Sunday, June 5, 2011

When can you call an adapted pattern yours?

The other day, I was playing around with a dress that I had created. I had declared Charlotte done with it, so I was looking though the collection to find someone who would wear it full term. I pulled out one of my Francie sized dolls and tried it on her. While it was a great style for her, the fit was not right. There's enough of a difference between her body and Charlotte's belly button one to make the fit be really wonky. Unfortunately, this is really bad news for the Francie dolls, as well as dolls with similar shapes, but not new news to them. Since I don't have any patterns that fit them, they get stuck with clothes that are not made by me, or might be slightly too big. Out of the four Francie (and friend) dolls that I have, two are in Mattel clothes, one is wearing a turtleneck I made with jeans (that I didn't make) that are safety pinned in the back to fit her, and the other is wearing a dress I made that just happened to be too small for the Barbie that it was intended for. The Takara Jenny dolls also have this issue, out of the three of them, one is wearing Barbie clothes, and two are wearing things made by me, that just happen to fit them decently.
So I decided to change that. Knowing that I have a workable bodice pattern will give me the confidence to build and expand their wardrobe. I mean, do you know how many adaptations and tweaks I've done to that Barbie bodice from "Barbie in Japan"? Right now there are eight people wearing that same top in the collection, and that's not even including the things I've made that I'm not displaying. So I figured that if I had something similar for Francie, I'd be more inclined to actually make her something. So I started off how I normally do, seeing what I have and what's available for free online. Sadly, all the patterns online are copies of the vintage ones and people are charging for them. Which is ironic since I believe they should still be under the copy-write of their respective holders.
But I eventually did find something that I already had that I could use. But when I made it up, I found a great deal of issues with it. So I did some hardcore tweaking. Bu the end, I changed the neckline, changed the sleeves, changed the size and the position of the bust darts, changed the bottom hem shape, and made it go from having a seam at the shoulder to one at the sides. But even though I changed so much on it, I still don't feel like it's "mine", it just feels like I adapted it. Even though I changed so much on it, I wouldn't feel comfortable calling it a pattern that I drafted, even when it's so different from the original one that I started with.
What are your thoughts? Are there patterns out there that you adapted to where they feel like they're original? Where's that line?
P.S. Happy Anniversary Mom and Dad! 29 years, and still going strong!

1 comment:

  1. I am so glad that someone else uses the word "wonky" in reference to sewing for dolls. It sounds like you altered it enough to call it yours. But if it doesn't feel right to you then inevitably, no matter what anyone else says, that is more than likely the route you'll take. So, just keep sewing and tweaking. Maybe one of these days it will "feel" right. :)