A Weather Doll Can Solve Power Struggles Over Clothes


Parenting win! Use a felt “weather doll” to show the kids which clothes to wear for the weather. No more power struggles over seasonally inappropriate choices. Free template. www.booksandgiggles.comMy (beautiful, strong-willed) kids like to decide for
themselves which clothes to wear. I’m okay with this most of the time, as long as they are seasonally appropriate.


The problem for us here in the South is that the season doesn’t always predict what is appropriate. We can get a 70 degree day in January, followed by a dip into the 30s twelve hours later.
It’s a nice problem to have, living somewhere that can get warm weather even in winter.


It does make it hard for the kids to pick the right clothes, though. Some days, when they were toddlers, they just had a case of the “I do its,” and insisted on wearing shorts when it was 38 degrees outside.I love a good power struggle in the morning.

 

Weather Doll #1

 
When my twins were about 3 I came up with a solution that we all really liked. I cut out a little felt “weather doll” that helped them feel independent. Every night I would dress the doll in shorts or pants and short sleeves or long sleeves.


Parenting win! Use a felt “weather doll” to show the kids which clothes to wear for the weather. No more power struggles over seasonally inappropriate choices. Free template. www.booksandgiggles.com
Every morning, the girls would look at the doll to see what to wear. This method worked oh-so-much-better than me telling them verbally – it removed all our power struggles.


The doll itself was super-simple. I just cut it out of some felt scraps leftover from another project. I cut it freehand, so the arms are kind of wonky. And, as you can see, it has no hair.


Fortunately, my kids didn’t care.


Weather Doll #2
 
I decided my little doll needed a makeover.


Parenting win! Use a felt “weather doll” to show the kids which clothes to wear for the weather. No more power struggles over seasonally inappropriate choices. Free template. www.booksandgiggles.com
It’s easy to change the outfits because felt (and some other fabrics) sticks to felt. It’s also easy to make, especially when you have a template. So I’ve made one to share with you.

Materials You’ll Need

  • Freezer paper
  • Pencil
  • Iron and ironing board
  • Felt in several colors, including a sliver of red for the mouth
  • Sharp scissors
  • Googly eyes
  • Craft glue
  • Printout of template (below)
 

Step-by-Step Instructions

 

1. Tear off a sheet of freezer paper the size of the template. It’s easier if you do the body and hair separately.

2. Lay the freezer paper on top of the template, shiny side down. You may want to tape it down in a spot or two to hold it in place.

3. Using a pencil, trace the template onto the freezer paper.

 

Parenting win! Use a felt “weather doll” to show the kids which clothes to wear for the weather. No more power struggles over seasonally inappropriate choices. Free template. www.booksandgiggles.com

4. Lay the freezer paper shiny side down on top of the felt, and iron for a few seconds. You want it to be the minimum amount of time needed to get the freezer paper to stick to the felt.

 

Parenting win! Use a felt “weather doll” to show the kids which clothes to wear for the weather. No more power struggles over seasonally inappropriate choices. Free template. www.booksandgiggles.com

5. Cut out the fused felt and freezer paper, as shown below (Sorry the felt changes from dark pink to light pink — I had to take the ironing pictures later, when my kids weren’t around):

 

Parenting win! Use a felt “weather doll” to show the kids which clothes to wear for the weather. No more power struggles over seasonally inappropriate choices. Free template. www.booksandgiggles.com
6. Peel the freezer paper away from the felt. Save the peeled away paper — you will need it again.
Parenting win! Use a felt “weather doll” to show the kids which clothes to wear for the weather. No more power struggles over seasonally inappropriate choices. Free template. www.booksandgiggles.com
7.  Voila! You have a weather doll.
Parenting win! Use a felt “weather doll” to show the kids which clothes to wear for the weather. No more power struggles over seasonally inappropriate choices. Free template. www.booksandgiggles.com
8. Repeat steps 1-6 for the hair. Glue on googly eyes, and make a mouth with a sliver of red felt. Or, you can use embroidery thread and sew them on like I did with my original doll. Make some little hair bows too, if you like.
9. Now, choose felt or scrap fabric for the doll’s clothing. If you’re using scrap fabric, check that it sticks well to the felt doll. (If it doesn’t, you could give it a felt backing with Wonder Under, but that’s a whole other tutorial….) Lay your freezer paper doll, shiny side down, on top of your fabric. Yes, use the one you peeled off in step 6. Iron it on, just like you did with the doll body.
Parenting win! Use a felt “weather doll” to show the kids which clothes to wear for the weather. No more power struggles over seasonally inappropriate choices. Free template. www.booksandgiggles.com
10. Okay, pretend that that purple felt transformed itself into the floral fabric shown in this next photo. Please? I was rushing to finish before I had to pick up my kids from school, and I used the wrong fabric for this photo.
Here it is all ironed on:
Parenting win! Use a felt “weather doll” to show the kids which clothes to wear for the weather. No more power struggles over seasonally inappropriate choices. Free template. www.booksandgiggles.com
I was really excited to figure out that you can iron the same sheet of freezer paper over and over, and it will still stick well enough for our purposes. So you only have to cut out a template once!
11. Leaving a little margin, neatly cut the fabric out around the doll template.

Parenting win! Use a felt “weather doll” to show the kids which clothes to wear for the weather. No more power struggles over seasonally inappropriate choices. Free template. www.booksandgiggles.com

12. Peel the paper off (save it), trim out the neckline on the fabric, and you have a little shirt! Repeat for pants, and you have an outfit.
Parenting win! Use a felt “weather doll” to show the kids which clothes to wear for the weather. No more power struggles over seasonally inappropriate choices. Free template. www.booksandgiggles.com
Once you have all the outfits you want, teach your kids how to “read” it to see what to wear. If they’re anything like my kids, they’ll love the feeling of independence you’re giving them.


Then, put it into your routine to look at the forecast and dress the doll for them every day. At first I did it when I checked on them before I went to bed.


Later on, my son, who is 3 years older than the twins, looked at the forecast with me and helped me do it. This had the double benefit of giving him something special to do with Mommy, and also teaching him about what temperatures go with each type of clothing.


I do have to add that sometimes even knowing the weather doesn’t help, but that’s a whole other blog post.


 

 


Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

13 thoughts on “A Weather Doll Can Solve Power Struggles Over Clothes