Brocade Doily

dsci0036Here is the latest doily that I made. This one is from Coats & Clarks #197 “Priscilla Doilies”.  I made Brocade #A-792.  It was originally published in 1969.

As this is doily number 4, this time I used a thinner thread (size 10) and a smaller crochet hook (size C). The finished size is 20 inches.  It is bigger than I had wanted for the center of my dresser but I am still learning.  If I had used the pattern’s recommend size 20 thread and hook, it would be 15 inches.  I decided that I will just put it at the edge of the dresser then drape the excess off behind the dresser.  My lamp, two cedar boxes and a couple of bottles of perfume will look nice on it.

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The pattern wasn’t really hard to follow. There were a couple of rows that reading the directions didn’t make sense.  So I would start out the row and then compare what I was doing to the picture included in the book.  The picture was detailed enough that you could see what the pattern was.

This is it not starched.

 

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Recreating Molly’s Christmas Dress- Butterick 6149

Pattern Doll Clothing 2016

 

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I guess we could say my sewing skills have came a long way.  Now I am trying my best to “hack” Molly’s Christmas dress from Butterick 6149.  I don’t usually try to draft out entire pattern pieces.  Mainly, I just make little modifications like lengthening a t-shirt pattern to a dress sort of thing.

I started with Butterick 6149 because I would not need to make changes to the bodice.  I used view B for my dress especially since it was short sleeved.  I tried changing a gathered skirt to the A-line skirt to match the original outfit.  It was close but I ended up “fixing” the front by trimming length off it.

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Looking at the compare pictures at the bottom of the post, my skirt is close to the original but slightly off.  I am not sure what I did wrong but I am at least close.  Anyways, it may just be fabric choice.

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The big question I have is where did American Girl get the velvet to make Molly’s dress.  I picked my fabric up from Fabric mart.  It was definitely too thick but I used it anyways as I really wanted to re-create Molly’s dress for Doll Clothing week.  My seams are bulky.  I didn’t line the sleeves because of bulk.  Also, I didn’t add the lace to the sleeves to avoid more bulk.

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My other fabric issue was the velvet had a little bit of stretch while the lining was white quilting cotton which didn’t.  So there was some fighting between the lining and the velvet but in the end, the pieces lined up enough that everything worked out.  Cutting the velvet was a bit tricky too.  I feel like it slide out from under my rotary cutter.  Next time, I will try pinning and using scissors to see if that helps tame the velvet.

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All I can say is those 1950’s mothers must have really loved their daughters if they were setting the sleeves of a doll dress in the round.  When I seen that in the instructions, it was so not happening.  Especially after realizing the lining cotton and velvet were not getting along and that the seams will be bulky anyways.  I put the sleeves in flat and it turned out alright.

American Girl sold the dress on the left below for $24.  I was able to recreate it for around $6.  I know my final result is a close but not quite there (I ended up ordering one off of Ebay to have a closer look than I can get in pictures.  From what I can tell, it looks like I need to drop the waist line of the dress, lengthen the sleeves, add extra buttons (which I can still do as there are more at home), and change the skirt.  At first, I honestly thought it was A-line.  Hopefully the closer look will help figure it out.

christmas-compare

Doll Clothing Week- Thimbles & Acorns

Pattern Doll Clothing 2016
Today’s doll clothing designer is Shari Fuller at Thimbles & Acorns.   I have actually sewn just one of the ten or so patterns of Shari’s that I have.  The details in the En Forreau gown are absolutely delightful and my Felicity doll looked beautiful in her dress.

 

I gave Shari five questions and here are her answers:

1.  What was your first doll?

The first doll that I remember having was my little Dawn Doll.  My profile picture shows me mending her dress… the first time I ever sewed!

 

2.  What was the last doll you got?

The most recent doll I got (well, I just bought it a few days ago and it hasn’t arrived yet), was a Laura Ingalls doll from the Queens Treasures.  Laura Ingalls was my childhood hero, so I am rather excited to see her.

lhdlli_in-box_eye

3.  What is one sewing notion you absolutely must have?

My absolute must-have sewing notion is my seam ripper.  I actually have about five of them, but still spend far too much time searching for one of them when I need it.  My package of bobby pins comes in as a close second though… they are wonderful for turning narrow tubes.

4.  What pattern from your line would you recommend to someone who hasn’t tried  your patterns before?prairie-rose

I would recommend my set of three Prairie patterns that I just released this summer to anyone new to Thimbles and Acorns.   They are relatively easy to make, include both a Past and Present variation, and many of the pieces are interchangeable so there is a wide range of design options.

 

5.  What is the next pattern you are releasing?  Where did you get the  inspiration for the new pattern?

Currently, I am working on a series of Elizabethan Era dresses.  The idea for this series stems from my work on the soon to be released Elizabethan doll from A Girl For All Time.  I am really enjoying researching the different dress styles from this period and am rather fascinated by their unique construction.

 

Check out Thimbles and Acorns’ website at Thimbles and Acorns.

 

Doll Clothing Week- Pleasant Company’s Kirsten’s Apron Dress

 

Pattern Doll Clothing 2016

 

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Slowly, I have been working away on completing pattern from Pleasant Company’s Kirsten’s Pretty Clothes. Previous featured on the blog have been Kirsten’s school dress, her pantalets, and her chemise.  Today, I have Kirsten’s birthday dress for review.

Just a reminder, I have the pdf version of Kirsten’s Pretty Clothes from AG playthings website. The pdf version is fairly easy to put the pattern pieces together.  I haven’t had any problems cause by faulty pdf taping.

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I know that I also posted this before but Pleasant Company patterns don’t really have pictures to go along with the instructions. If there is a picture, it isn’t very detailed.  The written instructions are great but if you are a visual person, you may have some troubles getting the dress put together.  Also note, Pleasant Company patterns has the warning that the pattern is for experienced seamstresses only and children need the experienced seamstress’ guidance.

My Kirsten doll hasn’t had a new dress since March of 2014. So this time she is getting her birthday apron dress.  The nearest craft store didn’t have any baby rick-rack so Kirsten doesn’t get any on her dress.

On the sleeves, the pattern calls for 3.25 inches of elastic. The pattern calls for it to be zig zagged stitched on across the entire sleeve.  The piece of elastic would not stretch across the sleeve.  Instead I used a 5 inch piece of 3/8 inch elastic.  It gathered like what I had seen on the pictures.  I am not sure if this is because of differences in elastic or an error.

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Alright, besides the elastic troubles, this dress has very little wearing ease for a doll.  I think my waistband length was a little under 11 inches.  I actually had troubles getting this on my doll (please remember my Kirsten doll is from mid 1990’s so she is a bit bigger).  I seam ripped the back seam some and still felt like I was going to break my doll’s arm.  It would probably be fine if the Velcro goes the entire length of the back.  Otherwise, may be sewing just the last inch of the back seam together may get enough room to put the dress on.  To be honest, I will probably end up re-making this dress for Kirsten with more wearing ease.  As of right now, I think she needs about a quarter to three-eighth inch extra.  Definitely double check the pattern measurements against your dolls before making this one and decide how you want to put the dress on the doll.

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Next up was Kirsten pinafore apron.  I decided to completely disregard the instructions since a lot of the hemming was to use the rick rack that I couldn’t get.  The top pieces of the apron (apron front, straps and waistband) were cut out twice so I would be able to line and get a clean finish for my doll apron.  The apron went together fairly easily.  I would recommend basting the bodice and the straps to the apron and check to make sure everything is straight when apron is on doll.  I had to seam rip out the strap and untwist them.  Like before, the narrow hem on the apron skirt was zig zagged stitched before rolling.  It just makes it easier to have something with a bit of weight to hold on to.  I switched out the closure from the 3/8 inch button listed in supplies to Velcro.  The button just seemed to get lost in the waistband.  Velcro also makes the apron a bit more adjustable if needed.

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The version sold in stores was $28. I was able to make my version of the dress for $3.00.  The apron was probably around $2.  For a grand total of $5.

 

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Bonjour Teaspoon Taylor Regatta Dress

Pattern Doll Clothing 2016

 

 

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Switching up a bit, today’s Doll Clothing Week Post is for Bonjour Teaspoon’s Taylor Regatta dress as modeled by my Kit doll.  Plus keep reading for today’s Doll Clothing week Giveaway at the end!

I still had plenty of teal poly/ lycra knit left, so I decided to use it.  With that said, I feel like Kit’s dress is a little plain and she is in definite need of a larger necklace.  So my recommendation to anyone making this dress is to either color block it, use a fun print, or both.  The picture shows it in a stripe fabric which is very cute.

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The dress goes together easily.  I think I had this finished in 1 1/2 hours including cutting.  This is a nice quick to make dress which would be perfect for gifts.   I had no problem in inserting the sleeves.  The waistline was easy also.

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The skirt pieces are larger so if you are using scraps from a left over project, you may have to add a seam to the center front if you don’t have enough fabric to cut on fold.

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Today’s giveaway is a Pixie Pack of shoe soles.  Please leave a comment below to be eligible to win.  Giveaway closes on 12:01 am Friday (central time).

 

Doll Clothing Week- Keeper Dolly Duds

Pattern Doll Clothing 2016

For the first ever doll clothing week, I was able to get a couple of doll clothing designers to answer a couple of “get to know you” type of questions.  Today’s Doll Clothing Designer is Eve from Keepers Dolly Duds.  All of Keeper Dolly Duds patterns (except ones issued by Simplicity) are located on Eve’s Etsy store.

Questions:
1. What was your first doll?

My earliest memory is of a baby doll that I sewed a dress for when I was four. I truly don’t remember what kind of doll it was. There were lots of doll in our house as I had four older sisters and later two more came after me.

 2. What was the last doll you got?

The latest doll added to my doll family is the 1960’s AG doll Melody. I am also awaiting the arrival of a doll named Nisha from the A Girl For All Time Doll Co.

Upcoming Simplicity Pattern

Upcoming Simplicity Pattern

 

 

3. What is one sewing notion you absolutely must have?

Can’t decide on just one notion. I love buttons, lace, thread, needles, etc. etc…. and my thimble! Of course I truly love fabric as well.

 

4. What pattern from your line would you recommend to someone who hasn’t tried  your patterns before?fifties-flair

I would recommend to a novice seamstress KDD04-Fifties Flair as it is a basic pattern which one can use their imagination to add detail to. If it were someone who is more of an accomplished seamstress, perhaps they should like to try KDD20-Colonial Day dress, as there is lots of detail in that pattern. There are four patterns I have designed for Simplicity Pattern Company as well with a fifth to be released the end of this year or early next featuring 1960’s patterns. They are very basic but fun 60s styles and would be a good pattern for someone new to sewing. 

(I did try to scatter pictures of the recommended patterns throughout the post.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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5. What is the next pattern you are releasing? Where did you get the  inspiration for the new pattern?

The next pattern I am releasing in my Etsy shop is KDD22-Train Station. It features a four piece outfit consisting of a pleated skirt with shoulder straps, a short sleeved blouse, a lined jacket and a coordinating hat. Hoping to have it completed in the next few weeks. This style is a classic design worn over many decades with little changes to the basic style. I felt it depicted every young girls wardrobe from the 30’s through to the 60’s.

 

 

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Eve did let me know that the best way to see what is coming up for Keepers Dolly Duds is with her Facebook page

www.facebook.com/keepersdollyduds

Also, Eve did share tons more inspiration at her Flickr page.    www.flickr.com/photos/keepersdollyduds

As I know that Melody will be coming home with me in Christmas, I will anxiously await that new Simplicity pattern.  I am not sure what other pattern may end up in my doll clothing pattern collection.

Thank you to Eve for answering the questions that I gave her.

Which T-shirt? 2016 Sew Doll Clothes Week T-shirt Comparison

Pattern Doll Clothing 2016

If you are sewing for some lucky girl’s holiday present, more than likely, that doll will need a t-shirt.  There are probably more doll t-shirts out there than I can actually ever sew.  Today my Rebecca and my Grace dolls will be modeling the 5 different t-shirts I made for the T-shirt test.

Before getting started, the weather was not the best so I had to do inside pictures.  Looking at all the neckbands in the photos, I probably overstretched them as sewing especially since I was trying to make everything on my sewing machine instead of switch back and forth between it and serger.  I was trying to recreate how someone just new to sewing would only be using a sewing machine.

Here are the 5 patterns getting tested:

Liberty Jane Patterns Trendy T-shirt (free)

Liberty Jane Trendy Tee

Liberty Jane Trendy Tee

Liberty Jane Trendy Tee

Liberty Jane Trendy Tee

Liberty Jane Trendy Tee

Liberty Jane Trendy Tee

Liberty Jane Trendy Tee

Liberty Jane Trendy Tee

  • A fold under and stitched neckline.  I stay stitched the quarter inch mark and then turned under and zig zag stitched.
  • Decent fit, not too tight and not too loose
  • The double fold sleeve was pretty tight.  So I just did the single fold under and zig zag stitched the hem.  It made the sleeve longer but at least I knew I didn’t have trouble with setting in the sleeve or closing up the side seams.

Doll It Up Dolman T-shirt (free)

Doll It Up Dolman

Doll It Up Dolman

Doll It Up Dolman

Doll It Up Dolman

Doll It Up Dolman

Doll It Up Dolman

  • Doll It Up Dolman T-shirt is a pull over the doll’s head type of t-shirt.  I don’t particularly like pulling t-shirts over my doll’s head so for that for any future makes of this pattern I will add seam allowances to the back so that I can add Velcro to the back for an easier to put on t-shirt and not mess up my doll’s hair.
  • This was hard to put on and take off.
  • It was fairly fitted.
  • A fold under and stitch neckline which I stay stitched the quarter inch mark then turned under and zig zag stitched.

Sweet Pea & Pumpkin T-shirt (free)

 

Sweet Pea & Pumpkin

Sweet Pea & Pumpkin

Sweet Pea & Pumpkin

Sweet Pea & Pumpkin

Sweet Pea & Pumpkin

Sweet Pea & Pumpkin

  • Neck band which is like what a girl would find in ready to wear.
  • I really wish there was a small box with the neckband bias marked in the pattern pages.
  • As this is a PDF pattern, I don’t usually have the computer up with the instructions as I am cutting pattern out.See above.  I actually had to go back and fix the t-shirt after completed because I found out about the neck band so that is why my neck line is stretched out.
  • Otherwise, the pattern pieces fit together nicely.
  • Probably more of a boyfriend shirt style of fit.

Liberty Jane Patterns Baseball T-shirt ($3.99)

Liberty Jane Baseball Tee

Liberty Jane Baseball Tee

Liberty Jane Baseball Tee

Liberty Jane Baseball Tee

Liberty Jane Baseball Tee

Liberty Jane Baseball Tee

Liberty Jane Baseball T-shirt

Liberty Jane Baseball T-shirt (example on older doll in rayon jersey)

  • Neckline band!  That is probably the finish one would expect to see in Ready to Wear.
  • Easy opportunity to color block which means that it could use smaller scrap from projects.
  • Fairly fitted style
  • Raglan sleeves
  • Fairly fast to make (I have made this three times before but still even first time is fast)
  • Definitely need a fabric with stretch (I have made this top with ponte for the body and it will only fit on my newer dolls)
  • Pattern marks match up easily

 

Lee & Pearl’s 1001 Unisex T-shirt ($3.99)

Lee & Pearl

Lee & Pearl

Lee & Pearl

Lee & Pearl

Lee & Pearl

Lee & Pearl

  • Neckline band!  I really just love this.
  • Pattern comes with a V-neck option
  • Choice of long or short sleeves.
  • Relaxed fit
  • Pattern marks line up well

 

 

All these t-shirts were made with teal poly/ lycra knit from Fabricmart.  All the doll models shown in the pictures are modern American girl dolls.  I didn’t use any of the older dolls in my collection which are more stuffed than the current dolls made.  As always, there will be slight variation per doll.