How to Sew Hair on a Raggedy Ann Doll

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Raggedy Ann and Raggedy Andy are a charming example of the American past that is still loved by children and collectors today. These dolls are easy to make, requiring only basic materials. Many people do find that the doll's yarn hair is the most challenging aspect of making Raggedy Ann. Fortunately, it does not need to be. With only basic materials you can have your Raggedy Ann finished and ready to enjoy with a mop of bright red yarn hair.

Things You'll Need

  • Red yarn
  • Heavy cardboard
  • Red thread
  • Sewing machine
  • Scissors
  • Exacto or box knife
  • Hand sewing needle

Create a template to allow you to make your yarn hair for Raggedy Ann. Cut a strip of cardboard 20-inches long-by-4-inches wide. Use a box knife or craft knife to remove a strip out of the middle of this piece, approximately 1-inch-by-19-inches. The strip should look like a tall, narrow U when complete.

Wrap the cardboard densely with yarn to make Raggedy Ann's hair. Avoid overlapping the yarn. Using either a sewing machine or needle and thread, securely stitch down the center of the yarn. Be certain to secure the thread well at both ends with knots if sewing by hand or reverse stitching on your sewing machine. Remove the yarn from the cardboard.

Make several more strips of looped yarn. A small doll may only need a few strips, a very large Raggedy Ann doll will need more strips for a full head of hair. Pin the strips in place as you finish to make sure that Raggedy Ann has a full head of hair, but not too much.

Using a needle and thread, sew the Raggedy Ann hair into place, sewing along each stitching line in the yarn. Work in horizontal strips from the forehead back and the back hairline up. Keep in mind that too much hair will not be flattering, but you do need enough yarn hair to avoid bald spots.

Add yarn braids or pigtails if desired. Make braids or pigtails by stitching down the center of a long length of yarn. Stitch this into place where desired and braid or tie with ribbon or fabric bows.

Tips & Warnings

  • Raggedy Andy's hair can be made just like Raggedy Andy's if you simply cut the loops after sewing the hair into place.
  • Experiment with how you like Raggedy Ann's hair best. Loops or straight, pigtails or braids are all acceptable and traditional choices.
  • A curved dollmaking needle can make sewing hair into place easier.
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