Friday, April 5, 2013

Down under: Les petites culottes

I have the entire collection of those hard-to-find "Baby Phat Barbie So-In-Style" dolls which I love. Not only are they gorgeous, but they are fully articulated which means they can sit. While this is great for showing off pants, we experienced a bit of a "Lindsey Lohan moment when I put the girls in dresses and sat them on my dresser. You see, the girls cannot completely close their legs AND, they're not wearing underwear. Technically their panties are tattooed on their little butts. Honestly, have you every heard of pantie tattoos? Neither have I, which prompted me to make panties for my little friends.

I begin using lace hem tape and 1/8-inch ribbon. I don't really care for this lace, but I wanted to do something simple with an easy to find material. For this exercise, I create the panties right on the girl.

Steps 1 - 2 - 3
Begin by taping a length of ribbon around the hips of the doll (step 1). This will close on the side, so be sure to cut a the ribbon wider than the doll. The tape will keep everything in place while you work. Now cut a length of lace that begins just above the ribbon at one hip, wraps between the doll's legs and ends on the opposite hip at the back (step 2). Repeat on the other side, going from front to back. The lace tape will overlap and crisscross over the front and over the back. Pin in place at both the front and at the back (step 4-5), then hand stitch the two strips of lace together (step 6).

Steps 4-5-6
Fold the lace over the top of the ribbon and glue on the back. There is extra ribbon on one side. Fold each end into a loop and glue in place. Cut a small length (about 6-inches) of ribbon. You will thread this through the two loops and tie into a bow at the side (Step 7). For reasons of symmetry, make another small bow which you will tack in place over the opposite hip (step 8).
Step 7-8


For the second pair of panties, I use a stretch rayon jersey and I create a pattern using wide tape. Cut two pieces, placing the first piece over the doll's hips. Cut two slits on the inside of the doll's thighs up to her crotch (Step 1). Now press the tape onto the doll and between her legs. Bend her legs slightly to get the leg line on the panties. Now, draw in the pantie. Repeat at the back. Mark the sides well (Step 2).
Panties 2: Steps 1-2


Panties 2: Steps 3-4-5
Gently remove the tape and attach to graph paper (Step 3). You will make a single pattern piece by joining the back and front at the mid-crotch seam. Smooth out the lines. Then fold the paper pattern in half (vertically) (Step 4). Try to match the two sides up as close as possible. With the paper folded, trace off this (half) pattern to graph paper again and then trace the opposite side to complete the pattern. It should look something like my pattern (Step 5). Add 1/8" seam allowance all the way around.

Fold the seam allowance under and pin in place. I prefer to hand stitch the panties using tiny stitches. Press well.
Position the lace to take full advantage of the pattern.


Adjust the fit of the panties and hand stitch on one side. Fold over the other side and add Velcro.
For the last set of panties, I found vintage lace. I position the lace pattern over the front and again in the back. Pin in place and sew up one side. The other side I fold the lace over and attach a bit of Velcro. Be sure to trim away any excess on the inside of the panties.


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