Can dolls kill? If you’re an aficionado of horror books and movies, you’ll probably say they can. But dolls are inanimate objects without minds of their own. Humans kill, but in Death By Killer Mop Doll, the dolls I’ve created for a new television show become a killer’s props. Pity my poor mop dolls. They took quite a beating before I figured out whodunit. If you’d like to make a mop doll of your own, they’re quite easy and require no special crafting skills. Anyone who can use a pair of scissors, some tacky glue, and a glue gun, can make a mop doll. Here’s how:
Basic Mop Doll Directions
24 oz. mop head (available in the cleaning section of most hardware stores, discount centers, and supermarkets), 4” Dylite® (smooth craft foam) ball, 5” x 5” natural muslin, wooden craft stick, 3/16” black half-round beads, rubber bands, tacky glue, glue gun (optional), blush or pink powdered chalk, 1/4 yd. 3/8” wide ribbon, 1/2 yd. cotton or cotton blend fabric, 1-1/4 yd. 1-1/2” gathered lace, desired lace or ribbon embellishments for neck edge, needle and thread, 8” straw doll’s hat.
(NOTE: All gluing can be done with either tacky glue or a glue gun except for attaching the muslin to the Dylite® ball and gluing the dress. These steps must be done with tacky glue.)
1. Cut a 4-3/4” diameter circle from muslin for the face. Snip 1/4” cuts around the perimeter of the muslin circle. Using tacky glue, glue the muslin to the front of the Dylite® ball, smoothing out any wrinkles.
2. Poke a hole in the bottom of the Dylite® ball directly under the muslin face. Glue the craft stick into the ball, allowing approximately 3-1/2” of the stick to extend.
3. Spread the mop apart on a table. Randomly pull 26 strands from the mop. Set strands aside.
4. With the bottom of the doll head adjacent to the top of the mop, glue the craft stick centered over the mop tape.
5. Glue several strands of mop closest to the head down over the craft stick and mop tape to conceal them. Flip the doll over and repeat the previous step to conceal the mop tape on the reverse side. Wrap one of the mop strands you set aside around the doll’s neck, gluing in place.
6.. At both the left and right sides of the doll, take the top 18 mop strands. Trim 3” from length, saving trimmed pieces to use for hair. Braid strands for arms, securing each wrist with a rubber band. Glue ribbon around wrists to cover rubber bands.
7. Tie the body together under the arms with one mop strand to form a waist. Trim ends even with bottom of mop.
8. Cut remaining mop strands into 3” lengths. Run a line of glue around the edge of the muslin for hairline. Fold strands in half, gluing folded edge to the muslin. Run a second line of glue in front of the hairline. Glue a second row of folded strands in front of the first row. Place the doll face down. Working in even horizontal rows from the base of the neck to the top of the head, continue gluing hair in place.
9. Glue beads in place for eyes.
10. Use blush or chalk to color cheeks.
11. To make the dress, press under short edges of fabric 1/2” twice and glue in place. Glue gathered lace to right side of front bottom edge of fabric.
12. Press under remaining long edge of fabric. Run a gathering stitch along this edge. Gather fabric and tie under arms at center back of doll.
13. Glue lace and/or ribbon embellishment under neck.
14. Glue hat to doll’s head.
Death By Killer Mop Doll
Overdue bills and constant mother vs. mother-in-law battles at home are bad enough. But crafts editor Anastasia Pollack's stress level is maxed out when she and her fellow American Woman editors get roped into unpaid gigs for a revamped morning TV show. Before the glue is dry on Anastasia's mop dolls, morning TV turns crime drama when the studio is trashed and the producer is murdered. Former co-hosts Vince and Monica—sleazy D-list celebrities—stand out among a lengthy lineup of suspects, all furious over the show's new format. And Anastasia has no clue her snooping has landed her directly in the killer's unforgiving spotlight.