My Sew Sew Life-A Long Promise Finally Kept

A very long time ago, when I was a small girl, the local grocery store would get in wonderful toys right before Christmas. One year, I fell in love with the Cinderella doll. And I did get her! I never scored very many dolls so this was a big deal. After all these years, she is still with me. ‘Rella was pre-Barbie, so for the time, this was a high fashion doll.
‘Rella was originally dressed in a beautiful gold and pink tulle ball gown, which disintegrated ages ago. The pair of silver plastic shoes also disappeared.
‘Rella in her new top to toe outfit.
She is 29 inches tall and I’ve not found patterns for her. My Mom found one for a 32 inch doll (see below) and used that in the three garments she made for her all those years ago. For decades, “Rella has been barefoot and dressed in a limited and increasingly distressed wardrobe.
A very old and worn pattern, but all the pieces are there. The styles don’t fit Rella’s image and are not a perfect fit. But it gives me something
to work with.
For years, I have promised myself that I would make the old girl something new*. I finally did. I don’t think this design is extremely fashion forward. However, it does fit the look of the doll.

I made seven pieces in all. To keep this simple, I have organized them in a list each with a little blurb.  
Fitted Pants-I adapted the pajama pant pattern to create a fitted pant with front pleats, back zipper and waistband. Next time, I am going to try and cut a new fitted pattern, rather than trying to fit that on on the doll. 

Lined Cape With Collar-This is pretty much the original. However, I wanted a collar and cut a pattern. Black grosgrain ribbon detail is used on the collar and cape (and also down the pant’s side seam). 

I made these two garments from a fabric remnant from my Mom. It was in a dresser that I took home after she passed (along with all her patterns). I had seen this fabric as long as I can remember and have no idea where it came from. I know it has been around at least forty years. Sophia and Niko (my Poodles) also got Christmas outfits out of it. I still have some left!
A side view showing pleats, waistband and grosgrain ribbon tuxedo stripe down the side of the pants. Also, it’s a good view of her new mani!


Short Sleeve Sweater, Arm Warmers And Beret.-I designed the sweater and arm warmers. The beret came from Ann Budd’s book The Knitter’s Handy Book Of Patterns. I used the 0-6 months size. 

The back of the sweater has a placket with vintage mother of pearl buttons.

The yarn used is Trendsetter’s Rapunzel. It is a Mohair and wool blend. This yarn was one of my Tuesday Morning finds.

Shoes (actually boots)-These are made from some fairly thick black felt. They have leather soles and heels created from Sculpty clay. I lined the top inside so they could be turned down for a different look. Shoes are always going to be a challenge. They are a whole different ballgame from regular sewing.
My research has found a wonderful and knowledgeable resource from Finland. Tarja Simpanen has a wonderful blog and website with valuable information about creating doll shoes.  

The boots showing the option of the turned down cuff. 


Purse-I designed this using leather and jewelry findings. Fortunately, I have an ancient heavy-duty Singer sewing machine that will sew through fairly thin leather with ease. 

 A closer view of the purse.

The only thing I bought specifically for this project was the Sculpty clay. I scavenged everything else from my stash.


I had a great time with this project. It covered a lot of different skill sets and made me research on how to do some aspects. 


* I have actually knitted one top for ‘Rella. I wanted a sample for my Simply Color fiber class, so decided to “kill two birds with one stone”, as the old saying goes. However, nothing goes with the knitted top. Next doll design project?


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