Miss Chloe will be turning 8 later this month and the only thing that she has on her birthday wishlist is an American Girl Doll.

She asked for one last year as well, but the dolls are RIDONKULOUSLY expensive, so we distracted her with other gifts.  This year she’s hedged her bets by only asking for one single thing.


Personally I don’t see the appeal, but then she probably wouldn’t see the appeal of the Cabbage Patch Doll craze that went around when I was young – and comparatively the cost for either doll could be equated (given the value of the dollar, inflation etc).

So we have a doll tucked away ready for her birthday and we know she’ll be thrilled.

Beyond the doll being expensive, the clothing and accessories are uber-expensive too.  Outfits run anywhere from $24 to $48 – for one outfit, no accessories or shoes.  That’s more than I spend on most of the girls clothes!  Nana and Papa and Grandad are going to save the day and get her an item/accessory each, but after doing a little bit of research, I’ve found that there are pieces I can make myself so she can have the fun of playing with them, but without us going broke in the process.

Today I’m showing how to make an American Girl Doll sleeping bag and pillow.

You will need:

  • sewing machine
  • two coordinating fabrics cut to 14″ by 20″ long  (35.5cm x 51cm)
  • fabric remnants cut to 3″ by 5″ long  (13cm x 7.5cm)
  • pillow stuffing

We’ll start with the sleeping bag first – cut your coordinating fabrics to 14×20 (35.5cm x 51cm).

With right sides together, sew a hem all the way around the outer edge, leaving a 2″ (5cm) hole for turning.  You’ll want to reinforce this with a zig-zag stitch so that it doesn’t fray and pull apart in the wash.

DIY American Girl Doll Sleeping Bag

Turn your sleeping bag right-side-out and iron smooth.

Next, fold your fabric in half on the widest side – put the fabric that you want on the OUTSIDE of the sleeping bag on the INSIDE.

In this case, I want the cat material to be the outside.  Fold down a triangle of the sleeping bag and mark the edge of the triangle with a pin.  This will be your stopping point when sewing the bottom of the bag together.

Sew a seam from the bottom left corner around and up to the pinned spot on the side.  If you are a sewer and don’t mind zippers, you could add it here instead.  I went for easy (and it ensures that no doll hair gets caught in zippers).

AG Doll Sleeping Bag - 3

Turn the bag right-side out and you’re done!

What was that, about 7 minutes total?
AG Doll Sleeping Bag - 5

The pillow I just guesstimated at 5″ x 3″ (13cm x 7.5cm).  Right sides together, sew (and reinforce) a seam around three edges.

Turn right side out and press – iron a 1/4″ hem along the open edge.

AG Doll Sleeping Bag - 6

Stuff with pillow stuffing and then top stitch along the open (iron-hemmed) edge.

AG Doll Sleeping Bag - 8

Easy, washable and at least $20 less than the one that is actually from American girl.

AG Doll Sleeping Bag - 9

Choose a quilted material if you want a puffier sleeping bag.  Buy enough material and you could make a coordinating one for your child (but you would need to sew a zipper in that one).

I can’t photograph it with the doll inside at this point.  Chloe is home sick and lying in bed behind me and I don’t want her to see just yet.

American Girl Doll Sleeping bag - easy sew

Know an American Girl Doll fan (or any 18″ doll)?  These would make great Christmas gifts and will only take about 20 minutes of your time.

Have a great one!

Too funny


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