Sugar Skull Dolls

I made one of these cute Sugar Skull Dolls last year with my girls and they have been on at me to make some more so I thought I’d share how to make them with you.

Sugar Skull Doll Tutorial

 To Make The Sugar Skull Dolls You Will Need

Card, 40mm polystyrene ball, patterned paper, double sided sticky tape,  pva glue, permanent marker pens, non bleed tissue paper, cotton pipe cleaners and felt scraps.

1. Draw a circle about 21-22 cm in diameter (I use a plate to draw round) on a piece of card. You can use card stock or an old cereal box which is what I’ve used for this tutorial. Cut the circle in half and keep one semicircle to make the doll dress.

Sugar Skull Doll Template

2. Cut a piece of patterned paper to cover the semicircle making sure you add an extra 1cm all the way round to fold over and glue to the back. Glue ths in place but before folding over around the curved edge make small incisions all the way round so that the paper will fold over and glue neatly.

Sugar Skull Doll Dress Material

 3. When dry find the center of the straight edge and gently bend the the two ends in to form a cone. Try not to crease the cone. Allow the cone to undo and add two strips of double sided sticky tape to each edge see picture. Now curl the edges back around and stick in place. If the card is thick you may need to add a little pva glue in between where the sticky strips hold the cone together.

Sugar Skull Doll Tape

4. Using a sharp pencil make a hole in the polystyrene ball so that the point of the cone can be glued inside.

Sugar Skull Doll Head

5. Using permanent marker pens (sharpies are great for this) draw your sugar skull face on.

Sugar Skull Doll Face

6. Using a sharp point (I use a nail) make 2 holes towards the top of the cone and thread your pipe cleaner through (I use a natural coloured one) and bend the arms into shape. Glue the head on and allow to dry.

Sugar Skull Doll craft

7. Glue a doubled up piece of rectangular shaped tissue to the top of the head and curl the edges to make a hat (it’s smaller version of this tissue paper hat). You may need to hold it in place and shape it a little whilst it dries.

Sugar Skull Doll Hat

8. Finally add some felt flowers to the side of the hat and one between her hands …

Sugar Skull Doll Head Shot


The pink Sugar Skull Doll was made last year and considering she has been played with loads she’s weathered pretty well.

Sugar Skull Doll

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31 Responses to Sugar Skull Dolls

  1. emma says:

    Oh how cute are these?! I am going to make some up for halloween, they are great! <3

  2. Choclette says:

    These are gorgeous. How clever of you and a great tutorial to show us how it’s done.

  3. This is really cute!!!!

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  5. Alexis says:

    This is adorable!! I love sugar skulls and it seems super easy!! 🙂

  6. Viccy Howe says:

    How creative! I actually (randomly) have some polystyrene balls from an old craft project, so I might do these Sugar Skull Dolls ready for Mexico’s Day of the Dead event. Thank you xx

  7. Jessica says:

    They look lovely. I used to make angels that way with my grandma at Christmas 🙂

  8. These are adorable! The hats are so cute and the colors <3

  9. Eileen Teo says:

    Thank you for sharing with us #pintorials Totally love it! So pretty!

  10. Love these! Stopping by from #pintorials, and so excited to try out this craft!

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  14. Carrie says:

    Oh, these are great!! Thank you for sharing at Sharing Saturday

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  16. I am so in love with these!! Adorable and easy. Two very, very important qualities to have. 🙂

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  20. Lisa Coomer Queen says:

    This is so cute! My granddaughter will love to try this. Thanks!

  21. Mrs. Annette says:

    I enjoyed the sugar skull craft idea. Do people ever comment it is representing death to children. Some times, I have used skulls in creating sf characters from literature. Most children at the library laughed and wanted the work so I gave it all away.
    I like this sugar skull idea because it is easier and kids may try to make them. Mexico and Frida Kahlo were my favorite bases for making dolls. Kahlo loved sugar skulls as a gift from her friends. thanks atk

    • ZingZingTree says:

      Thank you. Nobody has commented about the dolls representing death to children … yet 🙂 My girls are quite interested in ‘Día de Muertos’ and the idea that it’s a day to remember loved ones and pets who have died and celebrate who they were and are. They don’t see the sugar skulls as something to be scared of as they understand the sentiment behind them.

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  23. Indiana Obando says:

    Beautiful doll design for the Day of the Dead altar! How do you make the mini felt flowers?

    • ZingZingTree says:

      You cut a small rough circle and then cut into the circle to make a spiral snake. Starting from the middle of the spiral you roll it up into a flower and glue the end … I’ll do a blog post and link it in but if you google felt flowers you’ll easily find a ‘how to’

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  26. Cassi says:

    I love how easy this is and with such great results! I’ll be sharing this on The Crafty Crow soon 🙂

  27. Sankrithi says:

    Excellent !!
    What an amazing idea.
    I will do it,

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