How to Make Rag Dolls

One Methods:Doll Sewing Template

Rag dolls are often a child's favorite and they're super easy to make from spare pieces of fabric or unwanted older fabric that would otherwise be turned into rags. In putting a rag doll together, a unique personality forms every single time.


  1. Image titled Make Rag Dolls Step 1 preview
    Choose how you want your doll to look. Start with the fabric color. Any plain fabric will do, but you might want to choose something approximately skin-colored, such as cream, brown, tan, white, or pink.
    • Traditionally, rag dolls were made from scraps of fabric (rags), so see if you can find enough fabric to recycle from a pillowcase, an old shirt or clothes that don't fit.
  2. Image titled Make Rag Dolls Step 2 preview
    Draw the outline for your doll on a cloth. Add some extra width (half an inch to 5/8") all around the outside of your outline for a seam allowance.
    • Make the doll shape a little larger than you want the finished doll. When you stuff it, it will puff up and the sides will come in a little bit.
    • You can practice the outline on paper until you get it about right.
    • Make the head fairly large and round or oval.
  3. Image titled Make Rag Dolls Step 3 preview
    Place a second layer of fabric underneath with the right sides of the fabric together. Cut out both on the outermost line.
  4. Image titled Make Rag Dolls Step 4 preview
    Pin the fabric and stitch around the outline, leaving an opening for the stuffing.
  5. Image titled Make Rag Dolls Step 5 preview
    Relieve the seams around curves and corners by cutting triangular notches in the seam allowance.
  6. Image titled Make Rag Dolls Step 6 preview
    Turn the doll right side out, working the fabric through the opening.
  7. Image titled Make Rag Dolls Step 7 preview
    Stuff the doll with any fiber stuffing you choose.
  8. Image titled Make Rag Dolls Step 8 preview
    Turn the edges of the opening under, towards the inside, and stitch it closed by hand or machine.
  9. Image titled Make Rag Dolls Step 9 preview
    If desired, stitch across the legs and arms to form joints.
  10. Image titled Make Rag Dolls Step 10 preview
    Decorate the doll. Embroider a face or sew on buttons for the eyes and nose. Hair can be made from yarn; braid it for special effect if the hair is long.
  11. Image titled Make Rag Dolls Step 11 preview
    Sew doll clothes for it (another great use of found, leftover, or recycled materials), or make no-sew doll clothes.
  12. Image titled Make Rag Dolls Final preview

Doll Sewing Template

Sample Doll Pattern


  • One way to get your doll the same shape on both sides is to trace the outline on paper, fold this pattern in half down the middle, and cut it while it is folded in half.
  • Use tailor's chalk or washable pencil to mark the fabric if you don't want leftover marks showing through.
  • This doll is your own, so have fun with it. If you want crazy colors or crazy hair, make your doll that way.
  • You don't have to make fancy clothes. A simple no sew pinafore looks just as nice as a beautiful sewed masterpiece!
  • Make the doll a bit bigger, if the fabric permits. It will be that much easier to work with and stuff.
  • Remember to love the doll and cuddle it as if it were alive!


  • Use appropriate caution with sewing machines, needles, and scissors.

Article Info

Categories: Dolls and Doll Houses | Sewing Toys and Dolls