Liu

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You know that sunny day I keep waiting for?  Apparently it’s not going to happen any time soon!

Yes, that’s snow.

 But on to happier things…

I have wanted a Paola Reina Liu ever since I first learned of their existence a few years ago.  I kept asking Santa every year, telling him if only he could get me one I wouldn’t ask for anything else, and he kept telling me that no one would ship one to the US, or at least not for a reasonable price.   When you want something for a really long time, you do run the risk of being disappointed if the actual product does not live up to the high expectations you’ve built up for it.  Thankfully, that was not the case with my Liu!  Even though the one I eventually got came in a hideous soccer uniform, and had stains from her black shorts, I am thrilled with her and immediately set about making the outfit that I wished she had come in.

This is the original catalog/advertising photo

And this photo is of the actual doll (not a production sample) I found on Pinterest, with the front looking a bit different and kind of wonky.  It appears to close with a flap or something at the front,  but it ends up looking thick and out of scale with those large buttons.  The pants are also in a different print.

So, I was happy I didn’t pay a lot more for “Purple-Outfit-Liu” and the blouse pattern I came up after learning how weird the front could look when closed with a flap, closes in back and looks similar but, in my opinion, more wonderful!  The front panel can be made in a contrast fabric, have decorative topstitching in a contrast color, or you can do something creative with the seams like rickrack or piping.  It has nice simple lines, sews up quickly and still manages to look sophisticated. Pair it with the pants pattern here, or maybe a cute ruffled skirt.  My pants are a little longer and less full to look more like something a modern girl is wearing right now.  You could make them in a knit print and pair with a hoodie – just alter last week’s raincoat to be shorter!  And yes, based on the results of last week’s poll, you like this size so more patterns will be appearing!

Get the free pattern here

And just for silliness…

When I was taking Kit’s chicken pix, I spent at least an hour getting the chickens to come near her and stop moving enough for a picture.  When I set Liu down by this log, they were very curious and just wouldn’t leave her alone, hence “Liu and the Giant Chicken”

And now I’m pining after this special edition of Dasha (by La Lalla) that’s not available in the US…

 

Sigue lloviendo…

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This photo is from our canyon’s FB page and illustrates what the weather’s been like lately…it just keeps raining!  But if you live in an area this dry and you get your water from a well, you’re not likely to complain too much about precipitation.

So the post I WAS planning got moved to next week in the hopes I’ll have a sunny day to photograph that outfit, and this week’s post turned into something the dolls desperately needed:  A raincoat!

Pictured above is Paola Reina Liu – more about her next week!

It’s really hard to take good pictures in rain and mist, both for reasons of lighting and because you’re feeling rushed and cold/lying the mud/worrying that your camera is getting rained on.  It can also be hard to take good photos of shiny things with their “trying highlights” (anyone get that reference?) and those two things combined today to make for not-the-best-photos ever.

This was the one I liked the best, although if you blow it up enough you can see my reflection in her eyes as I stood over her with the camera! :)

Get the free raincoat pattern to fit Cheries and Paola Reina Amigas here

You can see in the photo below that the PRs are noticeably smaller than H4H.

Copy the raincoat pattern at 107% to fit H4H!

(L-R) 10″ Tonner Half-Pint (AE body), 12″ Paola Reina, 14″ Hearts for Hearts, 13″ Corolle Cheries, 12″ Natterer Minouche

Stenciled Tea Dress

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Kish 14″ Shea is pretending she’s on a manicured lawn waiting for tea at Downton Abbey rather in in my wild mountain yard.

Get the FREE pattern for her tea dress and vintage stencils here

Reminder if you’re participating in the Maru Contest to get your entries in by May 8th!

More info here: https://jenwrenne.wordpress.com/2015/03/24/maru-contest/ 

Bleuette!

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So I took a few weeks off from the blog, and had some time off work, plus a major snowstorm kept me housebound and what did I do with that time?  Well, there are a couple major projects in the works, and I thought I’d give myself a break from them and…um…sew some other stuff.  (Yes, I’m aware how silly that is!)  Also I did a huge amount of digitizing of embroidery designs and my Bleuettes are thrilled!

Yours might be too, because there’s a whole new collection in my etsy shop of Bleuette machine embroidery designs in pes format.

Yep.  You can now make your Bleuette an incredible, embroidered wardrobe in a fraction of the time it would take to do it by hand!  If your machine uses another format, there’s FREE conversion software here: http://www.wilcom.com/en-us/products/truesizerproducts.aspx

Are you running to get it right now?  Use the coupon code 20off20 to get 20% off it or any other purchase of $20 or more through Sunday!

Want to try my one of my favorites from this set?

Download the 1933 Robe de Toile FREE here

and get the pes design here

Don’t have a Bleuette?  It will also fit Paola Reina las Amigas and Corolle Cheries but NOT Hearts for Hearts

If this dress looks familiar, that’s because I did it for larger dolls here: https://jenwrenne.wordpress.com/2015/02/26/hurry-up-spring/

Another Adorable Effner…

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I had thought nothing could top last fall’s doll show find of a Little Darling https://jenwrenne.wordpress.com/2014/10/10/the-4-season-dress-summer/

But I was wrong.  I got this 10″ Boneka Tuesday’s Child (at far right) for an AMAZING price and am thrilled to find she can share with a lot of dolls I already have!

Are you thinking her outfit looks similar to a Boneka one you’ve seen before?  You’re right!

Click here for the story of her new outfit, with a tutorial on making patterns from ready-made clothes.

There are no instructions with the pattern.  The neckline was faced, the sleeves and hem were bound with bias and the pants were gathered onto a waistband and legbands.  You could also add extra length there to form an elastic casing if you want.

Do you need a chicken to go with Kit’s overalls set? Several people said they did, and I found a really cute, easy, and FREE felt pattern for one here: https://georginagiles.wordpress.com/2015/03/28/diy-felt-chick/

1930s Overalls part 2

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So last week the blouse part of the overall outfit was free, and this week we’ll make the overalls.    BUT again, get it today, because it will disappear tomorrow!

The expanded version of the pattern, available all at once in my etsy shop right now, also includes the blouse with a puffed sleeve variation, a skirt to make the overalls into a jumper AND an additional set of pattern pieces sized for slim dolls like Sasha/Kidz n Cats/Girl for All Time/Kathe Kruse.

 

Yes, there’s actual chicken scratch in her bucket and scattered around her to encourage the chickens to be in the picture.  As you can maybe tell by the less-than-perfect quality of this photo, it’s harder to photograph a flock of chickens than you’d think!  :)

 

**Maru Contest**

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Exciting news from

Maru is holding a design contest on Wren*Feathers and one other blog.  They will choose one winner from each blog.  Details below:

Designers your time has come! Calling all creative people to design an outfit for Maru and Friends. We are looking for the best of the best in the hopes of finding a new Fall/Winter outfit for our dolls. All fabric types are welcome. The contest will run for forty five (45) days, until May 8, 2015, with readers being able to submit up to three (3) original designs. One (1) winner will be picked at the end of the contest period and will be featured on the Maru and Friends social media pages. The winner will also be awarded a $150 designer’s fee* and the possibility of the outfit being a new addition to the Maru and Friends clothing collection. Designers are asked to submit designs to marketing@maruandfriends.com.
*Maru and Friends will retain all rights to the design with the acceptance of this payment
Note:
1.  These must be your original designs, since you’ll be signing over design rights if you win, so sewing something exactly from my patterns to enter in the contest is not allowed.  Using them as slopers to help draft something unique for this contest is OK as long as you’ve changed them enough that they’re your own designs.  Patterns available here
2.  I am not affiliated with Maru, and all I know about the contest is what they’ve sent me to post here, so any questions about contest specifics should be directed to them at the email above.
3.  Need a Maru doll to model your creation?  They’re available at http://www.maruandfriends.com/shop/maru.php and a few are also on Amazon with free Prime shipping at the moment.