Do you remember your favourite outfit as a child? I grew up in comfy needlecord pinafore dresses from Clothkits, layered over cosy knits – great for hours spent playing outside and jumping in autumn leaves in the woods. Those memories inspired me to me to make this denim pinafore dress for my Blythe doll. I’ve shared the pinafore dress pattern and instructions so you can make your own Blythe doll a denim pinafore dress. It will also fit Licca Chan dolls and can be adjusted easily when you sew on the back closure. This post contains some affiliate links to some Etsy suppliers.
Grab your supplies:
- Lightweight denim fabric (I up-cycled a girls denim skirt – children’s clothes are great for making doll clothes. I used the pleat at the bottom of the skirt to add some detail)
- Contrasting fabric for lining and pocket (the daisy fabric was another skirt I found in a charity shop – perfect small patterned print and nice lightweight fabric)
- Matching thread (if you are confident sewing a contrasting ochre colour thread looks great with denim)
- 2 x tiny buttons
- 1 x snap fastener
- Sewing machine
- Tissue paper (for putting under the fabric when sewing fiddly bits)
- Fray check/ fray stop liquid
- Scraps of leather for straps (or you can make fabric straps)
Download the pattern:
Let’s get sewing:
DOLLY SEWING TIP: Place tissue paper underneath your fabric when sewing very small seams – it stops your machine eating the fabric!Claire
Get everything ready
Trace the pattern pieces onto baking parchment or tracing paper, then cut out and pin each piece to the relevant fabric as per the pattern instructions. Place the front of the dress pattern ‘on the fold’ – so the arrows on the pattern are lined up with the fold on your fabric, then cut out. The bodice lining is cut out in the same way. The back pieces are cut out on a double layer of fabric – so you end up with two pieces that mirror each other. The frill is also cut ‘on the fold’. The pocket is cut on a single layer of contrasting fabric. Trace the inside of the pocket onto a scrap of cardboard and cut out. Cut two pieces of leather for the straps approx. 4mm x 6cm.
Apply fray stop/ fray check liquid around the edges of all of your fabric pieces. This really helps stop fraying when working with doll clothes.
Make and attach the pocket
Fold the top edge of the pocket over, press and top-stitch. Next, hand sew a running stitch around the sides and bottom of the pocket. Place your cardboard template inside and pull the stitches around the template. Press. This shapes the curves of the pocket nicely.
Position the pocket on the front right of the pinafore dress. Alternatively, you could have a central pocket at the top or have two pockets at the bottom. Pin to hold it secure and topstitch around, leaving the top open.
Line the bodice
Position the two straps on the front of the bodice – with the straps going down (as shown by the star on the pattern) and pin to secure. Next, pin the bodice lining, right sides together, to the front of the pinafore. Sew from armhole to armhole. Clip the corners and curves. Turn right side out and press, making sure none of the lining is showing on the outside of the dress. Topstitch from armhole to armhole.
Make the back of the dress and frill
Fold and press the top of both back pieces. Topstitch along top edges. Pin the back pieces to each side of the front of the dress, right sides together. Sew the side seams, then press them open.
Press a 5mm hem on the frill and topstitch all the way along the long edge to hem the frill. Sew two rows of gathering stitches at the top edge of the frill. Pull the lower threads to gather the frill so it will fit the bottom of the dress.
Pin the frill to the bottom of the dress, right sides together and sew. Press seam upwards. Topstitch just above frill on bottom of dress.
Fold the dress in half and line up the back edges. Sew from the bottom of the frill to the mark on the pattern. Press the back seam open – press all the way to the top. Sew around the back opening.
Try the dress on your doll. Position the straps so the dress sits where you want it to at the front. Hold the straps in place and mark where they meet the back of the dress. Sew the straps at the back on each side – I did this by hand. Sew a snap fastener to close the back opening – you can adjust the position of the fastener to make the pinafore dress more fitted if you want. Sew your tiny buttons on the front of your pinafore by hand.
And you’re done! There are lots of ways to add embellishment to a simple Blythe pinafore dress pattern – for example, you could add lace, ric-rac or ribbon above or on the frill. You could also add extra pockets or embroider cute details. It’s up to you!
Here’s my Blythe showing off her outfit:
If you want to add more cute detail – check out my Lottie pinafore pattern – which uses tiny studs and dungaree clips for the straps.
I love seeing everything you make using my patterns, so please tag me on Instagram @galaxiadolls and use #galaxiadolls and don’t forget to share with your dolly friends! Happy sewing!Claire x