Sewing Clothes for Girls and Their Dolls

Favorite childhood doll

Memories of My Grandmother

My grandmother was an amazing seamstress. One of my favorite memories is of her sitting at her Singer flip down, black sewing machine. She was frequently sewing something for me, or a cousin. My favorite thing that she made was doll clothes. Her clothes were the best that a doll could aspire to.

I wish that I would of inherited a little more of her talent. My sewing skills are not anywhere near her level, though I am working on improving. Being a grandmother now myself, I have longed to make some clothes as she did.

Recently, I bought my granddaughters both eighteen inch dolls. I am making matching outfits for the dolls, and their owners. It is actually not all that hard, and a lot of fun.

Christmas Dolls

Many Patterns Available

I found that there were many patterns available for clothes for eighteen inch dolls.  Here are a few choices you might want to consider. 

  • Butterick 3329 is a wardrobe of clothing.  Included is an Ice Skating Outfit, Party Dress, Robe, Jacket, Top, Vest,  Backpack, Slippers, and Pajamas.
  • Simplicity 7083 also is a diverse wardrobe of clothing.  jeans, Jacket, Jumper, Long sleeved blouse, Hoodie, more.
  • There is a website called "Free Sewing Patterns".  Here you will find cute, free patterns.
  • Books - Check Amazon, and Ebay.  Two books that I have been using are: "Two-Hour Doll Clothes", by Anita Louise Crane.  "All Dolled up"  by Joan Hinds.
I especially like the book "All Dolled Up", because this book has matching patterns for both little girls, and their dolls.  The directions are written so that you do not have to be a professional seamstress to make these clothes.

Matching dresses

T-Shirt Dresses

I made T-Shirt dresses from the book "All Dolled Up".  These were not hard to make because they started with purchased T-Shirts.  The skirts had patchwork ruffles though, so that took some time.  For two girls and two dolls dresses, I purchased two different fabrics.  One had large polka dots, and the other small polka dots. I used both fabrics in both dresses.  One had mainly large dots, and the other mainly small dots.  I purchased a adult large T-shirt to use for material for both dolls shirts.  It was more than enough.  I will probably make leggings with the extra material.

The book explained how to sew the cotton skirts to the knit T-shirt material.  I gathered the top of the skirts in a loose hand stitch so that the waist diameter matched.  Then I sewed the skirt to the shirt with a zig-zag stitch, stretching the fabric as I sewed.

Enjoy Sewing

Kids Can Sew, Too

As my granddaughters get older, hopefully we will be able to work on some projects together.

Simple small sewing machines are available for kids.  There are also many projects that can be done with younger children using non-sewing techniques.  Fabric glue can be used for some simple seams, and knot tying can be used with fabrics like fleece.  

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Comments 6 comments

Dolores Monet profile image

Dolores Monet 6 years ago from East Coast, United States

It must be hard to sew those tiny clothes. When I was a girl, a woman in the neighborhood made Barbie dresses. My Barbie was so cool in original outfits!


susansisk profile image

susansisk 6 years ago from Georgia, USA Author

It's not that hard, and at least sewing doll clothes doesn't take a lot of cloth.


Shari 5 years ago

Thank you for your comments on the book All Dolled Up. I've been thinking about ordering it. You picked some cute fabrics for your t-shirt dresses. My two older daughters (10 and 7) are both enjoying learning to sew. I posted on my blog about the matching girl & doll aprons we made together.

http://centralnjemilyroseathome.blogspot.com/2010/...


susansisk profile image

susansisk 5 years ago from Georgia, USA Author

It is great that they are learning to sew so young. I plan to look at your blog to see what you made.


Teacher106 profile image

Teacher106 2 years ago from United States

I love sewing. Thanks for the article.


susansisk profile image

susansisk 2 years ago from Georgia, USA Author

Thank you for reading!

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