Friday, May 10, 2013

Make a Doll Swim Suit from Socks; Easy tutorial

BeachBabyDoll's Sock Swim Suit Edition
 Need a quick swim suit for your dolls? Grab some children's socks and make your own! Requires only imagination and a few stitches:
BFC Ink 18 in dolls

Vintage Tiffany Taylor 18 in doll

A Quick tutorial:
1. Choose your socks carefully.  For these slim body 18 inch dolls, I found cute socks at my dollar store. I chose children's size 6 - 8.You may need a larger or smaller size sock depending on the size of your doll. Take the doll to the store with you to help size it out.  I used the sport sock type. They were 3 pairs for $1, really easy on my wallet. The packs contained co-ordinating designs so easy to mix and match. See Tiffany above. Tools needed are only: scissors, needle and thread.
sports style socks

2.  Next I looked at my doll and decided where here bulges were and where the bulges in the socks were (the heels!). Take a look at Tiffany. She has large breasts and hips so I could use a heel portion over the breast area and the hips. However, I chose to use the heel portion over the hips of all three dolls so that I could use the band as a waist band. For the girls I cut a cute area for the tube top  There are several ways you can cut the socks to make a cute suit.  For Tiffany I could have made a one piece tube tank style suit because she is slightly smaller. For the boy doll I was careful to choose some masculine looking stripes to make him a sort of Speedo suit. Below is how I cut a bottom and top out of two socks.

You just sort of "eye ball" the sock, holding it up next to your doll to see how long to cut the piece. Consider the design on the sock when you cut. Make the piece too long at first. You can always cut more off. 

3.  Try on your doll. I tried the pants portion on inside out so I could see where to sew up the crotch. The second picture below looks a little gross, sorry dolly, but I just show you that I pinched the suit together at the crotch. I actually sewed the crotch while the suit was still on my dolls. Pinching the right sides of the bottom of the suit together, I used sort of an overcast or whip stitch to secure the crotch.  I chose not to finish the edges of the pants legs because they are knit and weren't unraveling. If you desire to make it finished, you can just make a small hem with a running stitch. See my free hand sewing handout:   For the pink suit's top, I turned under the edges and stitched with a running stitch.
4. Optional: To help hold the top in place: you can tack a piece of  skinny ribbon at the center front of the tube top. Tie behind her neck. You could also make little straps out of ribbon and attach to the back. I was on vacation and had no ribbon so for my BFC Ink doll I just used some thread.

This is a great little project to do on vacation with your children and grandchildren. If you try it out, I would love to see what you made. If you would like to send me a photo, you can find my contact info on my main web site at

 I hope you and your dolls are ready for a great summer. Just a word of caution: My dolls love to pose in the sun but never swim as they could get mold inside. They do not like to stay outside too long either 'cause their hair could turn pinkish!

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