Mix and match doll clothes patterns when a pattern piece is missing #SewingTips #DollClothes @ ChellyWood.com

This image accompanies an article on mixing and matching doll clothes patterns. It shows Butterick Craft pattern 4687 followed by a plus sign, followed by a close-up image of two doll clothes items from McCall's Craft Pattern 83428, followed by an "equals" sign, followed by a completed doll dress and pinafore. The dress pattern came from McCall's craft pattern 83428 while the pinafore pattern came from Butterick pattern #4687. This outfit was made by Chelly Wood, the doll clothing designer. She combined the McCall's pattern (which was incomplete) with the Butterick pattern to create the handmade dress and pinafore we see in this featured image. The website where Chelly Wood posts her sewing adventures in making doll clothes like this is watermarked on this "formula" image: ChellyWood.com so please visit ChellyWood.com for free printable sewing patterns and tutorial videos for making doll clothes to fit dolls of many shapes and all different sizes.

Last week I showed you a pretty elastic-waist and elastic-neckline Barbie dress that I made, using McCall’s “Teen Doll” Barbie Clothes Sewing Pattern #3429, which was first published in the 1970’s. Here’s the link to that blog post, if you’re curious, and here’s the doll dress I made, using that pattern:

The image shows a handmade doll dress with an elastic waist, elastic at the sleeves, and elastic at the neckline. The dress is made of red floral fabric. The bottom of the dress is edged with white eyelet ruffles. The overlay tells where to learn more about the pattern used to make this dress: ChellyWood.com

Unfortunately, the McCall’s “Teen Doll” Barbie Clothes Sewing Pattern #3429 was missing its pinafore pattern.

Have a look at the McCall’s pattern 3429 below. In the lower right corner, you can see the elastic-waist dress I’ve made, and beside it, you can see that it’s meant to have a pinafore. On the McCall’s pattern, the pinafore is pictured in a blue plaid or blue gingham:

In this image, the Chelly Wood doll holds up McCall's "teen doll" pattern #3429 which was published in 1972. In the blog post at ChellyWood.com, where this pattern is discussed, Chelly Wood (a doll clothing pattern designer) asks the question, "Do you prefer to come up with your own fabric concepts, or do you like to choose a fabric that matches the illustration on the front of the doll clothes pattern?" The Chelly Wood doll is actually a Spin Master Liv doll that has been made over to look like the actual doll clothes pattern designer, Chelly Wood.

I bought the McCall’s pattern on eBay, knowing it was an incomplete pattern. The seller had circled the pattern pieces that would come with the pattern, and you can see the seller’s writing on the cover of the McCall’s pattern in that image above.

So she was an honest seller, and a good person! (If you’re wondering how to watch out for bad pattern sales on eBay, I recommend reading this article.)

But I knew that I also had the Butterick pattern, which, as you can see below, actually came with a similar pinafore:

This image shows a commercial pattern: Butterick Craft Pattern #4687, which offers patterns for making a night gown, a sweat suit, and a long pioneer-style dress with a pinafore. All patterns are designed to fit 11.5 inch dolls like Mattel's Barbie dolls.

So I compromised. I purchased the incomplete McCall’s pattern and used the Butterick pattern’s pinafore piece to create the finished pioneer-style dress you see below:

Here we see a Mattel Barbie modeling a handmade "pioneer-style" dess and pinafore. The article that this image accompanies describes how a sewist can mix and match doll clothes patterns to come up with a new look or to fill the void when a craft pattern is missing some of the pattern pieces. Please visit ChellyWood.com to learn more about mixing and matching craft patterns and/or doll clothes sewing patterns to create a complete doll wardrobe for your Barbie or other dolls. ChellyWood.com offers free printable sewing patterns for making doll clothes for dolls of many shapes and all different sizes. It also offers advice for the beginning sewist / sewer who is making doll clothes.

I don’t think the Butterick pattern’s pinafore is quite as long as the McCall’s pinafore’s pattern, but if I wanted to create another one,  I could certainly lengthen the skirt of the pinafore as a simple alteration.

Instead, I just followed the Butterick pattern as-is, to see what it would look like. And truthfully, I really like it just the way it is!

Here we see a Mattel Barbie modeling a handmade "pioneer-style" dess and pinafore. Tis is a side view of the dress and pinafore. The article that this image accompanies describes how a sewist can mix and match doll clothes patterns to come up with a new look or to fill the void when a craft pattern is missing some of the pattern pieces. Please visit ChellyWood.com to learn more about mixing and matching craft patterns and/or doll clothes sewing patterns to create a complete doll wardrobe for your Barbie or other dolls. ChellyWood.com offers free printable sewing patterns for making doll clothes for dolls of many shapes and all different sizes. It also offers advice for the beginning sewist / sewer who is making doll clothes.

I liked the way the Butterick pinafore tied in the back using fabric straps,  whereas (see image below), the McCall’s pinafore sealed with a snap in the back:

The image shows the pattern pieces for McCall's Teen Doll Pattern 3429 whcih fits Mattel's Barbie.

In the image below, you can really see the Buttrick pinafore from the back. Compare it to the McCall’s pinafore from the pattern instructions (above):

Here we see a Mattel Barbie modeling a handmade "pioneer-style" dess and pinafore. This is a view of the dress and pinafore from the back. The article that this image accompanies describes how a sewist can mix and match doll clothes patterns to come up with a new look or to fill the void when a craft pattern is missing some of the pattern pieces. Please visit ChellyWood.com to learn more about mixing and matching craft patterns and/or doll clothes sewing patterns to create a complete doll wardrobe for your Barbie or other dolls. ChellyWood.com offers free printable sewing patterns for making doll clothes for dolls of many shapes and all different sizes. It also offers advice for the beginning sewist / sewer who is making doll clothes.

Now I’d like to hear from you, my followers. Do you like to mix-and-match your doll clothes patterns? Have you ever found problems with mixing and matching? And if so, how did you solve those problems?

Please share in the comments section below!

2 thoughts on “Mix and match doll clothes patterns when a pattern piece is missing #SewingTips #DollClothes @ ChellyWood.com

  1. I remember watching a video from a designer and seamstress (not sure if I am using the correct terms). She was getting grief from using patterns. She said EVERYONE uses patterns. Even if you completely design your products, you might use a pattern for a sleeve (and you may have been the creator of that pattern, but at an earlier time) for a new outfit. And even if you create the whole thing, you create a pattern somewhere along the line. She used and mixed her patterns to create her beautiful clothing. I might be muddling this all since I don’t know and understand all the terms that those that are in the business might use.

    1. Well Melissa, I do think a lot of pattern designers fall back on pattern “templates” that they’ve created and “slopers” that they’ve created, as they develop new and different pattern concepts.

      It might be interesting to learn, that back before there were commercial patterns, people would seam rip (unpick) their worn-out garments and use the pieces as patterns to make new garments.

      The history of sewing is a fascinating topic!

      These days you can actually buy computer software that will take your measurements as input and create patterns for you!

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