"Miss" Cindy and I have a long history. Her son Donnie was in my kindergarten class 18 years ago and her daughter Christa was in my kindergarten 12 years ago. "Miss" Cindy had a licenced daycare in her home when her children were very young. When my children came along, Cindy took care of them when they were toddlers and preschoolers. My son called her "Miss Cinny" for years! The children were clean, fed, and well taken care of when I would pick them up after teaching but most importantly, my children were loved all day long. There were NEVER any tears about being left at "Miss Cinny's" house! What a blessing!
Mine were the last two little ones that Cindy took care of in her home. She then started working as a teacher aid at my school. Last year was the first time I had the pleasure of working with her directly because she was assigned to help with the little boy with Down's Syndrome who was in my class. Such a blessing! Again!
This is Cindy's baby doll that was given to her shortly after she was born. The doll itself is in great condition but the clothes have deteriorated. The elastic has 'given out' in the waist, legs, and sleeves of the outfit and the fabric of the little dress tears with the least pressure. I have draped the dress over the doll because I don't want to damage it any further just to dress her for photos. I offered to make her 'baby' a new set of clothes as a 'thank you' for all her help.
The picture above shows the inside of the dress and the one below shows the outside. I love the panel down the front with the gathered lace edging and the lace around the neck. The little ribbon ties are attached under the panel. I want to incorporate these details in the new outfit.
I am using this vintage pattern for a 16" doll that I am redrafting to fit Cindy's doll who is smaller and a bit thiner than the dolls this pattern was designed for but it is the closest that I can come in my pattern stash. I have redrafted the sleeve to accomodate smocking. In this way I will eliminate the need for elastic that will loose its 'oomph' over the years. I am also making pan*ties that will have smocking at the legs and a ribbon drawstring at the waist...again to eliminate elastic.
The dress will be a lovely white cotton batiste with French cotton lace edging. I had a length of a pretty embroidered pink ribbon in my stash that I will use as the panel and ties.
This next picture shows the lace machine rolled and whipped to the batiste and then zig-zagged again from the right side for the sleeves and panties. I often attach the lace before rolling into the pleater. (A pleater is a hand cranked machine that you feed the fabric into that pleats the material for hand smocking. The rollers remind me of those really old washing machines with rolling 'wringers' on the top. The rollers push the fabric onto threaded needles that hold the pleats. The pleating threads are removed after the smocking is complete.)
I usually add lace and pleat the sleeves together and the pan*ty legs together before completely cutting them out. It saves some time both at the sewing machine and the pleater.