Blue and Purple Dotee Doll

This is a Dotee Doll I made last Sunday for a private swap. She turned out a little smaller than I had planned. Only about 3 inches from head to beginning of tail. Generally a good size for a Dotee is 4-6 inches not including the hanger and tail.

I was using my new Fiskars pinking shears for the first time and forgot to leave extra seam allowance when I was cutting. I always end up cutting things close in an attempt to save fabric. Sometimes this has ended in trouble with me having to patch holes as the material frayed while turning the Dotee right-side-out after sewing. All my Dotees are hand-sewn at this stage. Maybe one day if I had room to have a sewing machine set up permanently I’d be happy to jump on and quickly stitch one up. For now hand-sewing is still fun and the more I sew the quicker and more even I become.

For those not familiar to these little dolls, they are the creation of Dorothy Christian. Dotee is pronounced DOT-ee as Dot is a common shortening of the name Dorothy, especially here in Australia. If anyone ever wants to learn how to make these dolls I always direct them to the youtube tutorial made by Dorothy Christian.

Key features of a Dotee Doll:

  • 4 to 6 inches long (Should sit nicely in the palm of your hand)
  • Must have a looped hanger, which can be made of ribbon or beads.
  • Must have a tail, usually beaded
  • Embellishments like beads, buttons, sequins, bows, charms, etc.
  • Face of felt (or skin-tone fabric if you can’t find felt).
  • Details of eyes and a mouth on face. Usually embroidered but I have seen them drawn, with molded faces and even a face cut out of printed fabric.Traditionally eyes are closed but can be adapted to your own creative whims.
  • Hair (Usually of yarn but you can use your imagination here too – use other materials or add a hat.)
  • Stuffed with clean new material like polyfill. (Or a combination of clean re-claimed fabric scraps and polyfill).

I have always traded my Dotee Dolls for other Dotees or other swap items. I would be hesitant to sell something that is not my own original idea, particularly when I know that the person who ‘owns’ the intellectual property has done so in the past. If I ever decided to sell something even vaguely similar I would definitely be talking to Dot first. After taking another look at her blog I am once again entranced and inspired by the intricacy and beauty of her work.

I was just looking at Dot’s Etsy shop, I’ve added a few things to my favourites. With my birthday next month it is always good to keep your favourite’s up to date! It is encouraging that someone who I admire owns (and is now selling) a book which a very precious friend of mine just gave to me in an inspiration package. My wish is that one day I can have the joy of creating such rich art as in the mixed-media art/jewelery book, or something as vibrant and intricate as what Dot creates. It’s not that I want to copy any one else – far from it. I want to continue to develop my own style and bring inspiration to others in the process.

It really can’t hurt to wish and dream, I have dreamed before and now those dreams are my reality.

♥ Sweetypiedie ♥


About sweetypiedie

Sweetypiedie is creative, articulate, compassionate and introspective. Connecting with people is important. Expressing oneself is vital. Her goal is to be a creative force for positive change. Welcome to her portal.
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4 Responses to Blue and Purple Dotee Doll

  1. Rebecca says:

    If you want to, you can totally sell these. No matter where you got the idea from, you made it so you can sell it. Unless you use a strictly limited pattern that doesn’t allow you to sell items made from it, there is no copyright issue. I understand that you are being courteous to the originator but ideas cannot be trademarked or copyrighted. It is so cute, you should share them with others!! So sweet!

    • sweetypiedie says:

      Thank you so much for the encouragement! I’m still pretty new to the crafting world. I know people get snarky about people ‘stealing’ swap ideas, so I figured people could be even more protective of their craft patterns. It’s sometimes hard to know how seriously to take people on-line. Some blogs are super-serious or ultra-professional. I suppose it all comes down to whether you are enjoying your craft for the joy it gives you or if this is your income and bread and butter. Crafting has become big-business these days!

  2. Ingrid Tiffe says:

    A great rundown on what a dotee doll is and the background behind them. Many people have no idea what they are. At least that is what I find when bringing them up in conversation, especially if they are not part of a craft community.

    • sweetypiedie says:

      Thank you. I do try not to assume that everyone will always know what particular crafts are – especially when introducing something new to my blog. I also found when hosting swaps there really wasn’t anywhere that I could refer newbies to to see what was expected. Hopefully in future I can refer them to this post. 🙂

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