New year, new toys, new patterns!

Happy New Year from Many Small FriendsHappy 2015, friends! I hope that all who celebrated the holidays had many joyful and memorable moments. We had a terrific Christmas filled with family, fun, and delicious food. As usual, my dolly habit was indulged by my wonderful family and I have lots of fun new stuff to show you in the coming weeks.

My daughter is enchanted by the revamped American Girl Pets Collection and asked for Coconut and “any of the pet beds” for Christmas. I made a top secret video review of both items before gifting and, fortunately for me, she didn’t peruse the MSF YouTube channel before the big day.

American Girl Coconut Puppy

AG Pets and the Princess Pet Bed

You can check out the video here, but the bottom line is that I was more impressed with Coconut then I expected and much less impressed with the Princess Pet Bed.

She loved both, and that’s really all that matters.  🙂

One of my favorite new toys is a 5th generation iPod Touch!  I have enjoyed a much older version for years, but it has been sporting a cracked screen for a few months and it didn’t come equipped with a camera.  I’m also the last human on earth to not have a smart phone, so although I’ve been very intrigued by the doll communities on Instagram, I haven’t been able to join the fun with no device compatible with the Instagram app.  My new iPod now allows me to snap quick pics and upload them to Instagram or Facebook for instant sharing. Hello 21st century, it’s so nice to finally meet you!

I’m definitely a “newb” (as I’m oft labeled by my teenage sons), but I have found lots of great doll-centered Instagram accounts to follow.  My account can be found here:  @many_small_friends

(Sons, did I do that right??!!??)

I’m also posting the Instagram pictures on Facebook if you are uncool like me and still hang out on Facebook*.

*Facebook uncoolness insight also provided by aforementioned teenage sons.  Apparently parents ruined it.

Dolly Instagram

One of my favorite things about a fresh new year is all the fresh new ideas that flood my imagination. I can hardly sleep with all the patterns and projects floating around in my head.  Sadly, daylight hours have not expanded to match my renewed energy, so progress is slow.  But bear with me, I have so many fun things to share with you in 2015!

Here is a peek at some of the patterns I’m working on.

Julie and Saige American Girl Dolls

Have you sewn with loose knit sweater fabrics and stretch lace?  They are too sheer to be used alone, but I’m developing a pattern for a fully lined dress that looks fantastic with these knits and lace as an overlay.  It’s almost finished and will be available at Etsy when it’s ready.

Doll bums are difficult to fit.

I’m also expanding the jeggings pattern to fit better with less stretchy fabrics.  I’ve found a bunch of printed sateens (~3% Spandex content) that have a little too much gap in the back without some additional paneling in the rear.  You guys.. doll bums are difficult to fit!  But I’m soooo close.  It’s only taken about 2,403,649 prototypes, give or take.  Julie has been a (relatively) good sport, what with all the leg yanking required to get a million pairs on tight fitting pants on and off.  She did, however, threaten to stick chewing gum in my sewing machine if I didn’t finish up soon.

When this pattern is finished, it will be sent as a freebie to my MSF Newsletter subscribers and then listed for sale in the Etsy store.

Lots of prototypes

I hope you had a nice holiday season as well and I’m so grateful to have found such a wonderful group of fellow doll enthusiasts to share ideas and inspiration. If you have an Instagram account, I’d love to follow you!  Post your account address (?? Is that what it’s called on IG?  Sons, stop at laughing at your mother) in the comment section below. 🙂


  1. Flo says:

    Happy New Year! I LOVE the new version of Coconut, I just had to get her not long after she came out. It was love at first sight when I saw her at the AG store in Columbus.

    Congrats on the Ipod touch too, I would be lost without mine. Just watch, the home button on these is not as well made as previous versions and tends to wear out quickly. You can add a “Home” key to your screen that does most of the same things, I wish I had known about it before, I would have used it more.

  2. Carrie says:

    I have had such a darn fuss with making pants for the dolls, at least with knitting I can make short rows. But with fabric, even darts aren’t all that helpful (or flattering for that matter). Plus, my sewing machine and I are not on the best of terms, I’m hesitant to sew knits because it likes to fight me. And I am on IG, my handle is @priestessraven my icon is a weird little angel/devil symbol on a black background 🙂

    • Steph says:

      I’m not quite sure what madness infected my mind to attempt to make a pants pattern. I think I *finally* have a working pattern and am just about to publish. And then this new apron project bulldozed it’s way to the front of the line. Either that or I was just sick of making pants. I seriously have 15 to 20 prototype/trial pairs sitting in various stages of finish. I don’t know how people make human pants. At least the dolls don’t grow or move. 😉

      I think working with these stretchy wovens is a good bridge between stable wovens and “real” knits. They behave a lot better and don’t tend to go wonky or get caught up in the stitch plate like regular knits. I’m planning a tips for sewing knit doll clothes series, too!

      Thank you, Carrie, for reading and commenting! I just followed you on Insta. I *can* knit, but I don’t find the time very often. I’m very inspired by being an onlooker. 😉

      • Carrie says:

        plus people are in all those weird SIZES (myself included). Between hips, and thighs, and cankles, and low slung, and mom jeans, I couldn’t begin to make an adult pair of pants. I look forward to your tutorial, maybe soon I’ll butcher an old teeshirt and take the plunge 😀

  3. Betty says:

    ♥ your blog and patterns. Have printed on those sheets you dip in water, iron to dry and stitch on garment but am anxious to try your way. Did you use Scotch tape or another kind? Looking forward to seeing what you have up your sleeve for 2015 and making some jeggings and aprons.

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