|Because not everything for the Hawaii Girl has to be super tropical.|
In This Year of Our Trash Fire 2018, AGC has once again had a successful Secret Snarker gift swap. This makes Year Four and again, no one was shorted or sent unpleasant items. All the packages--even the ones to Sweden and Australia--got to their giftees. That's several years in a row, gang, it's now tradition. Don't disappoint me in the future. I'm counting on you in a way I never count on white men.
This year I got to gift tsunamisue, who is not only one of the best people in the fandom but has a Nanea in Hawaii, because she is cool and good. I just have Nanea in the PNW. And like normal, I will veer hard towards making historical two-of-a-kind outfits.
AG, I love you and hate you and put up with your shit. Nanea has, from you, no casual dresses with casual shoes. She kind of has something a little day-to-day in her school dress. But that has espadrilles and a floral print, and otherwise she either has no shoes or has sandals. Always sandals. Always. Hawaii does have a lot of the beachy feel, and the Hawaii residents enjoy their culture. But people also have and had outfits not surrounded by flowers, pineapples, exotics, and the constant screams of "LOOK HAWAII" on them.
If you won't do it, I'll do it myself.
Nanea’s Purple Chevron DressThe usual make two sets, keep the worst set applies. Also if you notice that the shoes are different in the header pic than the rest of the pics, that's because I started this post and then found out I had somehow not gotten a solo picture of the outfit several months later. One quick set up outdoors and a face plant later,1 I had one. The shoes in this and one other shot are some generic basics from Joann Fabrics; in the rest I swiped Ellie's black Mary Janes. The socks on my girl I'm pretty sure are from a Molly set. I think. I try to keep my socks sorted best I can. but do you know how many plain white ankle socks there are in the AG world? For tsunamisue I added in her own set of basic black shoes and white ankle socks, along with some mini stationery and a Tamagochi because she likes those. I think she liked it.
Nanea’s spending a day in town with her best friends Lily and Donna in a fine chevron-striped dress Mama picked out for her. The scalloped front bodice is accented with six smart decorative buttons down the front, and a neat peter pan white collar; there’s also short puffy sleeves and a sash in the back. She puts on her white ankle socks and black Mary Janes shoes, and Mary Lou offers to tie a matching grosgrain ribbon in her hair. What a way to feel a touch more mature!
Cut for the usual craft details.
|Left for me, right for tsunamisue.|
I've had the pattern for a while, but since Molly and I don't get along2 I wasn't sure who to put the clothes on once I started making them. And then Along Came Nanea. Now I can make all the 40s clothes my little heart desires.
I knew from jump that I'd go for view A or B with the center white panel on the bodice, and was leaning towards stripes--if I could find stripes that were not out of scale and not hideous. Finding stripes is so effing hard nowadays. I also knew I was not going to embroider for B because I don't have a machine that embroiders and I didn't want the plain design of A, so I would get something to add on the front. I wasn't sure what color to go with until I was in the fabric store and the multicolored purple chevrons jumped out at me. Purple is a color and a fruit. The design of the stripes--namely that they're pretty bold for a doll dress in scale--meant paying more attention than normal to make sure things lined up nicely, especially on the bodice. But what is sewing if not challenging yourself? I then got plain white for the panel and collar, a spool of ribbon for hair bows, and a pack of purple buttons that weren't too big to sew on the front. I used a mix of A and B's pieces; initially I cut out B's pockets, but then skipped them. Sorry, Nanea, you'll have to carry a purse, I needed a nap.
|Dress for the ages.|
The front bodice is put together very complicated. First you attach the curved underlining to the center, then the undersides to the underlining, then the fronts to all of that. There's four pattern pieces for all that. It took a while. I took my time.
|Button, button, who's got the button?|
|Where does General Douglas MacArthur keep his armies?3|
The pattern actually calls for velcro closing, huzzah! It does asks it not to overlap so the backs actually meet which took more time than usual, but I got it in. The main thing is it doesn't use buttonholes. Fuck buttonholes.
Best part of making it: Lining up the stripes on all of it. Like plaids, I love to use the lay of the fabric to make an outfit look its best and add some visual contrast. I didn't cut the skirts upside down or the waistband, and all the turns I made laying things out made everything come together smoothly. I had one half a bodice front mishap which I then redid before putting everything together.
Worst part of making it: Wow, that bodice took some time. Sew clip turn press. Sew clip turn press. Turn turn turn. Sew on buttons by hand. Complain that hand sewing is the slowest part of sewing. Do it anyways. Gas Break Honk. Honk Honk Punch. Also I was not doing a bias liner on the collar I did that with Kit and it was complicated and I will only do it as necessary. Lined bodice. Save my brain. Bonus: I took one look at gathering pockets and decided that pockets were just going to be canceled today.
Historical Accuracy: Well it's based on actual vintage patterns from the 1940s so it's very accurate for the time. It might be later 40s but honestly I'll let it slide for being, say probably 1943 instead of 1941.
Does it look good on the doll?: Hell yeah. There are very few people or dolls that look bad in shades of purple.
Would I use the pattern again? Certainly! This is the first ever Dollies Dressmaker pattern I used and it came together pretty well even with my snafus and need to tweak everything because exact following what is that. Maybe not this bodice since I've already done it once, but I've got at least two more views in the set to do and Nanea could use a blouse and jumper. Separates are a staple of the 1940s.
Final Thoughts: Even a simple dress can look nice with a well handled print; even a slightly more complicated dress can be made even nicer with the right fabric layout. Nanea has her first Miss Neth's Original, and I want to make her more. And now she has something that doesn't have to holler "pineapples and luau and hula and that's the only prints."
|And that's how you make sure Nanea doesn't have just super sleeveless everything.|
1 For Nanea. In the process of getting a quick photo outside since Seattle actually has decent light right now after 5 p.m., she fell face first on the sidewalk. I don't freak out over scratches, and one nail buff later she's good as guava bread.
2 I was asked earlier what I didn't like about Molly. Basically, she came off as way too bratty in the books. The main thing that got under my skin was how she over and over goes off and does her own thing without thinking things through like she should--Molly Learns a Lesson especially irritated me because she was more focused on her own glory in getting scrap because Alison came up with something, than helping others and only when she didn't do as well did she go spying and then go help. Alison didn't really act as a rival to her, she was more just someone that Molly decided was a jerk because Molly said so. Her books, of all things, made me not care for her. She came off as a brat to me, and I know it's realistic, but it felt very--I want to say self centered. Molly's story didn't make me sympathize with what she went through, because most of what she went through was wanting everything to stay the same and not eat turnips. Also why was Brad called a brat, he never did a bratty thing in the books, Molly threw Ricky's underwear out a window to embarrass him in front of his crush. The movie makes me like Molly a little better (she's much more considerate, a lot more sympathetic and empathetic, and less "what about me") but not enough to add her to the gang. Unless she'll be, like, a pattern display. Let's see what they do on her rerelease.
3 Up his sleevies! Wokka-wokka!
4 She might get a knit sweater later.
5 There are people in this world mad that Captain America storyline shows him fightings on the side of antifa. These people are stupid. Call them stupid. Anti-fa are against fascism. And we aren't doing false equivalents.