Pages

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Tutorial: Finishing Neck and Armhole Edges on Doll Clothes



There are of course many ways to finish edges on doll clothes and I have tried them all. I was looking for a way to finish necks and armholes on sleeveless tops and dresses and I normally make a simple facing for the neck, but facings do not work too well on armhole edges.

Many commercial doll clothes patterns tell you to simply clip and turn the edges down and then top stitch them, but what if you do not want topstitching on your garment? Plus it is really tricky to get a neat professional looking edge this way--and then there's fraying.

Full photo tutorial after the jump



Lining the garment is probably the best way to get a neat look, but often lining with the same fabric as the garment will end up too bulky.

Facings are great for neck edges, but when using garment fabric sometimes it will show through the finished project-particularly if you are using light colors or light weight fabric--plus as I mentioned above not ideal for armholes as, in my experience, it has a tendency to poke out the armhole of the finished dress sometimes.

Here is an old photo of a dress I made years ago. You can see the neck facing (same fabric as top) right through the top! Bad choice of fabric, but a good example of what I am talking about--even with a facing this thin, it shows through!


This tutorial combines a sort of lining and facing technique using tulle, which is ideal because it is cheap, does not fray and does not add bulk to tiny doll clothes. In this tutorial instead of cutting out pieces of tulle and sewing a duplicate garment for the lining (and chasing bits of tulle around my sewing table), I just used a single rectangle of tulle and trimmed it afterwards.

For me, coming up with this easier technique this was a hard won "Aha moment" so I wanted to share because this was always the thing--finishing neck and armholes--that doll patterns simply do not address and I could never find information on.


One of these is organza, that works too. Chose a color that matches, use white or neutrals or just pick a signature color for your linings, it will not show to the front.













You are done, simply catch the tulle up in the back closure seams as best you can and trim of any big excesses of tulle.


Close ups, finished dresses




Hope you found this useful! Happy dolly sewing!
If you have any questions about the tutorial, please feel free to email me or comment here.

15 comments:

  1. Hello from Spain: beautiful dolls. The tutorial is very interesting. Great designs. Keep in touch

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Marta! Have a wonderful day!

      Delete
  2. I love this concept... my only issue is that I get several 'broken' pictures that just don't show up. One of which is where I assume you turn the piece right side out. I sew for small dolls like Pukifee, Barbie and Monster High and I think they technique would be invaluable for them. Do you have the pictures located somewhere else online, that we might be able to see them in their entirety?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I will check the photo uploads, I agree--it is an especially great way to do a lining for the tiny girls!

      Delete
    2. They are all showing up for me, if you like I can send you the photos via email :)

      Delete
  3. This is brilliant. Thank you. :)

    ReplyDelete
  4. What a clever idea! Tulle is a great material for lining these tiny pieces as it doesn't fray as well as not adding bulk. Organza is good too but it frays more than tulle.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Exactly! I find the rolled organza less a fraying worry it is also good for adding more body and stiffness if needed, especially for full skirts.

      Delete
  5. :D This is an awesome idea! I'm working on doll clothes to sell, and now I know I just need to buy me up some tulle, instead of abusing the Fray-Check. (Corsets I'll probably still Fray-Check on, but for those little collars, I love love LOVE this idea!)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks! Would love to see your doll clothes! Where do you sell?

      Delete
  6. i have just found your blog.. this is amazing. i am just a beginner but i know how valuable this information is.. thank you so much for taking the time to show us. you are a great talent.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Missie! :) Happy Sewing!

      Delete
  7. I have recently got into making doll clothes so this is brilliant infomation, sure I have some organza some when. Thanks for Sharing xx

    ReplyDelete
  8. Excellent tip and perhaps you didn't know, but the method of using Organza as a lining/stabilizer is a Haute Couture method ... ☺. -Brenda-

    ReplyDelete