I Am Not a Robot

I’ve finished the 11-tuck skirt of Lily Auguste’s first dress. The tucks are not perfect.  Looking back at my inspiration, a dress made by school girls for Rose Percy, I think they were driven to perfection by their instructors, used a very precise sewing machine or they were robots.  I am not a robot.  I am human and I can live with my wonky tucks.  Whilst hand sewing 660 inches … Continue reading

Machine Sewing for Antique Dolls?

The sewing machine for home use was first created around 1850. It was quickly adopted by home sewers.  So it is not unusual to find machine-sewn clothing on antique dolls made after the mid-19th century, whether professionally made or home sewn.  I was surprised to learn that even the trousseau of Rose Percy contains machine-sewn items. Learning this was a revelation to me. Her wardrobe was sewn by students in … Continue reading

I Chose…

I didn’t sew a stitch this weekend.  But I breathed the soft Spring mountain air, listened to the birds sing, checked on the Nuthatch nest perched precariously (and messily) on a ledge on our porch, ate in a diner with a dog who visited every table when the food was served, petted a puppy, visited the exquisite Gaudineer Knob to experience it in Spring, found a beautiful lake, discovered wild … Continue reading

Tool Tedium

I’ve started using some new needles, thread and pins and I’m excited about them. I don’t expect you to be as excited as I am, but I hope you find the information helpful. Needles I used John James quilting between size 12 needles for many years when hand sewing doll clothes. I included them in my list of necessary supplies when I wrote Hand Sewing for Dolls Part 1 many … Continue reading

New Clothes

Progress is slow, but Lily Auguste will finally get new clothes. Her first outfit will be in the enfantine style. In other words, dressed as a young teen/pre-teen. Before LA arrived, I pored over many of my doll books searching for inspiration. My criteria for choosing costumes for my dolls starts with finding a dress that appeals to me aesthetically and is from approximately the same time period as the … Continue reading

Roll, Whip & Gather & Gather

Lily Auguste now has her first set of underwear. If you expect fast-paced sewing, I will disappoint you. I’ve had her since early December and finally finished her simple undies in early April. Four months.  I sew quickly, but don’t sit and sew very often.  LA stays home when we travel to the mountains, so planning, pattern making and her fittings have to wait until we get home. DH, our … Continue reading

Dolly Math

Are you familiar with the acronym STEM? It’s very trendy because it is very important. Ask any teacher or student.   You can tell your kids, grandkids or any kid you know that you use STEM to costume antique dolls: Science – We study how things were made in the past and experiment with how to recreate them. We use chemistry to dye new fabrics, and to clean and preserve … Continue reading

Book Review: Stitching Up Paris

Back in July, 2014, I wrote a post lamenting, I Miss Shopping. But soon, I’ll be getting a major shopping fix when DH and I take Supergirl (SG) to Paris. She’s 9 1/2. There are many, many things that I love about Paris, but shopping is pretty high up there on the list.  I usually don’t buy too many things, but the ones I have bought always bring back fond … Continue reading

Sewing for Supergirl

Long ago, before Supergirl (SG) was born, I dreamed of sewing for a granddaughter. I was going to make her such lovely lacy, dainty dresses. Never happened. I started taking care of her when she was 2 months old while her mom worked full time. And was just as busy as I was with my own kids. Lacy, dainty dresses may be cute for pictures, but serve no practical purpose on a … Continue reading

Sleeves!

This post is part tutorial and part cautionary tale. I am not a hand-sewing or doll-costuming expert. I merely share with you the hard-won lessons I have learned by making a multitude of mistakes, perhaps helping you to have a smoother sewing journey. There are easy ways to set in sleeves on tiny doll costumes. This is not one of them. Several months ago, I challenged myself to make a … Continue reading