Wednesday, April 6, 2011

IpleHouse Tania's New Dress

Tania has been moping around the house lately, eyeing with barely concealed envy her sisters' new dresses.  Who can blame her?  The most recent outfit I made for her is a sundress.  Fine in summer, but somewhat uncomfortable when April showers are snow showers.

So I pulled out my box of patterns.  Selected Annabella from Adams-Harris Patterns.  It is a pattern for SD girls, but I had reduced it on the photocopier and had yet to try it on a smaller doll.  I looked through fabrics to see what might suit.  I had a lot left over from the Sweet Jane pattern that I made for Hazy.  Not only is it a gorgeous Japanese print -- the color was perfect with her red boots.

Because I had not made this outfit for Tania before, I made a trial bodice in another fabric.  It fit, insofar as I could tell without lining it.  The skirt has several tiers, along with belt loops that sit at the hip, so there was no telling how tight it would become when everything was assembled.  A more seasoned seamstress might have completed the entire outfit in test mode, but I tend to work intuitively.  If it feels right, I plunge ahead.

I had already made the body shirt for Asa, so I knew that would fit.  In fact, it fit under Tania's sundress, but she wasn't satisfied.  Said it felt plain compared to the other girls' outfits.  Now, Tania is a girl who could never look plain, even wearing an old sack.  Nevertheless, I humored her and piled on the lace and trims.

Anyone who is following my sewing misadventures has probably guessed by now that I encountered a problem or two along the way.  Annabella was easy enough to sew in SD size.  In MSD size, parts of it were too small for the machine and so I ended up doing a lot of hand sewing.  The shoulder straps refused to go in the right direction; I nearly shredded the bodice lining trying to reposition them.  Then, I sewed two of the skirt tiers wrong side out.  How did that happen?  It's not like I never made anything from this pattern before -- I've made three other versions of this outfit already!
Despite the outfit's shortcomings, Tania was proud to stand alongside her IpleHouse sisters for a group photo.  If she looks a wee bit shorter, it's because she is posing without the aid of a doll stand. 

I made a discovery while dressing her.  A previous owner wired her legs.  She is still strung with elastic, but there are wires running through the same channels.  I have never wired a doll myself -- I wasn't sure how to do it.  From what I can see without taking her apart, the wire goes all the way up into her torso.  I wouldn't be surprised if the same wire went up one leg and down the other.  This modification is intended to enable a doll to hold a pose.  It does make her sturdier when standing.  Finally I understand why she has always resisted any efforts to straighten her legs all the way.

1 comment:

  1. Oooh - I own Tania and have ordered an Asa too! We must have similar taste in dolls. I love Tania's outfit! The net petticoat is so cute!