SewistDen Intro & 2020 wrap up

What an interesting year 2020 has been. The robotics team I coach went to the State Championship (again). Life slowed down due to the pandemic. In person robotics & group homeschooling adventures came to an almost full stop from the schedule we were used to maintaining. 

This change led to more free time at home and the reopening of my sewing studio. In the past, I've sewn everything - costumes, home decor, clothing, doll clothes & more. Sitting here with file cabinets full of fabric and leftover trims from past projects, it was time to start using up those smaller cuts. Doll clothes was the logical choice here for most of it. Years ago, I used to sell monthly doll clothes subcription boxes and started doing it again. The difference this time, is I am only going to create patterns and sew for dolls I enjoy sewing for. Sorry Barbie, you dont make the cut. I developed my short list - some (most) of which are dolls I had never seen in person, as they weren't ones my (now adult) kids had.

I needed some models for this newest adventure, so I could draft some patterns. Enter my foray into the world of 14" & 18" dolls. I picked up dolls from currently popular lines: Carpatina, My Life As, Our Generation, Wellie Wishers. I already had other dolls from my kids childhoods to use as models, most of which I had sewn for in the past - various baby dolls, Cabbage Patch Kids in all sizes, Girlhood Journeys, Tiffany Taylor, and the small fashion dolls they loved - Only Hearts Club, Sunshine Family, vintage Skipper. For horses, I was already used to making barding and accessories for Breyer Only Hearts Club Horses & Ponies and the CPK Showponies; I added an Our Generation horse to go with the larger dolls I was now sewing for.

While most of these dolls are fine to sew for, one really stood out and I needed more than one of that brand. Carpatina (and the closely related Just Pretend dolls). I like their face molds, quality wigs plus the historical aspect appealed to me, since I've always loved sewing historical costumes. The all vinyl bodies are a huge plus to me, so you can tailor clothes that actually fit well, verses the ready to wear-esque close enough fits of variable size cloth bodied dolls.

I started taking my profits from sewing and adding dolls to my personal collection. I'll claim these are "models" or manequins, but these are really because I enjoy them and sewing for them. I'll end 2020 with 14 personal dolls, many purchased on the secondary market or rescued in rough condition. 

My Carpatina Dolls:

  • Isabella - x2
  • James William
  • Rowena
  • Stephan
  • Veronika
  • Zoe - x2
  • Zoe - custom with brown hair

My Just Pretend Dolls:

  • Stardust Classics - Alissa, Princess of Arcadia & Laurel the Woodland Fairy
  • Friend to Friend - Kiri 
  • Dream Doll Designer - Showcase doll Allison & one DDD custom

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