Sunday, March 20, 2016

Flour Sack Dolls

Recently I have taken an interest in trying to make a high collar Dress and a interest in making  rags dolls out of old flour sacks. As you know, anything old in fabrics is costly, the old flour sacks are no different. Winning a bid on 27 old flour sacks has provided me with lots of fabric to test out dolls with. Some of the sacks are smooth, but don't have any stains or writing, several of them have lots of staining and very faded writing and pictures, but you can make your dolls, or animals, as I have also make some standing rabbits with the sacks, to be posted later. Not only are the dolls made of flour sacks, their body suits, and some clothes are being made out of the sacks as well. The dress I am showing is made out of civil war reproduction fabric, but the bonnet and shoes are flour sacking I have dyed, These particular dolls have a very long neck, and I see I can shorten the neck  on the dress a little. This pattern is very old fashioned looking, but the dolls are super light weight, even though I did use real rags in the bodies, arms and legs, not all rags, but some.  As I have said before, the faces are a problem for me, but I put on the dolls the best simple face I thought looked good, it is very easy to go to far with color, or pencil, or ink. Once you have gone to far and are not happy with the look of the face, you can turn the doll around and start again on the other side, but I didn't, as I knew I would not be happy with that, and you would have to cover the back of the head. Right now, cloth dolls are popular again, especially  antique ones, but to costly for me. If I was going to make a more classical old cloth doll with a pencil face, I would choose strong smooth muslin and probably a different color or material to make it look old. It is my thinking that some folks are using real dirt to stain the dolls, as I can see no other way to get the look of dirt, as grunge doesn't look that way., but for now I am happy with my experimenting and the dolls are very pretty just sitting around. If there is any way to use antique fabric for these dolls, or atleast a fabric that you have dyed yourself, or aged  I would stay away from new or even reproduction fabric, it doesn't suit these dolls. They need older, not necessarily ragged clothes, but definitely clothes that look like they have been around a long time.


  1. Martha, these dolls are so sweet. You've done a great job. I agree about the dress fabric, I wonder, have you ever bleached reproduction fabric? I love the blue on the doll, but if it was faded out would it work. I mostly have repo fabric. I might try that.

  2. I have bleached repro fabric and it does help it from being so vivid. I love your dolls! The fabric that you've made their bodies/faces with are just the right tone to make them look so very old. :~)

  3. Now, I am a big fan of flour sacks, and have a collection passed down to me from my mom. Just reading your post title, "Flour Sack Dolls," really perked me up. And, I wasn't to be disappointed for your girls are quite wonderful. I love their faces, and the flour sack body suits are just great!