Thursday, February 12, 2015

American Girl Doll Rehab and Clothing

My dear Sister-in-law got me an American Girl doll for Christmas so that I could use her to measure and model the AG-sized items I will be selling in my soon-to-be Etsy shop. 

She came to me totally naked, being a previously well-loved doll that my SIL got for a deal. 

Fortunately, my SIL knows a thing or two about rehabbing tired old dolls. 

She went from this...

To this!

 Well, obviously I had to get some clothes on her quickly. I had a pair of old grey knit pants that my boys had outgrown lying around, so I turned them into a pair of leggings.  You can see the wear on the hem seam, where the thread had started coming out.  Oh well, it was faster and easier to make them with the original hem, and I don't think she minds.

Then I started making a dress for her, but soon thought that if she is going to be modeling other things, she should wear something plain and simple so she won't clash with the patterns on the other items. In the end I went with a simple white t-shirt instead.

Of course, I can't keep it simple, and I can't follow a pattern.  I always have to add something, or modify the method.  I did both on this shirt. 

The shirt pattern I used was originally a tank top.  I added the sleeves and the ruffle around the neck, which is just a 1-inch wide strip of fabric, ruffled up the center and sewn on.

I also modified the method for back closure.  It took me awhile, actually, to figure out the best way to close it up.  I unpicked quite a bit, but in the end I am happy with how it turned out.

All in all, I think she has made a lovely transformation! 

Friday, February 6, 2015

Valentine Mug Rug & Tips for Sewing Curves and Inside Corners

Just in time for Valentine's Day, a mug rug made from my red-est and pink-est scraps.

The patchwork is 1-inch squares, finished.  The mug rug itself is about 9.5 inches wide, 8.5 inches tall. 

The inspiration for this quick little project came from this pin HERE.

The biggest challenge I had with this was sewing the binding around the extreme curves.  Fortunately, I know a few tricks for sewing curves, and they came in handy on this project.

Tips for sewing binding onto curves:

1 - Cut your binding on the bias.  This allows your fabric to stretch much easier around the curves.

2 - Go SLOWLY when sewing around your curves.  There is nothing wrong with stopping every few stitches to adjust your fabric and check your progress.

3- Learn how to sew binding onto an inside corner.  This will help with so much frustration when sewing a project like this.  

I actually learned a handy trick for sewing inside corners from THIS post. It is presented as a tip for serging, but it works for regular sewing, as well.  It is how I got the binding into that deep inside corner at the top of the heart.

Now I am going to pack this sweet thing up and send it to it's new owner.  
Happy Valentine's Day!

Fort Worth Fabric Studio    Needle and Thread Thursday