Friday, 1 November 2013

From humble maid to Lady of the Manor

Here is the first doll to undergo the transformation.  I actually finished up with three of these maids with the same black dress, white apron with the dreaded nylon lace glued on in pleats around the edge and identical hair-do.  When I eventually do a maid, she will have a striped dress and an antique broderie anglaise apron but in the meantime, here is a Lady customer from the late Victorian period in a very posh walking gown.

From this:
Here is the doll in her original maids outfit - lots of glued nylon lace and a black cotton dress.

To this:


 Another added bonus is the grey fabric of the dress.  I paid $1 for a grey shirt-blouse at a charity shop which I thought was "polished cotton".  It wasn't until I got home and started to cut it up that I noticed the tag down the bottom near the hem which said 100% Pure Silk!!! Wowee! That was the best $1 that I ever spent!! This whole outfit was sewn by hand with tiny running stitches as I didn't want to ruin it by sewing on the machine and getting it wrong. I dyed the tatted edging the same sludgy pink as the pleated ribbon which I bought way back in 1995 by mail order from England. I've looked everywhere on-line and I can't find it anymore. The furry fringe down either side of the centre front panel was a heavy gimp braid which was just the right colour. I unpicked it back to the last layer and it looked like a looped fringe. Once I had sewn it on to the dress, I cut it back to 1/4 inch wide and worked the Feather Stitch embroidery with some antique silk thread which again was just the right colour. Her hat had to have a large top to cover that large "bun" on top of her head but it suits the outfit anyway and was trimmed with the same unpicked gimp braid as the dress (with the loopy fringe left uncut) and a couple of satin ribbon roses. So far I have made her two totally different handbags and I have discarded them both because they were not quite right. So until I get her a decent handbag, she is still a work in progress.
So one down, seven to go!!!!!