Friday, July 11, 2014

Aletha's Dress Finished

Letha Mae has finally seen her dress.  
Getting her to smile for the camera is a 
tough one, as she's a bit shy.  Inside, 
I know she's beaming!
I made her a little hankie.  It's actually cut 
from a old hankie, that I just added some
 lace to.
Her apron is made from a sheer stripped
batiste.  I added a pocket for her hankie.
Young ladies blow their nose, not wipe
it on their sleeves.
Miss Mary's dress is described as having a "full"
skirt.  I stitched 3 rows of synchronized stitches
 to gather her 160 pleats.  I removed the bottom
row, and left the top 2 rows in the finished dress.
  It's hard to see, but there is also a fold in the skirt
 to coordinate with the fold in the sleeve.
Here's a link to an earlier post on:
 Miss Mary's dress did not have buttons, but
I added 4 early 1900's milk glass as a decorative touch.
 Aletha is named after my mother & she loved milk glass.   
They're a bit too big, not the right period, but sometimes, 
that's what gives a dolly's dress all it's charm.
I stitched some old fashioned socks from a pattern I
found on Dixie Redmond's site, Maida Today.  They
remind me of the Wicked Witch of the West, but
red and white stripped socks were quite fashionable
in the mid 1800's.
Maida Today Old Fashioned Sock Pattern

Miss Letha's asked me to make a
 matching outfit for her favorite doll Jane. 

Jane the Cook is a character from the book
 The Tale of Two Bad Mice by Beatrix Potter,
Aletha's favorite story.

 This doll was made by Fred Laughon, a
well know wooden doll and furniture maker.
You can read about him at the link below.  If
you visit pinterest, just search his name to 
see some of his lovely dolls.
Fred Laughon
  I stitched a simple outfit for Miss Jane.  She
doesn't have an apron in the book, but I
thought she needed one.  It's made from an
antique sheer gauze fabric.  It was not easy to
work with & I'll avoid it in the future.  The 
pantalettes & petticoat have cotton string ties. 

 I made button loops for the
tiny buttons with silk thread doubled.
I have a couple stitches that aren't 
pulled firmly & I didn't get all the loops
the same size.   I have to say,
it was very tiny work & my eyes and
fingers just don't do what I want
 Button it up & it looks just fine.
 Next project is doing some work on 
her oak bed and making the bedding.
It's a large one, so I will use the dreaded
machine.  I think I'll use some red
and white stripped ticking for her 
mattress and pillow.  A quilt is
probably in order too. 
 Aletha needs some shoes, but for now she'll
just have to be content with clothes!
Happy Sewing!


  1. Great post, Sherri! How I enjoyed this one, which seems to bring together much of what you have presented here in previous posts. Aletha does seem a bit shy, but my doesn't she look beautiful in her new dress...not many girls can boast of 160 tiny pleats! I hope she doesn't take to spoiling for you are giving her a lot of opportunity...her very own Fred Laughon wooden doll (love Miss Jane and the way you dressed her). And, what about that beautiful for a queen!

  2. I keep tellin' you, lady. There's a book in all this. The doll world, antique toy world, sewing and costumer's world, lots of worlds, would benefit from your knowledge, storytelling skills, and talent. ;~)

  3. You did a fantastic job on the dolls clothes. The little wooden doll is precious too and her dress and apron. The clothes are fit for a queen. the bed is wonderful too. Red striped ticking will be pretty. Aletha has lots to play with, the wood animals are especially pretty.

  4. She is so cute! I love the button! You are so creative!

  5. Love your Aletha doll and I can not think of 160 tiny pleats on her dress.Aletha is lucky to have a friend made by Fred Laughon. Your workmanship is wonderful on these dresses..
    Carolyn B

  6. Dear Sherri,

    Letha Mae's and Jane's frocks and aprons are beautiful! Sweet Letha Mae's striped socks are darling! We love the photograph of the dolls together reading "The Tale of Two Bad Mice"! That is one of Jerusha and Myrtle Mae's favorite books, too. Love the cows in the basket! Can't wait to see the mattress, pillow and quilt that you make for Aletha's bed!

    Your friends,
    Diane and daughter Sarah, and the dolls and Tillie Tinkham the seamstress mouse at Corgyncombe


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