Evelyn Ackerman's book, “My Favorite Patterns for Dressing Antique Dolls, 1865-1925” contained the inspiration dress. Evelyn’s doll is described as a petite Bru and is 12 ½” tall. That would be perfect for our 12” dolls and my Emilie Claire! Ms. Ackerman describes the dress: “…The illustrated example is made from white dotted Swiss with china silk lining…. The trim is ¼” lace edging and is all the trim that is used.
I had a large piece of dotted Swiss and shared with my friends. The fabric would be perfect so we planned the stages of developing the dresses for our dolls. Each of us had the book so we copied the pattern and instructions, read them through and talked about the construction. We all had ideas about our dresses. Using the pattern from the book, we made muslin to use for fitting the gown to our own doll’s figure. We worked together on the garments but we each had different interpretations. Kate and Pat dyed their fabric pink while I left mine white and lined it with a pink Swiss. One has ruffles another does not. I chose not to make ruffles. Pat chose to ruffle but changed the form due to the fabric weight. We used different trims and ideas, all the same dress, yet all different when completed. Given the choices, each person makes from a wide variety of inspiration (fashion plates, favorite colors, movies); we believe this would be a great project for a club.