Thursday, December 3, 2015

Handmade Holiday Blog Hop: Day 2

It's Handmade Holiday Blog Hop time! Over the next days, we'll be sharing both gift and decor ideas here on the blog. Make them now; bookmark them for later. Either way, we hope you'll enjoy the inspiration and ideas to help you get in the holiday spirit and/or cross a few names off your gift list.

Today Debby Kratovil of Debby Kratovil Quilts is sharing a sweet nesting doll project for a child. She used the panel and coordinates from Greta Lynn's Little Katerina collection to make a gift that will get used year round! Enjoy Debby's tutorial and then head over to her blog for a chance to win a bundle of Little Katerina for yourself!

Little Katerina by Greta Lynn for Kanvas
Nesting Dolls have a history with our family. My husband Phil visited the old Soviet Union in the early 1980s and returned with several sets of dolls. We even have a set of the communist leaders: Lenin, Stalin, Kruschev, Gorbachev (sorry for any mispellings). When I was asked to participate in this Benartex hop, I jumped at the chance to make some little dolls for my granddaughter Eva (who is almost 2).

Now, to a professional quilter ALL FABRIC looks like a quilt. I had to think outside the box! While most people would cut out the panels, sew them and stuff them with batting, I decided to make actual nesting dolls. First, let's see the panel:

Little Katerina and Friends panels
I grabbed my stash of Timtex (very stiff, fusible interfacing) and proceeded to stiffen the shapes so my granddaughter can treat them like paper dolls. I traced the shape of the first doll onto the Timtex.

Trace shape of doll onto Timtex
Then I cut it out and fused it to the wrong side of the doll front. I also fused Timtex to the wrong side of the doll back. I wanted a very firm doll!

Timtex fused to wrong side of doll front panel
Stitch around the outside, leaving the bottom open. Turn around to right side, turn bottom edges under and topstitch around entire doll.
Smallest doll, stitched. See, she likes this!
In order to nest the dolls, I needed to make a pocket on each of the other 4 larger dolls. Here is how I auditioned one of the companion fabrics for Doll D.
Doll D with pocket for Doll E

Double folded fabric with raw edges at the bottom
And here are the remaining dolls:

5 Nesting Dolls - where is the pocket on Doll A?
I put the pocket for Doll A on the back so that she could carry them either front or back. Let's see!
Four dolls in back pocket of Doll A!
And how do these compare with my authentic Russian nesting dolls? Do they approve?

Yes, they approve!
And one more thing: the little apron I made for Eva with the Green Farms Collection was left in Spain this summer. So, her mom (my oldest daughter) asked me for a replacement. Here is the Green Farms apron in case you missed it:
Pinafore from the Green Farms Collection (by Benartex)

But, I did not enjoy putting all that binding on all the raw edges. I decided to face the entire pinafore. It's a good thing I've been sewing for decades and decades. That was torture, but I think you'll agree with me that the result is so sweet!

Little Katerina pinafore with two large front pockets
And the inside, lined with a beautiful blue:
Little Katerina pinafore back, showing lining
These fabrics are so sweet, perfect for any little girl. I think I will hold back the dolls for a Christmas gift for Eva. As for the apron, she needs it. She cooks with Audrey every day!

Thanks Debby! 
Head over to Debby's blog to learn more about her nesting dolls in the photo below and find out how you can win a bundle of Little Katerina. 

Don't miss any days of our Handmade Holiday Blog Hop!
Day 3: Sew Easy Travel Case featuring Sew Easy
Day 4: Firewood Tote by Mary on Lake Pulaski featuring Shades of Winter
Day 5: Evergreen Pennant by Jessica of Quilty Habit featuring Snow Days
Day 6: Patchwork Apron by Kristen of KD Quilts featuring Frosty Forest
Day 7: Christmas Adorned quilt by Kelly of My Quilt Infatuation featuring Santa's Here
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  1. Love the fabric. Nice job. Everything looks so sweet.

  2. So very cute. Total #CreativeGoodness


  3. Such a cute dolls and fabrics.Great job!

  4. LOVE that apron. It really is super cute. What a great idea how you made the fabric nesting dolls instead of stuffed dolls like most, including me, would make from that fabric.

  5. Great fabric! I love the flat dolls with pockets, Debby, and the pinafore is so sweet! May I be reincarnated as one of your granddaughters? (janeherbst at roadrunner dot com)

  6. Our oldest daughter was born in Moscow, so I'm always on the lookout for the nesting dolls for her. Love these and may just have to make a set myself. Even though she'll be 31 in January I bet she'd enjoy having these on display.