Medium 11.5″ doll Tea Gowns

Medium Doll Tea gowns

Tea Gowns are now up for 11.5″ Medium Fashion Dolls!

This is a bit of an off choice, but I wanted to get this style out because the vintagizing tutorial in it on tea dyeing will be extremely useful to some doll patterns on the ‘soon’ list for this size, like Hippie and Mori.  You can easily do either of those patterns without tea dyeing, but knowing how to do it and having the option will make those patterns more fun when their time comes 🙂

(Pssst… 10 days left for the Kimono contest)

April theme & bonus contest!

April challenge/contest!

Why am I suddenly kimono crazy with the recent wa-loli patterns and going to a kimono shop in NYC? 

‘cuz I’m going to Japan!  I’ve got a whole folder of doll-and-fabric shopping tips set up and I’m super, super excited. 

So help me get even more excited with this month’s challenge: Kimono!

If you post an outfit you made using a pattern from the shop in the Facebook group this month, there will be the standard pattern-winning-raffle but ALSO the kimono I like the most will win the maker my personal fabric shopping service while I’m in Tokyo and Kyoto.  I like to tailor my prizes to something that will be useful to the prize winner, so depending on the doll size preference the prize will be fat quarters or yards (about the same amount of fabric in total either way) in the color/style preference of the winner (traditional, kawaii prints, etc).  The only thing the winner will have to pay for is shipping the fabric to her/im after I get back to the US!

And remember–there are LOTS of different kind of kimono, and you don’t have to go traditional!  You can make a lolita style frilly kimono with the wa-loli pattern or make a steampunky kimono using unusual fabrics and decoration.  As long as it’s recognizably some kind of kimono, it counts!  So have fun, and I look forward to seeing every single entry 🙂 


Wa-Loli for Medium 11.5″ Fashion Dolls (including tall, classic, curvy, petite, strong)

I hate ruffling. Not ruffles, ruffling. The act of making ruffles.

See, it’s terribly boring and repetitive. Press. Gather. Press. Gather. I entertained my friend’s kid by letting her pull the string on some ruffle, and she was impressed…the first time. But that’s ruffle for you. It’s not the ruffle that’s interesting, it’s what you DO with the ruffle that makes OTHER things interesting!

I’ve been doing a lot of ruffles in patterns recently, and I’m kind of sick of it. So this week, when it came time to pick between a ruffled pattern and a ruffled pattern, I went with Wa-Loli because I have some really cool fabric that I haven’t used yet that is perfect for wa-loli. Whatever works!

Wa-loli for medium dolls up in the Etsy shop

And even with this one I cheated by using some lace!  Well, not really cheated.  I had a very good reason for using lace trim, which is I was trying to get the kimono sleeves to drape naturally.  I’ve only ever done this pattern on Monster High before, and they are almost as tall as these dolls but they’re like 3D representations of those twig-legged fashion illustrations.  Barbies are a lot thicker all over, so a lot more fabric is used which makes them bulkier, which makes them stiffer and not drape so delicately. 

Lace works pretty good, especially if you use it with real ruffle.  It adds the delicate touches of layering without adding a lot of the bulk of layering. I think if I redid this again, I’d do the lace on the sleeves so that it juuuust peeked past the hem.

Here’s an example of a fully lined/ruffled kimono and the lightly lined/ruffled kimono:

More wa-loli styles, more dolls

I added some other tweaks to reduce bulk, but it is definitely stiffer.  The doll can’t assume as many poses in the super ruffled/layered dress that look natural.  So if you’re sewing for a Made-to-move bodied doll and want her to kneel delicately with her hands clasped in front of her at a little table set out with tea service in a diorama, you might want to go for lace+ruffle instead of ruffle on ruffle.  If your doll is a 5-point articulated fashionista or just standing on a shelf?  Won’t matter. 

If you’ve already sewn the PS size and pick up this pattern, DEFINITELY READ THE INSTRUCTIONS!  Like I said, I used some tricks to reduce bulk because there’s a huuuuuge difference between 8″ of ruffled fabric and 18″ of ruffled fabric wrapped around the waist of a dolls with only 1″ difference in height!  The PS pattern was also adapted from a friend’s design, but Keely never did that style for this size doll so PS size is made with her style and M is made with my style.  The end result looks similar, but how you get there is a bit different.

Corset patterns for Classic and Curvy Barbie!

Corsets for Curvy Barbie

I’m quite happy with this week’s patterns: Corsets for Curvy and Classic Barbies!

This is a style that I did quite a long time ago for PS sized dolls but was reluctant to do for bigger dolls because… it’s super fitted.  Super, super fitted.  Therefore, it is not nearly as multi-body-type friendly as other patterns.  If I need to make this for Tall, Petite, and Strong dolls, they will each have to have their own pattern, too. 

Corsets for Barbie

I really love this pattern on the Curvy body.  On Classic, it looks very nice and accents clothes well, but how do I put this… Curvy looks like she’s wearing a corset.

Does that make sense? Classic is so skinny already, the overbust corset looks like just another strapless top or outfit accessory, but on Curvy it looks like it’s actually shaping her body like a corset should. 

And of course, here’s back views:

Corsets for Curvy BarbieCorsets for Barbie

I did one of each demo corset with eyelets and looped lace.  Both look very nice, and though eyelets aren’t nearly as difficult as you think they are, they are still more difficult than simply sewing in looped lace. 

There’s also a third pattern that is now shown: the waist cincher.  This is like a broad belt that laces in the back.  It isn’t quite as versatile or iconic as a long line underbust or overbust corset. 

Enjoy 🙂 

(And let me know if you desperately need these in other sizes like Tall, Petite, or Strong.  If enough people ask, I’ll make them!)

This entry was posted on February 9, 2018, in Barbie.

Hasbro Forces of Destiny Doll Action Figures

Lately there’s been a lot of crossover between ‘dolls’ and ‘action figures’.  Though it seems to me that the only real difference between action figures and dolls is whether or not boys are allowed to play with them without social disapproval, I have been told that it comes down to articulation and sculpting.

…ok, whatever.  Either way you look at it, action figures (like the all-sculpted 6″ mini DC Super Hero Girls) have been showing up in the girl aisles while traditional dolls have been gaining more articulation and sculpted clothing while Action figures have been getting bigger and more doll like (Hi there, Hot Toys!)  Madame Alexander Fangirl Dolls and WWE’s Diva dolls have brought classic fashion dolls to the boy aisles.

The Forces of Destiny dolls are hybrid dolls that are simultaneously dolls and action figures and are marketed to both boys and girls.  Great!  Let’s have a look.

Hasbro Doll comparison Continue reading