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.
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.
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):
6. Peel the freezer paper away from the felt. Save the peeled away paper — you will need it again.
7. Voila! You have a weather doll.
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.
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:
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.
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.
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.