Monday, June 13, 2011

Tutorial: Shirred 18” Doll Dress with a Bonus

One of the many bonuses of having a little girl is in some ways you get to relive parts of your childhood that you absolutely LOVED.  Mine was engineering doll clothes and their habitat.  I use to make my dolls their clothes along with their couches, kitchen, etc. out of shoeboxes and little things around the house  Oh the hours I spent creating.  Sing with me “Memories….”  moving on.

Reliving some of my chld memories I made (with a little bit more skill) my daughter’s American Girl Doll a summer Shirred Dress.  So easy and so cute…


Supplies Needed…10x18” piece of material, 18'X2” piece of material, thread, and elastic thread.

Shirred 18 doll dress

Here are the quick steps….you should be able to make this in less then an hours.


1. Cut your 10”X18” piece of material.  Rule of thumb…if your doll is 12” around multiply that by 1.5 to get your width. 

2. Do a small 1/4” hem on both 18” sides.

3.Wind your elastic thread on the bobbin BY HAND!! Very important.  With medium tension.

4. With your fabric facing up start stitching.  For my doll the stitches are 1/8” apart and I did 10 rows.

5.10 rows of stitches complete

6. With a hot steam iron press the elastic.  Like magic it all shrinks up.  LOVE THIS PART!

7. Stitch your side seam with a 1/2” seam.  Press open.


For little straps I personally despise turning them inside out.  I seem to break out in an unnatural  sweat and I have all those little gismos too.  I am going to share with you my quick and easy no-turn straps.

No Turn Strap Tutorial

1. Cut your material 18”X2”

2. Fold in half length wise and iron.

3. You should have a nice center line

4, Fold one side to meet the center line- iron

5.Fold the other side to meet the center line- iron

6. On each side open up trim fold 1/2” trim the sides (as shown) and refold.  These are your finished edges.

7. Fold again in half so both your folded edges meet.  Sew down one side.

8. Cut in half and you have 2- Nine inch straps.

ADD Stitch your No-turn Straps to the front of the dress body about 1” apart. 



Here is the bonus…make your daughter’s day and make her a matching dress.


Watch your daughter have the best time…


The best reward was when her I overheard this conversation with her friend…

Friend: Your mom made that?  That is so cool.

Lawson:  Yep, my mom made this. She makes lots of things. She is really cool!!

MUSIC TO MY EARS!!  I had to document this because one day homemade things might not be so cool!!

I am sharing this at these parties…

Email me if you have any questions.


Elizabeth said...

Was reading along...loving the dress and thinking about how cool and talented you are. Then, hit us with a totally awesome Lawson sweet.

Jen-CraftOManiac said...

LOVE LOVE LOVE IT! so cute. Better the American Girls Costs. WINKW-JEN

MOMentum said...

You ROCK Mama. Lawson is blessed.

Melissa said...

I love it when my Mom makes matching outfits for my girls and their dolls and so do they.

Isn't it a thrill when your kids think what you do is cool!!

Pamela said...

Love it. My grandaughter would, too. In a world of 3 brothers she loves her babies and frillys .

Katie's Nesting Spot said...

I love the matching outfits!!! How stinkin' cute and I'll have to take your word for it that they are easy. Using elastic thread I think is way above my skills currently. I did buy some preshirred fabric at the store a couple of years ago. I should dig it out and actually use it before I find out I no longer have enough yardage to go around ER's body.

Anonymous said...

How can I download the your patterns for the winter outfit, without opening a Facebook account or any other account. Love the shirred dress. Debbie in KS

Maridith @ Strictly Homemade said...

To Anonymous- You should be able to click on the Patterns link and it will come up in scripd. It is a free website and the prints are free too. You should not have to subscribe to anything. Enjoy!

jelly andrews said...

Oh! I love this pattern. This is so cool. I want to give this a try. Thanks a lot for sharing.

Anonymous said...

WOW! So glad I found this sundress pattern for my granddaughter's American Girl Doll. My own mother used to make matching dresses for my doll and me. Now I will do the same. Thanks!

mae anderson said...

Wow! It looks great. So cute! How I love to try this pattern too. Thanks a lot for sharing the tutorial.

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