Making miniature clothes can be one of the most tedious tasks one faces while tailoring on a sewing machine.
There are a number of things that must be kept in mind before we begin sewing clothes that small.
Lightweight and stretchable fabrics, the right needle and thread size, the seam allowance and so much more need to be carefully considered before we begin sewing Barbie clothes with a sewing machine.
How To Make Barbie Clothes With A Sewing Machine?
We have gathered the basic guidelines for sewing Barbie clothes with a sewing machine. You will find the task of sewing Barbie clothes much easier than it sounds once you see the basic guidelines. Once you get settled on a few basic outfits you’ll find it easier to draw inspiration and create more outfits of your own choice in no time!
1: Pick A Suitable Fabric
As we mentioned above, there are a few basic details that must be kept in mind to make the process of sewing Barbie clothes easier. The simpler we keep it at the beginning the easier it gets with time. The most basic choice that makes a great deal of difference is our choice of fabric. To keep it easy and simple, always go for lightweight and stretchable fabrics.
Lightweight pieces of cotton are a great go-to for Barbie clothes as these don’t create bulk and heaviness in seams. Heavy materials like wool or linens might create bulges in the stitches and are a difficult task to handle for such small-scale work. Stretchable clothes are also a good choice for sewing the sleeves and making the overall bodice as well. Fabrics like silk must also be avoided at the beginning as they might be too difficult to sew on such a small scale.
2: Sewing Machine Settings
The needle type is crucial for sewing of any kind. Using a standard needle is not suitable for making Barbie clothes that are on such a miniature scale. As a general measure, we must use a Microtex needle that is a 60/8 or a 70/10. This needle size will easily stitch the fabric and not bulge or tear the fabric of your Barbie outfit. The stitch length must be about 2mm for the scale at which you’ll be working.
The closures can be handled with Velcro or even tiny snaps. The tiny snaps must also be according to the scale of the Barbie clothes therefore about 4-5mm should be good enough. Although zig-zag stitches are a good way to overlock seams you could also do it by hand in the end.
3: Prepare the Fabric
Before you get your hands on the machine, first plan out the outfit you have in mind. Barbie outfits are small so it’s easier to cut out the fabric in the shape you wish to sew. Preparing your fabric beforehand will save you twice the time you’ll spend sewing.
You could draw the outlines of your desired outfit with chalk on the fabric of your choice. This will help you get a rough idea of the outfit as you go about sewing and putting it together. Once you go through each phase of putting together the outfit you won’t miss a step and so avoid making any errors.
4: Take Care Of Seam Allowances
Seam allowances are a lot more meticulous to handle when it comes to Barbie clothes of such a miniature scale. Usually stitching in a zig-zag pattern is enough to avoid any excessive seams. However, in case you do end up with excessive seams, you can always cut them off in the end once the outfits are put together.
For most Barbie outfits, a seam allowance of 0.16 inches or 0.4 cm might be a good place to start. This size will probably fit any fabric for the purposes of a Barbie outfit, as it won’t be too small or too big. If your seams are too big they’ll probably take up most of the fabric and might rip it once you put it on an actual Barbie. It is best to sew inwards a few millimeters instead of starting right from the edge.
You can trim the seam allowances in the end as you see fit. In case you can’t cut out excessive seams you could also do some topstitching in the end to overlock the seams. This will help avoid the pulling apart of the outfit at a later time, keeping it intact for as long as possible. This technique will also help flatten the rough and unflattened edges.
Sewing clothes for Barbies on a sewing machine might sound like a challenging task for such a small scale. However, it is not as difficult as sewing adult clothes and gets easier after just a few attempts. If you keep a few technical points in mind you could be sewing multiple outfits in one go in no time. Hopefully, the guidelines we gathered will be good enough to get you started!