Saturday, October 13, 2012

Simplicity 1900 - Handmade Baby Doll

Hi All!

Here is my latest sewing project! I am currently eliminating junk from my diet so my clothes sewing mojo is on hiatus until I reach my goal (with the exception of transition pieces and accessories...

I used broadcloth, 8.5 X 11 sheets of felt, assorted fat quarters, embroidery floss, fiberfill, thread,eyelets and grosgrain ribbon.

So here's the cute little doll that I made for a sweet little girl.


I cut out the pattern pieces a while ago and hand embroidered her face first to see if it was going to be a successful project or a hot mess. Once I finished her face I decided to finish her up today. I took pictures of some of the steps so that you can see how she came together. I am still training myself to stop at the right points in the project to take pictures (I get so caught up in the moment that I've completed several steps before I realize that I haven't snapped any photos! So, here we go...

This is what the front body looks like after embroidering the face, putting on the hair and top stitching around and on top of the hair.


The back of the body with top stitching on and around the back of the hair.


Legs and socks sewn together.


Arms sewn, turned and stuffed.


Arms and legs basted to the body front.


After attaching the legs and arms to the front of the body I put the back and front together (right sides together) and sewed all the way around the doll, leaving a small opening for turning. After turning the doll was firmly stuffed with fiberfill and the opening was closed using a whip stitch (not as neat as a ladder stitch, but it does give "rag doll" properties to this little cutie. Since she didn't have any clothes on I just took a head shot :).


On to the clothes - this is a little A-line dress that has a front that has been separated to allow for the contrasting pleat. The arms, bottom and back closure have simple double-folded hems. The collar was finished with binding and I used heat activated hook and loop tape for the back closure. A little rectangular piece was stitched (right sides together with a hole for turning), turned, pressed, stitched closed and tied in a knot to form a bow.




Here's the cape. It was cut out of felt. Two butterflies were also cut out of two colors of felt, folded in half and stitched very close to the fold. They were then attached to the cape by stitching along the seam that was just created. The cape's closure is also heat activated hook and loop tape.


The pattern originally called for the little shoes to be closed by a loop and a button, but I thought it would be cute to make these mimic ballet slippers. To do this I inserted two sets of eyelets on each shoe, cut and sealed two lengths of grosgrain ribbon, threaded the ribbon through the slippers and tied them around the dolls feet.




Here are a few more pictures of what she looks like.


Here's what I learned...

1. I should have cut the threads between her eyes (it's visible behind the fabric) or use a thicker broadcloth next time.

2. Double check to be sure that the fabric doesn't shift when sewing the back and front together.

3. Don't make the seam allowance so wide in the shoes (they went from being almost too big to almost too small!

4. Don't be lazy...I should have used pink thread for the socks (the dark thread is showing).

5. Use a contrasting color for the top stitching throughout the hair (all my nice stitches throughout her hair are practically invisible).

6. Continue to tighten up my embroidery skills (and use stabilizer next time)!

Thanks for reading my looooooooong post!