Well I did it! I released my first doll sewing pattern
My first release ended up being for the Gotz Just Like Me dolls as I so wanted to make an outfit for this gorgeous little doll and there really isn’t many sewing patterns available for her so I figure heck why not start with making a pattern to fit my ‘Lucia’ doll as others might like it as too. Well… like it? Heck I’m happy to report they’ve loved it 🙂
Below I thought I’d share a bit of my journey on the process of making the pattern to it’s release and the feedback I’ve received from people who have bought this pattern already.
Pattern making process
First off I had to draft and test the pattern myself which was great fun as I got to actually put my pattern drafting skills to work. For me I wanted to start with something that was not only easy to draft but would also be easy to sew as I know quite a few people who love sewing for dolls and many of them like to sew quick and easy projects for their dolls. They also like their outfits to look cute and provide options where they can use their own creativity to be able to embellish as much as they like or to be able to use a variety of pretty fabrics they have in their stash.
So I figured that with a plain and simple little top with a bodice that has room for embellishments along with an attached ruffle would be perfect for my first doll pattern project along with a pair of cute little capri pants. Then I thought why not add in the option to not only be able to make a cute little top but also an option for a gorgeous little dress. So that’s exactly what I did.
How adorable is this little dress on Lucia, my Gotz Just Like Me doll?
Next up I knew I didn’t want to sell hand drawn pattern pieces… no way! I wanted my pattern to look professional. So I set about and taught myself how to use Adobe Illustrator and that was not an easy learning curve but I did it and I’m so proud of how my pattern pieces look. Plus this is definitely a skill I needed to learn as I continue with my fashion design course.
In amongst working on my pattern I knew I needed a logo and had to create a brand for myself. So while working on my pattern my little brain was also thinking about my brand and I had so many questions running around in my mind with the main ones being did I want to create a different brand for my little business venture and come up with some of funky brand or did I just want to use my own name as my brand? Mmmm not an easy decision to make… I thought of a variety of different names but every time I did a Google search it seams like all my ideas had already been taken and the domain names etc weren’t available. So I figured heck why not just stick with my own name and just be me. If it’s good enough for the big fashion designers then why not me LOL.
So end result is I’m sticking with branding me and sticking with using my own website and adding my own patterns to my own little shop.
I used Fivver to help me create a logo which was no easy feat as I really didn’t like the design concepts so with quite a bit of tweaking here’s my logo. I can change my colours to suit my patterns and do all sorts of things with it so I’m pretty happy with it from that aspect.
How I went about the sewing instructions for the pattern
Next up was the decision as to how detailed I would go with the sewing instructions. Did I want to keep the instructions short and sweet or go into more detail so even someone new to sewing would be able to follow along and easily sew their own dolls clothes with detailed step by step instructions? I also thought maybe someone could use the pattern along with the instructions to help them teach someone else how to sew?
Well the answer was simple… do the full Step by Step instructions and include photos of each step in the process… Heck why not? An experienced seamstress could just print the pattern pieces and scan through the instructions and whip these pieces up in no time at all and then there would be the option for someone new to follow along step by step.
The end result is a 28 page PDF pattern complete with Step by Step instructions as well as sewing tips that can either be printed or viewed on a laptop or tablet.
As I was working on my step by step instructions and taking photos of each step of the process I also thought I should not only be testing this pattern myself but I should also put a little pattern tester team together so as they could test my pattern too.
So I put a post up on my Facebook page asking if anyone would like to test my pattern and sure enough within a few hours I had a wonderful little team of pattern testers ranging from inexperienced and extremely experienced seamstresses. I now had what I believed would be the ‘Perfect Pattern Testing Team’. So I set up a secret group on Facebook for us so as I could easily share the pattern pieces and instructions and we could all collaborate together and share experiences and their feedback. It was the perfect platform to use as we could all see what each member of the team was making and the results they were getting. They could all provide feedback and suggestions. The end result is a pattern that I am so confident to now share and know that if someone purchases my pattern and follow along with the instructions they too will get a great result using my Cute n Casual pattern for sewing their dolls clothes too.
A BIG SPECIAL THANK YOU goes out to my wonderful pattern testing team as they did a great job and provided me wonderful feedback on the pattern. It was actually really a lot of fun sharing the process with a team and not going the whole process alone and wondering if I could or should do this or do that… I had a team of wonderful supports I could call upon and ask their for their opinions and what they would like to have included.
Here’s a couple of pics from my team while we had fun testing the pattern.
I had the biggest laugh when my tester Pamela shared this picture with me…. how cute is this! We were testing body rise and making sure there was sufficient ease in the back of the pants LOL
To be honest I really did have a lot of fun with my pattern testing team and am extremely grateful to them for going over and beyond what I was hoping for from a pattern testing team.
I actually released this pattern a few weeks ago now and I’m happy to report I had quite a few sales already mainly here on my website but I’ve also had a few over on my Etsy shop too.
Here’s a couple of reviews I received on Etsy
I’ve also received emails and messages with things like:
I just had to write and tell you how wonderful your pattern is!!!!! I hope you’ll consider more pieces because you’ve done an outstanding job!!!!
Thank you so much for putting out such a fine pattern!!! I’m sure I’m going to be able to create some wonderful clothes for my little dolls!!!!
Hey Chris, I just bought your Cute n Casual pattern for the smaller Corolle and Hearts dolls, and it looks great, thank you!
Will I be releasing more doll sewing patterns?
Yes, I definitely will be but probably not until later in the new year as I’ve been focusing back on my fashion design studies and making more clothes for me….
Sneak peak what I’ve made for me
I have a gorgeous gown the I designed for my last assignment and I got a HD (High Distinction) for. I’ll share my creation with you in my next blog update 🙂