Whimsical Corn Husk Dolls

Whimsical Corn Husk Dolls
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Cornhusk dolls have been made by Native American girls and women for more than a thousand years, probably since the growing and harvesting of corn began. They in turn passed this craft down to the Colonial families. It was a time when nothing was wasted and a purpose was found for everything. Today we can still make these whimsical dolls with our children!
You will need:

Corn husks, fresh or dried, about 8 sections of husk
Cotton balls, or scraps of batting
Scraps of cloth, cording or ribbon, beads, buttons

If you are using dried husks you will need to soak them in water for about 10 minutes to soften them. Fresh husks can be used as is.

Place a piece of cotton in the middle of a section of husk, twisting and tying it with a piece of string to make a head. Create your doll's arms by folding another husk and tying it near each end to make hands. Slip these arms between the husks that were below the head you made. Tie the "waist" of your doll tightly with string. Arrange more husks around the doll's waist so that they overlap slightly and then tie them in place with the string. Fold the husks down carefully. You can trim the husks straight across at the bottom to even your doll's dress hem. You'll now need to let your corn husk doll dry completely.

After she dries, you can leave your figure as is, or add a face with a thin tipped marker or paint. You can attach fake hair if you wish too. Glue on some tiny buttons to the dress or beads and cotton fabric to the doll for a skirt or shawl. You can use very thin cord or ribbon as a belt too.

You can dye your corn husks with fabric dye if you wish. Mix the dye as directed on the package and place your husks in the dye one at a time. Remove the husks when they are the color you want to use and rinse the husks in cold water, then drain. You can also soak them in food coloring for 30 minutes, or for an old fashioned dye, try using strong coffee or tea. Pat them dry before making your dolls.


About The Author

Brenda Hyde is a freelance writer living on ten acres in rural Michigan with her husband and three kids. She is a mom, grandma, gardener, cook and writer. She blogs on all of these topics at Harvestmoongazette.blogspot.com.


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