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YCA NHS Dolls bringing comfort to many

We have now handed over 50 NHS knitted dolls to the NHS trust for them to use in conjunction with childrens' fundraising and their mental health teams.

The dolls have been knitted by members of the YCA from a scheme created by Thorne Branch

member Karen Dennis.

We will continue to accept dolls throughout the year and the pattern is set out below.

We thank all those who have taken part and helped bring comfort to so many people in our region.

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NHS Female Doll Knitting Pattern

By Karen Dennis, Thorne Branch


Size 4mm (8 or 9) knitting needles

Small DK ball each of blue, any flesh tone, white, brown, black.


Colours can be adapted to show different nursing roles.

Knit main body as one piece and stocking stitch throughout.

Begin with legs:

Cast on 14 stitches using black, Work 6 rows

Change to flesh, work 19 rows

Change to white, work 4 rows

Transfer to a stitch holder and repeat to make second leg.

Knit across second leg and join first leg by transferring stitches from stitch holder (28 stitches)

Next row: Purl 13, inc into next stitch, purl to end (29 stitches)

Work 6 more rows stocking stitch

Change to blue, continue in stocking stitch 18 rows

To shape neckline:

Next row: Knit 14 blue, knit 1 flesh, knit 14 blue

Next row: Purl 13 blue, purl 3 flesh, purl 13 blue taking yarn across back

of work

Next row: Knit 12 blue, knit 5 flesh, knit 12 blue taking yarn across back of


Next row: change to flesh, purl across all

Work 21 rows stocking stitch, cast off.

Knit 2 arms

Cast on 10 stitches flesh, work 18 rows stocking stitch

Change to blue, work 8 rows stocking stitch, cast off.

To make up body:

Bring outer edges together and join down the back to top of legs.

Beginning at foot, gather up cast on stitches and draw up before sewing

up back of each leg to meet back seam.

Do the same for arms.

Turn out to right side.

Stuff evenly all the way up to open edge (head). Repeat for arms.

Gather up cast off stitches and draw up to close hole.

To make neck, secure one end of flesh yarn at back of head and make a running stitch around on 2nd full flesh row. Draw up and secure at back seam.

Join arms to the sides. Hands can be shaped as with neck if desired.

Ears: using flesh, join yarn to side of head, just below flesh/blue

changeover. Make 4 blanket stitches towards change line. Work four

more blanket stitches, 1 into each previous stitch working back down the

row. Finish off with two more blanket stitches to head to give shape.

Embroider eyes and in any suitable shade using satin stitch.

For hair, choose any suitable shade/texture and wrap around something

about 30 times to give an even hank. Tie around the middle and secure

to top of head, letting loops fall around the sides. You can then secure

into different styles if desired or add a fringe using single large stitches.


Cast on 60 sts in blue

Work 22 rows stocking stitch

Next row: knit 2 tog, knit 1 to end (40 sts)

Next row: purl

Next row: knit 2, knit 2 tog to end

Next row: purl

Work 3 rows stocking stitch

Cast off.

To make up, fold and seam along the side edge.

To attach to doll, pull up over the legs, stitch around waist slightly higher

than white/blue line.

Collar: (make 2 pieces, first as follows and second reversing knit and purl

to reverse the shaping)

Cast on 8

Row 1: slip 1, knit 1, pass slip stitch over, knit 6 (7sts)

Row 2: purl 5, purl 2 tog (6sts)

Row 3: slip 1, knit 1, pass slip stitch over, knit 4 (5sts)

Cast off

Attach to front of v shaping using cast on edge and pointed part



using white, cast on 12 stitches, work 6 rows stocking stitch.

Cast off leaving long end to use to secure around ears.

For a finishing touch use backstitch to create a white stripe on sleeves

and collar and use blue to outline neckline and sleeves if desired.

When completed please send to YCA Central Office,

Agriculture House, 207 Tadcaster Road, York, YO24 1UD

01904 451581

Thank you to Karen Dennis for this pattern and to you for taking part.

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