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vintage craft // yoyo clown

Yoyo Clown

This week I received an email from Jackie asking if I had ever heard of yoyo clown dolls. (Jackie, I tried to email you back, but my message bounced.) And the answer to Jackie's question is, yes! I have heard of them, because I have one!

This fella was my mom's but may be older than she is. We're estimating that's it's around 60 years old, but it's hard to say. It was probably made by a relative. The arms, legs, and torso are make out of fabric yoyos. There are two sizes in there, and they're definitely rather flat, but that's what they are. Jackie tells me that sometimes you insert batting into the yoyos, but I'm pretty sure that these never had that.

The face isn't quite as friendly as I would like, but not as scary as some that you see when you do a search for "yoyo clown". The saddest thing for me is that you can see through the fabric enough to see the back of the embroidery. I don't think that's just because of age, though I could be wrong.

If you do a search for this type of doll, and I highly recommend that you do, you'll find plenty of instructional blog posts so you can make your own. And I'm betting that you'll make it really cute. Even if yours doesn't have the awesome vintage fabrics in this guy!

And for those who aren't so big on the clown, Simplicity once made a pattern for these, but it also made a dog, a caterpillar, and an owl!


  1. my daughter made one that was an elephant several years ago.... I wonder where he wandered off to?

  2. They are one of the creepiest toys ever made! My grandma made me one years ago, and I could never have it in my room!

  3. What a coincidence! My husband's mother recently passed away, and he came home with one of these treasures just the other night. It is definitely vintage, the fabric looks like it might be from the 30s and it seems to have the same face that yours does! I think it's super cool and I am hoping that his sisters don't want it and that we can have it here. I'm glad you wrote this post.

  4. I remember my friends mother had one...it did have a creepy clown face. lol

  5. As a small child, over 55 years ago, we had a neighbor who was in her later years that made this type of doll. She made very many. I think she sold most. Hers had a pretty face on them. I seem to remember they were maybe some type of pre-made face she hand sewed to the head. I think there were bells attached to the end of the arms and legs.


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