You guys!! I have been wanting to make a plush doll for so many months and I finally got it together these past few weeks. It was SO fun.
My friends’ kiddo had a mermaid doll when we were at coffee recently, and I had an OVERWHELMING urge to make some for my niece, Penelope. You know that feeling?
Anyway! Here’s my mermaid doll pattern. I hope you guys get a chance to make one too—
-mermaid patterns: pattern 1, pattern 2, pattern 3
-cotton fabric (in any skin tone)
–sequin fabric (and interfacing if needed, we used fusible interface)
-yarn for hair and acrylic paint to match yarn color
-sequins to decorate
1. Print our your patterns and cut out your pieces along the dashed lines.
2. Tape the head to the body and the fin to the tail at the dashed line areas so you end up with two patterns. (one for body and one for tail) Fold your cotton and sequin fabric into two layers (right sides together) and use your patterns to cut out the body and tail pieces (add the interfacing to the sequin fabric if you want to). Sew along the edges with a 1/2″ seam allowance and leave the top of the tail and bottom of the body open so you can turn your pieces right side out through those openings. Before turning them right side out, cut a few “V” notches into the turns, and then use a long object (like the end of a pencil) to help you push the fabric back through the opening. Once it’s right side out, stuff your shape with stuffing to your liking (use the pencil end again to push it into the small spaces), and insert the body into the tail opening. Fold the top open edge of the tail seam in towards the doll and hand stitch the tail to the body.
3. Use acrylic (or fabric) paint to cover the scalp area of your doll (this will help her not have “bald spots” without having to completely cover her hair in yarn—because that would take forever). When you apply the paint, try to use a very light/thin coat. A heavy coat will be too hard to stitch through. 😉
4. You don’t have to add the Sharpie dots, but I find them helpful to keep the spacing consistent. This is the minimal amount of “hair plugs” needed. If you look at the zoomed out photos of both dolls, the purple hair doll has about twice as much hair. It’s easier to style if you put more plugs in, but if you leave it long or in a braid, it looks good either way.
5. Stitch the yarn “hair” into the dotted areas, knotting so it’s secure.
6. When you get to the bang area, you can leave a little gap and then cover it with a braid at the end. Stitch on the bangs and then trim them after they are all attached. Then add a little bit of fabric glue to the forehead and style them straight until the glue dries (if they’re still a little crazy, like the photo below, just keep brushing them down until they relax).
Stitch on some eye details or add buttons for eyes. I’m a fan of the sleepy eyes!
Don’t forget their seashell buttons and sweet necklaces. Done and done! Enjoy your cute dolls.
Oh, and don’t forget—these make great gifts!!
The hair looks so cute braided too.
Thanks for reading, you guys! If you make one of these dolls, please tag them with #ABMcrafty on Instagram so I can see. My absolute favorite part of craft blogging is seeing what YOU make. xx- Elsie
Credits// Author and Photography: Elsie Larson, Project Assistant: Laura Gummerman. Photos edited with A Beautiful Mess Actions.
Your Little Mermaid is adorable. Where could I get the pattern as I would love to make this doll for a little girl going through a rough time. I know it would cheer her up! Thanks so much.
Hi! The pattern is in the supply list. 🙂
Aw! I just adore those supercute little mermaids! They ‘re gonna be on the easter candle that, here in greece, we traditionally give to our goddaughters for easter sunday! Thank you so much! Keep up the good work ????
These are So adorable! I just paid almost 30 bucks for a mermaid doll for my 3 year old that doesn’t look as cute as this! Wow. I will absolutely try these out with my other 2 daughters. 🙂
Patttern will not. Print
Hi Margie! If you right click, you can download the patterns and then print them. Email us at support AT abeautifulmess DOT com if you need anything else!
Hi thanks for this lovely pattern and easy to make wig idea. The women in our Women’s Support group are making mermaids tomorrow. Great to find a free pattern, for an easy to achieve, attractive mermaid.
Th women we support all have experience of mental distress / illness and or addiction and I love seeing their whole demeanour brighten when they are successful making something they love. Can’t wait for tomorrow.
Thanks from Aotearoa (New Zealand) .
Hi these dolls are lovely i made 1 and even made a video
Do have a look
It looks great!!!
your dolls are so cute but when i printed the pattern it is not clear at all
OMG! this is too cute for words, thanks for sharing =)
I’m a little confused about what to do with the hair after the plugs.
Hello Elsie, I love your mermaids!!!! they are so cute!!!! keep your great art girl! I need to make one of these for my little girl that loves mermaid for this Christmas, please can you tell me what yarn did you use for the hair?
Thanks for your time.
I made my mermaid, she’s sooooo cute, THANK YOU for the ace idea!! I’ve just posted some pics on my Instagram @thisislullaby.
I’m only publishing your comment to show you that I have nothing to hide.
Like I said in the post, I WAS inspired by another mermaid doll toy (not from an Etsy shop though, from the mall). I work so hard to support Etsy sellers and I don’t appreciate your accusation.
By the way- the dolls linked here are adorable, so I hope someone sees this and buys one who doesn’t want to sew one.
Not original, see https://www.etsy.com/shop/stapleydolls?section_id=17456014
After much fiddling, I have done it. I’M OFF!!!!! Thanks xx
This is rwally the best project for kids you ever did!
Your niece will love these dolls, I’m sure!
Sooo cute! I wanna make one that looks like Ariel. 🙂
Hi Vicky! Sorry about that! Are you trying to print them directly from the download link? Make sure that you are selecting the option to fit to one page when printing. – Jacki
I am in love with these and desperate to make one (I’ve picked out all the bits!)… but I can’t print the patterns out for some reason. They are really large, and only some sections print out. I might be being tech stupid… but can you help?!
These dolls are just so good. I can’t get enough of how great the hair looks. Great work!