Archive | February 2015

Bonjour Paris- Lee & Pearl 1033


So this is the new free pattern for Lee & Pearl’s newsletter mailing list.  For a free pattern, you are getting so many different variations.  The pattern included a top, dress, shorts (cuffed and un-cuffed), and an apron.  I went ahead and made the shorts and the top for my dolls.

The top I made with white rayon challis.  The pattern recommends cotton, so my rayon challis is a little light weight for the pattern.  So I didn’t feel up to fighting both Toby and Lala investigating the iron so I didn’t iron my wrinkly challis before cutting the pattern out.  I really believe that is why the top looks bigger than what the pattern shows.  The pleats at the neckline are the only part that made me stop to re-read the instructions and match what I do to the pictures.  I didn’t top-stitch my pleats down.  Otherwise the top was easy to put together even with the pleats in the sleeves.


I had a cute blue floral quilting cotton that I thought would be adorable shorts.  First I had to make sure I could get a dress for Cecile then I could cut my shorts out plus I got a bonus pair of shoes too from the fabric.  The shorts do have a pocket, so for the pocket lining I used some of the white quilting cotton I had so it wouldn’t show through.  The shorts went together very quickly.  I think I had them completely sewn in an hour and a half.  So this is the first pattern I have used for shorts/ pants that didn’t use elastic in the waistband.  These shorts close with Velcro.




This pattern is rated at easy/ intermediate for the pleats and curved seams.  That is pretty accurate.  I really like the items I made.  It will definitely be used again later this year as I am working on the doll wardrobe for my dad’s work.

A Coco for All Seasons

So this post will be covering at least five different Coco dresses from Tilly and the Buttons.

In July 2014, my mom asked if I would be able to make a dress.  So after looking though the patterns in the stash already, I decided to order Tilly’s Coco dress.  It sounded like what she wanted a knit dress with sleeves.

The first Coco was sewn up in August for me.  I figured I should at least be acquainted with the pattern before making it for my mom.  For the dress, I picked out a rayon jersey.  The pattern recommends more stable knits like a interlock knit.  But from what I saw online, it looks like several have used thinner knits and been happy with the result.  For my Coco dress, I graded between size 4 and size 5.   The sleeves are a little long; they are supposed to be ¾ length.  I probably should have taken an inch out in the length.   Instead of the stay tape at the shoulders, I used the clear elastic I had at home.  Since I was using a thinner knit than recommended, I didn’t want to cause too much stretch in the knit.  I used quarter-inch seam allowance on the side seams.  That way it just skims over me.  At the end, I decided to take two inches off the bottom.  It was a little long being at the middle of my knees when not hemmed.  After that I used a 1 inch hem to get it to look like the same spot as the pictures.

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I thought I had everything lined up well.  But I didn’t.  One side seam the stripes match perfectly; the other not so much.  This was following the pattern’s cutting layout. I went through and very carefully lined up the selvage sides and pinned the stripe together.  Then  I laid the fabric down carefully and did keep the bunny off while I was cutting (which is very hard to do).   I think the next time I use a stripe for this dress, I may go ahead and cut it out single layers.

I was able to show my mom the dress over Labor day weekend.  It was exactly what she was wanting in a dress.  So we went by the fabric shop and picked up some ITY fabric to make her a top with the pattern.

Next Coco was the top for my mom.  I choose a size 7 for her.  I also knew I was going to need a full bust adjustment.  This is a knit pattern and I can’t remember if I have seen full bust adjustments done on knit.  I drew a line of where I was going to do the “simple” full bust adjustment, then cut along it and spread 2 inches.  This did add some in the waist and hip area too, but it wasn’t so bad that I had to go back and fix it.  I cut my fabric then basted it all together for my mom to try on.  She like the fit but preferred using quarter-inch on the side seams instead of the 5/8 inch seam.

Coco 3 was a dress for my mom from a lavender rayon jersey.  I couldn’t get the stripes to line up because the pattern on the fabric was crooked.

I actually don’t have pictures of the ones I made for my mom.

Now we are up to Coco 4.  I made Coco 4 in December right before Christmas.  I decided to go with sleeveless so I could wear it with a cardigan and leggings in the winter and still be able to wear it in the summer.  I got the floral knit at the KC Pinhead Christmas party.  I used the size 4/5 combo again this time but I went ahead and took off a little length before cutting.  I also added a quarter-inch on the neckline at the shoulders.  I don’t know if that was the cause of the neckline gaping, if the fabric stretched while sewing since I forgot to stay stitch, or both but I went ahead and put in a couple of pleats around the neckline to keep it from gaping.


So the last Coco was made with navy sweatshirt fleece.  I used quarter-inch for the seam allowances.  I added extra length to the sleeves and the hem to account for the thickness of the fabric.  I still had neckline gaping even with stay stitching.  I need to decide how I want to fix that.  Excuse the first navy photo because I was trying to not fall over Lala.


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I think the navy sweatshirt fleece will be the last Coco I make for myself.  I just can’t seem to get the neckline right and I don’t know what else to do for fixing it.

I think the next knit dress for me will be the Deer and Doe Plantain  baby doll tutorial.