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What to do about all those single socks laying around,
when you just know the other one is going to show up
Maybe? …One day soon?
Lorinda Stevens ~ CSUC: EDCI 622
You start thinking
that you can make a doll
that is more adorable
than those ugly (lovable) things
at the local market….
R. Fugate (2009)
J. Chait (2009)
J. Chait (2009)
J. Chait (2009)
That’s what happened to me, anyway.
After staring at this bucket of single socks
for two weeks,
I started pinching and stitching
And thinking about dolls of years ago.
from the inside
Now I have a “mouth” in the middle of this sock.
Honestly, I’m not sure what to do with it,
but I do know I need legs.
And maybe antlers? Horns? Antennae?
Arms that come from the head? A four legged creature?
The creative play in me as student and teacher has come alive.
Time to just start chopping away. Oh dear… here goes……
I see something happening!!
So now, a bit of doll history:
The first evidence of a recognizable
doll is an alabaster doll made during the
Babylonian era. (Maybe Hammurabi
Painted wood dolls have been
found in Egyptian graves and
tombs dating back to 2000
BC. They are thought to have
been cherished possessions.
And dolls have been found in
the graves of Greek and Roman
Children. J. Nordquist (2009)
Lots of pinning and reflecting help me
remember to sew right sides to right sides,
while the whole thing is still inside out.
(I only sewed the insides together once!)
Most ancient dolls were made
of clay, rags, wood or bone,
although materials such as ivory
and wax have been found.
L. Lavoie (2009)
upon which the
The ideal doll, back in 600 BC, was one with movable arms and legs,
and removable garments.
Following the ancients, Europe became the hub of wooden doll making in the
centuries. Less than 30 of these dolls remain (BUMMER!)
Germany is known for the peg wooden dolls, made with simple peg joints.
Dutch Peg Doll
Set of 5 (2009)
Yeah, I’m still working away…
hand sewing with a back stitch.
All peg dolls
Hand Stitches (2009)J. Lotz (2009)
As doll making progressed,
new materials were used,
many with the intent to
Lynne’s Antique Dolls & Collectables (2009) J. Dyer (2009)
Unlike my ragamuffin, dolls in the late 18th
century were made from papier-mâché, ash,
eggshells, pulped wood & then porcelain in the early 19th
century. Most dolls were then “adults.”
During late 1800’s, the most coveted dolls were realistic; the famous
French “bebe” looked like a young girl.
Rag dolls (OK, YAY! Here I am!) were hand made of linens and cottons, and were
well loved for obvious reasons.
I use the handle of a
wooden spoon to get the
synthetic filler into
Not until after the Civil War did doll
making become an industry in the
U.S. Leather, rubber, and papier-mâché,
were most commonly used.
Celluloid dolls were made in mass
quantities until they were discovered to be
After WWII, doll makers started using
hard plastics. Dolls “grew” rooted
hair (and started to acquire many other
“life like” qualities like crying and wetting.
R. Ripley (2009)
Twine for hair
Two buttons each eye
Barbie, designed by mom Ruth Handler in 1959, was a
response to baby dolls exclusively on the market.
She wore a zebra striped swimsuit and was
available in blonde or brunette. 350,000 Barbie
dolls were sold during the first year of production.
Barbie’s real name is Barbara Millicent Roberts.
Novels written about her, published by Random House,
have developed a complete biography for her, including
her hometown, careers, pets, cars, and companions
Needless to say, Barbie has created controversy. To
start, she promotes an unrealistic image of a girl’s body.
(Proportionately, studies show that her hips would identify
her as anorexic; she would need to gain 35 pounds.)
Her name connotes “shallow.” She is notably dumb
(“Math is hard!” she says.) Her wheelchair
doesn’t fit in a playhouse. The list goes on,
and lawsuits have followed with abandon.
The original Barbies are now a collector’s item;
Her record sale stands at $17,000 at Christies in London.
This year, 2009, Barbie turns 50. Barbie (2009)
Integrating the creation of this doll with other content areas could focus on
the culture of dolls around the world, Native American Indian dolls, Americana handicrafts
recycled art and greening the community, or even in a science study of garbology.
The completed dolls could be used in puppet skits, animation or graphic novels,
or as a start to research about family histories or stories. A study of those less fortunate around the
world or in the community could spark a unit on empathy, giving,
and the doll could be a wonderful warm token of caring.
A business venture could be considered, and the dolls being a fundraising tool.
In this presentation,
a shallow history
of dolls. As always,
any unit can veer
Antique Wooden Dutch Peg Doll Set of 5 - eBay (item 280335603719 end time Apr-25-09 16:59:10
PDT). (n.d.). Retrieved April 22, 2009, from http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?
Barbie . (n.d.). Retrieved April 22, 2009, from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barbie
Chait, J. (n.d.). Inhabitots Â» Halloween Keepsakes: Cuddly, Lovable, Recycled Monster Dolls .
Retrieved April 22, 2009, from http://www.inhabitots.com/2008/10/31/halloween-treats-cuddly-lovable-
Dyer, J. (n.d.). Bearwood House Dolls. Retrieved April 22, 2009, from http://www.bearwoodhouse.co.uk/
Fugate, R. (n.d.). Handmade Toys on Etsy - FLOSSY - a OOAK recycled doll by Rochelle Fugate by
thegarbagegoose. Retrieved April 22, 2009, from http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?
Hand Stitches. (n.d.). Retrieved April 22, 2009, from http://www.ia470.com/wardrobe/stitches.html
Lavoie, L. (n.d.). IMG_9297 on Flickr . Retrieved April 22, 2009, from
Lotz, J. D. (n.d.). LOTZ : Wood Dolls From Germany and the Alps. Retrieved April 22, 2009, from
Lynne's Antique Dolls & Collectables. (n.d.). Retrieved April 22, 2009, from
Murphy, J. (2005). Stupid Sock Creatures: Making Quirky, Lovable Figures from Cast-off Socks. New
York: Lark Books.
Nordquist, J. (n.d.). A History of Dolls. Retrieved April 22, 2009, from http://ctdollartists.com/history.htm
Ripley, R. (n.d.). Dan Ripley's Antique Helper. Retrieved April 22, 2009, from