Friday, May 7, 2010

Miss Hickory Doll, Pattern, and Instructions

When my daughter was young we read, several times!, a wonderful book called Miss Hickory by Carolyn Sherwin Bailey. It was a Newberry award winner in the late 1940's, I think. The story is about an independent minded little doll, made from a hickory nut and applewood twig, who must fend for herself when the dollmaker and her family leave cold New Hampshire and go 'south' to Boston for the winter. Though she is independent and feisty, Miss Hickory learns to gracefully accept help from crow, squirrel, cat and other friends.

It took me 35+ years, but at long last I have created a Miss Hickory Doll! I think she matches pretty well the charming book illustrations by Ruth Gannett and the spirit of the character portrayed by Carolyn Sherwin Bailey.

In the next several posts I will give instructions for making your own Miss Hickory doll. But, you must read the story first!! That will surely influence your characterization of the doll.
Thanks to Salley Mavor for allowing me to present my version of a type of doll she has been making for many years. Salley has illustrated several children's book with her "stumpwork" fabric art, as well as presenting patterns and instructions for her charming little "Wee Folk" dolls.


  1. Love your doll and blog!
    Invite you to visit my blog.

  2. I have read the book twice and looking forward to instructions of how to make one, thanks so much, Linda

  3. Oh my goodness she is just wonderfully charming!! I will be back to watch the process!! Now I must look for the book!
    Thankyou Thea for sharing!!!

  4. I first read this great book when i was young, then I read it to my children when they were young, and we all absolutely loved it. You've captured the very essence of the spirited and sprightly Miss Hickory with this doll. Thanks so much for sharing the tutorial!!


  5. oh my gosh..this was one of my all time favorite books growing up and still is today. I have always thought about making a Miss Hickory doll and how cool it would be to have a lifelike one standing on my desktop to just bring me a smile....and you have created a perfect one! THANKS so much for sharing it all with us....and I think you should have someone mass market this to go along with a new resale of the book or something it is such a good doll design! PERFECTLY fitting the book...I imagine a whole set of characters could be designed like is simply beautiful! I am going to have to save your link to your blog so I can follow along always!

  6. I've always loved this book, since the first time I read it when I was about 8 years old. I have a paperback copy of it today and have to admit, I do re read it once in awhile, even now. Your doll is so adorable, it really looks like the spunky and charming Miss Hickory!