When Vogue Patterns releases a new craft pattern, I generally buy it. They don't have many, and they don't do it often, but when they do - it's good. This particular pattern is by Linda Carr. She has been in the doll making, stuffie making business for a very long time. If you have done any research looking for resources, books, or patterns you have probably run into her work. I bought V9194 as soon as I saw it.
- White minky fabric - Joann's
- Multi-colored yarn - 1 skein - Joann's
- Safety eyes - Glass Eyes Online (if you love making stuffies, you will love this site!)
- Leather - "Aqua Divine Top Grain Cowide" and "thin purple blue green sponge painting rainbow cowhide" from PeggySueAlso on Etsy (this is a candy store!!)
- D Rings (stirrups) - Joanns
- square dowel rods - Joanns
- the key rings and swivel hooks I actually had on hand - I bought these on ebay or etsy (from China in a crazy large quantity for very little money) for one of my son's school projects
- metal buttons, embroidery floss, fabric markers, felt, and stuffing I had in my supplies
- I recommend having hemostats for stuffing.
- Use a smaller stitch length because the seams will take a lot of strain from stuffing.
- Get a hump-jumper and tear away interfacing for sewing the small and narrow bulky parts of the saddle, bridle and reins.
- Leather is easier than you think.
- If you think you've stuffed enough, stuff some more.
As far as the pattern, it goes together well and the instructions are clear for the parts involving construction of the pony. I recommend reading the instructions for the saddle and bridle through a couple of times before beginning work. Also, I would like to have seen a list of all the lengths and sizes of leather strips needed, rather than having it interspersed through the steps. I recommend adding an inch to the strips that are supposed to be 4 1/2/ inches and I also recommend adding 1/2 to 1 inch to straps that go around the pony's nose.
For her eye liner, I used a green fabric marker and then glued her eyelids over the safety eye with Alene's fabric glue. Also - the metal buttons are not sewn on - 6 layers of leather was too iffy. I put a small hole in the layers of leather for the button shank so it would lay flush and then glued it with Alene's jewel-it glue. It has held very firmly, but I plan on testing again. If it comes, off, I will try epoxy.
I used a poly fiber fill stuffing because I find it gives a smoother look than wool. I prefer wool in other circumstances, but not this one. Even with the poly stuffing, her legs still look lumpy and chubby. I worked on them for quite a while, but gave up after looking at the photo on the pattern envelope and seeing the model horse has chubby legs too.
She's pretty large - she measures 18 inches high at the top of her head and 15 inches at her back. Perfect for the American Girls dolls or other 18 inch dolls.
Making stuffies and dolls is truly delightful. Although I love to make clothes and home decor, there is always something magical about making a creature. It's a bit like being a Geppetto or Pygmalion. I always end up naming them. This one I named Cristobelle.
She's shipping out this week to my niece for her fifth birthday. I can't wait to see if she likes her.
Make something beautiful!