I found a book at Barnes and Noble about 4 years ago that had lessons on how to sew sock dolls (Stray Sock Sewing by Daniel). Between that book (which is perfect for beginning sock doll sewers), a few other books, and the magazine Stuffed, I learned how to create sock dolls/softies. I make them as gifts for friends, or just for something to do with my hands if I get the urge to create something.
I have a large collection of socks (I only sew with new socks), buttons, ribbons, bows, yarn, and fabrics. I keep interesting fabrics, especially old shirts and dresses from my daughter. I mostly sew with heavy duty thread, as you need to pull on it with some force sometimes. Beverly’s is a great place to get specialty buttons, and other odds and ends like curtain pulls and letter beads.
Below is a gallery of dolls that I’ve made over the years. I even managed to get one of our cats, Julius, to pose with the itty bitty kitty dolls.
Julius with itty bitty kitty dolls. I sew these from baby socks.
My version of a totoro, a Japanese ogre (from the Studio Ghibli film My Neighbor Totoro.
Sheevil, the evil big horned sheep, with her baby. She is cute and pink, but notice the crazy look in her eyes and those razor sharp fangs? Still want to pat her on the head? I think not.
Medusa (yes it was tedious to sew eyes and a tongue on all her head snakes) and two ballerinas. She turns people to stone to create captive audiences for her two dancer friends.
Megg the chicken, slouchy guy, and a foot creature I made from a pair of stripy knee high toe socks.
Soccer sock monsters I made from Emma and Sam’s soccer socks. They each played one season (Mia Hamm and David Beckham they are not).
Emma with Big Headed Baby. I sewed her from a small child’s sweater. She’s the baby sister Emma always wanted.
Three dogs. Nuff said.
The sea monster in the back was a request from Sam. It has no name. He doesn’t know why. The pigs are fun, and the pink ruffly socks on the outside two make them extra pink and piggy.
Another chicken, plus lots of eggs. I made the eggs as a fundraiser for the kids’ school science team, so I tried to make them appealing to lots of different interests.