Woolen yarn dolls are more primitive than the Voodoo dolls made out of Spanish moss, although a certain skill is required to make such dolls. Such Voodoo dolls are externally reminiscent of old toys, and such appearance doesn’t affect the powers of the Voodoo doll: the same colors are used, the same needles, the same spells.
In order to create woolen yarn doll, you will need a tangle of thick woolen yarn and a thick cardboard.
To begin, cut a rectangle out of the cardboard, with a length approximately equal to the height of your desired doll. Wrap the thread along the long side (the more windings, the better). Now it’s time to choose a place to firmly tie a knot and remove the thread from the piece of cardboard.
Create a small ball from rolling a different thread from the same color. This will be the head of the Voodoo doll (in the end result, the head will be slightly bigger than the ball you rolled). Place the ball under the tied knot you already made. Tie a knot under the ball so that the threads on all sides entwine it. Now the head has acquired its final shape.
(Note: the step below is not needed if you’ve made at least 200 thread windings).
Cut your cardboard again, but this time a smaller size (length approximately equal to the span of your doll’s hands). Wrap the thread along the long side, but this time stop at 50-70 windings. Remove the threads from the cardboard and tie two knots, leaving 1 to 1.5cm on the edges. The rounded ends should be cut.
Moving on to making the doll’s hands. Separate some threads from the body to make hands from both sides. They will probably be too long, so there is a need to shorten them a bit, and tie knots leaving 1 to 1.5cm space from the end. Create a waist for the doll with a regular knot.
The female Voodoo doll is ready. If the skit looks messy, you can simply cut the thread and adjust properly.
If you want to make a male Voodoo doll, split the skirt into two equal parts and tie them with knots. The rounded thread ends should be cut.
To completely finish your craft, add hair and eyes to the doll.
A few more tips for making a woolen yarn Voodoo doll:
- Sewing the hair on top is not necessary, as you can make the hair from threads that make up the doll’s head. Just cut a few loops the wrap the ball. Since they are connected to the top, they will just hang down.
- If you want to make a two-colored Voodoo doll, weave the thread of the second color on the very first stage of making, but don’t make the doll’s hands and body in different colors.
About Mambo Ava Marie
Ava Marie has spent most of her younger days in Haiti, studying and understanding Vodou from the highest ranks. She has years of experience and has joined forces with us to write and share her insights.