In my quest to seek self-care during the nation’s early quarantined months I examined “what brings me joy”. One of those things was doll making. In the 80s I created dolls during the popular cabbage patch era. I loved watching the soft sculpture body come to life by my own hands, crafted from fabric, yarn and faux fur. I thoroughly enjoyed this craft. As the course of life changed over the years, I tucked away my doll making items, and started my life as a wife and mother.
In 2015 my passion for fashion and sewing resurfaced and I started designing. During that time, I envisioned Kimble girls, a collection of soft sculptured fashion dolls. I drew sketches of faces and fashions and tucked them away in a folder. An impulse reopened that folder and excitedly I’m bringing that vision to life! Dreaming a world of Kimble girls, these dolls are crafted with an array of rich skin tone fabrics which represent the beautiful women of my family.
Kimble Fashion Dolls are gorgeous cotton handmade keepsake dolls created with children of color in mind. This collection of dolls is constructed to represent a beautiful array of skin tones, hair textures and fashionable styles in which children of color identify. Each doll’s face is detailed and crafted by hand embroidery and uniquely her own.
My purpose is to create dolls who represent children of color. To encourage, inspire and nurture an imaginative playtime while identifying images of beauty, strength and love.
KIMBLE ~ Kindred Images of Myself, to Believe, Love and Explore
Constance Kimble Franklin
So I totally cut out this top without even thinking about the unbalanced stripes. I was pretty disappointed and thought that it was a done deal, especially since I have a personal sewing pet peeve about matching stripes and only had minimal yardage of the fabric to start off with. I really liked the fabric so I pondered over a solution, the challenge: how do I change the perception of continuous flowing stripes? Out of no where, the solution: ruffles came to mind. A creative distraction, if you will, the birth of my “Angel Wings” ruffles.
I’m sure this is how a number of fashion designs happen by trial and error. But wait, my resolution still was not complete. As I scanned my fabric stash for navy or green fabric to construct the ruffle design, I came up empty handed. I was determined this top was going to get completed! So I remembered I had recently bagged some items to be given away. And wha-la a pair of navy pants was in the bundle. I pulled those suckers out, removed the stitches and navy fabric was now at my disposal! I guess you can see my projects become my babies and I find joy in bringing them to life. The “Angel Wing” ruffle was constructed out of a navy crepe and off-white cotton (used what I had).
The simple lesson here, give your project another thought. Turn your Flaws to Fabulous, you never know what idea an Angel may give you 🙂
Check out the four pieces I created to walk this year’s MimiG Fashion and Sewing Conference Runway. I enjoyed sewing these looks and bringing my vision to life.
First, this Ivory jumpsuit made from a linen texture fabric. Walking the many aisles of fabrics, I allowed this texture to speak to me. Thinking outside the box, believe it or not it’s an upholstery fabric. To create this jumpsuit I masterfully combined MimiG’s Simplicity 1115 and a 1950’s Vintage Simplicity 8130.
To accompany the ivory jumpsuit I paired it with a tangerine orange cotton/rayon ruffle open front jacket.
This jacket was crafted by combining MimiG’s Simplicity 8177 coat and the ruffle from S8394.
Take note this jacket has NO side seams, to achieve this I made a muslin jacket and then used it as a one piece pattern to cut. Then I simply made a circular cut and then attached a double ruffle. I love color so I lined it with a hot pink!
For look two, I pin it as my interpretation of “Avant-Garde meet Everyday.” Green polka dots, one puff sleeve with “Snap-off” top which reveals a one-shoulder jumpsuit underneath. Created the jumpsuit by combining MimiG’s S115 and S8380. I drafted the bias snap-off top with Puff sleeve.
This puff sleeve consists of four fabrics: Polka dot chiffon, green cotton/rayon, interfacing and a cotton lining.
Get ready! View the “snap-off”.
Enjoyed making this sweet top using Simplicity 8335, ideal for someone learning to sew. Today’s message, ‘Time and Purpose’, understanding God’s timing is key in fulfilling your purpose. T=Treasure I=Investment M=Measured E=Eternal.
Looking forward to sharing my creative space on upcoming edition of Sew Sew Def magazine.