American Girl Doll Cape

American Girl Doll Cape

I created this pattern as a small scale mock-up for a life-size pattern, but it just turned out too cute not to share!  I have the pattern for you to download here → America Girl Doll Cape Pattern

List of Materials:

  • Fabric (approximately half a yard total)
  • Thread
  • Needles/Sewing Machine
  • Scissors
  • Sewing Pins
  • Closure of choice

1. First things first you will lay out the pattern on your fabric and cut out the pieces.  This cape has 2 layers, so if you would like a contrasting lining, every piece will be cut out of your fashion fabric and your lining fabric.  For this example, I used the same fabric for both layers.

2. Next, you will connect each "side" piece to the front or back pieces.  First, you will line up the straight edge of the shoulder and the end of the curve of the side piece.

Then you will line up the straight edges at the end.

You will follow along with the straight edges up towards the curve and then ease around the curve, pining as you go.

And then you will sew all of these pieces.

3.  On to the next step!  You will sew the side seams and the center back seam together.

4.  Now you will be placing the right sides together and pining all around the edge except the back piece neckline.

5.  You can now turn the whole cape inside out through the gap, making sure to poke out the corners.  I should say here that you should do as I say and not as I do and be ironing as you go.  I was incredibly lazy and waited till the end to pull out my ironing board and I definitely would have had a much more polished final product if I had.  You will now turn the seam allowance in at the back neckline and stitch close to the edge.

6. At this step, there is an optional detail of little slits for the hands to poke out of the cape.  This is done with either the buttonhole stitch on your machine or by hand.  Then you are able to attach the closure of your choice!  You could use a loop and button, 2 ribbons tied together, or I used a needle and ran thread through both edges and tied knots at the end, and that's it!

Now go ye forth and make as many little capes for your dolls as ye well please!

Till next time! ♥️

1860s Hand-sewn Corset

Follow along with my sewing of this 1865 corset!

Till next time! ♥️

Drafting Your Own Size For My 1940s Blouse Pattern

I want to begin first with clarifying that this is not how to draft any blouse pattern, but particularly my 1940s Vintage Inspired Blouse, from the previous blog post.  Not necessarily a beginner's tutorial, but hopefully still simple to follow!

To draft this pattern you will need:

1. So your first step is to gather your own measurements, whether for your self or another person.  You will want your measurements to comfortable, not too loose or too tight.

You will need measurements of:

  • Bust*
  • Waist*
  • Length from base of neck to desired shirt length
  • Length from base of neck to waist
  • Length from top of shoulder to armscye (below armpit)
  • Circumference of bicep*
  • Length from base of neck to end of the shoulder

*You will need to add wearing ease.  This is a fitted blouse so I would recommend 2 inches to the bust, and 1 1/2 inches to the waist and bicep circumference.

With these new measurements, you can now begin to draft your new pattern!

2. You will start by drawing a rectangle.  The width is your bust measurement and the height is the length from base of the neck to desired shirt length.

3. Now you will draw in the waistline which is placed at the length from the base of the neck to the waist.
4. Now draw a vertical line down the center of the rectangle.  This will divide the shape into the front and back piece.
Front - Back
5.  Now some math to figure the dart placement!  First, take your bust measurement and subtract your waist measurement. (For example, 38" - 30" = 8")
Divide that number in half. (4")

Now you will have 2 different dart sizes.  We will calculate Dart A then Dart B.

Dart A:
Multiply the new number (4") by 0.7. (2.8")
Now divide (2.8") by 4. (0.7")

Dart B:
Multiply that same new previous number (4") by 0.3. (1.2")
Divide (1.2") by 3. (0.4")

These 2 measurements (0.7" and 0.4") are the 2 widths of darts you will use.  Now, these are the full dart width so you will center this measurement on the dart line. (0.4" would become 0.2" on either side of line)

6.  For the dart line placement, first, you will place the Dart A's.  One goes in the middle of the front piece, one on the center line, and one on the center back (center back is half a dart). Now you will center the Dart A measurement (0.7") on each of these lines.  Then connect those points to the ends of darts.
Front - Back

7. On to the Dart B's!  For the first 2 darts, you will measure 1/2" away from Dart A on the front, on both sides. You will then from those points measure the Dart B measurement (0.4") and plot those points. The Dart B on the back is centered on the back section.  Then connect lines to the ends of darts.
Front - Back

8.  For the neckline, shoulder, and armhole, there are so many methods of drafting, explained much better than I could.  I would recommend either printing out the original pattern, and using the cut and splay method, or even tracing a shirt you already own.  I may do a more in-depth tutorial in the future, but for this tutorial, I am keeping it to details pertaining only to this pattern, as otherwise, this post would be a scroll that falls from a courtier standing next to a king rolling from the throne, out the door.
Front - Back

9.  Then you will add 2 inches to the center front to form the button placket.
Front - Back

10.  With the puff sleeves, I would recommend scaling the pattern width to make the length 160% longer than your bicep circumference. For example, if your arm is 16" around, multiply by 1.6 and you want your finished sleeve to be 25.6".  You would add the additional width in the center of the sleeve.  The sleeve hem will be the same length as your bicep measurement.

11.  The collar, if needed to be altered at all will only need length added at the center fold line, and the ties are one size fits all.

12. Lastly, be sure to add seam allowance to all pattern pieces, and you are all finished!

I hope that you found this tutorial helpful, and please let me know if you have any questions!

Till next time! ♥️

1940s Vintage-Inspired Blouse Pattern/Download

Why hello there!

To dive right in, I designed this vintage-inspired blouse, made multiple blouses for myself with it, and now would like to share it with you!  To begin, go ahead and download the pattern here → Blouse Pattern

Now this pattern was drafted for measurements of 34" Bust, 26" Waist, and 39" Hip, so if this size won't fit you, tune in to my next blog post for a tutorial on how to grade this pattern to any size!

Now onto the sewing instructions!

A couple of general notes first:
  • All seams are sewn with a 5/8" seam allowance unless otherwise specified
  • You can use woven or knit fabric with this pattern, but make sure fabric is pre-shrunk

Materials needed:
  • 1 1/4 yards of Fabric (More if matching patterns and stripes)
  • Chalk or Fabric Marker
  • Buttons
  • Thread
  • Scissors
  • Sewing Pins
  • Iron/Ironing Board

1. You will begin by ironing your fabric, laying out the pattern pieces, and cutting them all out.  You may notice that not all of my pieces match, and that is because I only had 1 1/8 yards of the fabric, and fortunately had another fabric to use.  What you might call a "happy accident".

2. Mark all darts and sew.  My preferred method of doing this is first taking a sewing pin and poking holes all along the dart line.  I then place the pattern piece back on the fabric and apply chalk on top of the holes.  I then remove the pattern and use the chalk as a guideline for my basting.  I run stitches along both sides of the dart, pull the thread tight, and then knot off.  I then stitch the darts in place by machine.  Even though this takes a couple extra steps, I find my darts are much more even and precise this way.

3. After the darts, you pin and then sew together the shoulder seams and side seams with the right sides together.  Then you will iron your darts towards the center and your seams open.  There are multiple ways you can finish your seams to prevent them from unraveling.  For this blouse, I chose to pink the edges, but you could also do french seams, hong kong seams, use bias tape, or a serger.

4. Next, you will sew the underarm seam on the sleeves.  Take the sleeve hem pieces and sew the 2 sides together along the long edge.  Then fold into a tube and sew the short side.  Then you will sew gathering stitches along the bottom edge of the sleeve, and gather the sleeve to fit the sleeve hem, pinning in place.

5. Now turn the sleeve hem so the raw edges are inside the sleeve and fold the edge over by 5/8".  Either whipstitch in place by hand or topstitch by machine.  (I chose to sew by hand so I could continue to watch the Office.)

6. Gather the top edge of the sleeve and match underarm seams.  The notch at the top matches with the shoulder seam.  Pin and then stitch in place.  I finished this edge by pinking as well.

7. Now for the collar.  Take the collar ties and with right sides together sew around the long edges of the ties to make a sealed-off tube. Trim and clip the end, turn inside out, and then iron.

8. This next part is a little tricky.  What we are looking for is for the collar to curve downward and meet the tie with seam allowance to sew the collar to the shirt.  You want to line up the collar tie 5/8" above the edge of the collar, collar pieces right sides together, but when you sew, follow the curve of the collar.  Then turn collar right sides out.

9. Turning back to the blouse, you will turn the front edge under by 1" and then 1" again.

10. Now you will pin one side of the collar and the right side of the neckline together and then stitch in place

11.  Now fold the edge of the blouse fabric that will become the button placket over by 1/4" twice.  Then turn in the free edge of the collar in by 5/8" and pin in place.  Either sew this in place by hand or topstitch.

12. Top stitch along the edges of the button placket.  Fold the hem of the blouse twice by 1/2" and either whipstitch or topstitch.

13. I did not provide marking for buttons and buttonholes with this pattern, as personally I never know what size or number of buttons I'm working with and it can vary with every blouse you make.  The buttonholes are vertical with this pattern, though.  (I did not have any buttons on hand to finish this step, but you understand.)

14. And you are finished!  Congratulations on completing your new blouse! Now that you have finished this pattern, try adding different details like different sleeves or a different collar.  The possibilities are endless!

Again, my next post will be on drafting this pattern to a different size, so stick around for that!

If I was unable to clearly explain or describe a particular step, please leave a comment and I will do my best to better explain.

Thank you so much for following along!

Till next time! ♥️