How to make human hair wigs for dolls

Written by caroline adams
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How to make human hair wigs for dolls
A human hair wig for this doll included long curls set with a curling iron. (doll image by Lyudmila B from Fotolia.com)

A human hair doll wig allows the collector to style the doll's hair in more ways than wigs made of mohair or plastic derivatives. A human hair wig has less bulk to it so the wig looks natural and because it is human hair, it can stand the heat of a curling iron or flat iron. Human hair can also be dyed so that the appearance of the wig can change as desired by the doll collector. A well-made human hair doll wig can last more than a lifetime.

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Things you need

  • Cling film
  • Rubber bands
  • Crinoline
  • Scissors
  • Straight pins
  • Needle
  • Thread
  • Human hair
  • Measuring tape
  • Craft glue
  • Double stick tape

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Remove the old wig or hair from the doll. Use pliers to remove any remaining stubs of hair that might be left behind.

  2. 2

    Place a piece of cling film around the doll's head and secure it with a rubber band around the doll's neck. Check for any wrinkles or puckers in the cling film as it must be perfectly smooth.

  3. 3

    Cut a piece of crinoline fabric large enough to go over the doll's head and be secured with a rubber band around the neck. Smooth the crinoline fabric over the head.

  4. 4

    Mark the outline of the wig cap by running your finger along the doll's hairline. Use a fabric marker to mark it. Include openings around the ears.

  5. 5

    Remove the crinoline from the doll's head and cut along the fabric marker line.

  6. 6

    Place the wig cap back on the doll's head and secure it with pins. Add several running stitches around the back edge of the wig cap so that it conforms to the shape of the doll's head and fits snugly. Running stitches are small in-and-out stitches.

  7. 7

    Decide whether the parting in the hair will be in the centre or off to one side and mark it with the fabric marker. Remove the wig cap from the doll and sew a small line of running stitches where the parting will be placed.

  8. 8

    Measure the length of the hair needed by measuring from the top of the doll's head to wherever you would like it to end. Add an extra 5 cm (2 inches) to allow for sewing and styling.

  9. 9

    Gather a section of human hair and place the centre of it over the sewing line that indicates the parting. Sew that section of hair to the wig cap by placing stitches where the parting has been placed. Continue to sew in sections of hair until the parting is completely covered.

  10. 10

    Flip over the hair on one side of the parting. Place another section of hair directly below and sew it to the wig cap. Repeat until another line of hair has been sewn to the wig cap.

  11. 11

    Flip over the last section of hair that has been sewn in and sew in another line of hair. Repeat this process until the entire side of the wig has been covered.

  12. 12

    Flip all the hair that has been sewn in back to their original positions so that the hair is now layered and falls naturally. Repeat this entire process on the other side of the parting.

  13. 13

    Create a more natural hairline by sewing in small groups of strands of hair around the inside edge of the wig cap. This will help cover the edge of the wig cap while allowing for styling curls near the face for a softer look.

  14. 14

    Add fringe by sewing in longer pieces of hair to the inside edge of at the front of the wig cap.

  15. 15

    Make a wig without a parting by sewing the first row of hair to the inside at the front of the wig. Flip it forward to add the second row of hair and so on. Flip all the hair to the back for a full wig. Add small groups of strands of hair to the inside edge of the wig just as in the wig with a parting.

  16. 16

    Style the human hair wig for your doll as desired.

  17. 17

    Attach the doll's wig using craft glue or, if you like to change wigs, use a few pins to hold it in place if the doll has a vinyl head. For porcelain dolls, attach a small piece double stick tape to the doll's head and the inside of the wig.

Tips and warnings

  • You can buy human hair at beauty supply shops or you can find old human hair wigs at resale shops. Just wash and condition them before using. Remember, you can dye them any colour you like and the old wigs provide a lot of hair

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