make a wired doll I will supply wire and a wood stand.

 We shall include wings, as these are always very popular.  I shall be showing wings made from Angelina sheet this year.  This involves ironing onto a wire frame and using a heat gun.  These are very simple and quick and require no sewing!!

 If you can bring a picture or have a good idea of what style of doll you want to make, this will help you decide on your fabrics and trims.  This year I’m encouraging everyone to arrive with ideas about what they want their doll to look like.  If you want to make a first doll and keep it simple she can still look stunning when you leave.  I don’t normally do complicated joints in a 2 day workshop because there just isn’t time but I’m hoping to show you some samples so that when you are working on your own you have some idea of what they entail.

 If you have any queries on what you want to do – please do email me and we can discuss it.

 You will need to bring:

A sewing machine in good order

It is very helpful to have an open quilting or embroidery foot or a clear foot.  If you imagine machining with a small stitch around small fingers – you need to be able to see exactly what you are doing.

Natural polyester thread for machining.

Sharp embroidery scissors and good sewing scissors.

Paper scissors for cutting out the pattern.

Coloured or patterned cotton fabric for the dressing of the doll.  Best to use a good strong cotton fabric – quilting cotton fabric is ideal – for the doll body pieces as the fabric has to take quite a lot of stress when stuffed.  Some synthetics can be difficult to work with but silks can be good for costume skirts etc.

Don’t use anything that frays badly.  Small amounts of fabric are fine – bring things from your stash. Fat quarters are ample and will contribute to a few dolls.

 If you want to use button joints then bring 4 buttons to match your fabric. 14mm – 16mm work well.

 Trims of all kinds may be useful – ribbons, laces, beads etc.

 Hair – you can use more or less anything – but fancy chunky yarns are great, dyed fleece locks and dyed wool tops to use as a base.  I sell Tibetan lamb but this is quite expensive and not necessary unless you really want this effect.  Dyed fleece can be found online and also and fibre and quilting fairs.

 If you have your own doll making tools, pens or pencils then bring them.  If you do not already have them I would advise not to buy until afterwards, especially pens as people often buy the wrong kind which do bleed on fabric.

I shall provide tea, coffee and biscuits for us which can be made in the communal kitchen.  On Saturday the cafe is open until 3pm and serves light lunches.  You can bring a packed lunch if you prefer.

 My Refund/Cancellation Policy:

Before Feb 23rd  2019 - £20.00 of the amount paid is non-refundable but I will refund the balance of £100.00.  After February 23rd -  unless I can find another person to fill the place, the total will be non-refundable.  If I find a replacement £20.00 will be retained to cover admin costs.