Thursday, June 29, 2017

Flower Power

Next to fancy sleeves, the next biggest trend this summer is the return of florals. From pretty little dresses straight down to footwear, everything is growing up roses, pansies, violets and chrysanthemums! Though this is about fashion sprouting flowers, there are enough different ways to wear this trend from classic to edgy! In other words....there's something for everybody out there in our garden of style.

This post is not so much a tutorial as it is an exercise in styling as there are many ways to wear this trend.

A Rose is a Rose is a Rose

The newest way to dress dolly is by layering floral prints. Here Sybille wears a stretch rose dress (made from socks) underneath a classic coat (made from cotton upholstery fabric). This is a basic coat--the tutorial is HERE.) Both are oversized prints for her, but the graphic impact is what makes the look.
But if this is too much print for your doll, you can always slide the coat over a solid tone or bi-colored geometric dress (left). And the dress (which I have stitched in a line of shirring to one side), can be worn alone with a floral sheer scarf tossed over her shoulders. Tutorial for making a basic knit dress can be found HERE.

Placed Prints
In the market, a "placed motif" is a print where a design is printed only in certain spots against the background. You can simulate this with applique. Over a princess line dress in cotton chintz, Angelina wears a coat inspired by an item in Fendi's recent collection. I wanted to do this coat in linen but with this special motif. Tutorial for the coat with raglan sleeve is found HERE.
1. On the left, you see the simple princess line dress. (Tutorial for a princess line dress can be found HERE.)
2. On the right you see how I started out with a piece of the printed fabric. Using very sharp scissors, I cut away the motif I have selected. Place this on your garment AFTER you have sewn it together (to make sure it falls where you want. Use a light layer of fabric glue on the back of your motif and place on the garment. Iron well. You can stop right there.
3. But for the Fendi coat I was copying, I needed a flash of metallic. So I added a bit of foil. The tutorial for foiling can be found here.
4. In the middle photo, you see the finished look.

Olympia is wearing a classic blazer (collarless) over dress with a fitted bodice and gathered skirt. The tutorial for this jacket can be found HERE. Here's a tip: look for cotton squares sold for quilting! For the most part, the prints will be the right scale for dolly!
For directions on how to make the 2-piece dress, refer to the tutorial found HERE. Modification for the flared, gathered skirt part of the dress is found HERE.

Lounging Around
 In Paris, young girls are all over the streets in flowered pants (often mistaken for pajamas). Here, I've cut up an old silk scarf for Grace's wide, palazzo pants. The tutorial for these can be found HERE. What I did differently was transform them into drawstring pants. Do not stitch up the darts and, instead of a waistband, simply turn down the top edge of the pants and sew or glue down.

In the lower left hand side, you see what I've done. I threaded a wide eyed needed with silk embroidery yarn and made a running stitch about 1/8" (3mm) away from the top edge. Use a double strand and be sure to double knot each end.

Steel Magnolias

Floral prints don't have to be realistic nor bursting with color. Look for abstracts, floral silhouettes, monochromatic patterns. We paired a cotton print (again from the quilting section of the store) with an abstract floral silk sheer for Nichelle's exotic ensemble.

Her top is super simple. It consists of two tiny squares of sheer frayed fabric: 5"x 5" (13x13cm).  Lay one square on top of the other and pinch together the corners. Tack them together with a stitch, then wrap the thread around and tie in place. Repeat on the opposite top edge. (I wanted a little shine, so once again, I added foiling in the middle of the flower motifs.) Now place on the doll allowing one side to slide off the shoulder. This can be worn as is or belted.
Underneath is a basic pair of pants cut mid-calf length. Tutorial for a 1 pc pants can be found HERE.
Finally, I made a pair of "spats" out of the same cotton print I used for the pants which slide over any pair of dolly shoes. Tutorial for the spats can be found HERE.

 With the season abound with floral prints, it's no surprise to see the kimono make a show. This one is cut from a silk material (recycled from an old blouse). I have a collarless tutorial for the kimono HERE, and if you want to add a collar like I did, you'll find instruction for adding on a shawl collar HERE. Here again, I've combined two different prints, each a contrasting scale. What makes them work together is that both have the same colored background.

In this, another view of Katoucha's pants outfit (1 pc narrow pants and matching bra), you can see I've made matching espadrilles. The tutorial for that is found HERE.

But once again, if this is too much print for your can always pair your kimono with a solid pair of pants!

Okay, dollies. It's time to get out and smell the roses!!!!!

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  1. Hi FDS! I love your designs, specially the first one with the big rose. I'm the kind of person that can't mix patterns at all, so it's great to see how you make it work. By the way, I'm following you on Pinterest.


    1. Hi M-C. Thank you so much for your kind words. This was all quite refreshing to take a break from all my usual black and do something using florals! The only thing you need to remember when mixing prints is to make sure there is at least one color in common. Like that you can never go wrong!

  2. What beautiful fashions once again! I wish I had your talent! I do love seeing your doll fashions. Thanks for sharing them with us!

    1. And thank YOU for your lovely words and continued support. It makes putting these posts together that much more enjoyable for me!

  3. Wow, these fashions are amazing!

    1. Thank you Muff. And I made them using very simple patterns!

  4. Love them all! Finding florals to scale for dolls can be tricky but you nailed it ......these are gorgeous

    1. So true about finding florals to scale. That's why the quilting squares are so good for this. But when you're thinking of using a "normal" scale floral, try wrapping it around the doll first to see what kind of effect you get. Sometimes it can yield unexpected (good) results! Thank you for your kind words.

  5. Brak mi słó jest przepiękne! Zachwycające stroje! Cudowne tkaniny! Rewelacyjne kostiumy i kwieciste buty! Zakochałam się w Twoich projektach i kreacjach!
    Pozdrawiam serdecznie!

    1. Olla wrote:
      I do not have words ... this is beautiful! Delightful clothes! Wonderful fabric! Fabulous costumes and flowery shoes! I fell in love with your projects and creations!
      Best wishes!

      Thank you soooo much for your very kind words, Olla. It is really eye-opening to see how floral prints can transform otherwise ordinary basic clothes. This was a lot of fun!

  6. Replies
    1. Thank you Urszula. I'm happy you enjoyed this post. Big hugs. April

  7. Przepiękne kreacje.Modelki wyglądają oszałamiająco.Uwielbiam kwiatowe wzory.

    1. Dlubaninylalkowe wrote: Beautiful creations.Models look stunning. I love floral designs.

      First of all, Dlubaninylalkowe, welcome to my blog. So great having you here. Thank you for your very kind words. I love florals, too. I think it makes the outfit that much more pretty! Come back any time!

  8. I seen your pics on Instagram and I knew there would be some more fabulous fashions. Some bright and pretty.

    1. Thank you so much, Brini. You know we're always full of ideas here. I've been so addicted to black and sophisticated fashions, I had almost forgotten how fresh and pretty floral dresses are. Big hugs. April

  9. Just fabulous all the printed fabrics and styles on this post.
    You have a good taste and balance with fabrics

    1. Thank you, again, for your kind words and continued support, M-C.


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