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Make An Empire Waist Doll Dress For Any Size or Shape of Doll

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Make A Basic Empire Waisted Sleeveless Doll Dress, Then Expand Your Design
Simple empire waisted doll dress on a dollhouse scale doll

Made from cotton quilting fabric, this simple empire waisted doll dress is easy to make for any scale or size of doll.

Photo © 2012 Lesley Shepherd

This basic doll dress is shown here made from cotton quilting fabric to fit a 1:12 scale tiny jointed doll. The style of this dress makes it a great pattern for a range of clothing styles. You can use it to make tops, move the waistline up or down for a range of dress styles, add short or long sleeves or change the gathered skirt to one with box pleats, or a single reverse box pleat in the center. The pattern can be used to make jumpers or tunics to wear over shirts or sweaters instead of a dress. If you prefer, you can make a straight A line skirt with no gathers and add it to the basic bodice.

As shown in these instructions I hand sewed this outfit as it is very difficult to seam on a sewing machine. For larger sized dolls, machine sewing is an easy option.

To make this dress you will need fabric in a suitable scale. I used standard quilting cotton fabric (pieced quilt broadcloth). Finer fabrics such as cotton batiste or cotton lawn will drape more naturally for smaller dolls. See the information on choosing scale patterns for different gathered and pleated finishes. You may also find the information on making a fabric viewfinder useful for choosing a pattern that suits your particular doll.

To fit the dress to your doll, you will need to make a basic torso sloper pattern to fit your doll. This is an easy thing to do, and means you can make all kinds of clothes which will custom fit your doll.

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