This is the first toy I have made exclusively with my son in mind. Kids have it rough; their days are filled with bumps, cuts, bruises, and other kids coughing in their faces (not that they are any the wiser). It seemed to us that our 4-year old and the ice pack had become best friends. So when I saw IkatBag’s “Owie Doll” pattern, I thought that would a perfect doll to commiserate with the forever-bruised.
Sometimes he has a bit of a tiff with his sister and they scratch like cats.
But Arjun’s pretty tough and quickly gets good as new (mostly). And before you know it, he’s off to the next adventure.
This was a fun project with multiple little things to make. The very talented IkatBag (who already created the design for the Mrs Sow and the piglets) sells the pattern for this toy. My version is a pared-down version of it because the Fall has been too busy. IkatBag now sells little kits that come with the supplies to make one or two dolls; I highly recommend this route because it’s hard to get a hold of some of the supplies. This one is popular among crafters to make for children in the hospital.
Doll body: To get the bandiads to stick to him, the doll’s body is made of craft velour. Try as I might, I didn’t find it in any local fabric stores and ended up ordering it from http://www.clothdollsupply.com/. Despite ordering the “Craft Velour Chamois” skin shade, Arjun looks lighter-skinned than I would have thought.
While I made the doll body of the right size, I overstuffed him, and had to unstuff him a bit after the fact. All that stuffing went straight to his hips, and his clothes wouldn’t fit!
The facial features are embroidered; satin stitches for the eyes, and chain stitch for the mouth.
Doll outfit: Arjun’s outfit is neat; it’s reversible, with his hospital gown and home clothes on either side. The making of that was pretty straightforward. I finally have a use for the Paddington print I bought in 2011!
The shorts were surprisingly tough (or I was surprisingly inattentive during the making, not sure which). Took me three tries and finally I gave up and just used the shorts on the third try. First, I wouldn’t do this with the serger again. It just kept ripping the inseam, possibly because of the fabric I was using. Second, I kept sewing it so that the stitches for the inseam and the sides were on opposite sides, so that the shorts were never quite turned out. But oh well, Arjun’s modest, and the next time I will need to pay extra attention to make sure the shorts turn out correctly.
Bandaids: The bandaids were tiny and are wool felt backed with velcro loops. Similar to the pig snouts, these were first sewn and then cut out. i.e. don’t cut the bandaid shapes out first, because of course they are then hard to place under the machine foot. Anticipating (rightly) that several of them would be lost, I made quite a few.
The arm and foot cast were pretty straightforward from the tutorial.
To customize Arjun to my son, I improvised an ice pack to the kit. Just a blue stuffed rectangle with felt lettering. The letters were attached with HeatBond UltraHold. But I think – next to the bandaids – they are the most popular prop.