18 Kokeshi Doll Craft Ideas

Updated on April 5, 2018
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Loraine loves arts and crafts and used to volunteer at an elementary art class. She loves sharing fun and kid-friendly craft tutorials.

There's something about the Japanese Kokeshi doll that makes one believe that it really could bring good luck. I've been fascinated by this simple and beautiful doll since the first time I saw one.

In this article, you'll find only projects which included a tutorial. So, if you find a doll you want to make, there are directions to help you. Just click on the site name and you'll be taken directly to the tutorial.

To make the beautiful Kokeshi doll shown in the photo above, go to Dad Can Do.

1. Kokeshi Easter Eggs

This Kokeshi doll project actually uses boiled eggs. Be sure you visit the Thirsty for Tea site because the blogger has an interesting article and a unique method of painting the Kokeshi eggs. Very interesting article. Don't miss it.

2. Candle Cup Kokeshi

All you need is a wooden candle cup and a wooden ball and you too can make this sweet Kokeshi doll. For the directions, go to the restless RISA site.

3. Japanese Kokeshi

I did this project with a group of 4th graders. The background is painted with colored tissue paper. This is an outstanding project which the kids loved doing. They were so proud of their art. Go to Kids & Glitter for all the instructions.

4. Kokeshi Doll

I think these would be so cute with a pin-back glued to them so they could be worn. Go to handmade for the pictured instructions.

5. Kokeshi Doll

You can make this traditional doll with items found around your home and following the directions at education.com.

6. Kokeshi Note Holders

Make these Kokeshi note holders for yourself or to give friends as gifts. You'll find the easy to follow instructions for making these note holders at Lynn’s Craft Blog.

7. Kokeshi Doll Favor Box

8. Kokeshi Shadow Box

This is an outstanding craft that you'll be proud to display or give as a gift. Find the instructions at Kuretake UK Blog.

9. Kokeshi Doll Printable

Just print off copies of this Kokeshi doll and let the kids color to their heart content. Then cut the dolls out and assemble. The easy, printable download is found at Activity village.

10. Kokeshi Stuffie

There is so much you can do with this project. Think about making little girl or baby gifts using the instructions found at BurdaStyle.

11. Mini Kokeshi Doll

Learn how to make this little Kokeshi doll using a bottle cork and a wooden ball, instead of the walnut, by going to CRAFTS IDEAS for the tutorial.

12. Japanese Paper Dolls

Make these great looking Japanese Kokeshi dolls with fancy papers. Find the directions at kimono reincarnate and make many of them.

13. Simple Kokeshi Doll

This is a really easy and inexpensive Kokeshi doll craft project using tp rolls and a Styrofoam ball or Christmas ball. Find the tutorial for this project at Discover Nikkei.

14. How to Make a Kokeshi Doll

The instructions given at wikiHow show and tell you how to make a kokeshi doll using a bottle and a ping pong ball.

15. Kokeshi Dolls

You'll find a nice tutorial for making these Kokeshi dolls on the Mark montano blog. Beautiful, colorful Kokeshi dolls to make for yourself or as gifts.

16. Kokeshi Doll Finger Puppets

These cute little finger puppets are made using felt. Be sure to read through the directions because the robot and kokeshi doll puppets are slightly different. For the instructions to make these finger puppets, go to Craft Foxes.

17. Kokeshi Japanese Wooden Doll

18. Kokeshi Doll Tutorial


  • The supplies needed for the Kokeshi doll are minimal. I used a Nestles CoffeeMate container to make this Kokeshi doll.
  • Craft paints, paint brushes, and a finishing gloss spray were the only other supplies needed.

Step 1

  • Use a CoffeeMate or other plastic bottle or jar with a large rounded cap.
  • Cut the bottle at the top ring. This was 6" down from the top on my 32 oz. bottle.

Step 2

  • Paint the bottle with a coat of white or flesh colored paint.

Step 3

  • With a pencil, lightly draw the Kokeshi doll on the bottle.

Step 4

  • Paint your Kokeshi doll in whatever colors you choose. You can get lots of expressions and coloring ideas by going to Google seach, images.

Questions & Answers

    © 2012 Loraine Brummer

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      • profile image

        anonymous 5 years ago

        Wow, thankyou, 11 year old lady is having a Japanese sleep over party ... great ideas to keep her and her friends busy!!

      • Brandi Bush profile image

        Brandi 5 years ago from Maryland

        Awww...these are precious! I am going to make one of these with my daughter, she will love it! :)

      • terracroatia profile image

        terracroatia 5 years ago

        This plastic bottle recycling idea is really great!

      • jlshernandez profile image

        jlshernandez 5 years ago

        I used to collect kokeshi dolls when I was younger. I had no idea you could make one with an empty plastic bottle. How creative. Thanks for sharing.

      • SpicyCabbage profile image

        SpicyCabbage 5 years ago

        My granddaughter would love helping me make some of the dolls. Thanks for the directions

      • Sher Ritchie profile image

        Sher Ritchie 5 years ago

        This is a great lens - thanks for sharing!

      • flycatcherrr profile image

        flycatcherrr 6 years ago

        Ii had no idea what these little dolls were called. My aunt had one, when I was a child. Very cute!

      • lbrummer profile image

        Loraine Brummer 6 years ago from Hartington, Nebraska

        @Aquavel: Yes, that's what I used. I only used one coat of white, but I probably would at least coat the face again the next time. Thanks for stopping by and for your kind words.

      • Aquavel profile image

        Aquavel 6 years ago

        These are wonderful! Love this lens! Question: Are you using the DecoArt white paint for the undercoat on the bottles?

      • victoriuh profile image

        victoriuh 6 years ago

        I have loved these since I first saw them. I never thought of making one though. Great lens!