I finally managed to get into my workroom this week and decided to dress one of the Laura Ashley ghost dolls. For some reason the urge came upon me to make the dungarees I needed for one of them. I remember this sort of cross between a jumpsuit and dungarees from my youth, although I don’t know if I ever had any. I needed one of the dolls to be wearing this sort of garment so I decided to make it, having done several dresses for the others.
I will write more about the dolls as the project comes to completion, but I wanted to say just how much sheer pleasure I got from making these dolls clothes. I had been intending to make some of those very trendy distressed art dolls which look like they have just come out of an exotic tomb somewhere, but this one was having none of it, and I made the dungarees from a fine cotton date 1977, I think, using the wrong side to give a bleached out look, but other than that, the whole thing is pretty pristine. The dungarees fit. I adapted a pattern from a wonderful book I found at my mother’s last time I was home, The Dolls Dressmaker by a woman who rejoices in the name of Venus A. Dodge:
It’s a brilliant book with patterns for all sorts of shapes and sizes and garments and instructions for people who know what they are doing. Quite the opposite in fact from someone I spoke to recently who even had to have a photograph of how to thread a needle in her book. That aside, I made the dungarees and then a close fitting T-shirt from an old one of mine. The T-shirt fits like a glove to go under the dungarees. Then I found an old necklace with these beaded hoops on them and they fitted exactly as bangles.
The whole thing came together really easily and looks great. But what surprised me was just how much pleasure was involved. I loved both the final result and my own exercise of know-how to get these things to fit and to look right. I loved making dolls’ clothes. I will blog more about this at some point, because I think it has things to say about creativity, but this quick post is just to introduce the ghost doll I have decided to call Angela:
I discover from my notes that I just need to get her a small child sorted out and then she is finished. I must consult Venus A Dodge on small sizes.