Posts Tagged ‘Dolly’

Remember Dolly?

Well, she’s gone through puberty rather rapidly:

That’s kinda balanced out those hips a bit, but her shape does look rather ridiculous!  (Well, I suppose, my shape does look rather ridiculous!)

I’m quite happy with her shape and size now, though I probably need to put a little padding on the hips (they’re the right size, but mine aren’t as smooth – they need to start sticking out a bit higher up) – at the moment it doesn’t matter too much as my current plans are for blouses and full-skirted dresses.

Anyway, working with Dolly has taught me a few things, so here’s how I did it:

1) The form doesn’t come with much in the way of instructions for adjustment, by chance, I checked the Adjustoform website – that has the information we need to adjust our form!

2) The Diana has numbered dials that are supposed to show the circumference in centimetres.  They’re not entirely accurate, so don’t rely on them!  I measured me, I measured Dolly, I adjusted, I re-measured Dolly, I checked my measurements, I adjusted again, I measured again … and so on until I was happy.

Not 100% accurate!

3) That chest area.  Yeah, so.  I thought it wouldn’t work, but I wanted to check what the under-bust measurement would be if the full-bust measurement was correct – I was right, the under-bust was far too big.  I think that, like most patterns, dress forms tend to be made to a B cup.  I wasn’t made to a B cup!

The solution …  I adjusted Dolly so the under-bust measurement matched mine.  I then measured from the base of my neck at the front (roughly at the hollow between the collarbone) to the botton of my bra band (centre front) to check where that should sit and marked that measurement on Dolly with a pin.  When I put the bra on Dolly, I made sure it lined up with that pin.

Then I got out the stuffing!  This was the filling of an old pillow that had already been pulled apart.  Instead of pulling out a single wad, I took out small handfuls at a time and gradually built up the padding inside the bra, shaping it and trying to make it a smooth, realistic shape all the time, until it felt about full.  This essentially means groping the filled bra repeatedly!  Feel free to film this stage and watch it any time you need a laugh.  I measured Dolly’s assets and filled a bit more, measured and filled until she was just right.

Of course, the flaw with this way of working is that you end up with boobs that only go as far as the top of the bra cup – and boobs don’t tend to do that!  It’s a good idea to check the high bust measurement in comparison with your own.  With the tape measure taught across the bra straps, Dolly’s is the same as mine, but there is a gap between the tape and her body.  I think a temporary solution could be to put a layer (or two) of batting across the upper chest, above the bra cups, which could be tucked under the bra straps.

Please mind the gap.

I’m losing weight at the moment (slowly and steadily, no radical transformations here!), but when I’m fitting back into my old jeans (again, just one size down, nothing radical!), I’m going to try to make a cover for Dolly.  The Party Dress has a guide to draping a simple body block, so I’m going to grab some calico, a friend, a long zip and some padding and get personalising Dolly.  In the meantime, though, she’ll be fine as she is.

And the first bit of fitting will be …


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Woot-woot-woot!  Free patterns!  All month!  I know!  The very kind Kathleen of Grosgrain is hosting a whole month of free patterns with tutorials from their creators – that’s a new pattern each day.  It’s like it’s your birthday every day!  Here are the patterns so far – I can’t wait for the rest.

As for me – I’ve just welcomed a new addition to the family …

Her name’s Dolly and I’m very proud of her (hahaha!).  She’s already been measured up and adjusted, though she needs a bra full of padding and a little re-shaping on the hips, but I’m very happy with her so far.  I’ve been watching what I eat (not a diet, just being more healthy – lots of fruit and veg!) and I should have time to go back to the gym soon, so over the next few months, I’m hoping I’ll be able to start narrowing that big gap in the hips (can you tell that’s where I put on all my weight?).

In the meantime, I’m really looking forward to getting some calico and having a go at draping (with hilarious consequences, I don’t doubt!).  If you’re in the UK and looking to get a dress form or a sewing machine, I really recommend Hobkirk: they were really helpful and nice on the phone, they had the best price I could find for this model (Dolly’s a Diana by Adjustoform and she was £104, including P&P) and I ordered her at 9pm on Wednesday, she was dispatched on Thursday and she arrived this morning by courier.  This is how online shopping should always be!  Well done and thank you, Hobkirk!

(And no, I don’t work for them or have any affiliation, I just happened to have found them and bought from them online – and I’m glad I did!)

And finally, it was craft class today – yay!  In the free fabric bins I found this fabric, which is very similar to a Marks & Spencer cushion I like:

It’s actually a little more green than it looks in the picture – more like the folded over part in the top left.  Here’s that cushion:

But I didn’t just spend the lesson rummaging in fabric bins (honest!): I started making a cushion cover – sorry, that is an owl cushion cover!

I got my inspiration from this little fella:

I need to do some more sewing and I think I’m going to try some confetti applique on his chest to get a ruffly-feather effect (hopefully!), then it all gets stitched together into an envelope-style cushion cover.

Oh, and his name’s Horace.  🙂

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