What American Girl doesn’t like making new matching outfits? We all do! All you need is T-shirts, a stencil and ink pads, and some cardboard. First we did the stencil on tee shirts for both the big girl and also one for her doll. Learn how to stencil a shirt with our step-by-step directions.
After making the shirts we made matching dirndl skirts – gathered skirts on elastic waistbands. See our quick and easy directions below the stenciling project. A fun afternoon project on a rainy day – Love matching outfits!
Make a Quick and Easy Skirt
While the shirts dried, we decided to also make matching skirts. Fabric from my stash just happened to match well. Materials needed are about a yard of fabric, thread and elastic.
For each skirt, measure the length you want the finished skirt and add an allowance for an elastic waist and a hem. For the girl’s skirt I added four inches. Cut or rip one width of fabric this measurement. I wanted a 12-inch skirt, so I cut it 15.5 inches. Press and sew the selvage edges together to form a tube. Press the seam open.
Turn the top under 1/2 inch and press, then turn it under 1 inch and press again. Sew the edge down to form a tunnel, leaving a one inch opening at center back (by the seam). Top stitch along the top edge to stabilize the casing. Measure the recipient’s waist. Cut elastic a little shorter than this measurement so that it will stretch. Attach a safety pin or bodkin to one end of the elastic, and pin the other end to the skirt so you don’t lose it! Insert the safety pin and thread it through the casing to gather the skirt.
Try it on and adjust as needed. Then sew the two ends of the elastic together. I like to make an X to be sure it is stable. Try the skirt on again and determine the hem. Press the hem under 1/2 inch to create a finished edge. Then press it under again to make it the desired length. Stitch the hem. Press and enjoy!
Then follow a similar process for the doll skirt. I made the width 4 times the doll’s waist.
By now your shirts are dry and you can give each piece a press and try on the finished outfits. Smiling little girls and a fun project! Making memories!
Brynley and Beatrice in their new outfits – and we learned how to stencil a shirt!
Check out all of our surface design projects and inspiration on Create Whimsy!