Vintage 50s Swing Dress Patterns for 11.5″ Fashion Dolls!

50s Swing Dresses for 11.5" Fashion dolls (including curvy, tall, petite)

This week’s pattern is one a lot of people have been waiting for! 50s Swing Dresses!

I debated doing the Meido fashion this week, but while the PS size really rocks out the loli styles, it isn’t as popular in this size.  This size, the classic, feminine dresses seem to be the most in demand, and since Qi Loli was the last one, I figured I would do something different 🙂

New design in PS Size: Meido

Meido aka Maid Cafe type Lolita uniforms

This week’s pattern is one I’ve been wanting to do, but also kind of avoiding doing for a while!  Lemme explain:

I love black and white combos.  I have to actively add color into my own wardrobe because if you present me with two dresses, one being black and white and one being color, I will almost always go for the black and white one.  I don’t know why, I just do.  I LOVE color and brightly colored things, but there’s something about black and white combos that seems so perfect.  Black by itself is boring, and white by itself is boring, but together? Perfection!  So obviously I have a thing for any kind of dress, suit, or uniform that takes advantage of this combo.  At the top of that list is the iconic, often-reinvented, classical European maid uniform!

So that’s the part about where I love it.  Here’s the part where I hate it: do a search for ‘maid outfit’ and you’re going to get results that are 98% either lingerie or sluttified Halloween costumes.  Not really the kind of thing I’m into making patterns for.

BUT I’ve been watching some anime lately, and it’s reminded me of the Japanese meido obsession which has more of a focus on cute than sleazy.  It’s like Maid x Lolita style.  In fact, structurally this is essentially a classic lolita dress pattern with a lacy underskirt, ruffled dress with poofy sleeves, and blousey/pinafore layering options.  Do it up in pastels prints and you’ll have a knockoff sweet lolita Baby the Starts Shine Bright type fashion! 

Another fun thing about the Meido pattern is that you can absolutely swap around pieces with patterns like High Fashion (sew the dress with a ruffled collar, high sleeves, and use the wide waistband instead of the narrow one for the pinafore, for example) or pop the pinafore over the Wa Loli or Qi Loli dresses for instant traditional Japanese or Chinese x maid styles (also totally a thing!).  And of course, you can use the lacy, layering-friendly bodices from the Drndl pattern under the dress instead of a blouse top, or swap pinafores with the Looking Glass Lolita pattern for a slightly more ruffly Alice type lolita dress. 

 

Check it out in the shop and enjoy! 

 

The Doll (Pattern) Evolves! Fashions for the new Fashionistas

Usually, I have a ‘to do’ list as long as my arm and never feel that I’ve gotten quite enough done, but this week I’m pretty happy with myself!

Last week, I got the new Slim, Original, and Broad Fashionista Ken dolls.  This week, they all have patterns.  Nice.

All the Mattel-made dolls that share a sizeOk, maybe some of the new sizes aren’t all that new.  The ‘Original’ Ken is pretty much a less articulated, slightly enlarged (except for the hands/feet) version of the EAH doll.  And Slim is almost the same, but with slightly more slender arms/legs, and less sculpted muscle definition (and smaller hands/feet).

Medium Boy Basics

First is the new Medium Boy Basics.  Slim Ken isn’t a cover doll, but that’s because people always ask me about Taeyang clothes (also the same size!) so for now at least, I’ll have the most popular medium guys on the cover.  (This size is also the same size as rebooted MH boys, by the way.)  This is a pattern that’s been in the shop for a while, but I went through and updated the pattern, changed the cover, and rewrote the instructions. 

"Original" Basics

So if the new Original Ken size can wear any Medium pattern enlarged 108%, why does he get his own pattern?  Easy!  Printing at different sizes is the #1 thing I get people asking for help with, and the ‘Basics’ patterns are designed to be as easy-as-possible for newbie sewers since this is the style most people make their first pattern.  Original just joins the Super Hero Gals with their 125% pre-resized Basics pattern and the 17″ giant doll 150% pre-resized Basics patterns in the PS size (as well as all the Yo-SD resizes in Tiny size!). 

Broad Fashionista Ken BasicsFinally, here’s this week’s totally new, not revamped or resized pattern: Broad BasicsAnd now that I’ve photographed him in his new custom size clothes, I can totally try giving him a beard to complete his manbun hipster-lumberjack look.  (Oh yes I am.  Of course I am.  How could I not?)

3 new patterns in a week!  And in a week with a holiday in it! 

What does the future hold for the new boy bods?  No idea 🙂  With the addition of two new bods to clothe, Medium might just become popular enough to escape the boy-pattern curse!  Since the new Broad guy is also a rectangular torso shape, just thicker to what I’ll now be calling “Classic” ken instead of “Modern” Ken, I might be able to manage future patterns so that Broad is a variation included in Large patterns the way I do with Curvy Barbies in most Medium Girl patterns.  But again, more patterns is contingent on people buying existing patterns, which has always been a hurdle for boy dolls  ^^;

Chibi School Uniform

Private School: Chibi Sized!

The chibi size has become a little more popular recently, probably because kikis are becoming less rare as more dolls are made! So this week, here’s a nice wardrobe basics pattern: Private School Uniform

I also have gotten my hands on a Fairyland Realfee and can confirm that although they’re a bit shorter, they’re about the same size.  Things like socks obviously won’t work between them, but I’ll deal with that when I get there. It’s not like the other sizes don’t have a bunch of variations.

Realfee in Chibi Private School Uniform

So here’s the deal with Realfees (since they come with so many body parts): When they have human legs, they’re slightly shorter and have slightly narrower hips, though still pear shaped.  When they have non-quadroped animal lower halfs (bunny, satyr, mermaid) the hips widen to be just about a perfect match to the realfee.  So far, both the patterns I’ve done are only fitted to the waist and free at the hips because skirts and dresses and bloomers are all pretty roomy down there, so you can pop them on either doll no problem!

The New Ken dolls: Slim, Original, and Broad

…or as I refer to them in my head, Twink, Twunk, and Beefy. 

New Kens size chart

I like the variety.  I always will applaud variety.  Is this groundbreaking variety?  Nah.  If anything, the ‘broad’ male to be the ‘plus size’ counterpart to the new Curvy Barbie is even less of a stretch into the edgy than Curvy was.  Look at those flat abs and total lack of love handles! 

The body that annoys me the most is the new “Original” body, which is not the same as any previous Ken and just messes with the terminology.  Not just because of that, but because I don’t think that the exaggerated V torso ideal in men is any healthier than the Classic Original Barbie bod was for women. Men aren’t built that way.  The closest I can think of is a swimmer’s physique, and even they don’t have hips narrower than their rib cages.  If the point of this is to promote healthy body images, the new Original body is less realistic than Classic. 

Apart from the complaint that 1 of the 3 new body types is more of a step back than a step forward, my other major problem with these guys is the articulation.  It’s crap.  And I don’t just mean that it’s 5 point crap: the widest stance Broad Ken can have spaces his feet only 2 inches apart.  His foot moves back about 1 inch and forward 5 (not enough to sit).  It is worse than the alt sized Barbies. 

So will I be making clothes for them?  Sure!  All dolls need clothes.  You can read the breakdown of sizes here, in the measurements section.