Thursday, May 1, 2014

Dolly Patrick Kelly (Video Included)

Many of Patrick Kelly's signature stretch dresses can be easily converted into stylish doll clothes. Before his collections were financed by Warnaco and professionally manufactured, Patrick made his dresses by hand using locally sourced cotton knit tubing. Those early garments were not finished at the edges, but simply rough cut! So don't feel guilty if you don't feel like turning under your edges. Do as the late designer did...leave them as is!

Though some of Patrick's dresses can be made using a simple tube or sock, many were created with a basic jersey dress which is why I thought we should begin with this video tutorial on making the jersey knit dress sloper.

With the basic knit dress made with the help of the video, you can add any combination of buttons to create the Patrick Kelly look.

If you can find small enough buttons to scale and feel like seeing them in place, all the better. However, for this post I've used bejeweled stickers!

Patrick's studio used a template to ensure the heart patterns on his clothes were consistent. Just make sure you are making a real heart shape. You can lightly make a sketch and then fill in. Instead of the heart, you can also make a simplified Eiffel Tower pattern in buttons...another popular theme of Patrick's.

Aside from buttons, Patrick also loved to use bows. For this dress, I used cotton panties (taking advantage of the sewn edge). I cut a deep neckline in the back. Then with small rectangles pinched with tiny stitches, I made 10 bows which I then stitched down the center back to the hem. Patrick loved opera length gloves. I made tubes from the same fabric of the dress. I don't like to make mittens for dolls which is why my gloves are always fingerless.

Patrick Kelly's clothed always had lots of glam. This strapless dress was a favorite of his.

I start with the basic stretch dress. Even if you use a tube to make this dress, you will still need to make it with two side seams and a pinched waist for shape. On the other hand, you will not need any closure, since the knit should have sufficient stretch to slip the doll in and out. Make two small tubes. Slide them on a pencil to make it easier to stitch.

Hand stitch the sleeves to the dress under the arms. Cut another length of fabric wide enough to wrap around the doll's shoulders (including around the sleeves). Turn down the top edge and carefully press. Now, stitch this to the top edge of the dress and onto to top outer edge of the sleeves. After everything is in place, you can go back and better secure the sleeves under this "collar."

This collar is stitched down the center back. Again, there is no closure. The doll should be able to easily slip in and out of the dress. Again, I've used heart shaped jewel stickers.

Not all of Patrick's shirred dresses were tubes. Some were regular knit dresses shirred from the hips to the hem.

The striped dress was inspired by one of Patrick's early collections. I began with a basic knit dress cut longer than usual. I made a running stitch on the inside then turned the dress to the right side. Draw up the running stitched. Adjust the drapes from side to side, then stitch the drapes together. This dress was created with a pair of socks so I was able to take advantage of the knitted edge at the hem. I also made matching opera length gloves. Patrick would not have wanted it any other way!

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OK, so now that you've taken care of your "girls," treat yourself by making a Patrick Kelly cocoon coat for yourself! Click here for pattern and instructions courtesy of the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

Next: You're in for a real treat! The girls have just returned from the Barbie Retro Chic exposition Barbie at La Musée de la Poupée (Paris' Doll Museum) with lots of pix!

Toutes-Les images, les vidéos et le format texte, propriete de poupée de styliste de mode de. 2014. S'il vous plaît Ne Pas Reproduire sans autorisation Préalable. Merci.


  1. They are wonderful! love them all!

    1. Thank you, Billa. I wanted to make the enitire show's clothes!!!! Hugs!

  2. These knit dresses are wonderful/ Thanks!


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