Yellow & blue doll dresses….five different ways…

It’s fun when you find a fabric that is so versatile it can work for several different dolls…actually several different periods and seemingly look fine for all of them. I don’t normally buy a huge amount of any one fabric because I don’t like to make (and no one wants to see) the same fabric being used over and over again. This yellow and blue fabric, however, WAS one I bought several yards of and I’m so glad I did. My stash gets smaller and smaller with each dress I make, but I wanted to show you how you can use the same fabric many different ways… five ways in fact!

Please excuse some of my pictures…they are from the archives and it was before I had a decent camera and knew anything about taking pictures.

If you click on the pictures they will enlarge.

American Girl Elizabeth is modeling this dress I made as an Antebellum period dress. I think it really brings out Elizabeth’s blue eyes.

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Bitty Bethany, by Helen Kish, is modeling a dress that was a commission. A woman had re-painted a doll’s face and she wanted one of my dresses for her doll to wear when she sold it. It was so cute and my pictures are pretty awful looking. It was so pretty in person.

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Janie is a 13″ Little Darling, by Dianna Effner and this was one of her very first dresses she modeled for me after coming to live at my house. I think she looks like a perfectly sweet little girl, don’t you?

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My second Bitty Bethany; a blonde this time, is showing off her rendition of the fabric in her sweet summertime dress.

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Julie, an American Girl doll, was just recently seen in a dress using the fabric. I think she looks just as cute in her 1970’s dress as Elizabeth does in her 1800’s dress. See what I mean by versatile? Well, if you use your imagination…

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See you tomorrow,
Blessings, Jeanne

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Comments

  1. Hi Jeanne,
    BB U TI FUL material. Each dress is beautiful and unique. The added lace and flowers are so creative and really add to the dress. Love love love the first dress. Elizabeth’s bonnet is so beautiful.
    Each little dress after Elizabeth’s is just darling. It is nice to see how cute all the other girls look in their dresses with the same material. The detail is appropriate for each styled dress.
    Thanks for sharing!
    Blessings.

    • Jeanne W says:

      Thanks Paula,
      Now that I’ve shown the yellow and blue dresses, I just might have to show the ones I did in pink…if I haven’t already. I’ll have to check.
      Thank you for your kind words about the dresses. As I look back at them, it’s fun to see them all together too.
      Have a wonderful Saturday,
      Blessings, Jeanne

  2. Jeannie B. in TX says:

    Jeanne, of course I do love that floral print !! Julie’s dress especially. It’s just perfect in all ways.
    I have meant to ask you about how much fabric you buy when you see a special one, or if you are just going to make one dress for say an AG? I think I tend to overbuy because I fall in love with one or under buy because …. what, I’ve spent too much $$$.
    I had this experience recently when I pulled out a print to make Molly her birthday dress. I realized as I was placing the pattern pieces on that I either needed more fabric to make the sleeves or I had to use a companion fabric that would blend. I tried to find the same print at the shop where I originally bought it but it was unavailable. Then I took to the internet and did find some on Etsy but could not wait for delivery if I wanted her dress done by April 22nd. Fortunately, I now have a good stash of this print for the future.
    I am interested to know what yardage other seamstresses buy when they shop in general.

    • Jeanne W says:

      HI Jeannie,
      I thought you’d like to see Julie’s dress again! So glad you like it!
      As far as fabric goes, I have tons that I have when I used to buy 4 yards. When I made little girls dresses, I always liked to have enough in case someone bought one from me and then wanted a sister dress. Nowadays I tend to buy 1/2 yard and sometimes a yard. If I really like the fabric and it’s interesting and can be used for several different time periods, I’ll maybe buy 2 yards. But usually no more than that. There are so many new fabrics that come out and I “must” have them, that the smaller amounts work better for me now.
      I seriously have enough fabric to start a small fabric store, but I like what I have now and only have a few set aside to sell. I’d like to get a store set up on my website so I could do that. *She dreams*
      Blessings, Jeanne

  3. That IS a pretty fabric, so colorful. I can see why you bought more of it than usual. Fabrics so pretty don’t coming around every day, do they? I think my favorite is Elizabeth’s dress, though they all are pretty!!!
    I usually buy 1/2 yard of a fabric because the fun is in working with a new print, although I have a few that I wouldn’t mind having more of, but they are long gone. I usually realize this too late. Oh, well…there’s always new fabric to be had…never a shortage of fabric, is there? LOL!
    Happy Saturday to you, Jeanne. Cool and cloudy here today. Hope it’s sunny by you.

    • Jeanne W says:

      HI Cindy,
      I like Elizabeth’s dress very much too! It was one of those that “everything” just turned out perfectly on.
      That’s what usually happens to me…if I don’t buy enough, everyone wants it, and if I do buy a lot, I get tired of it. or it doesn’t sell well as a doll dress… oh dear…
      Yes, there is always new fabric coming out and it’s a pity to have to pass on something because you bought too much last week…
      It’s been pouring all day here. I had a bridal shower I was in charge of and it was a disaster getting my stuff from the car the church basement. I also got my hair cut in a layered style and the rain and the humidity has made my hair look crazy wild with the frizzies. I’ve got to get something figured out by tomorrow. Nothing like getting a new hair cut and your debut of it looks like a lion mane!!
      Blessings, Jeanne

  4. I think they are all perfect, Jeanne. I love the first dress with the double skirt and the bonnet. Yes, Janey is a perfect little girl and so is her dress and she looks so cute with the big matching bows in her hair, Good job with the silk ribbon on the collar for your first Bitty Bethany. I notice that your second Bethany got a blue gingham check pocket and some checked bows. On you first Bethany I’m not sure if it’s gingham or not but I like her blue checked belt.
    To Answer Jeannie B.’s question, Little Darlings are the largest dolls I sew for so I usually buy a third of a yard. Usually a quarter would be enough but sometime it gets cut wacky at the store so buying a third takes care of that. Some in my stash I have yards of, mostly that I bought years ago when I was sewing for myself, and I wonder what I’ll ever do with all of it and a friend recently gifted me with close to 60 yards of vintage batiste, some of it 64″ wide. Christening gowns anyone?
    Obviously I have more than enough fabric to last far part my lifetime, but I still need more! It’s an obsession, isn’t it? We just love fabric, that’s why we sew, and while there is a lot of ugly fabric in this world, there is also a lot that is irresistable! A couple years ago on another list I admitted that I’m a fabri-holic and quickly found that I’m not the only one! Here in Valpo our one nice fabric shop closed when the mall owner decided to do a major construction project a while back and our quilt shop burned a couple years age. Lucky for my budget that we’re left with only WalMart and Hobby Lobby.
    So now I’ve written a letter instead of an answer, sorry. Can you tell that I have no one here to talk?

    • Jeanne W says:

      HI Jevne,
      Yes, Elizabeth’s dress was a favorite, I have to admit. She looked so pretty in it. I’m glad you liked the other girls in their dresses too. It’s fun for me to see them all together in a row.

      I have some “little girl” fabrics that are too large of a print for my dolls, that I used when I sold little girls dresses. I keep it on hand so I have something to use like when I needed a print for the girls “flower girls” prototype dresses. It was too large of a print to use for my dolls but worked perfectly for them.
      I’d just use the vintage batiste to do all my linings in . Of course, 60 yards will take you a lifetime and a half to use up, but it’s a start and it was free…You can’t get much softer or finer than batiste to line bodices with.
      I stand up and admit I like fabrics too. I have to sometimes make myself stay away from Hobby Lobby and JoAnn Fabrics. But sometimes that 40% off coupon wins out and pulls me into the store. Oh the joys of fabric collecting…. :o)
      blessings, Jeanne

  5. Carolyn says:

    They are all adorable but I especially like Elizabeth’s! I think what makes your dresses so special are the trims you use on them and the cute accessories you make for each one. I’ll be looking forward to the pictures of the pink fabric!

    • Jeanne W says:

      HI Carolyn,
      Thanks so much for your kind comments. Well, it seems that Elizabeth’s dress has taken first place if we were to do a poll. It was very pretty…
      I guess I better get to work putting the pink pictures together….
      Thanks again Carolyn,
      Blessings, Jeanne

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