11 October 2016

Craft Project Idea:Coraline Doll

 I love celebrating Halloween (and all celebrations really) and I love crafting so I thought I would combine the two in this week's post! This week, I have been making a doll from the Coraline film using felt! I'll be using this as part of my Halloween costume this year, which as you can probably guess, will be a Coraline outfit! Coraline is one of my favourite Halloween films because it perfectly mixes creepy with cute and the animation style is beautifully stunning! Hopefully this will give you a few ideas for your next project, it's not necessarily a tutorial but i'll tell you the basic steps I took to make Coraline!

To start making this doll, I decorated her face! I chose two shiny,black buttons for her eyes and sewed them in place. Next, I drew on the felt where I wanted the lips, eyebrows and freckles to be. You can draw quite easily with biro to give you an idea where to sew! Then I started to sew the rest of the facial features! I used satin stitch for her eyebrows, french knots for her freckles (which are quite complex stitches, so I recommend you practice them on a fabric scrap first) and I haven't sewed the lips in this photo yet! I then created two hair pieces out of blue felt! I started by cutting out a basic hair outline for the front and back and then cut strips of felt, which were then sewed onto this larger piece! This helped to add texture to the doll which adds interest!

In this next picture, I have started to add clothes and sew her lips on. For the lips, I used basic running stitch down the centre (in brown thread) and then filled above and below the line (in light pink thread) in whatever way I could. i'm not sure if the technique I used has a name but I just imagined the thread was a pen and I was colouring in the lips. If you're confused, I mean that I simply put my needle through at the top and put it back at the bottom, then moved along to the right and went through at the bottom and then out at the top, and then repeated until it was done. Sorry if you don't understand, it's hard to explain! I then sewed on a dark pink vest which I then sewed light pink strips onto with running stitch that was spaced apart. I then put a black strip to be the skirt waistband (I put the skirt on in a later picture). After this I sewed on white socks which has black stripes sewn on. Finally I made yellow boots with laces!
In this photo, you can see Coraline stuffed! She was sewn up using blanket stitch in a skin tone. As I stitched, I added little bits of stuffing to make sure I didn't miss any gaps. I probably would have missed gaps if it was stuffed after sewing most of it up. It can be fiddly to sew and stuff simultaneously but this method is the most effective to evenly stuff. Take your time to sew it up because you don't want to leave large paces between each stitch because the doll will easily fall apart and the stuffing will come out; you don't want that!  I forgot to mention earlier, I added a little clip in Coraline's hair that she has in the film. If you add all these little details, it makes for a more accurate costume (but if you're short of time, you can just create an impression of Coraline rather than a close replica).

This last photo shows Coraline now that she is completely finished! The things that changed from the last picture to this one, is the fact that she has all her clothes now! Here she is in her lovely yellow anorak that was sewn up using three pieces (1 for the back and 2 for the front) which was then turned inside out and decorated with a collar and buttons! She is also wearing a  black skirt that was made using layers of different fabrics: black felt, a black ribbon,taffeta and netting! the reason I use different fabrics is to add interesting texture and depth to the piece of clothing! I didn't want it to just lay flat on her legs.  I love the way that she turned out! She is cute but also a little bit creepy, just like in the film! I think this will be a great addition to my costume that I'm wearing on Halloween. I'll also keep her afterwards because she looks great!

If you make this, I hope you have a lot of fun like I did when I made this! You could make it with a friend or family member who's experienced with sewing if you'd like! I made mine with my Mum who's an experienced sewer!

Over to you...
What are you wearing for Halloween? Let me know! Did you give this project a go? 


  1. This is an amazing idea, Megan! The doll looks super-cute and kind of creepy at the same time. :) I like the way you've organized this post with descriptions and photographs of each and every step.
    Using felt to make the doll is a very creative idea. I also like the way you've made the skirt - with several layers of different fabrics. The doll seems to be very neatly and carefully stitched. It's pretty difficult to be so neat in stitching.
    Overall, I really enjoyed reading this post. It gave me some ideas for making a doll too. Good luck with your costume! :D

    1. Thank you so much Fatima, that's the look I was going for! :D I enjoyed taking photos at each step because it made me realise that it was coming together nicely! I used felt because a.my mum has lots of it and b. I find it easier to work with since it softer than other fabrics. Thank you again! :D I'm so glad it gave you ideas!

  2. I loved seeing the process of Coraline being stitched up for Halloween on your Insta! (I've been meaning to comment on this post for so long - sorry I'm late!)

    The final result is super cool and looks so much like Coraline! And as I mentioned before I love how you chose the spooky button theme from the movie - it's just fit for Halloween! Not to mention, the way you sewed up the fabrics and put the doll together shows you have so much talent with crafts! I love how you've written out a tutorial for it too - I'll consider having a go at sewing a doll using your tutorial too! I must say, Coraline is also one of my favourite Halloween movies! The animation is definitely stunning. :D Beautiful work Megan!! <3

    I love how you've made the Photoshop picture your blog template background! It looks absolutely fantastic and just fit for Halloween/Day of the Dead! C:

    (I have to go in a moment but hopefully I'll comment on your Inktober post next! <3)

    1. Thank you, I like doing craft posts every now and then since it's relaxing to start a new project! Don't worry about it, I've taken a while to reply too! :D

      The button theme from the movie changes the way I see buttons now ha-ha! So that's why I incorporated it into this (also I was trying to make it look like the doll in the film). If you decide to sew a doll, I'd love to see it! But don't feel like you have to follow my tutorial! Did you watch any Halloween movies this year? I have a small collection of Halloween DVDs and sometimes it's hard to watch them all before the 31st! xD I agree, it must have taken so long to create such a sunning stopmotion animation. The team working on the film must be very talented.

      Thank you! I feel bad that I'm going to have to change it very soon! I'm not sure what I'll draw for the next background-I don't think I can go back to the pineapples since that's kind of Summery. By the way I loved your Day of the Dead drawing, I must remember to comment on the instagram post soon!

      Ok! Thank you for your lovely comments once again. <3


Any ideas, feedback or praise? Select 'notify me' so you know when you get a reply from me or someone else.