Hey guys! Today I’m posting about the Sherlock doll that I put together as a Christmas gift for my friend Sabrina. He goes with the 11th Doctor (Matt Smith) that I made her for her birthday… All she needs now is a knit Tom Hiddleston, and her sexy British male triumvirate will be complete!!! Muaha!!
This was my first non Doctor Who doll, and the first time I needed to do curly hair. I wasn’t satisfied with any of the curl techniques from knitting, so I actually ended up learning how to crochet just to get the look I wanted. Here’s the finished product!
And here is the Ravelry link if you want to know the materials.
So I will just confess right now, I’m not that familiar with the show. I do like Benemadingdong Cumberbatch though, and from what I’ve seen of the show, I really enjoy his portrayal of everyone’s favorite consulting detective. When I was doing color selection for the project, I wasn’t really sure what to make under his signature grey coat, until I discovered this awesome figure from big chief studios that basically did the color choosing for me:
That man can wear the hell out of a purple shirt. I’ve since learned that fans have developed their own moniker for this mysterious article of clothing that apparently only appears in one or two episodes: “The Purple Shirt of Sex.” The name caught on among Cumberbatch fans, and fanned by the flames of the internet, it became a “thing” worthy of a hashtag.
This time around I actually photographed the act of sewing together the front and back halves of his body, with terrifying results! He looks like a creepy blank-faced conjoined twin thing. This is the method of doll making I learned from Lizzard Crafts’s Finn Doll, two knitted flat halves that get mattressed stitched together.
I put a black suit jacket on him the same way I did the 10th Doctor’s blue suit jacket. Once the plastic eyes were in and the smile was sewed on, I was able to start exploring hair options. Using a combination of online tutorials and help from a friend in the office (THANKS MEGG!), I made a couple of test curls and laid them on his head. I think he actually looked pretty cute and funny with a curl ‘Mohawk.’
At this point I started making his scarf with a simple garter stitch. I couldn’t decide on the light blue or dark blue scarf, but eventually went with the dark blue. That 11th Doctor next to him was actually the second I made, intended for my friend Kim for Christmas. I love that the green tip of the sonic is almost glowing in this picture, it’s because I strung some shiny floss in with the yarn 🙂
For Sherlock’s signature grey coat, I used a technique I’d never done before: blocking. For non-knitters, blocking is when you soak your knit piece in water for a bit, then pin it into the shape you want, and let it dry. This combats the problem of curling, which happens a lot in that stockinette stitch I use for everything. Here’s a picture of my coat pieces blocking.
I was really glad I did it, because if I didn’t, it would have curled so badly it wouldn’t have looked like a coat at all. I finished the scarf and sewed together the coat. Also added some buttons for interest and to actually make it look like outerwear. He’s looking like himself, all he needs is a head of curly locks!
So at this point I made a ton of those little brown corkscrews in varying lengths and degrees of curliness, and began placing them on the head/securing them with T-pins. (Just a little side commercial, I LOVE T-PINS for knitting!!!) During this process it felt less like knitting and more like sculpting a statue. I took his outer coat off while I was doing this so it wouldn’t get in the way.
One of the things I really aim to do with my dolls is to make the hair so that it’s zero maintenance for whoever gets to keep him. That means that I not only sewed the hair in at the roots, but I also sewed in the tips, and took a few stitches at varying degrees along the lengths of the curls to keep them in perfect place. Now he can be thrown around, punched in the head, snuggled with and rolled over on, and his hair will still be the same as the day I made him. Here it is all sewn down! He’s all finished!
Since Steven Moffat is the showrunner for both Doctor Who and Sherlock, I couldn’t resist getting a photo of Sherlock and the Doctor together. It’s Moffat’s boys!
At last the time came to deliver all three of the dolls on my project table to their respective owners. I couldn’t bear to just toss them in the back seat, so I buckled them up together in the front. If any of you watch Adventure Time, you’ll recognize Finn. That pattern is entirely available online for free, I mentioned the Lizzard Crafts blog earlier… but here’s the link again for anyone out there who is lazy like me.
I guess I got a little overexcited with the hair for sherlock, because this is my box of leftovers! O.o
The possibilities are endless!! Well, almost. In closing, here’s a sneaky selfie I grabbed at Sabrina’s house!