I’ve had so much fun with Travelling Ava, I now want to design a brand new range of Travelling Dolls so you can have one too.
- Challenge One – small feet
Travelling Ava is an amazing Travelling doll but she is not without her design faults. Her feet are a little on the small side, adorable but a nightmare for designing shoes. The new Travelling Dolls need to have big feet so the shoes won’t slip off as easily. Don’t mention this to Ava, she is often embarrassed, mostly by me having to retrace my steps looking for a little brown shoe that’s dropped off somewhere.
- Challenge Two – you can see her stuffing
When I originally designed Ava I made her using a 3.5 mm hook and DK yarn. Although the result was adorable you can see her stuffing in places. That is fine when creating dolls for myself but designing dolls to sell is very different. I’m still making adjustments to the final pattern using a smaller hook. I want the dolls to be attractive and safe. It hs been more complicated than I thought to redesign the pattern. I thought I would be able to make some quick adjustments and that has not been the case. The first doll has legs too narrow, the second doll has somehow become considerably taller than the others, I don’t know how I didn’t alter the length of the legs just the width. I’m almost finished doll three and this is looking more like I want it to look.
- Challenge Three – safety testing
I want to make sure my dolls are safe, I want children and adults to have great fun with their Travelling Doll so I need to make sure I complete all of the safety tests. This does make me a little sad and is probably why I’m dragging my feet getting the first dolls finished. Doll 3 will become a safety test doll, a very important job but that means she will never get to be an explorer.
- Challenge Four – developing characters
This might sound a bit odd but when I’m designing toys I can’t rush that character design, it has to happen organically. I need to think about the different aspects of their personality to help me crochet a little bit of magic in there. At the moment I’m not finding this so easy, probably because I’m trying to think about multiple dolls rather than focusing on finishing one doll at a time.
There is so much to think about when designing Travelling Dolls. I’m excited to move this project forward in the next few weeks.
I have already bought some yarn for my new dolls. I spent an afternoon researching vintage fashion from the 30s, 40s and 50s to help me design my colour palette. There are so many beautiful colours and styles in fashion during these decades, I’m really looking forward to sketching and designing some mini vintage-inspired outfits for the Travelling Dolls.
Over the next couple of months, the plan is to safety test and design a range of 10 one of a kind travelling dolls. Each doll will have their own personality and vintage inspired travelling outfit. I will keep you updated on my blog with further doll developments so don’t forget to subscribe to my blog so you don’t miss out.
Are you a toy designer? What are your challenges when developing new products? I would love to hear from you.