Felt Paper Doll Tutorial + Free Pattern

Make a felt paper doll using this free doll pattern and tutorial. Your child or grandchild will treasure it for years to come!

Oh boy have I got a load of crafty cuteness for you. Today I’m going to show you how to make a felt paper doll and I’m including a free printable pattern to make it even easier for you to make one for that special little princess in your life. Are you ready for adorable in epic proportions?!

A fun sewing project to make an adorable felt doll

It’s so cute right? You want to make one right this minute, right? It’s such a perfect handmade gift idea for little girls, right? ☺
To make a felt paper doll, you will need: (aff. links)
  • Craft Felt: “skin” color, “hair” color and white
  • Batting (just a little bit)
  • Sewing Machine and Coordinating Thread
  • Fabric Scraps
  • Heat’N Bond Iron On Adhesive
  • Oil Pastels and a Q-tip
  • Free Felt Doll Pattern (download at the bottom of this post)
Begin by printing the pattern, then cut out the body, hair and underwear pieces.
How to make a doll out of felt
Sew the hair and undies on to the body. Add eyes with a permanent marker or stitch them on with dark thread. My favorite method for making rosy cheeks on dolls is to fluff the end of a Q-tip, rub it on the red oil pastel chalk, then gently add a bit of color where the cheeks would be.
The best way to add rosy cheeks to a fabric, felt or yarn doll.
Sew the body onto a large uncut piece of felt. It makes sewing around the little details so much easier.  Another tip for sewing detailed shapes like this is to keep your needle in the fabric and lift up your sewing machine foot often. This helps you make tight turns and adjust your sewing lines around weird shapes. Make sure to leave one small hole for stuffing.
Felt paper doll tutorial
Next, press batting into all of the nooks and crannies. I’ve found that the end of a knitting needle works perfectly for this.

 

The easiest way to stuff a handmade doll

 

Sew the hole closed, then trim around the edges and your doll is done! I added little ribbon hair bows to my doll. You could make these interchangeable to match different outfits, but I hot glued mine on.
Free sewing pattern and tutorial for a felt dolly
To make clothes for your cute little doll, line the back side of a scrap of fabric with Heat N Bond. Trace the dress pattern onto the paper backing and cut it out. Then peel back the paper and iron the dress to a piece of felt.

 

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Use Heat'N Bond to attach fabric to felt
I chose to top stitch around my outfits. It’s not necessary, but it sure makes the clothes cuter. Also, the more details you add (pockets, collars, trim, buttons, etc.) the cuter your clothes will turn out. Once all of the sewing is done, trim off the excess felt around the edges.
Felt paper doll clothes patterns and tutorial using felt and fabric
Velcro is also optional, but it does help the clothes stick to the doll better. I attached my Velcro with hot glue so the stitches wouldn’t show through to the other side.

 

Free sewing pattern and tutorial to make felt paper doll clothes.
And there you have it. Now you know exactly how to make a cute little felt doll. This was seriously one of the most fun crafts I’ve made in a long time. There’s so much room for creative expression. I loved digging through my notions to find cute little doodads to use. I think you’re going to love this project! It was so, so fun.

 

Free pattern to make a felt paper doll on your sewing machine.
And don’t you think your new little doll needs a home?

Try making a little dollhouse inside a suitcase!

DIY Dollhouse

58 COMMENTS

  1. My granddaughter is coming to send 3 days with me next week, so I'm going to make this for her this weekend. Can't way to get them to her.

  2. Thank you soooo much for this adorable pattern! Seriously so stinkin' cute! I'm making a quiet book for my granddaughter and this little doll is going in there. I think I will back her with Peltex instead of stuffing so the quiet book won't be too thick. Just have to figure out how to include a closet to store the clothes in.

  3. For ladies who make "Little Dresses For Africa" charity, it would so sweet to include a little dark-complexion girl with a matching dress. I'm sure the small children in Africa have few toys to play with. Thank you for such a wonderful idea. God bless you.

  4. What a darling toy! I'm planning to make a few of these, and keep them in a felt envelope to carry in my purse when I fly…there is ALWAYS a child who needs a new toy to keep them occupied and help the parents keep them happy!!

  5. Taking a 7 day trip with my 2 yo angel baby. She will LOVE this! What a smart pattern and wonderful imagination you are awesome!! Thank you so much for sharing.

  6. I do not see the printable instructions for making this sweet little doll!
    Can you please help so I can print how to make these!

    • At the very bottom of the post there’s a teal colored box with the words “GET THE PRINTABLE PDF PATTERN” inside. Enter your email address in the box and the pattern will be sent to your inbox! I don’t have printable instructions… you’ll have to refer to this post.

    • Sara, you’ll need to enter your email address into the box at the bottom of the post where it says, “GET THE PRINTABLE PDF PATTERN.” Then the pattern will be emailed to you. Thanks!

  7. So generous of you to share the pattern and video. There will be so many happy little ones because of these dolls and their wardrobes.

    • I just double checked and the box is still in the post at the very bottom of the page. It’s teal in color and is right after the very last photo that shows the suitcase dollhouse.

  8. Jennifer, this is absolutely fantastic! My granddaughters are all grown up now, but I think that this is a fabulous idea for the Operation Christmas Child boxes this coming Christmas! Imagine the face of some little girl in a far off land, opening her shoe box and finding this doll, and lots of clothes inside! You are a genius, and this was a stellar craft. Thank you, so much.

  9. I have three, soon to be four, great granddaughters. I just printed the patterns and plan to start making sets of the dolls and clothes right away. The three year-old with love them NOW and the babies will have them in wait for an appropriate age. You have made all of us very happy by sharing your wonderful talent.

    • Hi Vicki, there’s a teal colored box at the end of the post that says, “Get the printable PDF pattern.” Just enter your email address in the box and the files will be emailed to you.

  10. Hi Jennifer, This is really so cute and I was happy to give it a try. The first thing I had to do was get some better felt than the 33 cent felt at Hobby Lobby. I ordered some online. Much sturdier and easier to work with. This was a lot harder than it looks because you have to change thread color for the hair and the body and the undies. Getting the needle around the little turns was tricky too.
    I had trouble getting the batting in too even with the knitting needle. Whew.
    I have gotten the doll done now and it is cute but have to make the clothes. I know that will be easier. Thanks for the pattern though because it is really sweet.

  11. Thank you, Jennifer for sharing this adorable little doll and her accessories. I have a granddaughter in California who will be turning 3 in June. I plan on making one for her and one for me. I live in Idaho and we video chat every week. I read her stories, sing, etc. and I think that adding this cute little doll will encourage play time between her and I.
    Once again, thank you.
    Joyce

  12. I had so much fun making this doll and SO many clothes for her. By adjusting the patterns I was able to make her a dress with a pleated skirt, a ballet outfit with tutu, pajamas, etc. I hope my granddaughter has half as much fun with her as I did.

      • No, I’m so sorry. But it would be easy to make any clothes you want by tracing the body shape, then drawing the outline of the clothing onto the body, then cutting out the pieces.

  13. Hello from Tennessee!!! Hi, Jennifer – I love your site !!! I have found this post just now with this ADORABLE little Felt Paper Doll !!!!! I LOVE IT !!! I do wonder with your Pattern, WHAT SIZE DOLL
    does your Pattern Make ??? I know we can Increase or Decrease the Pattern when we get it, but I wonder what size does your Pattern start with ??? I can’t wait to get started on this Little Creation!!!
    THANK YOU SOOO MUCH FOR YOUR GENEROSITY !!! WE ALL LOVE FREE THINGS !!! 8/29/2019 jwt

    • Hi Janet, thanks so much for your kind words! Comments like this keep me going. <3 To answer your question, the doll turns out to be about 8 inches tall. Enjoy!

  14. Is the piece of scrap fabric between the clothing and the felt necessary? Can you just fuse the dress directly to the felt?
    Love your pattern! I’m making two dolls.

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