Fringe Benefits 2.


You cannot think of fringe without thinking of vintage--an ongoing trend that often sends fashionistas to second hand shops and flea markets. You can wear fringed garments as is for a theme party or...you can come make a few modifications to bring the look up to the present norms of high fashion. While putting together this, the second part of my project, I kept that idea in mind especially after Monster Crafts left a comment stating how she normally doesn't care for fringe..except perhaps for accessories! As usual I had so much fun putting this post together!

In the early days of this blog, I did a post in honor of the film "Great Gatsby" which is set in the Roaring Twenties. And of course I made a cute little dress for one of my Barbies. The original dress is a strapless sheath with five rows of evenly spaced 1-3/4" (33mm) silk fringe. I still like this dress, but I have noticed how around the holidays none of my dolls are requesting to wear this dress. So for this post,  I decided to make a somewhat more modern version.

Built on the base of a one shouldered mini dress with the same l-3/4" silk fringe, what makes this dress interesting are the rows of fringe falling at an angle.

 1. Again, the dress is quite simple...a one shouldered sheath dress. Be sure with your choice of fabric and color because as the fringe moves, the fabric will peak out from underneath. I've used a matching midnight blue taffeta for the underdress. Then using chalk, I marked guild lines for where I would be sewing on the rows of fringe. For you to really see a slant, the rows must be place at a 45 degree angle. When you get to the side seam, the row of fringe reverses its course upwards, again at a 45 degree angle. Note: around the top of the dress, the top row of fringe goes from front to back, ending at the back center back (where the closure is.
2. Start from the bottom and work up, being careful not to catch the strands of fringe in your stitches.
3. Unless you want the top of the fringe to show, it is a good idea to cover it.
4. I used a bias cut strip of the same my underdress.
5. You can also embroider or add beads, ribbon or glitter to that edge as well. On Anna's dress, I added beads for a couture touch.
6. The dress closes in the back on a slant. I used a hook and eye.



Another way of modernizing the classic 1920's dress, is by choosing a novelty fringe. Nadja's dress is exactly the same as Anna's, except for the fringe which is a mix of knitted silk yarn and crystals. I've belted the dress to give it more shape.

 You can also use a long rows of fringe to create a more modern dress! I found this lovely 3-3/4" (92mm) silver fringe which was perfect for this Versace Couture inspired dress.
 1. The under dress in this case, is a simple, fitted sheath. It is best to use a woven fabric so that the dress doesn't stretch while you sew on the trim. I have drawn in (red) a new, halter neck neckline.
2. After cutting away the excess, the silhouette looks like this.
3. After you put in the seam allowance the pattern looks like this.
4. Cut a piece of bias fabric the width of the neckline. Add 1/4" to the width and seam allowance.
5. For this dress I made an "over collar" out of leather. The fringe is sewn or glued into the bottom of this collar and the whole thing is sewn to the under collar of the dress.
1. The fringe is added to the dress at the points indicated above (just over the bust, at the bustline and again at the waist.
2. The dress can be worn loose as seen here.
3. It swings freely all over the dress including the back! But it can also be belted for a totally different look.


Of course you don't have to use fringe all over the dress. Think of it as a trim. And, think of layering it at the hem of a gown for example.
This Chanel inspired dress is a simple sheath with spaghetti straps (and a good dose of glitter over the silver lurex fabric). The original dress called for faux fur at the hem, but I wanted to play up the silvery aspect of the look, so I added six rows of 1" (25mm) silver fringe upwards from the hem. Since the top of the fringe is decorative, I left it in full view. But if you are using fringe where the top portion is not so press, you can make the dress shorter. Add trim to a width of fabric, then join it to the hem of the dress so that dress overlaps the top layer of fringe.


Novelty trim--especially when it's fringe--is always fun to play with. It doesn't swing and sway the way silk fringe or cut fringe does, but it lends a playful look to the garment. For this dress, I decided to make an entire party dress.


1. Here's my fringed trim. It has little bits and pieces to it. I decided to make this dress in two parts: camisole top and the skirt. Either item can be paired with another garment.
2. For this look, I started out by making a lace, 1-piece camisole. This is because the trim by itself doesn't cover the doll's bust. So I thought it would be nice to have a bit of lace peeking out from under the frou-frou. A single row of trim is use, facing UPWARDS, from center back seam, around the front and to the opposite center back seam is sewn in place. You can use snaps to close the top.
3. For the skirt, I cut a simple straight (mini) skirt. I use a row of trim instead of a waistband. Another row in the middle and a final row above the hemline to create the skirt. I have purposely left space in between each row so that you can see the gold stripe on the top of each row of fringe peaking through! If you are going to line this, you should make the lining separately and stitch it to the backside of the first row of trimming.

Awhile back we featured a dress inspired by a Ralph & Russo gown.
What we liked about this 2-pc dress is how the fringe was used to accent this asymmetrical look. Since I didn't have access to pink fringe, I had to make it myself by threading the edge along the hem and around the armhole with lightweight cord that I knotted myself. I decided to make a more simple version of this dress to share with you.
The top is a one-shouldered top. (The tutorial is HERE). The bottom is a draped sarong skirt.

1. This skirt begins with the basic straight skirt sloper. You will need to trace it to the other side to have the full front. About 1/8" (5mm) down from the waist on the upper right tip of the front, make a mark. The next four marks should be about 1/4" of each other. Make one single mark on the left side of the skirt sloperabout 2-1/2" (6.5 cm) down from the waist. Join the marks on the right side to the left side mark.
2. Slash all but the bottom right side mark within 1/8" of the mark on the left side. Move the slashes, placing them 1/4" between each other. Tape down.
3. Trace the outer silhouette as well as the dart on the left side. Be sure to mark the slash lines on the right side. They will serve as guide lines to make folds.
4. Draw a style line, scoping out an area of the skirt as shown here. Cut that area away.
5. Now create your front sarong pattern by adding seam allowance.
6. The back of the skirt is simply the back sloper with seam allowance.

7. Cut your skirt out in fabric. Stitch the back together, leaving space near the waist. Create pleats on the right side of the skirt front and stitch them down in the seam allowance. Join the left side of the skirt front to the back.
8. Join the left side of the skirt together with the back, folding the back seam over the front. Pin, then hand stitch in place.
9. Fold the hem up and the edges under and hand stitch in place.
10. Attach the fringe along one edge of the skirt within the area as shown (green dotted line). Make the bodice. For instructions as to how to make a one-shouldered top, click HERE.  Finish the edges, and add fringe around the armhole from front to back as shown above (green line).
All by itself, it is quite a lovely dress!

However, you are not obliged to make a fringed garment to give your dolls this look. Think--fringed shawl!!! 
Helena has a shawl made from the same flocked wool as her dress trimmed in long silk fringe. It's a great way to take your doll from day to night in a snap.

For this particular shawl, I cut a triangle that has two sides the length 7-3/8" (19cm) while the base is 13" (33.5 cm).

I added 3-1/2" (9cm) black silk fringe. In this case, I didn't want the top of the fringe to show, so I overlapped the lower edge of the shawl over the woven top of the fringe trim.
I almost decided not to line the shawl, but then had a bright idea. I lined it with a contrasting fabric in the same tones. It's like having two shawls in one.

Akure immediately borrowed it to wear over her dress. The tie print silk of the reverse side of the shawl matches her skirt!
Whenever I travel, I try to check out antique fairs, flea markets and the like for interesting vintage lace. I didn't find this piece there, but I did find a "remnant" in a high fashion fabric store in Paris' Marche St. Pierre. I almost forgot I had it. From this marvelous remnant, I cut away one of the motifs--wide enough to go over the shoulders of a special doll. I added the silk fringe to edge and voila---a gorgeous embroidered shawl with fringe.

 Even if you are not so lucky as I was to find such a treasure, you can make your own. Start with a bit of lace and add beads, rhinestones or even silk flowers to it.
But be warned....this could be the most popular accessory in the house!!! Right on Morgan's heels was Tiah who HAD to have this shawl for her night out at the opera. The black shawl really shows up when paired with a golden gown!!! But even she wasn't able to hold onto this beauty for a long time. Samantha showed up asking if she could borrow it for an impromptu evening sarong!

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