Saturday, 11 April 2015

Adjusting patterns in everyday things

I am having a lovely time adjusting old patterns to fit various size dolls but I am also adjusting the patterns of my life. I have set myself a 90 day challenge to change some fundamental things such as my weight, water consumption, exercise and sleep patterns. I also want to write daily.  I drew up a calendar to mark my glasses of water and I aim for a minimum of six a day. It is important to take stock and reevaluate life on a regular basis. As I search for a new home closer to the city I have had to think about what I am leaving behind and what I am gaining in the move. I have some wonderful friends here in Warrnambool and I shall miss not being able to see them as often but then I have made wonderful friends everywhere I go and we keep in touch. The place I am aiming for is central to many other places so I feel it is a good choice for being able to stay close to others.
Adjusting patterns is about learning a new skill and giving me a creative outlet as more of my life is packed into boxes. My art supplies are out of reach now and there is not a spare surface big enough to put up a canvas or an easel so the sewing eases something inside me which needs feeding. I forget to eat when I am involved in creating and hours pass without me realising. It is lovely to be so immersed.
I do want to be more immersed in my writing however I need a place to hide in, a study or den or a writers cave with a super duper pair of sound block out ear muffs then I can not be disturbed by "What's for dinner Mum?" "Drive me some place Mum." "Mum can I have...where are my...could you do..." I wonder how many other writers manage to pour prose into their pages while being bombarded by vital demands to find socks for their offspring?
I vow from today on I will write 500 words a day no matter what! Should I capitalise that?
I VOW TO WRITE 500 WORDS A DAY NO MATTER WHAT! There I have shouted it in capitalisation.

So on to the actual pattern adjusting for actual doll clothes.

In a previous post I mentioned the pattern books from the 70s(and earlier) with pages of patterns that ranged in sizes. I suspected they would be perfect for a Lammily however my first experiement turned out to be way too small and fitted a Bratz instead.
 Here she is in her skinny trousers and lacy bra. This was the finished size from the smallest trouser pattern in the Enid G sewing book. I need to put a tiny bit of elastic in the waistband but otherwise they fit beautifully.

 The pattern pieces were photocopied and I made tissue paper copies. I have a whole ream of food wrap for souvlaki from back in my old catering days and I use that for all my pattern copies.

I tried the largest pattern(46"/117cm) in the book but it turned out to only be Barbie size so I whipped up a pair of shorts, a little halter top and a head scarf in the pink stretch gingham. In the Enid Gilchrist book, the smallest pattern(91cm/36') fitted the Bratz.
 Here is Barbie standing on her pattern copies and the back of the shorts show I miss hemmed the legs a little so one is slightly longer than the other. Ah the joys of learning from mistakes. So after this I measured up all the dolls carefully. Thighs, hips, waist, shoulder, arm length, leg length and every other length I would need to compare pattern sizes.

Measure twice cut once. A handy homily to avoid mishaps.
 Barbie in her complete outfit. The top is made on the same pattern as the bra with an added halter strap. I made the piece a little longer than the bra so I could turn up a hem. I finished with a small pink button with a star on it. The back has one hook to close it.  The shorts have darts in the front and do not need elastic in the waist.
Here are my Lammily doll feet next to the adjusted shorts pieces pinned to more of the stretch pink gingham. I cannot complete them today as my eyes have grown too weary to be able to thread the needle on the machine.

Here is the pattern for shorts for both Lammily and Barbie. I shall take a photo of my Lammily doll in her picnic outfit tomorrow.
and here are two basic dress patterns for a Lammily and a Barbie.
 This one should fit Barbie and other 11" fashion friends and will benefit from the darts to shape and style it. A4 sheet.

This one definitely fits a Lammily doll if it prints out A4. I have to tissue overlapping the printed page from the book. (photos of the yellow outfit in the previous post are from this pattern.)

just popping in the original page again (this size is too small for Lammily) so you can clearly see where lines need to go. This basic pattern will give you three different lengths for shirt sleeves, a blouse, three different neck shapes and matching collars, a jacket and a skirt as well as the dress.  It is an excellent starter for anyone just starting to learn how to make their doll clothes. Good luck. Hope these help.