Today is Pants/ Jeans/ Shorts day for Doll Clothing Week. I decided to try out Simplicity 8397 for today’s challenge. It is one of their American Girl collection line.
Tell you how much I must have not liked the finished pants, I didn’t even realize until this morning I had not take pictures of them when I was going to post the review.
I did view E (the long pants). I didn’t add the bias tape or buttons to the front. I didn’t have bias tape at home. Anyways, something basic would be more versatile. So being up front and honest, this is a mixed review. The pattern went together well, but ended up being over half an inch too big at the waist for my Gabriella doll. I know a bit of the problem was from fabric choice and cutting. But I can’t believe I was that far off that it made the pants that big.
The pants have a Velcro closure in the back. I wasn’t expecting that. I am not sure I care much for that. But as this pair doesn’t fit, I am going to table that decision until I try a back Velcro closure that does fit my dolls.
My absolute first recommendation if you use this pattern is to use a thin stable cotton. I used the linen look rayon/ poly for my pants. It was a bit temperamental in cutting out with my rotary cutter. So that probably didn’t help my pants out. Also, with the cuff, there is a lot of bulk at the hem of the pants. So a thin fabric will be better for that.
My other recommendation is do not use your quarter- inch foot with this pattern. I honestly believe if I had used my 0 foot for my Pfaff, I would have at least had a closer to fitting pair of pant. My honest guess is that this pattern is geared more towards someone who may not sew doll clothing as much and not have a quarter- inch foot for their sewing machine.
Finally, before installing the waistband, try the pants on your doll. If I had, then I would have been able to pull in the side seams and front crotch seam. But honestly, I didn’t expect them to be that big. So I didn’t even think about trying them on Gabriella. I think they were even too big for my older dolls.
In the end, instead of removing the waistband and taking in side seams, I decided to just put a second strip of Velcro in the back. It takes care of most of the excess but not all. At least now, Gabriella’s pants are not falling off of her.
Tell you how disappointed I was, I decided not to even bother making a top to go with this pair of pants. I will just owe Gabriella another outfit instead.