I've been playing around with faces this week.  I wasn't quite completely happy about the face that was emerging from the Kathleen Early pattern.  She has the nose and lips sewn on after.  I'm one who likes to make everything with one long thread and be done.  The Precious Moments doll I've made has a nose that is crocheted right in so I played around with both patterns.  And this is what I've come up with so far.

The eyes are terrific in the Early pattern.  When I first made them I made them bug out and thought they were strange looking....well, duh!!  they are supposed to bug IN and then be eye sockets for the eyes that go in later!  Well, all righty, then.  I got it and they are quite nice.  Haven't tried making the eyes yet....we'll see about that.

The nose bothered me greatly.  The Early pattern has it crocheted as a separate piece and then sewed on.  I really didn't like that much at all so I got out my Precious Moments pattern and sorta put them together.  So this is what I got.

Between the eyes make an uneven number of stitches.  Then in the next row, in the middle stitch, dc 4 or 6 times to make the main part of the nose.  I think it gives it a little more definition to dc once in the stitch before and again in the stitch after.  In the next row either single crochet across if you want a larger nose, or skip this row and go on to the next which is this: sc half the nose stitches together twice.  i.e.: if you made 4 stitches for the nose, now sc tog the first sc and the first 2 of the nose, then sc tog the other 2 of the nose and the other sc.  Let me put this in my own shorthand:

R1: in the 5 stitches between the eyes
skip one.....dc.....4dc.....dc.....skip one

R2: sc across [optional]

R3: sc3tog 2 times

R4: sc across

Variations of the numbers and rows will make the kind of nose you want.  Play around with it.  I like a tiny little button nose on my baby dolls but for the little boy I made a more pronounced nose with a little tip and actually 2 nostrils.

Under the nose, I found that simply sc across will make a good place for the lips.  So far I'm still sewing them on but I'll work on that later.

The chin is easy: double crochet about 3 times under the lips in two rows:

sc.....3 dc.....sc

This makes a little bump for the chin.

Now let's get to the actual face itself.
Of course it is symmetrical so get rid of the opposite side and follow the one side instructions backwards.  i.e.:

hdc in 4.....2hdc in 4.....[nose].....2hdc in 4.....hdc in 4

well, cross out the part after the [nose].....it is useless and confusing.....just do the first part backwards.

Cheeks seem to be a series of increases and decreases depending on how fat you want them.  i.e.:

under the eyes:
R1: hdc in 4.....2hdc in 2.....hdc in 2
R2: hdc in 3.....2hdc in 6....hdc
R2: hdc in 4.....hdc2tog 5 times.....hdc in 2

I skipped one stitch at che beginning and end of each face row.  That way it seemed to shape the head without decreasing around the back.  At the very bottom couple of rows I did decrease 3 or 4 stitches.  Then I like to add a row or two of hdc to make a sort of neck.

Well, the point of all this is that it seems easier for me to think of the faces as three different parts.....one cheek.....nose.....the opposite cheek.  Now I'm not thinking of an interminable path of strange stitches but of a block of cheek and nose and cheek.  I'm all for simplifying anything I can.

I've made these poor dollies so many times, they are going to be worn out before I get them finished and sent!!

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