It’s going to be Velvet & Lace for the Little Darlings Christmas dress…

Today I made quite a bit of headway on the 13″ Dianna Effner Little Darlings Christmas dress. I wanted to make a really dressy dress for them out of some black windowpane rayon velvet that I’ve had for awhile. It’s super soft, lightweight and very fluid; almost like chiffon with just a bit of flocking on it. But along with “prettiness” comes headaches… like all the fuzz in the room, on your clothes, and all over your dolls face as she tries on things. Sewing with black thread on black fabric that has a nap to it isn’t the easiest thing to do. Then sewing with black velvet and using white lace is “almost” as bad as that silver fabric… NO… I take that back…it’s not even close!

Here’s a picture of the windowpane velvet… you can see how transparent it is through the “pane” parts…

[If you click on the pictures, they will enlarge.]


This is a picture of the first bodice I cut out… can you see why I didn’t use it?


It was so slippery when I cut it out, it turned out crooked… that will never do! So I cut out another one…v-e-r-y carefully! Here is a close up of the bodice… you can barely see the little squares in the velvet, but in person they’re very pretty.


The dress is going to have a double ruffle made from a pretty white lace.


Here’s a close up of the lace…


…and one final picture to have you guessing what I’ll do to complete it… oh… I have things up my sleeves… you just wait!


I hope you like it… my other Little Darlings, Janie and Isabelle are quite jealous that Lian got to try it on first…

See you tomorrow,
Blessings, Jeanne

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  1. Linda Doyle says:

    Goodness gracious! What a gorgeous dress, Jeanne! You outdo yourself each time! This is the kind of dress I really love to see little girls wearing, not the sequin stuff they seem to go for now. This is so elegant and tasteful, and just plain darling—for the Little Darlings!

    I have never seen windowpane velvet, so that a new one for me. That lace is so pretty and delicate looking too, just a wow from me! Can’t wait to see what else you will be doing to add to the outfit. What you have there is enough for me!

    • Thank you Linda,
      I like to see little girls in dresses like this too! I don’t think I have ever made my Little Darlings such a fancy dress…and I’m anxious to see how it all turns out too…
      Thank you Linda,
      Blessings, Jeanne

  2. Beautiful and Elegant! Santa sure will bring her lots of goodies!

    • Thank you Sylvia,
      I hope Santa is good to my girls because they probably won’t get anything from me…except the chance to model their Christmas dresses…. Bad mommy, aren’t I?
      Thank you for your comments Sylvia…
      Blessings, Jeanne

  3. I agree with Linda, this dress is beautiful and what I picture a dress-up outfit. The bodice is adorable with those little puffy sleeves and the lace is gorgeous…especially with the red belt. I wanted to say this is my most favorite dress you’ve made but I can’t because as I said that to myself, I’m thinking of so many other dresses you have done. It’s impossible to decide on that subject!
    Santa came early with a new hot water heater in his sleigh!!

    • Hi Paula,
      Thank you for the compliments on my latest Christmas doll dress… I think Lian looks pretty cute in her half finished dress…well, maybe 3/4ths finished dress.
      I am so glad you were able to get your water heater fixed….nothing beats hot water, does it!
      Blessings, Jeanne

  4. That is so sweet. I love the red around the waist. ๐Ÿ™‚ I have a hard time finding lace like that. They don’t sell anything like that here.

    • Hi Christine,
      Thank you for your kind words about my Little Darlings Christmas dress. The trim is a ribbon and I can’t remember where I got it… Most likely Hobby Lobby, Joann fabrics or Walmart…
      Thank you again,
      Blessings, Jeanne

  5. Kathleen Ivy says:

    Wow, I LOVE this dress. This is my idea of a party dress for the holidays. What an inspiration.

    • Thank you Kathleen,
      I appreciate your compliments on Lians Christmas dress… I can’t wait to finish it…
      Blessings, Jeanne

  6. Marilyn Grotzky says:

    Paula, congratulations on your new hot water heater. Other things are more romantic, but few things are more appreciated than hot water.
    Jeanne, that’s a darling dress. It’s perfect for going to the ballet or later for Valentine’s Day. Everyone above has said all the right things about it. I hope the other girls get a chance to model it as well.
    I finally made the corn casserole. It’s very good and seems to go well with nearly anything.

    • Hi Marilyn,
      You can be sure the other girls will get to try this dress on… There would be mutiny on the dolly shelf if they didn’t get to.
      I’m glad you tried the corn casserole and liked it. Yes, it’s the perfect side dish for lots of things…from Thanksgiving to cheeseburgers…
      Thank you Marilyn.
      Blessings, Jeanne

  7. The word eegant surely dscribeds this dress. Not over the top but simply tasteful. Lovely job with difficult slippery fabric.

    • Thank you Jan…elegant might be a good word to use in the title for this dress. It certainly is more elegant than most dresses I make for my dolls. Sometimes simple is better than fancy…
      I appreciate your comments…
      Blessings, Jeanne

  8. It’s a beautiful dress, Jeanne. When I have something slippery to cut I sometimes trace the pattern onto freezer paper leaving half an inch or so around the edges, and press it to the fabric. Then just cut through the pattern and the fabric. Learned this when I was making dolls with tiny fingers….sew around the fingers, then cut them out. :- )

    • Hi Jevne,
      It’s such a delicate fabric, I don’t know if I could peel the freezer paper off without ruining the edges. I did end up cutting a piece of fine fusible interfacing for the bodice backside and gently pressing it on. I left the sleeves sheer though. It sort of slides around when you cut it out or sew it. Fortunately it doesn’t fray…but it does leave lots of little furry fuzz on everything until the edges are finished off. It’s similar to corduroy with all the little fuzzies.
      Thanks Jevne,
      Blessings, Jeanne

  9. Lian does look lovely in her Christmas dress. Velvet just seems perfect for the holidays. The lace skirt is very sweet.
    I thought i’d let you know that my Marie-Grace arrived and she is very, very sweet. If you haven’t ever seen her in person, seeing her in person makes all the difference. Her face is sweet in person although I do admit I probably looked at fifty NIB dolls for the right expression over the past three months while finishing saving up for her. While browsing last week, there she was. Her aquamarine eyes are lovely, blue in some lights, green in others. Her hair is a lovely color and the four little ringlets on each side are adorable. She looks so lovely sitting next to my PC 1991 Felicity. Next to my Marlene (Nellie) the chin isn’t nearly as sharp or pointed as I once thought,, in fact, Nellie’s lower jaw appears more square. She is going to be my Civil War girl and is renamed Shiloh Autumn after the the Bible verse, Civil war battle and a favorite book of mine from years ago “Shiloh Autumn” by Bodie and Brock Thoene .I can’t wait to hopefully sew something for her since that pink meet dress AG made does no justice to her whatsoever. I like the clothes PC/AG made for Felicity and Samantha, but the NOLA collection has nothing I care for, which is good, no secondary market temptation. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Hi Laura,
      Thank you for your kind words about Lian’s Christmas dress. It is a sweet one and I hope to get it finished soon.
      You sound very excited about your new Marie Grace doll. I know you have been looking for quite some time for the perfect one and I’m so happy you finally found her. She will be very much loved, I’m sure… Congrats on adding another doll to your collection!!!!
      Blessings, Jeanne

  10. Adding my 2 cents here too….you’ve made a very gorgeous dress for your doll. Your work is very charming.

    • Thank you Becky,
      I love making little girls dresses!
      Thanks for taking time to give your comments!
      Blessings, Jeanne

  11. Outstanding dress. The velvet, red accent, and the tiered lace. It looks lovely with the white tights and black shiny shoes. Bet this one could be a buy it now for immediate cash.
    Ten Ping’s tunic is finished save for snaps and decorative buttons. When complete, I’ll send a pic. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Hi Joy, thank you so much for your very sweet compliments about the dress. I like to watch and see who wins my doll dresses so it will be listed as an auction…
      Can’t wait to see your Ten Ping set…maybe you’ll inspire me to finish mine!!!
      Blessings, Jeanne

  12. Jeannie Brandon says:

    Jeanne, that dress is waaay too cute !! I love the entire thing!! That lace skirt is absolutely beautiful. I know you will be putting a crinoline under it. Can’t wait to see the finished product.

    • Thank you Jeannie…I’m glad everyone likes it since I didn’t even ask for anyone’s opinion…
      I am working on the slip right now…
      Thanks Jeannie. Blessings, Jeanne

  13. I agree with Linda: Every time I think I’ve seen a favorite that can’t be beat, you come up with another winner! I’m especially fond of this one as I found one kind of like it last year for my granddaughter. Ditto on all of the complements on this lovely dress.

    Thanks again for all of the inspiration. You’ve sure got a winner here and I’ll be the AG girls will be jealous and want one like it.

    • Hi Susette,
      I got it finished and think you’ll like it… it’s on Ebay as of a few minutes ago. Yes, this little black and white number is a favorite of mine now… oh dear.. how many times have I said that?
      It’s a good thing I can make more… cause I’d like to keep this one…
      Thanks Susette,
      P.S. I received your check in the mail today for the scarf and the pearl necklace. I’ll do my best to get Rebecca to make the necklace as soon as she can… Thanks so much,
      Blessings, Jeanne

  14. Kathie Welsh says:

    Whatever you do to it will be wonderful! It is absolutely perfect! Love the lace/velvet combo too!
    Busy day…but had to check on what you are making….later.

    • Thank you Kathie,
      Well, it’s done and I hope everyone likes it… Felicity is up next… what to do for her… hmmmm…
      Hope your “busy” day was about sewing…
      Blessings, Jeanne

  15. Charlotte Trayer says:

    Oh, my goodness, Jeanne, that has to be at least One of the most beautiful dresses–if not The most beautiful–I have ever seen!! The combination of black velvet and white lace is stunning, and that touch of red is just right.

    I’m working on a dress for my LD ning group’s swap, and it’s silk dupioni. The stuff ravels if you breathe on it! Today I realized that one sleeve band was too small, so I had to undo the underarm seam (already serged, of course!) and remove the band (ditto!); tomorrow I’ll cut a new band, but I’ll also have to try to put gathers in the lower edge of that puffed sleeve. All these struggles with this one dress makes me really appreciate all that you go thru, handling some of the special fabrics you use!! And then, you share it all with us!! Thank you.


    • Hi Charlotte, oh how I feel your pain with your dupioni silk…nothing is worse than taking out an underarm seam. I had to do it on Lians dress. I guess the elastic came loose so I had to pick out my black stitching from the black velvet.. not much fun.

      Thank you for the compliments on Lian’s dress. What sweet things you said about it.

      I was going to share my post on the Little Darlings ning group but when I go to the forum, I only have the bottom line of tabs…just the members, links and the doll waiting updates…is it just me, or is something wrong with the site? I wanted so much to share Lians dress with the group but seem to be locked out.

      I got the problem solved. We got a new satellite modem and I had to login on the forum again from the beginning to get on. I managed to get my discussion post made… thanks anyway…
      Thank you Charlotte, blessings, Jeanne

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