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  • Publisher: Search Press
  • Edition: BC Paperback
  • Publication: 07 January 2021
  • ISBN 13/EAN: 9781782213079
  • Carton Qty: 22
  • Size: 216x280 mm
  • Illustrations: 288
  • Pages: 144
  • RRP: $29.95
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Cloth Doll Faces


A practical guide to creating character and expression by Ray Slater

Edelweiss Buy Now
Book Description

Discover techniques and ideas to create cloth faces filled with personality in this book by leading international dollmaker and textile artist, Ray Slater.

Leading international doll-maker Ray Slater reveals her secrets to creating vibrant and dynamic faces in cloth. Brimming with ideas and practical advice, this is an invaluable guide for cloth doll-makers everywhere.

The face is the key to bringing life and personality to a cloth doll. Often thought of as being the hardest part of the making process, creating the face is, in fact, relatively easy and enjoyable to do. Just by following a few simple rules a whole world of wonderfully expressive, fun characters can be created. Ray will show you how, taking you from the initial inspiration sources, the design and drawing process, to the final colouring, sewing and embellishment of the head.

Using just three basic face designs flat, three-dimensional and collaged you'll learn how to create a fantastic collection of characters. With tips on how to adjust proportions, hues and positioning of the features, you will learn how to make a whole host of faces with different looks and expressions. Fully illustrated step-by-step instructions break down the process of making each kind of face, and there are techniques to help you make your own unique doll. Finally, Ray shares two body patterns in her book to suit all three head types, and body templates are included.

Table of Contents

Introduction 6

Face & doll-making notions 8
Materials 10, Tools 12, Drawing & colouring equipment14

Inspiration & design 16
Influences, sources & styles 18, Developing a design 20

Designing & colouring a face 22
Proportions of the face 24, Drawing eyes 26, Drawing noses 34, Drawing mouths 37, Shading a realistic face 40, Gallery of simple line faces 42, Gallery of realistic faces 45, Gallery of decorative faces 50, Designing a collage face 53

Face-making techniques 56
Flat faces 58, Dimensional faces 68, Extra head details 82, Collage faces 88

Basic doll-making techniques 102
Before you begin 104, Basic bodies 106, Basic collage bodies 114

Templates 116

About the Author

About Ray Slater

Ray Slater studied Embroidered Textiles at Goldsmiths College and Theatre Costume at Croydon College of Art before working in theatre, film and television. She curated an exhibition of cloth dolls from the US, Canada, Australia and the UK in 2003, and is now one of the UK’s leading teachers of dollmaking. She practices a wide range of textile-related subjects and her current work has evolved from her passion for costume and textiles. She is the author of Cloth Dolls for Textile Artists and teaches throughout the UK, Europe and America.

To see more of Ray's work visit


Book Threads Magazine

Whether creating a doll or incorporating faces within your embroidery Ray Slater's new book is full of inspiration. It is full of tips on how to get that unique look.

Ray explains that it all begins with the design, and she proves that faces are not as scary as you might think.


There are plenty of examples in their various categories, line drawing, realistic faces and decorative faces ... Ray finishes the book with a quick workshop on making a basic doll, with plenty of templates of the suggestions to encourage all ages to have a go. This book deserves a place on the bookshelf of everyone who is young at heart and still enjoys doll. I know that copy will end up on mine. 


I was excited to receive a review copy of this book by Ray Slater book from the publishers, Search Press.

Its a new area for me, but combining textiles with painting would broaden my skills especially in the latter area.

The book starts with materials and tools needed and moves onto inspiration and design. She takes her inspiration from many sources anything with a human face, such as portraits, sculpture, paintings, film, and fashion. Slaters design development is so logical and developed in small steps which can be followed easily.
She then moves onto drawing faces and provides plentiful diagrams of how to draw each feature eyes, noses, mouth, eyebrows. A great feature of this book are the galleries copious drawings of facial features in different styles simple faces, long faces, square faces etc. Some are fantasy/ decorative while others are realistic.
Faces can be formed in several ways. Flat fabric can be shaded by painting. They can be further developed by needle sculpting. Or they can be totally 3D, with features such as noses and moustaches made separately and sewn on. Ways to add hair? That's there, as is adding real eyelashes. All those techniques are shown and explained.

Throughout the second half of the book Slater has examples to inspire you, showing design sheets as well as finished faces.

The book isnt primarily about doll making as it concentrates on how to construct faces. However towards the end she discusses again in depth how to make basic doll shapes and includes templates for this. She also has a plethora of templates for faces.

This book gives me the confidence to expand on my textiles and sewing activities, and to be creative in a new way. Its the most exciting book Ive seen in a long time and one I would purchase. Definitely recommend this.


Sew Magazine

Ever wanted to learn the secrets behind creating cloth dolls packed with personality. Leading international dollmaker Ray Slater is on hand to guide you through every step of the process: from initial inspiration to drawing up your design, all the way through to adding the finishing touches. Simply mix and match the faces and bodies to create a first-class collection of characters!

Customer Review

I particularly like the templates at the back of the book and help on drawing faces. Anyone who enjoys art and being creative would find this book very interesting. Before reading this book, I never knew a cloth doll could be so expressive!

Customer Review
Angela Merritt

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