Monday, June 15, 2015

Paris Street Style: On the Fringe

There are styles that appeal to the adult in me. And then there are those trends that speak to the teenager buried deep within. Such is the case with fringe. I love how it adds movement to the wearer. I love how it makes the body shimmy when the wearer moves. And I especially love how such a simple concept makes an incredibly sophisticated fashion statement on my dolls.
Courtesy of
Throughout our trip to Paris, not a day has gone by without spotting fringe on an item in the store or on a handbag or jacket of someone on the street. On this page...I bring to you lots of ideas for bringing this street style to life for your favorite vinyl diva.
Straight up I will tell you that getting the look is as easy as cutting a length of fringe and attaching it to the edge of anything your doll already has in her wardrobe. For most of the looks on this page I have used some form of leather or suede (real or faux), which when thin enough, will give you just the look and effect you want. (For tips on making leather clothes for dolls, click here.) Though you can cut the fringe with scissors, a single edge razor or Exacto-knife and a metal ruler will ensure straighter edges.
Kimora saw this poster in the Paris Metro and decided she just had to have the look. In addition to the "Daisy Duke" short-shorts (a short version of our jeans pattern), and a kimono (click here) cut from sheer silk chiffon, Kimora wears a black knit stretch top trimmed with cut fringe.
 1. Start with a strip of knit that stretches around the doll's bust plus 1/2" (1 cm) to allow for a back seam. My strip here is roughly 5" wide by 1" long.
2. Cut a second strip that will go from underarm to underarm in width. The length should be 50% longer than the length of #1. Here, my strip is 1 1/2" (4cm). You can always make this longer if you want.
3. Create your fringe by making vertical cuts to within 1/4" (6mm) of the top edge
4. On the backside of strip #1, lay your fringe along the top edge as shown. Stitch the two together.
5. Let the fringe fall over the front of the strip #1.
I turned this stop inside out and stitched the seam down the center back seam. It is a typical stretch top that slips over her body. As with most stretch tops, you need not hem anything as the knit will not fray.
Notice Kimora's matching footwear. It's as simple as cutting a small width of fringe and adding it to an already existing pair of boots!

 Best Fringes

Again, anything you make can be easily converted to this style. This is the basic jacket pattern made with chamois cloth I bought at the hardware store. (Chamois is thick and working with it is tricky, but you can learn to work with it when nothing else is available.) After laying the front jacket pattern against the doll, I decided how deep I wanted the fringe. Sew the garment together, then turn it inside out. Use a ruler to draw in the fringe on the wrong side. Then cut the fringe into the hem of the garment.
Remember this (2-pc) dress? It was a fringed wrap dress featured in Jean Paul Gaultier's Spring/Summer 2014 collection. The skirt is our wrap skirt with a width of cut-fringe sewn or glued around the outer edge of the skirt.

For the top, I used a basic (knit) shell then cut away one shoulder. There will only be one sleeve. The opening is on the side.
 The end pattern looks like this.  And I've added a simple tie belt.
Here's another look where the fringe is cut directly into the garment.
 Again, I'm using a chamois cloth for the top and skirt. The handbag (featured in a previous post) was cut from ultrasuede.
The skirt is simple. Decide on the overall length of the skirt you want. Use the 1 pc skirt pattern which is perfect for working with leather. Draw the fringe, then cut using a blade. Glue the skirt up the back to the hips. I use Velcro as a fastener at the waist.
 The top is also equal. I cut a flat-nose triangle for the top.
1. For Barbie or similar sized dolls, draw a horizontal line 5" (13 cm) wide. At the midpoint, draw a perpendicular line 3 3/4" (7 cm) high. Then draw another horizontal line at the top which is 1/2" (8 mm) on either side of this vertical line. Finally, connect the points at the top and the bottom with diagonal lines.
2. Wrap around the doll.
3. Overlap at the back and tape in place for the moment.

1. Tape the top to the doll in the front. You will notice the top bulging away from the doll over the busts. Make a tiny slash on either side.
2. Glue the top flap over the bottom.
3. Add straps from the top edge, over the shoulder and glue to the back of the top.
4. Add a square of Velcro to close.
You could stop there (l). could make a series of horizontal slashes over the bodice for added texture and interest.

You can also add a fringe bib to the front of the smooth version.

Add a shawl. Click here for ideas on ponchos & stoles with fringe.
And don't forget to add embellishments to the shoes!!!!

Accessory to the fact
Bags by Zara

Bags by Saint Laurent

Even if you don't make a fringed garment for your doll, you will definitely want to make a fringed handbag--a hot trend we saw all over the streets of Paris! You can start by taking a peek at the first fringed bag we did not long ago. Click here for basic handbag patterns.
Take any of the bags from our most recent post on handbags. Here, we made a simple bag we made from leather (recuperated from an old belt). We then cut and glued three layers of fringe onto the bag then added straps. The "buckle" over the front flap, is a small piece of wire we hammered flat and glued in place. By the way, Latoya's jacket was made from an old glove. Click here to see how we did it.
A spotted leather variation of a Zara bag, Billie wears it as a shoulder bag.
For this style, I used a really thin (printed) leather! 
1. Start out with a rectangle which you will fold in half at the bottom.
2. Stitch down the sides and turn outside in.
3. Add fringe which is longer than the length of the purse to the sides and the bottom.
Punch a hole at one of the corners. Add a wire loop then add a shoulder or wrist strap.

Here's a version in white, using Ultrasuede. For this version, I've kept it a clutch bag with a wrist strap.
Though I used the same pattern, the ultrasuede reacts differently than the thin leather. The fringe doesn't drape quite as well.
But dolly is NOT complaining! Au contraire!!!

Alas, all good things must come to an end. The girls have just arrived back home for summer where they plan to have fun with textiles! Stay tuned!!!
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  1. WOW April, I love all of them! I have a piece of fake suede but I don't believe is thin enough to try, but this is going to come super handy!
    The two dresses that impress me most are the JPG one and the one with the slashed bodice.......wonderful!

    1. Thank you Billa. This was another post where I could have just kept going on and on. Actually the chamois cloth is quite thick. The secret to making the fringe work when it's thick is to cut the strips thin and long. But even if you don't make your scrap into an outfit, it will be at least good for a handbag! I loved the slashed bodice too.

  2. Groan! Wish I could sew now - your designs are inspiring.

    I like the movement with fringe. I had not noticed that aspect before. Thanks for the links and the tips on working with suede and leather.

    1. Thank you, D7ana. Well....many of these are cut and glue!!! Even though you might not feel comfortable making a skirt or jacket, why not try your hand at a simple handbag with fringe! Easier can buy fringe and add it to an existing garment so dolly can get in the fun!!!

  3. AWESOME! I am loving all the fringe. The cream colored outfits were my faves, but all are sooooo pretty.

    1. Thank you Vanessa.'s all so easy to get the look!!!!!

  4. This is SO COOL! What an idea. Love the jacket that closes at an angle ending in a long fringe. Lots of work here..... O

    1. Thank you. There's lots of work, but it's only because there is so many ideas out there to work with fringe!


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