Friday, July 27, 2012

18” Doll Dress - Josefina

I’ve been busy cutting out and starting to sew some 18” doll dresses like Josefina’s for our Liberty Girls group.

I cut out all 11 of the doll shirts and skirts…


And then sewed one of the outfits for my daughter’s doll. Cute! The only things missing are the sash and the rebozo (shawl) and the girls will be making those themselves at one of our club meetings.

IMG_7489  I think making 18” doll clothes is pretty fun! The dolls are big enough that you aren’t going crazy with things being too tiny, yet, they are small enough that you get things made pretty fast! AND, they can sure make a little girl’s face light up with delight! When I gave this doll outfit to my daughter she immediately went and put it on her doll and then got her own Josefina skirt on and a white shirt (since I haven’t made my daughter’s Josefina shirt yet) and she played all afternoon.  

Such fun!

PS – If you’re interested in finding patterns for some of the older American Doll clothes, go to this link:



July Finishes

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Simple Gathered Skirt – Josefina style – a Tutorial

For our Liberty Girls club this semester, we’re going to make costumes for the girls so they can dress up like Josefina.  I will have a pattern for the moms to use for the camisa (shirt) but the skirt is just a simple gathered skirt that I don’t feel we need to buy patterns for, so I thought I’d make this tutorial for the moms in our group who would appreciate instructions on how to make one.

This is my first tutorial and I took at least a thousand pictures! ; ) We’ll see how many I end up using… And please, if you feel that I didn’t describe something well, please let me know and I’ll fix it! Thanks!

This is what the finished skirt will look like. Cute, isn’t it?


Before we begin:

** I’ll use my daughter’s measurements as an example. You will need to plug in your daughter’s measurements for her skirt.**

Measure your daughter from her waist to the floor.  My daughter’s measurement was 27.5”

Take that number, and subtract 5'”. So, my new measurement is 22.5”

Add 1.25” for the casing, and Add 1” for the hem. So, my final measurement is 24.75”.


  • 2 Widths of Fabric (WOF) x your final measurement.  (Mine was 2 WOF x 24.75”)
  • 1/4” - 1/2” elastic the length of the width of your daughter’s waist. (Mine was 21”)
  • 88” of 1 1/4” – 1 5/8” white eyelet trim
  • red and white thread
  • 2 safety pins for use with elastic




This shows me getting ready to cut one width of fabric at 24.75” in length. Cut two of these.


Open up your two pieces of fabric and put right sides together, pin the selvages together on one side and… IMG_7440

…sew a seam 1/4” inside of the inside edge of the white selvage. (1/4” is usually at the edge of your pressure foot.)



You can cut off some of the white if you want to.

IMG_7443             Iron your seams.


IMG_7444On one of the raw edges, fold over 1/4” and sew.


At this point I would recommend sewing down both sides of your seams a couple of inches. This will just make things easier for you when it comes time to put the elastic in the casing.

IMG_7448Then on that same edge, fold over 1” and sew, this time leaving an open space about 2” wide.


IMG_7449 This is showing the opening in the casing.

      IMG_7451Next, cut a piece of elastic the length of the width of your daughter’s waist.


Put a safety pin in one end of the elastic…
…and begin inserting it into the casing.



At this point I would encourage you to pin the other end to the skirt near the casing opening. Once upon a time I didn’t do this step and ended up pulling the end all the way inside the casing… : )


Slide the safety pin through the casing…
…until it comes out of the opening again.


Pin the two ends together, overlapping about 1”.
Then have your daughter try it on. Adjust elastic length as necessary.


Sew ends of elastic together, overlapping 3/4” – 1”
using a zig zag stitch.
                         Then sew the opening shut.


Stretch the waistband from edge to edge…
…then move your hands half way around the skirt and stretch again. This will help the gathers even out.

        IMG_7470At this point I would sew through the elastic on the two side seams. This helps keep half of the gathers in front, and half of the gathers in back.


Now on the bottom edge of the skirt, you can do the hem one of two ways. One way is to fold over 1/2” and sew all the way around, and then fold over another 1/2” and sew all the way around again.  This is just fine.


Or you can fold over 1/2”…
…and fold over another 1/2” and sew all the way around. This just saves you from having to go around twice.


Now switch your thread color to white. (If I would have thought of it, I would have done this step first before switching to red thread in the first place! Do this step whenever you want.)  Fold over 1/4” and sew on the end of your eyelet on both ends. Make sure you do both ends the same way!


With red thread, sew the right side of the eyelet
to the wrong side of the skirt hem.
       Overlap the eyelet at the end.



Now you have an adorable little skirt!!! So fun! The minute I showed my daughter that it was finished, she had to put it on and has been wearing it the whole day.  Some girls sure love to dress up! 

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial. (I only used 30 out of my 1000 pictures! : )  Again, if you feel I need to clarify something please let me know!!



PS I’m linking up with Such a Sew and Sew, Quilt Story, and Freshly Pieced. (Even though this is a finished product, I still consider it a WIP since I still have so many more to do! ) And with Confessions of a Fabric Addict. Whoop! Whoop!

Been Shoppin’!

It’s been almost two weeks since I last posted and time just keeps flying!  I haven’t even done any sewing in the last two weeks! Ugh. Oh well, that’s life sometimes!

I’m gearing up for another awesome semester with my Liberty Girls group. We’ll be reading the Josefina series from American Girl, and it is set in the time period of 1824 New Mexico. It is a great series! I read all the books a couple of months ago and am now preparing with my co-advisor for all the cool stuff we’re going to do.

First things first – buy fabric for the outfits for the girls and their 18” dolls!!! We’ll be having a Fandango (a party with music,dancing and food) in September with the girls and their families - it’s going to be amazing!

Josefina-meet-f  This is the first book in the series, and the dress Josefina is wearing on the cover of the book is the one we’ll be making for our girls & their dolls. FUN!


14.5 yards of white fabric for the shirts…

23 yards of the red fabric for the skirts…

45 yards of 1.5” eyelet trim for both the shirts and skirts…

10.5 yards of plaid fabric for the rebozos (shawls)…

oodles of elastic, ribbon and thread…

still need to buy the patterns…

IMG_7431 Now I’ve got to divide it up and deliver each set of supplies to some of the moms who will sew.  I think I’ll be sewing at least 4 girls and 3 doll outfits.

Here we go!


Wednesday, July 11, 2012

More Christmas Pinwheel Table Runners

Like I said in a recent post, “If one is good, four is better!”  I finished one pinwheel Christmas table runner last week and have 3 more on the burner… They’re all sandwiched up nice and tidy (thanks to 505 spray!! Awesome stuff!) and just waiting to be quilted.  Let’s see how long it takes me to actually get them done! : )



WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Requesting Suggestions, Please!

Hello everyone!  I have been planning a project for a couple of months now, and I’m still stuck on what exactly to do! So I thought I’d put it out to you amazing people to see if any of you have any suggestions for me.  All suggestions are welcome and I would sure appreciate your input!

I’m going to make a special ‘handprint’ quilt for my mother-in-law for Christmas with all the handprints of her grandchildren on it. The fabric I’ve chosen is some from the California Girl line…


Every other square will be a handprint cut out of the Cal. Girl fabric appliqu├ęd onto white fabric, and so every other square will be some sort of quilt block design of the Cal. Girl fabric.  I simply can’t decide what to do with the quilt block squares!  Can you help me??? (Don’t laugh to hard and my drawings of hands! : )

Here’s my amazing drawing of the quilt:

Grandma's Quilt

What do I do with the blank squares??? I thought I could do some sort of fun design with half square triangles like one of these:

I love half square triangles!

Or I could do granny squares, which I must say, the name “granny squares” lends nicely to who the quilt is for, Grandma! But I have to say that for some reason, I’m not in love with granny squares yet…. don’t shoot me. : )

Yummy Granny Squares!

Or I could do heart blocks:

Or I could just do a plain square of fabric, like a simple patchwork quilt.

OR I could do something I totally haven’t thought of yet! All I know is it can’t be too complicated or I’ll never get it, and all the other things I want to make, done! : )

Do you have any suggestions for me? I sure would love your help!!!

Thank you!!!


WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Christmas in July : )

Yes, today is July 7th and yes, I just sewed a Christmas table runner!  I didn’t plan on starting Christmas projects in July, it’s just that I saw a table runner like this on a blog I LOVE and I just had to make one! I say one, but I actually have 4 going right now. Do you do that to yourself? If one is good, then four is better! ;  )
I decided to step out of my comfort zone and do a different fmq design.  I don’t know it’s official name, but I like to think of it as ‘whimsical’ although it looks an awful lot like waves. : )  Do any of you have a better name for this design?

I’m going to give this one to my sister-in-law as a thank you gift.  She and her cute family drove all the way here from Arizona to celebrate Independence Day and while they were here, she took our family pictures. She is one amazing photographer!  You can go see her work here:
I hope our pictures turned out ok. We had scheduled them for Thursday evening and of course, the sky became majorly overcast and rained.  We hurried from one pose to the next. She was great though. I’m sure she’ll be able to make us look good in spite of the weather. : )

Lily's Quilts

July Finishes
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