First let me start by saying buying doll patterns is important!! It keeps wonderful people and companys going and there is knowledge in each pattern ,not just a traced doll. With that said I have been sewing long enough to just make a pattern. I was emailing with a friend who was quite interested by this so I decided to blog how I do it. I trace a pattern onto freezer paper and cut out. I then trace the pattern onto fabric. I prefere osnaburg. I do not cut out the doll . I sew it and then cut out. I turn out my doll and stuff the head and neck with pollyfil. It is important to stuff firmly but with small pieces so you will not get a lumpy head. Pay close attention to the neck area or your dolls head will sag in time. I then stuff the rest of the body with fabric and wool scraps. This gives the doll a nice old weighted feel. I stuff the arms and feet with polly fil but only a 1/3 of the way. I want the doll to sit and be positioned well. After attaching arms and legs I may stitch the face or leave plain depending on my mood. I make up my "potion" ,Nestea sugar free instant tea, cinnamon and Vanilla. I like my dolls dark so I use about a cup of tea , 3 tbl cinnamon and 1/2 bottle of vanilla. I use a sponge brush to apply to doll making sure to cover well . If you miss a spot and touch up later it will show . I bake my doll on a parchment lined cookie sheet in a 250 degree oven until dry. For my doll today I am making it black so I pour black paint into a disposible cup and add water. I mix well and apply to doll with a new sponge brush. I make sure to cover completely and then back into the oven to dry. I then sand my doll. this ages it as well as softens the fabric. I then apply my tea "potion" again to give her a warm color. I then get my paint out and make eyes on my dolly. While my face is drying I am going to age a small Bible I picked up at Dollar Tree for my doll. Although I felt a little uneasy about this I want my doll to be a wise older God fearing dolly who has loved and read her Bible each day so aging it was a must. I firt sanded it and then applied stain. Let dry. As you can see it makes quite the difference. Now it is time for her dress. I lay my doll onto freezer paper again and trace her to create a bodice. ( top of dress) I also trace pantaloons for my modest doll. I cut out my bodice on a double fold. I also cut out 2 long pieces for the skirt bottm. I do hem my edges. It is my preference since I do not wear raw edges. I sew two rows on the widest setting to gather my skirt. I choose to add scrim ( a fabric netting found in the drappery dept at your fabric store) on the front for the apron. Once pinned to the bodice I sew a straight stitch. I pull out the long gathered threads. I then fold my dress right sides together and sew along the outside edges. I now turn right side out and cut a slit in the neck. I dress her. and run a gather stich around the neck line. I also add hair now. I use raw wool. I now make her bonnet. I take wool and fold in half. I hem the edges. I sew down the back and then the top triangle. I attach on the sides of her head with rusty safty pins. I make a bag from wool to hold her bible. I use pins and tie jute for the bag handle. I added a pin with bell to the front and aso a key necklace. All that is left now is to name her. I made this doll for a swap I am doing. It is going to a wonderful woman who is not as primitive as I am so I didn't "dirty" her dress. If she was for my home I would have tea stained her dress. However her clothing and bag are not as bright as it looks in these pictures. I hope you enjoyed my doll makeing lesson. If you have any questions feel free to email me.