39 of 39 people found the following review helpful
Lovely box set but not for beginners to sewing,
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This review is from: The Tilda Characters Collection: Birds, Bunnies, Angels and Dolls (Hardcover)
At an initial look they do seem suitable for beginners but only to a certain extent. The instructions tend to be split over several pages with a lot of `Read this chapter several pages back to do this'. There weren't any instructions that I could see about actually sewing the doll together and, if I hadn't already made my first doll using a similar technique, I would have been utterly confused by the pattern cutting and sewing explanation. I really wouldn't recommend it for beginners unless you have someone more experienced helping you. However, once you get the hang of it, most of the projects in this set of books and the others (such as Tilda's Summer Ideas) are based around very similar patterns. So get the hang of one doll pattern and you pretty much will be able to do all the others with slight variations in clothing.
The books didn't really have much on how to actually assemble the dolls so I went with what knowledge I had from making my first doll. It's not a complicated design so it was just a matter of stitching the legs and arms to the body with whip stitch. I did use doubled cotton thread as I was a little concerned with whether the limbs were a tad too flimsy but I think that's a personal choice and probably depends on how much you stuff the limbs.
You cannot buy Tilda hair from any shop for love nor money. And when you can find it, it's a very small amount for what they charge. So, I decided to use wool I found in Hobbycraft. You get loads of the stuff and you can use it for future projects/dolls. It's a tad fluffier that the Tilda hair. The instructions to add the hair were very basic and I ended up ignoring them altogether for my own method. I added a lot more pins, styling and stitching the hair as I went. I tried following the book method but kept ending up with a mess which did look kind of cool but not very Tilda-esque.
I think this box set is worth the purchase if you like the Tilda range and can see yourself making lot from it. It covers angels, dolls (which are essentially the same pattern with varied clothing) birds and bunnies. I then bought the Tilda's Summer Ideas book which covers a few types of dolls (garden, kitchen) plus a couple of additional small projects. Tone Finnanger also has books themed around Spring/Christmas and general projects for your home which look interesting but aren't top of my wish list just yet. I also want to point out that the books don't always give specific measurements for the fabric required in a project. There's a fair amount of guesswork involved but again, once you get the hang of one pattern, it's easy enough to apply that to any project. I think if you keep in mind that you should make these dolls in the fabrics you like rather than getting caught up in buying everything in the Tilda range, they are good books to use. If you are looking to get started with the Tilda range, buy Tilda's Summer Ideas first as it's quite cheap and then decide if you want the box set.