I like traditions in theory; but in practice, I dread offending anyone or being branded a heretic by charging ahead on my own creative initiative and accidentally overstepping my bounds. No matter; my daughter dearly wanted a doll, and I thought I could at least take a stab at it. My friend lent me her pattern and showed me how to make the head.
I fell in love with this doll as I was making it, and I poured my heart and soul into it. And so did G -- I asked her to help me by describing what kind of a 'person' this doll was to become. G described a girl who was older than she, "about fifteen", adventurous and practical. G was very clear that she was to have "jeans and a white, V-neck, long-sleeved T-shirt".
"Yes, white, V-neck, long-sleeved T-shirt."
For the hair, I took stock of my yarn situation, and dyestuffs. I had scored some mercerized cotton yarns at Value Village, and I had plenty of plain ecru wool, and also a bit of cotton/silk blend in a disagreeable pale salmon colour that I had inherited from a friend's stash a couple years ago. I had alum to mordant the protein fibres, and some cheap red wine to mordant some of the cotton, and just enough onion skins to make a medium-strength bath. And I thought, why not rose hips too? Once the onion skins were depleted, I popped in some lemon zinger tea bags....