Simplicity 1484: Doll Clothes
Lili’s hair was a matted mess after I took her out of the box. I fixed it…and it was a strange soothing feeling doing so. Feelings of being a kid flooded my entire being and the trance-like urge to make her new clothes set in.
I made Simplicity 1484 View A without the belt.
The first thing I noticed is that the seam allowances are so tiny! 1/4″ vs. the usual 5/8″. Cutting out was a breeze.
I was surprised to see that there is a bodice lining. None of my Barbie clothes were lined! Why a doll needs a LINED bodice, I have no idea, lol. It gave me a good laugh. I was going to skip that part but decided it would be good practice.
The process to line the bodice was EXACTLY the same as my Celebration/Quilt Dress. In fact, the entire construction was exactly the same. Even the skirt! One big gathered rectangle.
It was worth the extra step to sew the lining. I always forget how to do the side seams but doing this for the doll reinforced the method in my mind. Topstitching was optional but I went ahead and did this too. It gives it more of a professional finish.
The green material is leftover from my Kermes dress (review coming soon) and the palm was one of many block prints from the Celebration/Quilt Dress. I had fun deciding where to use what! The trim is made from a one inch strip of palm fabric. I turned the raw edges under and sewed it using an edgestitch foot. I caught myself wondering why I was putting so much effort into doll clothes. I mean, switching out machine feet…that’s when it starts to get serious! Haha! But I shrugged off the feeling and embraced it. Because I like things to match I put a green ribbon from a leftover box of Godiva chocolates in her hair. The whole thing cracks me up, lol.
The pattern itself was straightforward. I rated it 5 stars on Pattern Review.
Besides the tiny seams, I found it easy to sew. It’s not my cleanest sewing on the inside, but I didn’t want to chance ruining it by accident through the serger. Instead I finished the seams using a combo of pinking and zigzag stitch using my new-to-me vintage Wiss pinking shears. The back fastens with a 1/4″ piece of velcro. Using double sided adhesive made sewing this so much easier!
Doesn’t she look so much happier wearing summer clothes?
This kind of creative sewing was such a nice break from the careful couture sewing and pattern drafting brainwork I’ve been up to lately. That kind of sewing can be really intense. I really got lost in making this Palm dress. The moment she had the new dress on there was a major feeling of satisfaction. It’s not the same feeling I get when I make myself clothes. It’s not even the same feeling when completing a simple zipper pouch.
Remember when you were a kid and it felt like AGES for Christmas to arrive? Remember when you finally unwrapped your presents? Remember how you felt once you saw what it was?!!! That excited feeling?!
Well, that’s the same feeling I got once I saw the doll wearing my Palm dress creation. It’s like suddenly acquiring the key to unlock a door you thought was permanently locked beyond age 10.
Originally I was embarrassed to purchase a doll and to sew doll clothes for my own personal enjoyment. But there’s nothing like unscrewing the lid of the Nostalgia Jar, taking a whiff and being transported to the happy worry-free times of being a kid. The fact of the matter is: This doll makes me smile. All the ridiculousness of creating an outfit, rummaging through scraps to find the one that is just the right size, sewing the tiny seams and making it all work to create something cute. You can deny it all you want, but I do think there’s an inner child in all of us adults. As pleasing as it sounds to escape the stressful Adult Real World and book a one way ticket to Neverland, I’m telling you right now (unless there’s a child present) you won’t catch me having a Tea Party with this doll, lol…..but I AM growing to love her.
“Lili” was her original name on the box. I am going to rename her “Pia.”