Friday, June 6, 2014

Late 1800's Tiger Maple Dolls Rope Bed

Dixie Redmond's latest group challenge at MAIDA
is "Finish What You Started".  What a great
idea, don't we all have those unfinished projects?
I decided this would be a good time to do
something with the little dolly bed that's been
gathering dust!
It's quite small, 12 1/2 inches long, 10 inches 
wide & the posts are 9 1/4 high.
The hubby re glued all the loose joints &
I used clear Briwax to clean and 
protect the finish.
I used cotton string lightly aged with
walnut dye to re string the ropes.
I also watched a "how to" video
on You Tube.
I stitched a mattress and pillows from 
blue ticking, also lightly aged with walnut
dye & stuffed them with wool roving.
 I tufted it with embroidery thread.
The tie ends are on the bottom side.
Sheets and pillow cases from cream 
colored cotton.
Edged with cotton lace.
This little nine patch quilt always hung
above my mother's sewing machine. I
was just amazed when I realized it
fit this bed perfectly.
I used a vintage piece of  cotton Matelasse 
fabric to make a coverlet.  I edged it with 
purchased 1/4 in. off white bias double
 fold tape.
 I cut it to fit the bed and scalloped
the edges.  This is called cut corners
and used for beds with tall posts.
  Before the invention of the
 jacquard loom, this fabric was 
hand stitched.  Imagine that!
This is the right side.
The wrong side.
Double fold bias tape has one side wider than the
other.  For machine sewing, you tuck the
raw edge in the middle with the widest
side on the back.  Machine sew on the front
& it easily catches the back side.
For hand sewing, open up the tape
 and use the first ironed crease of the
short side as a stitch line.
I clipped the peaks in the scallops
& made a small fold in each.
Turned the tape to the wrong side,
& whip stitched it down.
I'm not sure if this was the proper way
to address the  peaks in the scallops,
 but it looked okay in the end.
I made a couple small pillows from the
cut out corners & found a home for 
this dolls antique overshot coverlet. 
Now, if I could just get the other 
unfinished projects done!
Learn more about French Matelasse and 
American Woven Coverlets below!


  1. Sherri, the bed, sheets, and coverlets are adorable! And to be able to use the little quilt, well, it's really special! I have three little beds, one bought, one made by the farmer, and one by a son-in-law. They're all decked out in sheets, pillowcases, and quilts, and each has a doll, taking a nap :) The son-in-law has made a chair for me but I don't have it yet. Don't you love playing with dolls?

  2. It's always rewarding to be able to check one of those need-to-finish-jobs off the list. This little bed with all the bedding is now a real treasure. I am most impressed with the mattress and pillows made from blue ticking!

  3. so cute. Lots of work in this little bed. I like the way you made the bed spread with the long end and the fabric is beautiful. A little treasure for sure. I do love the doll beds and this one is super sweet.

  4. what a treat!! I love all the accessories!! you did a beautiful job and the bed itself is marvelous.

  5. What can I say? This is truly an amazing "finished" project. From the hubby fixing the joints....stringing the bed, making a gorgeous mattress...not to mention the sheets, quilt and the cotton Matelasse coverlet. I think my favorite part was how you trimmed the coverlet. There's much to learn here! Now aren't you glad you finished it!

  6. Good advice to finish it all up! What a wonderful job you did. It is adorable!

  7. I love the little 9 patch quilt. You did such a good job!


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