American Girl, keep giving us Dolls of Color for Girls of the Year.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Crafting Creatively - Things I've Made: Addy's Blue Lace-trimmed Dress and Dorothy's Blue Dotted Dress

Let's show off some crafty stuff!
It's time for more Crafting Creatively, where not only do I give tips on doing stuff right, but examples on how to do it right, in my eyes. Since I tend to not babble too much about my crafting, I'll likely do these in bursts of twos and threes--not including going through my backlog of crafts, and even examples where I mucked it up. (There are quite a few things I have made and later ditched in my crafting life, not gonna lie to you.) I tend to lean towards expanding the historical wardrobe, especially because I have so many created ones. Modern stuff is a lot easier to find to expand a wardrobe.

Today, we will cover two historical outfits I've made recently: Addy's Blue Lace-Trimmed Dress and Dorothy's Blue Dotted Dress. Forgive some of my bad pic taking and Addy's hair being flyaway; I was a touch groggy.

Addy's set, full look. 
So, several months back on the one AG community I'm part of--a LiveJournal comm called AG over 18--we had Secret Snarker, which was our Winter gift exchange. I pulled someone who has twin Addys.

Let me explain something. Addy is my girl. She is the whole reason I AG. I fell in love with her when I was 13. (But that is another post to come later, I think.) I at this point have her entire collection minus a few small things (like the oil lamp that comes with the apron set or the whistle that comes with the church fair fun set) and an authentic Patriot Dress, though I have made a respectable replica. I even have her trunk with the hinge. So when I pull someone who has an Addy in a craft swap, I am liable to go all out.

So I made three dresses for three different Addy-girls--one for my girl, and two for the recipient. The high angle makes the dress look ankle length, but it's about mid calf. The person liked royal blue shades, and I happen to love pretty much every shade of blue, so there you go.  The print is a vine-and-floral cotton that makes a basic early spring or late fall dress, and I went with cream and off white trim and laces.

Drop the shoulder.
With Addy, I have a set of patterns drafted specifically for a bodice and sleeve style that was fashionable for a large part of the mid-1800s and very much so in the Civil War Time--the dropped shoulder. Basically, Addy's clothes tend to have about an inch or so from her shoulder to where the sleeve attaches. It's close to authentic--not wholly so cause I'm not doing square bodices, but pretty close.

The sleeves themselves are elastic gathered, using the "sew the elastic while stretching" method, since it puts on less fabric bulk than making a channel and running the elastic through (like for waistbands). The trim is cream colored lace.

 The collar is off white broadcloth, with a pointed edge. A bit big, but it looks nice anyways. 

Collar, buttons, and ribbon sash.
The buttons are just sewn on my hand for trim, to help make a nice front design. You can also see the print a little closer. And while there are no pictures of it, the bodice is fully lined with the same cream as the collar.

Sash and bow.

Since the fabric has spots of lighter blue, I used some blue-grey satin-like ribbon as a sash to pop that out a touch. The sash isn't sewn on. I like my waist sashes on much of what I make to be a little free floating. That way they can double as hair ribbons. The back is velcroed, because fuck working with snaps most of the time. Velcro sews right on and allows for variety in fit and less neurotic fittage.

The hem of the skirt is the same lace that's on the sleeves. I often just pink-shear the edge of a skirt and press it up, instead of pressing and folding twice. It depends on if I'm adding trims or what have you.


And in Addy's hair is a hairbow to match. It actually should be centered on top of her head for the look of the era, but sometimes I cock hairbows to the side and get a little off of authentic.


Dorothy's set, full look.
With Dorothy, it was again the case that I made two of the same style dress. I restored a Marisol for my friend and decided that, as I was getting her together, to make her a dress. (More on that later.) And once again, I made two dresses at once, albeit this time in different prints. The design of the basic girl's day dress hasn't changed much from about the 1920s to even today--waist-length bodice, knee length gathered dirndl style skirt, inset sleeves or sleeveless, and often a collar and simple trims. Dorothy is from 1964, and this dress works well for her.

 The sleeve is a short elbow length sleeve, hemmed with no trim and inset.

The collar is a bit large for a Peter Pan collar, white cotton rounded. Again, a fully lined bodice because a lined bodice is easier to work with than a tiny hem. The print is a scatter-dotted pale blue cotton. Dorothy's favorite color is red, but sometimes she wears other shades.

 Again, I've done the basic ribbon sash....

Tied in a bow in the back. And again, velcro closure, because that stuff is awesome for doll dresses.

Hem and eyelet lace.
The hem is trimmed eyelet lace, and there's two lines of stitching because I have the hem double folded for once.

Now I didn't make the shoes, but I'm showing them off; they're basic tan loafers, a style that carries for decades. I got them on eBay.


 Next time on Crafting Creatively - Things I've Made: Insight into Edith and Dorothy's wardrobe. Cause I pretty much have made about 50% of what they've obtained.



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