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Life Skills

Sew a Robe and Pajamas for Your American Girl Doll, 18-Inch Doll (Intermediate)

In this three-day boot-camp style class, we will sew a robe and pajamas for your 18-inch doll on the sewing machine.
Karen Highland
200 total reviews for this teacher
5 reviews for this class
Completed by 12 learners
  There are no upcoming classes.
55 minutes
per class
3x per week
over 1 week
year olds
learners per class
per learner - per class

How does a "Multi-Day" course work?

Meets multiple times at scheduled times
Live video chats, recorded and monitored for safety and quality
Discussions via classroom forum and private messages with the teacher
Great for engaging projects and interacting with diverse classmates from other states and countries

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Class Experience

Students will learn to: lay out and cut out patterns, sew seams, press and finish seams correctly, sew curves and clip properly, sew a casing, work with elastic, sew hems, use hook and loop tape, zig-zag stitch and use optional lace or trim. I will have lots of ideas for embellishing all items. The challenges that make this an intermediate project, instead of a beginner project are the bulk of the fabric, curved hems and a pleat. This also focuses more on ironing skills, which are important to sewing.
They will work on their items in class, whatever is not completed each day will be homework. They should be able to complete the bulk of the work in class, but if they don't, I will make sure to demonstrate so they can finish on their own.
* The pdf pattern is in the classroom. Please print it out and have it ready. I often post a video the day before class if I need to explain anything. * Fabric: The pajamas only take about 1/3 of a yard of fabric in 44 inch width. Usually cotton or flannel comes in 44 inches width. A fat quarter (used for quilting) which is 18" by 22" and is just big enough, if the fat quarter is cut correctly. If you have remnants, you'll specifically need a piece that is 15 inches by 36 inches wide. Doll clothes are the perfect opportunity to use up fabric scraps and remnants, as well as clothing that you really don't wear anymore. The robe can be made out of an old fleece garment you don't want anymore. A beach towel is perfect. The exact size needed is 18 inches by 30 inches. Each side of the robe can be cut from two separate pieces if they are each 9 inches by 30 inches. I will make a video describing it so it is easier to understand. The green robe in the class photo was made out of an old towel that was cheap and thin, so it worked well. A regular thick towel is too thick to work with easily, so I would avoid that. * The fabric is too thick to make a belt, so you'll need about 22 to 24 inches of ribbon, string, rope, yarn, shoelace, whatever you have on hand for the belt. If you have an old skinny belt that can be cut, that works too. Seam binding can work in a pinch, too. * You'll need matching thread. * Scissors and pins. A seam ripper is always good to have on hand. * Threaded sewing machine with proper tension and properly sized needle. (more than one is always advisable in case one happens) Light weight fabrics will need a size 12 US (80 EU) Medium weight fabrics will need a size 14/90. Heavier weights will need a 16/100. You can get them and any supplies at if you don't have access to a store, or Amazon, of course. Give two weeks for delivery...mail-order is running pretty slow these days. I've also done curbside pickup with JoAnn's and it is great! * Iron and Ironing board. * Print out the pdf patterns added in the comments in the classroom. I'll post a video about the patterns a day before class. * 11 inches of 3/8 inch elastic. * For closure: Hook and loop tape or dots (they have self-sticking tape that is easy to use), snaps. I don't recommend buttons, as button holes are an advanced skill. * Optional Embellishing for the P.J.'s: embroidery floss, decorative stitching, lace, ribbon, or rickrack, etc. Hand sewing needles.
Learners will not need to use any apps or websites beyond the standard Outschool tools.
They will have a cute robe and p.j.'s that they will enjoy using at sleepovers, and, equally important, will also enjoy saying, "I made this!" This is a confidence builder for sewers who have done well with the beginner skills and are ready to move into some more challenging projects.
2 hours 45 minutes per week in class, and an estimated 1 - 2 hours per week outside of class.
Parents know their child's capabilities. This 55 minute class is best for students who have a little bit of experience on the machine. I would call them intermediate sewers. It's best if they are familiar with their machine and can re-thread it if the thread comes out, as well as re-thread the bobbin. If they need help getting the machine threaded, then it would be best if parents are there to help if the needle comes unthreaded, or if the machine has any problems. It is very difficult for me to see from their laptop camera and figure out what the problems are, especially since all machines are a little different. Please make sure the machine is working and the tension is right. It can be very frustrating for students when these things aren't working properly.

You will find the directions in the sewing machine guide that came with the machine. Some machines (Singer) have arrows stenciled onto the front of the machine, showing the correct path to threading. 

If you don't have the guide, you can usually get it on the manufacturer website. 

Do a quick test on some scrap fabric to make sure the machine is in working condition and the tension is correct. It is very disappointing to a sewer to show up to class only to find out that their machine is not working. [insert sad face]

Some Quick Sewing Safety Tips:

Make sure your sewing machine cord is in good shape. 

Keep hair pulled back. 

Unplug machine when not in use.

Don’t sew across pins. As a pin nears the presser foot, stop the sewing machine long enough to remove the pin.

Make sure you’re using the proper needle for the fabric you’re sewing. A needle that isn’t the right size or thickness for the job could end up breaking.

Pay attention to the way your sewing machine sounds. If it starts making strange noises, or seems louder than usual, it might be time to have it checked by a pro.

Make sure there’s enough light. Using a sewing machine in poor lighting can lead to mishaps.


Karen Highland
Lives in the United States
Learning is Natural When You Fan the Flame
200 total reviews
201 completed classes

About Me

I teach Algebra and sewing. I'm passionate about Algebra because I believe it is a fundamental to building the life skills of critical thinking and problem-solving. 

I also teach some life skills classes, various sewing and needlework classes.... 
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