|Mr. Felix the Fox, all dressed up. Brent and Margot think I should make matching red pants for him.|
This was a lovely pattern to make up. It's all hand stitched using a few simple stitches like the whip stitch and the blanket stitch. The pattern is simple and straightforward though without all the doll making experience I have, I do believe I would have struggled making this specifically in the stuffing of the fox and attaching the head to the neck. There are tricks I have learned along the way and one of them is to stuff the head most of the way, begin sewing the head to the neck and then continue to stuff as you sew. So these directions are very brief with not much explanation and without tips. Compare these directions to those of a Gail Wilson doll and these directions are lacking. When you make a Gail Wilson doll, it's like taking a class in doll making. But that being said, I thoroughly enjoyed making Felix and will be making his wife Charlotte.
|Mr. Fox without his clothes|
To make Felix posable, you insert pipe cleaners in the arms and legs before stuffing. I thought this was very clever!
The beauty of this pattern is in the high quality material used and the stitching. Wool felt is expensive but beautiful compared to craft felt. It's worth the money though! The felt is gorgeous. And if you are going to spend all this time making this small fox, you might as well as invest in high quality materials. I love how all of the stitching is visible. My best advice is to stitch slowly making sure your stitches are nice and even. Don't be afraid to take out a stitch or two if you notice one is longer than the other or one is misplaced. It's worth the time to make them all very neat and even.
Margot thinks he looks like a deer.
This is nice close up where you can see the stitching. I really love doing handwork.
|Margot posed Felix with one of our angels. They are holding hands!|
I also made two buttonholes by hand- one on his pants and one on his coat.. This was fun and on felt (which doesn't fray) it's purely decorative. My first buttonhole was awful so I took it out and re did it. They other two were not bad! I made his button on his coat from green felt which was also fun. As suggested, I did the blanket stitch around his coat which really adds a lovely touch.
|Tools from Gail Wilson|
The other thing that made the biggest difference in making this doll was using the right tools. These tools are tools I bought when making the Gail Wilson dolls. The hemostats (the tool in the middle that looks like scissors) are the best tool ever and if you buy one tool to help you stuff a doll, this is the one! The great things about the hemostats is that you can grab a tuft of wool, close and lock the hemostat, and then put the wool in place in the doll and release it. Then you can use the tool on the the right. That is a great tool of tamping down the wool stuffing until it's firm enough for your preference. The tool on the right has a sharper point and is used for moving or loosening up a clump of wool in the stuffed toy. Sometimes while stuffing you might get a section that has been stuffed too firmly and this can help reposition the wool without having to start over.
Margot is anxiously awaiting for me to start on Charlotte!