Saturday, March 17, 2018

A journey in Journey Girls

My daughter got a Journey Girl doll for Christmas a year ago. I was very excited at the prospect of making lots of dolls clothes for her.  Years ago I'd bought my niece a doll and made it some clothes, but hadn't realised at the time that the doll was 16" and the patterns were 18". So now all these patterns that had been useless were finally useful!!

Sadly life is never that simple.

Commercial patterns, and most indie PDFs I've come across, draft for an American Girl doll, which is a different shape to Journey Girls. There are several websites/blogs comparing measurements so I wont go into details but essentially the American Girl dolls are wider through the body so all the clothes end up too big.

Before I realised this, I downloaded this free pattern for an Elsa inspired dress and made it up without fitting. I thought a mock-up wouldn't be necessary for a commercially available doll. I've learnt that lesson the hard way!  Luckily my then 6 year old thought it was amazing.

Following this, an internet search for patterns specifically designed for Journey Girls brought me to Pixie Faire, who offer (among other things) a free t-shirt pattern by Liberty Jane Clothing.  I also got a leggings pattern from Artsy Fartsy Mama; then found a glove pattern from Diane Morello on Pinterest; and boots from Peek-a-Boo Pattern Shop (which should fit but I used the wrong seam allowance so they are a little big)
Which gave me Batgirl!!
DC Super Hero High inspired Batgirl
For the mask I just googled 'bat mask template' and printed one in a smaller scale to fit, then cut it out of felt.

That t-shirt pattern from Pixie Faire came in handy again recently.  After Christmas just gone, my daughter "needed" an Emma Wiggle skirt and I decided to make a matching outfit for the doll from left overs.  The skirt is just a circle skirt with 'waist' measurement being about 1" larger than her hips and then sewn onto elastic.

(Yes that is a different doll, that is MY doll that I got last year so I can make costumes for it!)

Over the year, I haven't done as much doll sewing as I'd hoped for, because of the effort in trying to mock up a pattern and make it fit, especially when sleeves were involved.

Then, the other week, Craftsy had their free weekend and I watched this How to Make Dolls Clothes video/class by Joan Hinds.  In the video she shows you how to quickly and easily make a sloper for your doll, and then compare it to existing patterns to see where/if you need adjustments.  This has given me a new lease of life on my doll sewing and I have recently sewn up two more garments, which I will blog about shortly.  Stay tuned!

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