CHOOSINGFABRIC FOR THE FIRST TIME? KEEP IT SIMPLE!
Light to medium weight cottons or cotton blends, simple, lightweight wools, linen....are all good choices because they are easy to sew and don't cost an arm or leg. You can also save money by re-purposing old clothing, seeking out Avoid fabrics with nap or pile (like velvet or velveteen), plaids, heavyweight wools or slippery satins or silks. Once you have a little sewing under your belt, then you will be able to experiment with more complicated materials. Don't be intimidated by your mistakes. Chalk it up to a learning experience and continue to move forward. But first and foremost....don't forget to just have fun!!!!!
FIRST, IRON YOUR FABRIC
Before you start, iron the wrinkles out of your fabric so that you will be working on a flat surface. Doll clothes are so tiny, you need to be as exact as possible. Every millimeter counts!
RESPECT THE STRAIGHT OF GRAIN
Even though it's hard to see...and even though there's not much to a 12" doll....cutting out a pattern on the straight of the fabric's grain will ensure that your garment will hang the way it's supposed to. But how do you identify the straight of grain and once you do, then what?
PIN YOUR PATTERN TO THE FABRIC
SINGLE DIRECTION PRINTS
FABRICS WITH NAP OR PILE: VELVET, for example
Should you ever be tempted to work with velvet, velveteen, corduroy or any other fabrics with pile, you will need to lay out your pattern pieces in a single direction. On the left, the SAME fabric has a totally different look when place in an opposite direction.
One more tip: Certain patterns tend to look like pieces of jigsaw puzzles. After you've cut out your patterns from the fabric, leave the paper pattern on until you are ready to pin them together. This is very important when there are lots of little elements to a pattern (like a jeans skirt, for example). Indicate the top, bottom and even the side of each piece so that you won't be confused when assembling everything together!
All images and text property of Fashion Doll Stylist. 2015