Let’s start with clasps.
But before you buy clasps for your tiny dolls’ overalls, you might want to read yesterday’s blog post about purchasing products that have been imported from China. It’s important to be an informed buyer, and yesterday’s blog post dips into the dark political history of China while explaining my reasons for including links to stores like I Sew for Doll.
Feel free to leave your own comments on yesterday’s blog post. It’s good to get different opinions on matters pertaining to global concerns around products made for sewists like you and me.
These tiny overalls clasps are super small but incredibly detailed, as you can see in the image above. There are also overalls clasps for bigger dolls’ overalls on Etsy, and I offer recommendations in my store, for different clasps, for various doll sizes.
The littlest clasps are for dolls that are 10 inches tall or smaller.
Okay. Let’s move on to buttons.
Buttons come in various shapes and sizes on Etsy, and I recommend buying buttons that are 3 mm in diameter or smaller for dolls that are Barbie sized or smaller.
The bigger button size in the palm of my hand below, is a 6 mm in diameter button. These work great for Wellie Wishers, American Girl, and other 13 inch to 18 inch dolls; however they’re more for show than for functionality.
These are often available at craft stores and fabric stores, like JoAnn’s.
The teeny-tiny 3 mm buttons (shown below in little tiny zipper pouch baggies) are a little harder to find, but they can be found on Etsy and a few other places online.
These tiny buttons are definitely more for decoration than an actual closure device, although the 6 mm buttons can be used with a loop made of embroidery floss.
Here’s one of those embroidery floss closures I made for Curvy Barbie, although the 6 mm buttons do look a little clunky on a Barbie-sized doll, to be honest:
If you’d like to see the video where I teach you how to make those cloth-covered buttons with embroidery floss loops, click here.
But as I’ve said, most doll clothing sewists use buttons to embellish, rather than as a closure. For the two vintage Skipper shirts shown below, I have used size 4/0 Dritz snaps to close the shirts, but colorful 3 mm buttons appear on the outside of the shirt for a more realistic look.
Because they’re usually just an embellishment, rather than an actual closure device, my links to places where you can buy tiny miniature buttons for your dolls’ clothes will appear on both the closure page, in my store, and the embellishments page.
Now let’s talk about Velcro.
You want to look for “Sew On” Velcro, with the actual Velcro label, like you see in the image above. I’ve made the mistake of purchasing other brands, and lived to regret it.
And another thing, the actual Velcro company does make little stick-on Velcro squares for crafting (see image below), but I do NOT recommend using these for doll clothes closures. These stick-on Velcro squares are designed for other materials besides cotton fabric, not for sewing.
I have been known to scavenge hook-and-loop products from garments I’m recycling, from time to time, but be advised that when you do so, you do run the risk of possibly using a less-high quality of product than brand-name Velcro products.
However, recycling garments and other fabric products is good for the environment, and I have been able to use generic hook-and-loop products that were appropriated from garments or cloth products, with some success in my doll clothing sewing projects.
In the image below, Figure A shows an actual Velcro brand product. It’s certainly colorful, and the strip opens and closes with little effort.
The white hook-and-loop closure product shown in the image above (Figure B) was originally used to seal a cloth sack that some cotton bedsheets came in.
Once the bedsheets were out of the packaging, I turned the cloth sack into the white shirt shown on my Anna doll below, and the hook-and-loop closure that I scavenged from the cloth sack became the shirt’s closure. It may or may not have been an actual Velcro brand product, but it works fine!
You may not be aware that Velcro comes in a variety of colors and is easily trimmed down to the sizes you need, when creating closures for your doll clothes.
The royal blue strip on the left hand side is what these bits and pieces looked like before I cut them down to fit the back closure of various doll shirts and dresses.
I have one caveat, though, and it’s an important one! Don’t use your sewing scissors to cut the sew-on Velcro strips into smaller bits and pieces. Instead, use craft scissors.
And now let’s end with a quick chat about Zippers.
The zippers in the image are lying on a cutting mat that’s 5 inches wide by 8 inches long. (Sorry the cutting mat is upside down!) For those of you living outside the US, 5 inches is 12.7 cm or 127 mm.
But when you look closely at the zippers, the zippy part is only about 3 inches long. These are classified as three-inch zippers, not 4 and 3/4 inch zippers! You don’t count the extensions that hang over the top and down at the bottom.
So when ordering zippers for your doll clothes, pay attention to how much actual zip space you need, and place your order accordingly.
Well, that’s all I have on closures at this time, although my store‘s “Closures” page will include additional goodies, like hook-and-eye closures, miniature belt buckles, and toggle clasps, which are great for closing a doll’s cape!
If I missed any other types of closures, please leave a suggestion in the comments section. I’ll gladly add those notions as well, if I’ve forgotten something.
At a later date, I’ll do a blog post on ribbons, which can also be used as a closure, but which will be listed under embellishments instead, in my store.
For anyone who would like to expand their dolls’ wardrobes, you should really check out my “How to Alter Doll Clothes Patterns” course and my “Design Your Own Doll Pants Patterns from Scratch” classes on the Creative Spark online learning platform. Here’s my bio page on their website, where you can learn more.
For any class on Creative Spark, you don’t have to follow a schedule. Just sign up when you’re ready.
It’s a one-time fee for the course, and there’s no specific time limit to finish your course. You can just take your time and learn at the pace that suits you. So go check out my paid courses on Creative Spark, using this link.
If you enjoyed this blog post, and you’d like to see my videos, you might want to navigate over to my YouTube channel, ChellyWood1 to look through my playlists.
To read more about my free sewing patterns and tutorials, please visit the “Helpful Tips” page.
Disclaimer/Credit/Affiliate Marketing Link:
Chelly Wood and the ChellyWood.com website are not affiliated with any of the doll or toy companies mentioned in this blog post, but Chelly enjoys designing her doll clothes to fit a variety of dolls. To learn more about the doll companies mentioned in today’s post, please visit the doll or toy company’s website.