Wednesday, June 16, 2010

So you think you can't sew?

Sewing anything, from a pillow case to a ball gown, can seem intimidating. When your dolls need a new look, why not keep the money in your doll savings account for the next beautiful body on your wish list? Sew a brand new outfit for that vinyl beauty on your shelf and you’ll feel like the UPS truck already delivered a brand new one! There are many reasons to embark on the adventure of stitching up a great new outfit!

In comparison with sewing larger projects, miniature clothing means less fabric. I often use remnants/bolt ends at my local fabric store. These leftover pieces are significantly discounted because most customers cannot use such small pieces; luckily, you can! If you want to splurge and buy some high end fabric: no worries. Most garments only need a fraction of a yard.

No need to run out and buy an expensive sewing machine, or a sewing machine at all! Although it may polish off those straight seams a little faster (and depending on the steadiness of your hand, a little neater), many short or curved seams are actually easier to sew by hand. Not being tied down to a sewing machine also means that you can take your project over to a friend’s house and stitch away while you deliberate over last night’s episode of Project Runway. Or, if you’re like me, take it out to the hammock swing on your balcony and let the fresh air breathe life into you and your emerging work of art.

Maybe the best reason for breaking out the fabric and thread is the unique ability to create exactly what you want. Make a miniature replica of your wedding dress before you donate it to the thrift store (it will take up much less room). Duplicate that Chanel cocktail dress you saw in last month’s Vogue. Sew a shirt that you know will fit that busty BJD of yours, or design an outfit inspired by your favorite Beatles song!

If you’re pumped up and ready to begin sewing, grab some fabric scraps and pins and start playing around. Don’t be shy about using garments from your muse’s existing wardrobe to help teach you what shape to cut the pieces and how to put them together. Or, if you’re not ready to start from scratch quite yet, go online and search for patterns fitted for your specific doll. Finally, stay tuned to Fashion Doll Review for inspiration, free patterns and more ongoing sewing tips on how to create, and live vicariously through, your doll’s wardrobe!

If you’re still not convinced that sewing for your doll is the best idea you’ve heard all day, don’t feel bad. Go online, or check out doll shows in your local area and buy those outfits that you (I mean, your doll) just cannot live without! You’ll be supporting artists (like me) in the doll community that enjoy the craft of creating beautiful outfits, so that you don’t have to!


  1. You almost convined me to sew, almost!

  2. Ms. Leo--I know you want to!

    I am almost convinced, also. But Jen comes over to my house weekly, so my motivation is maybe a tad... influenced. ;)


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