My tutorial (dress making proposal) for making a fabulous Barbie dress.
1. Buy or borrow a Barbie doll. Having a model might make the sewing easier. You can try on the clothes and see if they fit, if you need to alter them.
2. If you're making a dress, consider using a Barbie clothing item as an undergarment. In addition, you think about recycling parts of some other Barbie clothing item. These two Barbie dolls I got came with very basic short dresses that I decided to use as an under dress. Once my dresses were completed, the original 'dresses' weren't visible at all but they added structure to the dresses I made and made things a bit easier.
3. Decide on a design and stick to it. You don't have to decide on a every single detail, but you will need to decide on the cut of the dresses before you cut the fabric. For example, if you want to make a dress with ruffles, you will need more fabric. You can decide on the decorations and details later on, but the basic cut should be decided on early on in the process.
4. Measure and cut the fabric. After you have established the design and the cut of the Barbie clothing items you want to make, sew your designed clothing items together. Don't forget to measure the fabric! You can always cut the excess fabric but if you use too little fabric (i.e. not enough) , you'll have to abandon the process and start anew.
5. Finalize the design. Don't forget to hem the Barbie dresses. Unless you're using faux leather or something that doesn't require hemming, you will need to hem Barbie clothes. Consider lining and underlining as those things always makes the garment look couture and polished.
6. Add the finishing touches, like decorations (optional). I actually added lots of details once I had sewed the dresses together. I used satin cords to create little hair bows for my Barbies. In addition, I used satin cords on both dresses. The transparent red satin cord is actually part of the design of the dresses and serves as the 'top' of the dress but I also added red satin cord to one of the dresses, I sewed it in and then I tied a bow. I don't know if you can see it but I have also sewed in a red heart under the transparent red satin cord (on the dress with a A cut)
7. Wrap the Barbie dresses you made! This step is completely optional as you're going to do it only if you made your Barbie dresses as a present for someone.
How do you like this DIY? Would you consider trying it? Have you ever made a Barbie dress? If you were to make a Barbie dress, how would you use it? Would you give it some kid? Are there any Barbie collectors among you? Did you play with Barbie dolls as a kid? I know I did. Honestly, I have never bought into that philosophy that Barbie dolls created 'unrealistic' expectations for little girls. Children are more influenced by what they mothers say and how they act, then by any dolls. Our mothers are our first style influences. I think that every little girl looks up primarily to her mother and then to other adults. That is where children get their information on how to behave and what to do. Kids are like sponges, they just soak everything in. What influences them the most is a combination of interaction with other people (both children and adults) and media. Barbie dolls on their own are just dolls. However, media is another thing. Cartoons, films and other programs for children are something that needs to be examined. Without getting into the subject deeper, I would certainly advise care when it comes to what children watch on TV and on their phones. Instead of stigmatizing a doll, why not actually speak with children and monitor their growth and thinking? I mean I also played with unicorns and pony dolls when I was a kid, but it didn't make me think I should become one. Do you know what I mean? Lots of little girls played with classical Barbie dolls and I doubt it did anyone any serious harm. When it comes to self-image, it's always a combination of factors, never something simple as a doll. Anyhow, that would be all for today. I hope you liked this DIY project. As I said, it wasn't the easiest thing to do, but it was more than worth it considering that it made two little girls happy. I'm a big fan of hand made gifts. In today's consumerist world, hand made gifts really meant something. If you make something with your own hands, if you put your time and effort into it, then you know you've put your heart into that gift. I wish you a fantastic week ahead.