Inspired by the ballet, Les Sylphides, we decided to make some pocket sylph dolls. They are so fun to make, and even more fun to play with. Follow along to learn how to make your own ballerina sylphs, flower fairies, and poet dolls. Our YouTube video (see below) will guide you through each step.
These sweet little dolls may be tiny, but they require quite a long list of materials and tools. To help you in making these dolls, we’ve put together a detailed list of supplies, with clickable links. We found that the right materials are key to making these dolls. Once you have the materials gathered, you and your children can enjoy making a variety of dolls. Each doll will be totally unique!
Here is a list of the materials we used:
Floral wire should be cloth covered, 18″ long, and 22 guage. The guage is important. We tried a different guage at first, and it was more difficult to bend. Interesting fact – the higher the guage, the thinner and more easily bent the wire is. 22 guage seems a nice balance between easy to bend while making the doll, but stiff enough to keep its form when the doll is finished. We found our floral wire at Hobby Lobby. A similar wire can be found on Amazon.
For the tiny details on these dolls, we decided to get a fine tip hot glue gun. We think this type of glue gun is really helpful. This KeLDE glue gun comes with some hot glue sticks. Hot glue sticks, of course, are also needed for the dolls. You will also need needle nose pliers, scissors, and ruler or tape measure.
Paints, paint brushes, toothpicks, and Q-tips
We used Apple Barrel acrylic paints to paint on the hair and faces. It is also helpful to have small paint brushes and toothpicks to paint on the small features of the dolls. We used Q-tips to paint the cheeks. Optionally, you may choose to apply a layer of Mod Podge to make the painted faces more durable.
We used skin-toned embroidery floss, as well as ballet pink for our fairy dolls. We also used a variety of colors for the bodice of the fairy doll. For the poet, we used skin tones, as well as white for the tights, and blue or black for the shirt. We like DMC floss, but a large variety pack of floss can also be nice to have on hand.
Model Magic or Wood Putty
To fill in the hole at the top of the bun of the fairy, or the head of the poet, we used Model Magic. You only need a tiny amount of Model Magic, but the extra can be used for so many other creative projects! Wood putty could also be used.
Tulle (and a needle and thread)
For the skirts of our ballerina sylphs we used a roll of 6 inch wide tulle. You will also need a needle and thread. For a no-sew version, simply use flower petals for the skirt.
Artificial flower petals
We used small artificial flower petals (such as daisy or hydrangea petals) for the sylph and fairy wings. The flower fairy skirts are made from larger flower petals. We found our flowers at a local craft store.
And now… let’s make
Ballerina Sylphs and Flower Fairies!
Watch our YouTube video for step-by-step details on how to easily make ballerina sylphs and flower fairies. (For tips on making the male poet dancer dolls, see below.)
If you would like to make the poet from Les Sylphides, follow similar steps to the fairies, but make it slightly larger. Use a 1 inch bead for the head. Make the arms 1.75 inches long. Simply fold the ends of the legs to make little feet. Use white embroidery floss for the tights and the sleeves. Use a blue or black embroidery floss to make the shirt. Add wistful poet scarf with a small white or metallic piece of floss. Ta da! Ready to dance!
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