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Cashmerette Appleton

To start with, this isn’t my first Appleton. I made a few of them for my mom for Christmas (one test that she got around Thanksgiving and two for Christmas presents from the pets).  Out of respect, I did not post her dresses to the blog.  I did post one on the KC Pinheads Facebook pages just incase they had some fitting advice for me.  She didn’t like it but at least understood why.  Her dresses look so great on her but we do have the discussion of are they too long.  The dress covers the top of her knee-high compression support stockings by three inches so I say it is perfect length because I was told to make it long enough to cover the top of the stockings.  She thinks it is too long. However, the dresses in the post are the first ones I ever made for myself.

Picking pattern size was the hardest part. There is a lot of negative ease in the pattern.  I don’t usually do too much negative ease.  So choosing size was a big hurdle.  In fact I traced a 14/18 combo then about a week later , I had size doubts and then re-traced the pattern out in a 16/18 combo.  In the end, I used the 16 E/F for the bust and grading out to the 18 at the waist line (where the ties wrap through is what I took as waistline).  I ended up with about 5 inches negative ease (about a 2 inch reduction in negative ease).  My bust is around a 42 inch.

Since I have made this dress before, I didn’t use the instruction really. I did put it out when it came time to apply the neckband.

The only other alteration I made was to shorten the dress by 2 inches at the hem and to take a 2.25 inch hem.

I decided to remake this dress for a friend’s wedding in early June.  The only change I made was to length the short sleeves to almost elbow length.  They may be a little long but I like them a bit better.  This one is from a little thinner ITY.  It feels so silky to the touch.

 

 

But as my wardrobe is more separates based, I really want to modify the Appleton into a top using Cashmerette’s hack they release.

Cashmerette Dartmouth

Cashmerette Dartmouth was another top that I cut out while my sewing machine was being repaired.  But tragedy struck that top.  All pictures are from the re-make.

For this one I picked a 16 C/D at the bust and graded out to the 18 at the waist.  To be honest, I don’t think I picked the right size.  This feels a little too relaxed and oversized as I am wearing it when I stitched it at the recommended seam allowances.

I was trying to improve the fit of my top so that I would wear it more.  As I was trimming the seam allowances, I cut a huge hole in the back of the top.  It was complete un-repairable.  Luckily, I did have the next day off from work, so I put some new fabric in the washing machine and hung to dry.  Both attempts were made from Rayon/ lycra jersey.

Dartmouth was actually a fairly fast make.  I probably started cutting it out around 8 am in the morning and by 11:30 I was finished with the top.  I really did not look at the directions much on the second time.  I made the same size as previously made.  This time I used 5/8 to 3/4 inches for the side seams.  I achieved a much better fit for the top.  I have realized that I probably need to size down or remove some of the hip curve.

The only part that annoys me a bit is the front hem.  Since there is two layers of fabric in the front, my hem just seems too bulky.  Once I get the correct size picked out, I will probably go back and trace out a second front for me and short it by an inch just so that it is caught in the hem but hopefully not making the hem be too bulky.

 

There is still a couple of Cashmerette Appletons to get on the blog and a Scroop Miramar.  Besides the blog worthy, most of the other projects in the back log are t-shirts which have been covered before.

Right now, I have been sorting through patterns trying to figure out what I need most.  After the Sew Powerful Purses, my focus should shift towards lingerie, blouses and trying to make some pants.

 

LJC UK Holiday Outfit for Hearts For Hearts Girls

Another Hearts for Hearts Girls outfit.  This time I made Dell the Liberty Jane UK Holiday outfit.  Lately, I have been using my 1/4″ guide quilting foot for my Pfaff Ambition.  It has been really great and easy to use.

Liberty Jane suggest that the skill level for the UK Holiday outfit is intermediate.  The intermediate rating is more in likely because of the knit fabric choice.  Otherwise the pattern was very easy to assemble.

For Dell’s top, I used a rayon lycra jersey knit.  It is especially important that the knit for the top be very light and drapey.  If it isn’t, then the top will not look great and be pretty bulky looking on your doll.  To make the waist elastic casing and the casing at the bottom of the sleeves, I used my beige colored Hug Snug binding.  I used 1/4 inch elastic for the entire top.

Even though the top was a fairly easy sew, I am not sure I like it enough to use the top pattern again.  I think this is more personal preference than pattern issues.

However, I do like the legging pattern and will be using that more in the future.  Dell is currently wearing the leggings using a stretch knit denim looking fabric.  I used the 1/4 inch elastic for the waist of the leggings.  If I am remembering correctly, I think the leggings took under an hour to make.

Rahel’s Ethiopian Dress

June 10 is World Doll Day.  So lets celebrate by showing off Rahel in her new dress.  Rahel is the third Hearts for Hearts doll added to my collection.

Rahel got the Ethiopian dress from Wren Feathers designs.  Honestly, it is an extremely easy pattern to put together.  I read through the directions and I decided that I was going to use a Velcro to close the back of the dress up.  I printed out a separate piece for the back and then added 3/8th of an inch to the center back for the Velcro.

The stash really didn’t have all the colorful trim that the pattern asked for.  Instead, I used my machine’s decorative stitches and the straight stitch for trim.  It was stitch 32 or 36 on my Pfaff Ambition Essential.  I really wished I would have went with more colorful stitches instead of staying with the single color which matched Rahel’s bangles and necklace.  As for the main fabric, I have to admit it is a mystery fabric that I got from Hancock’s remnant bin.  But it was a lovely light blue which worked well with the trim stitching.

However, I didn’t catch that the sleeve area should have had the binding also.

Jalie Raglan T-shirt

So flipping through blog post, it looks like I don’t sew clothes for people anymore.  But to be honest, November and December’s sewing projects were for my mom who doesn’t want her items posted to the blog.  I originally planned on working this t-shirt pattern back in the beginning of January, but I only had a plain solid color rayon knit picked out.  So it got shoved to the side so Marie Grace could get a dress instead.  I actually made the tops back in February.

I am glad that I waited, as later in January I picked up a cute floral rayon knit and a coordinating solid rose color.  This is much more inspiring.  As they are coordinating, I went ahead and made 2 opposite t-shirts.

I made a straight size Z.  This is the same size I made in the Jalie scarf collared top.  No other alterations were made.  However, I did add clear elastic in the raglan shoulder seams like I would have on a shoulder seam for normal t-shirts.

The neckline on the rose bodied top did stretch out some so I did add a tuck in the back neckline so that the neckline came in and laid against my back better.

Even though, several friends and my parents told me the neckline of the top is fine, I think the next version I make of Jalie 3245 will definitely have a thicker neckband before I start playing with the neckline a little.  It just feels a little too low for my own personal preference.

 

Let’s Welcome Nahji

I finally caved in and bought the Hearts For Hearts Nahji doll.  Nahji is so much prettier in person than the stock photos on Pixie Faire show.  Just in case you haven’t heard about Hearts for Hearts girls, please definitely check out their website.  Their dolls are from different areas all over the world and a portion of the purchase goes to charity.  As of right now, there are 4 dolls available: Dell (Kentucky), Rahel (Ethiopia), Consuelo (Mexico), and Nahji.  Nahji is from Assam, India.  This summer, Hearts for Hearts are planning on releasing another 2 dolls.

Nahji needed an outfit like the other dolls for Me-Made May too.  I probably should have used one of the free patterns I got when I purchased my doll off of Pixie Faire’s website.  But instead I decided upon using Liberty Jane’s Baseball Tee and the Genoa Jumper.

I really liked the American Girl dolls’ version of the Baseball tee so I figured it would be best to start Nahji’s outfit with a pattern I know I like.  I had originally planned a coral tee with a brown jumper.  But I couldn’t find the brown fabric.  Instead Nahji gets a rose tee with a teal jumper.  The rose fabric is some of the scraps of rayon Lycra that I had left over from the Jalie raglan tees I made in February but haven’t really taken photos of yet.  This is the Hearts for Hearts specific baseball tee, and it fits Nahji well.  The pieces went together so easily.

I must have been really distracted by Lala while I was cutting out the Genoa pattern.  The lining and fashion fabric didn’t line up at the hem.  So instead of following the instructions, I did simplify it and close the side seams with the serger and lined up the bottom.  I just surged and turned under the hem so that I made sure I was able to catch the lining in the hem.

My sewing machine hates quarter- inch buttons with a passion.  Instead, I used Velcro for the closure.  I will have to say that buttons do make the outfit.  Even with the print my dress is just missing that detail that a button would provide.

The Genoa pattern is advertised as fitting both 14 inch dolls (like Hearts for Hearts) and 14.5 inch dolls (like the Wellie Wishers).  For Nahji, it does seem a little loose but it isn’t drowning my doll.

As this is being typed up, I have been anxiously awaiting to hear when Rahel and Consuelo to come (granted I can’t get them until the weekend because I shipped them to my parents’ house).

 

Samantha’s floral dress Simplicity 1179

Samantha was the last doll to get a new dress for Me- Made- May.  Now all my dolls are wearing hand-made for the month.

Samantha got view D from Simplicity 1179 designed by Keepers Dolly Duds for Simplicity.  Her dress made from a quilting cotton.  Like previous doll makes, I switched out the button closure for Velcro.  I really should have tried the dress on my doll before finishing it.  It is a touch looser than expected because I really didn’t consider where her back seam should be for switching the closure out to Velcro.

I like this view much better than the view B that I made for Rebecca back in February.  I recommend being slow and cautious when doing the pin-tucks on the sleeve.  As far as I could tell, there was really not a great method of marking them.  I marked it on the back like usual, but the pin-tuck covers the marking as one is sewing.

I really didn’t have a great match for lace on the front bodice so I left that off of Samantha’s dress.  However, if Samantha gets a light lavender pinafore that should complete her outfit off quite nicely.

With the weather picking up and hopefully no rain, I should be able to get pictures of the back log of projects.