Basic Kit Dress
This is how to sew a BASIC Kit dress design. Kit's dresses all follow a similar design. (Sound like someone else you know?) So, figure this out, and you can be well on your way to recreating some American Girl dresses -- or, better yet, designing your own.
Cloth -- Quilting cotton will do you fine. CONSIDER!
For Kit's era, the best picks are really small prints, preferably
something floral. You know, like a feed sack. I'm also going to recomend
you grab some contrasting cloth for the collar. White is best.
Sewing supplies -- Needle, thread, sewing machine, scissors, so forth.
First, cut out: three bodice pieces, two sleeves (for now, let's do short sleeve, but you can use a mutton leg sleeve like Kirsten's if you wanted), the three pieces of an a line skirt, and two collar pieces. Most of Kit's dresses either use a Peter Pan collar or some variation. There's a pattern in Doll's Dressmaker for a Peter Pan collar, but there's a faster way then that to make one. However, like a dimwit, I forgot to take pictures! So please, enjoy my MSPaint diagram.
The first part goes fast. Assemble the skirt like you would a normal A line skirt, but stop before you get to the waist band. Don't forget the skirt hem! Assemble the bodice like you were assembling a shirt -- sew the shoulders together, put the sleeves in, sew up the side seams. Stop there.
See the side seams to your skirt? Pin them to the side seams of the bodice, so they match up, right sides together, top of the skirt to the bottom of the bodice. Pin the rest of the dress up, and sew it up.
At this point, when you unfold it, it should at least be dress-shaped.
Were it any other doll, we could likely either put a band collar in or just narrow hem the collar edge and call it a day, but this is Kit, and Kit demands a collar. Remember that Peter Pan collar we prepared earlier? Press the raw edge down so it's folded over.
Line your collar up so that the pieces meet up in the middle, the collar goes OVER the dress, but the folded over piece goes UNDER.
At this conjecture, you've got two options. You can stitch this down as is, with the collar up, and then press the collar over the stitches, or you can pin the collar down and top stitch accross. Whatever makes your clogged heart happier.
AUGH BEAN BUT WON'T THAT LEAVE A RAW EDGE?! Yes, yes it will, on the inside anyway. Look, these are dolls, not people -- it's not like it will itch, it's not like they move enough to make the dress wear out, and it's certianly not like the dress is going to light on fire. If this is really going to give you a coronary, Dolls' Dressmaker says you can finish the collar with some bias tape before sewing it in. I have no idea where the hell Venus Dodge gets her bias tape, though, because I feel like that would make the collar really bulky. My advice would be to press some ribbon in half and use that if you're gonna finish the collar.
Everything's already finished up, but still, add velcro to finish.