Prototype

It’s been a while since I put anything new on my shop, and I’ve been meaning to for a while, but the holidays are a bad time to start prototyping anything, and so this doll has been about two months in the making.  You will see right off that she is primarily a ballerina doll, although with different clothing, she wouldn’t necessarily have to be.

Although this doll may not look very different, (just looking at her face) she really differs in several significant ways. For one, she is the first pattern I drafted myself (almost from scratch)  She is taller and thinner, has pointed, rather than flat feet and is made entirely from one piece ie, I didn’t have to sew arms and legs on seperately.  I was looking for a doll with a more defined waist since my other dolls are so square in shape and sometimes their clothing doesn’t stay on very well.  So I gave her a waist, and I also gave her a wire frame- something that gave me quite a lot of trouble, and needed a lot of tweaking.   This is also the first time I have attempted yarn for hair.  Since she is more delicate looking, I thought she needed something finer than the jersey strips I usually use.  And though I like how it looks, I miss the stretch that the jersey gives me since stretchy hair is much easier to style.

At any rate, here she is.  She may or may not be a limited edition, depending on interest and what I can charge for her. (she took me quite a bit longer to make than my other girls)DSCF3034 (2)

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I had lots of fun with the clothing, both in sewing the beads and flowers, and in adding as many layers of tulle as possible.

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Here she is, crossing her ankles like a lady.

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Now she will demonstrate various poses to display her flexible wire frame.

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Her bendable knees also allow her to sit quite nicely when she is tired of dancing and decides to let her hair down.

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And speaking of hair- here are a few closeups, both up and down.

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So now we have arrived at the part where I ask for feedback and suggestions.  I have to laugh at myself because I keep hunting for something that might be a little less time consuming, and end up making something more complicated.  Oh well.  Let me know what you think!  Thanks!

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Odds and Ends

Well, the blog has been slipping out of focus these past few weeks as that all important day finally comes into view. For so long, I have felt like there is no end in sight to this pregnancy. But then, at the grocery store yesterday, I grabbed a gallon of milk and noticed with great joy that the expiration date stamped on it was my due date! It’s really coming folks! And none too soon. It’s getting hot down here and I could stand to lose some excess weight.

Anyways, I’ve been putting my feet up quite a bit lately, but I haven’t quite forgotten about sewing. There were a couple things I needed to finish up for Caroline, and one last doll order that I figured would be easier to complete before the new baby arrived.

I had been looking around at new diaper bags, determined not to settle for the cheap plastic one they give you at the hospital, like I did for my boys. But I had a really hard time finding one I liked that was affordable. I figured it would be worth trying to make one, since I still had plenty of the sturdy fabric I used for the armoire leftover. I found several patterns I liked on pinterest, but in the end, pieced one together from a few different ideas. I wanted a nice big one, and this is what I came up with.

I pleated it to make it extra roomy, and gave it a nice long strap so it can go across my body

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I also lined it with fabric from an old linen skirt, just for a contrast with the floral pattern. Then I accented the edges with purple bias tape, and had a bit of fun with one of the decorative stitches on my machine that I hardly ever use.

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On the inside, I just put two side pockets, for bottles and what not.

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And I put a sturdy piece of cardboard on the bottom, so that it would stand upright when full.

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I just happened to have that big old turquoise button lying around to cover up the ugly magnetic snap closure I used for fastening.
I think it will work! And it cost me about five bucks.

I also had great plans to make a whole bunch of clothes for her, but the more clothes that kept pouring in from other people, the less I felt the need. One thing I did want to make however, was a little outfit to bring her home in. It’s always a bit of a struggle, getting those little onesies over a newborn head and wrestling their curled up arms into the sleeves. Then I remembered I had had a few baby kimonos for the boys and really liked them, so I made one for my girl.

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There are a whole bunch of free patterns online, and you can either use snaps as closures, or little ties. I went for snaps here, with cotton jersey fabric and a bit of Alabama Chanin technique.

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And I couldn’t resist just a little bit of embellishment. I also made the sleeves extra long, to cover her hands and keep her from scratching her face if need be.
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The pants were super simple as well- nice and stretchy with a draw string waist.

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That’s probably the last of the sewing I will do for her for now.

And just for fun, another doll, for a friend’s daughter. She asked for something pink and girly, maybe with flowers involved. I got some inspiration from the peonies my hubby bought me for my birthday last week. (These aren’t them, but they looked like this.)

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Blond hair with blue eyes seems to be the popular choice lately.

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I added some little blue flowers at the waist, just so the pink wouldn’t be too overwhelming.

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Hopefully, she is pink and girly enough!

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Pink has never been a favorite color with me, but I think I am getting used to it. And just in time! Who knows what I might post next!

His ‘n Hers

Well folks, here’s another custom order. I had a request for a light-brown haired doll with green eyes, so here she is, with green dress to match. I had so much fun with the green eyes. I would love to do another one, although next I think I will try one with red hair. The dress is a little different this time- a higher collar with a bow and different button detail. It’s fun designing dresses! She has brown shoes to match her buttons and hair ribbon.

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After she was done, I decided to listen to my sons and try a little something for them. No, it’s not a pirate doll, but I thought it was time for an attempt at a boy doll. He turned out to be a little newsboy. I was inspired by the hat I guess. I am putting him up for sale, but if no one buys him, he will probably be a Christmas gift for someone around here. Speaking of Christmas, I have this dream of selling enough stuff to get us six plane tickets to my folk’s house for the holidays. Hmmmm, that would be an awful lot of sewing……

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Here’s a couple of shots of them together, laughin’ it up, and having a good old time during our photoshoot.

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Like I said, greeny is already sold, but I am happy to duplicate!

Having way too much fun

After my last somewhat somber blog post, I needed to focus on something cheerful, so I went a little overboard with these next few items. I started with the dress, inspired by a stencil I found in an old library book. I added the buttons later, because I thought the flowers needed a little something more to make them stand out. I made the pattern bigger than usual, but I think I miscalculated because it turned out way too short when I tried it on my two year old, but it was too big everywhere else. So I added the blue strip on the bottom- problem solved!

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I like how it turned out, but I thought that it might be a little chilly for upcoming fall weather, you know, in case anyone actually wanted to buy it. So I was thinking about another little bolero jacket when I stumbled on this idea.

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I love berets, and the cape- well, I just had to try it. They were both such easy patterns, I want to do more.

I couldn’t stop there. Such a cute outfit needed just one more thing. Yep, you guessed it. Or maybe you didn’t- a matching doll of course!

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My boys were fascinated by the doll making. They watched every step of the process, helped me stuff the arms and legs, and waited with bated breath while I made the clothes. They were so excited, they made a throne for her out of legos. Then they asked if I could make a pirate doll.

I had to try this ensemble on an actual girl this time, and I didn’t have to look far for the perfect model. It’s handy having friends with adorable children.

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Yep, definitely having way too much fun.