The Hollyhock Doll




Introduction: The Hollyhock Doll

About: I am married with two children. Spring, summer, and fall are my very favorite times of the year. I enjoy working in the yard, sewing, cooking, quilting, gardening, and creating. I do this to keep my sanity.

Happy summer everyone. What a grand time of the year! Families are getting together for outdoor Bar-b-ques and picinics and children are excited with all the activities. I recently posted a recipe for Hollyhock salad dressing and promiced to make an instructable on how to make the Hollyhock doll that I used for a photo prop. Hollyhocks and other edible flowers were very popular during the victorian era. Children made Hollyhock dolls to play with and woman added the flowers to salads and made tea from them. I don't supose they had to worry about chemicals in those days.

When I was a child I was always making dolls and doll clothes because my parents did not have the money to purchase toys for six children except at Christmas and birthdays. We always found a lot of fun things to make to play with. Hollyhock dolls might have been used for food plating but I don't know for sure. I decided to make a few dolls and make some Hollyhock salad using organic Hollyhock flowers to make the salads look beautiful.

This instructable will show you how to make Hollyhock dolls and use them for food plating. Please be safe and make absolutely sure you use edible organic flowers to keep your family and friends safe and healthy. This is an entry for the instructable contest so if you like it; I will be ever so grateful for your vote when the vote button is at the top right cornor. Thanks in advance. Lets make some dolls!

Step 1: This Is What You Will Need

Please note: These dolls need to be made with flowers and herbs that have not been sprayed with chemicals. If using the dolls for a garnish they must be edible to be very safe even if they are just for looks.

Several Hollyhock flowers and buds as well as rosemary sprigs or plant stems.

Carrot, apple, or radish for the stand. You just need a tiny piece you might normally throw away.

Food safe markers in red or pink for the lips and black or blue for the eyes.

Extra long toothpicks or something similar in size. Skewers are too large around and will tear the flower.

A large pin or needle to poke holes in the flowers.

Scissors (not shown).

Thin cotton towels or paper towels or napkins.

A medium size bowl.

Step 2: Pick the Hollyhocks and Rosemary

Pick the edible organic flowers and herbs. Choose a firm flower.

Step 3: Wash and Dry the Flowers

Wash and dry:

Wash and dry the flowers, buds, and rosemary.

Dry with a paper towel.

If you will not be making these right away then put them into a bowl of water and place them in the refridgerator for a few hours. These dolls are best when made shortly after picking. If using them for a garnish they need to be made just before serving so they do not wilt too fast.

Step 4: The Stand

As you can see I used the ends of a baby bell pepper for the stand. I made these dolls several times but the carrot worked the best for the stand.

Making the stand:

Cut the end of the carrot as shown for the doll stand.

Poke a hole in the carrot with the needle or pin.

Insert the long toothpick in the center.

Step 5: Preparations

OK, this part I have to admit is tricky because the hollyhock is a fragile flower. I later discovered using a pin works much better for poking the holes for the arms and the center of the flower. You will probably ruin a few flowers getting the hang of it.

Carefully cut off the stem from the flower

Carefully remove the stigma of the flower so the flower is still intact ( but the inside it kind of flat so you can poke a hole through the center).

Using a pin poke a hole through the center of the flower.

Step 6: Making the Doll Face

Drawing the doll's face:

Using the food safe markers to dot the eyes and mouth on the doll's face.

Step 7: Assembly of the Doll

A person might use a tiny bit of syrup or honey to stick the arms to the doll under the flower petals. Or you might color the toothpicks to look like arms. I loved the mystical look of the doll using the rosemary.You can use one flower or layer them like I did for the dress using two flowers. I used the smaller flower at the top.

Place the dress over the doll stand carefully allowing enough room for the toothpick to stick through the top of the dress to attach the doll's head. If the dress does not stay in place you can use a small carrot piece by attaching it to the toothpick and hold the dress in place.

Carefully poke holes for the arms using the pin or slide the rosemary through the petals carefully and add some honey or something very sticky. This part is difficult and might take a few tries. ( The pictures shows I used a toothpick but pins work better).I did not need to use honey but it took me a few tries to make the holes and stick the rosemary through the holes to make the arms.

Stick the rosemary through the holes for the arms as shown.

Place the head on the tip of the toothpick.

Place a small piece of the flower on top of the head for a hat if desired.

Step 8: Drying the Doll

Here is how to dry the doll.

I simply placed the doll in a safe location away from any activity from family members. I placed mine in my hutch to air dry. You can use them for decorations or place them in a bowl of popouri. I like the idea of putting them in a small glass jar or bottle with a cork.

Step 9: Sunshiine's Final Thoughts

It is always so much more fun to make something like the Hollyhock doll than to buy them. I used the dolls and petals for pasta salad, green salad, and I dried the dolls to put in potpouri. The green salad was so beautiful! I think even the guys loved it.

I hope you will be inspired to make a few for your family to enjoy. I wish to thank all of you for stopping by and do have a safe and happy summer!




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    21 Discussions

    I've been making these for many years, i always show children how to make them, they are so magical. These ones are very charming.

    A bit of floral wire cut at an angle works wonderfully for piercing the base of the flower to make arm holes ^^


    1 reply

    I used to make these when I was little! I've never known anyone else that did. Your's are much prettier of course. :)

    1 reply

    Aw thanks! I am sure you had a lot of fun making them. Thanks for sharing and do have a nice evening.

    that's pretty cool.... they look cool, and I was unaware that you could eat hollyhock flowers, they grow all over in the aria I'm in at the moment... next year I'm gonna' have to try this.

    Thanks so much shazni, I appreciate your comment. Hope your weekend shines.


    Oh I had never seen this kind of dolls before and I didn't even think it was possible to do such a cute thing with flowers! They are so cute yet elegant :) I love them!!

    1 reply

    Thanks Linda, Kids love them and I think they were pretty on a plate. Have a great day and thanks for stopping by.


    Hurray! Here they are!

    You did a great job! I love when regular items transform into something completely different by just a few simple steps. It's magic! ;)

    And there is something about these dolls that really touches me. I think they remind me of a childrens book my mother owns, with stories about dwarfs and fairies... I'll have to search for this book on my next visit at home...

    Thank you for this instructable!

    3 replies

    Aw thanks so much spunk! She does look like a fairy. I want to try to make a fairy from flower petals when I get the time. Hopefully before my flowers are all gone. My son is making a app for a game and is using her for a character. I wished I had more time to play.

    I hope you find the book! When my daughter was two she had a favorite book called Daisy's wake up book. I have no idea what happened to the book so a few years ago I looked for it and after two years I finally found a used one and gave it to her for her birthday. She loved it! Maybe you can find a copy of the book you mentioned as well.
    Stay tuned because I think I have another instructable ( Fingers crossed) that is really neat in the freezer! ) I am waiting for the results. Thanks so much for stopping by and do have a happy day.

    I think chances are good I'll find the book. My mother put all the children stuff in the basement...I just need to find it there (It's a little bit messy down there ;)...!)
    It's so sweet of you to search for your daughters book! Children's books leave such an impression in the little brains. I still recall some phrases from my favorite book in childhood :)
    I'm looking forward to your next project and wish you a lovely day!

    I am glad she saved her children's stuff. I wished that I had save more than I did. Thanks Spunk!


    Thanks for taking a peek and commenting! I hope your day shines!


    Thanks! It was great fun making it for a salad. Thanks for stopping by and do have a super Monday!