Thursday, 21 January 2016

AKA Amigurumi Apparel: Sundress & Dotty Daywear

Kwokkie Doll is wearing a red santa's hat with white trim and a jingle bell on the top.  She is wearing a black skirt which has multi-coloured polka-dots matched with a black sleeveless top covered with a red jacket. On her feet, Kwokkie Doll is wearing black crocheted sandals.
A report by Kwokkie Doll

Hello there!

Today I want to show you a selection of clothes that Jodiebodie made for me.


Kwokkie Doll is standing up, wearing a red sleeveless sundress and black sandals against a blue background.
Red sundress based on
"Lily Fun in the Sun Doll"
(Lily/Sugar'n Cream/Yarnspirations)

The first item I ever wore was a red sundress.  Jodiebodie wanted me to have a very colourful outfit just like the Little Colourful Teacher but, because of time pressures, she made a plain dress instead. 

Plain, single-coloured crochet is quicker than fiddling around with colour changing.  The plan was: if the simple red dress fitted, it could also be a template for more lavishly coloured dresses in the future.

This was a good decision because, on the day that I met the Little Colourful Teacher, Jodiebodie was still trying to complete some of my other clothes, including a multicoloured spotty skirt.  

Kwokkie Doll seated and wearing her red sundress, black sandals and black spectacles.
Do you like my custom-made glasses?

My wardrobe was made in a bit of a rush during the end-of-school-year & preparing-for-Christmas activities. The yarn for my clothes was sourced from Jodiebodie's stash because she didn't have time or energy left to go yarn shopping–so much to do!

My wardrobe is based on the clothes featured in the 'Lily Doll' series of free patterns published by Lily / Sugar'n Cream.  These patterns were unavailable for  a while but they can now be found republished  on the Yarnspirations web site. They all use American crochet terminology.

Front view of Kwokkie Doll seated, as she looks over the rims of her glasses.
I can give a stern teacher look,
but I am smiling underneath!

A pattern for my red dress is in the "Lily Fun in the Sun Doll" pattern leaflet (.pdf). I am actually 25% smaller than Lily and my body shape is different to Lily's so my dress was modified slightly by adding an extra row with decrease stitches at the top and widening the shoulder straps. The straps use a double chain cord and an extra chain row at the front. 

Kwokkie Doll seated in her red sundress, front view. Her straight black hair is tied back in a low ponytail with a red ribbon of yarn.
"I Feel Pretty"

Kwokkie Doll is modelling her Dotty skirt and black sleeveless top in bare feet. The skirt flares out in all directions.
Shall I pirouette?

My spotty skirt is part of an outfit that Jodiebodie calls "Dotty Daywear"–a fabulous stashbuster!  It was perfect for using up all of those short lengths of leftover acrylic yarn scraps.  

You will see in the yarn details below a list of all of the different yarns and colours that went into my skirt.  The important thing to remember when mixing yarns:  be mindful of the care requirements

Jodiebodie mainly used 8 ply yarns or equivalent, all 100% acrylic with the same washing instructions.  I would hate it if the fibres started to shrink or stretch unevenly in the washI don't want my skirt to pucker or become misshapen.
That would make me sad because it is such an amazing skirt. Many hours of careful crochet went into it.

It is constructed with a combination of tapestry and intarsia methods (mostly the latter) to insert  coloured stitches into the black fabric and was made 'blind'; that is, Jodiebodie made the skirt without me as a reference so I wasn't there to try it on as she made it.  I hoped that Jodiebodie had recorded the right measurements and that it would be just right at the end.
Close-up of the Dotty Skirt worked from the waist to the hem.
Right side of Dotty Skirt

Reverse side of Dotty Skirt showing the multicoloured thread ends woven into the skirt and each other!
Reverse side of Dotty Skirt.
There were so many ends to weave in and
they have created a colourful textured effect.

Jodiebodie decided to start the skirt at the waist using a 'foundation single crochet' stitch. (Lily patterns use United States crochet terms). The equivalent in Australian / UK terms is 'foundation double crochet'.  

These foundation stitches create a stretchy waistband which can stretch easily over my hips but I found that the waistband was too wide for me!  I am not sure whether Jodiebodie forgot to adjust the number of foundation stitches for my smaller waist or whether the soft acrylic yarn has more 'give' than the 'standard' acrylics or maybe the tension was too loose. 

We solved the problem by giving the skirt a drawstring to cinch in the waist and now it fits! Yay!  I am so happy about that because polka-dots and bright colours are my favourites!

It isn't the mistakes you make that matter,
it's how you deal with them that makes the difference. 

[Kwokkie Doll whispers:]
Perhaps next time, Jodiebodie should make the waist at least 4 stitches smaller!

Close up and front view of black sleeveless top. A simple tube with crochet cord shoulder straps.
Black sleeveless top
modelled on the bodice of the sundress.

A skirt is only useful if there's a top to wear with it.  This little black strappy top (left) is a perfect match for the skirt and a neutral shade to mix and match with other pieces. 

The benefits of this sleeveless design are: 
Speed and simplicity–  without the shoulder, sleeve and armhole elements, this top was very simple and quick to make.
Easy to wear–the lack of bulk around the arms makes it easy to combine this top with other clothes like jackets or jumpers.

Body of the doll before adding face and hair.  The stitches are flesh coloured except for white stitches for the underpants.
The underpants are permanent.
Never go out without your 'undies'!

The bulk of layered clothing is a significant concern when designing crocheted clothes to be mixed and matched because crocheted fabric is thicker than finely woven dolls' clothing materials.

Some of the Lily Doll patterns tackled this problem by crocheting clothing colours on the doll; e.g. "Back to School Lily Doll" has a permanent t-shirt and leggings. The "Denim Doll" has permanent boots. Me, I never go out without my 'undies'!

A pair of black crocheted sandals. The sole is oval shaped to match the bottom of the foot. The foot slips into a strap over the instep and another strap secures the sandal around the ankle.
My sandals have straps
over my foot and around my ankles.

An outfit is not complete without shoes!  My black sandals are the same design as those of "Born on the 4th of July" Lily (free pattern).  I like my sandals because I can kick them off if I want unlike the 'Mary Jane' shoes of "Fun in the Sun" Lily which are really coloured feet with an added strap to give the illusion of shoes.

Well, I am under no illusions. I am as real as they come and I want to have a collection of real shoes.  Maybe I will find that pair of slip-on Mary Janes or some super colourful lace-ups some day soon. 
Favourite shoes make you happy all day.

What are your favourite clothes ...

... to wear?
... to make?
... to look at?
... to collect?

It is lucky Jodiebodie made me a sundress because the weather has been extremely hot–39°C (102°F). Perhaps it is time to change into my bathing suit?  A swim at the beach or the pool is a great way to beat the heat.  I will go and do that and then see you again soon.

Have fun with your fashion!

 —Kwokkie Doll  xx

Yarn Details

Red Sundress

Remnants of red acrylic were used for the red dress;
One lot for top (A) and then alternating (A+B) for skirt (and C in last rnd):

A: Carnival 8 ply red, col. 095,  Lot #757370, used 7g / 22m
B: Moda Vera Marvel Plain 8 ply red, col. 1003. Lot #768316. used 3g / 9m
C: Carnival 8 ply red. col. 095. Lot #760466. used 12g /38m

Dress weighed 21-22g (68.2m)
Total yarn used = 22g / approx 69m

Dotty Daywear

The main fabric of the skirt used a soft style of acrylic:
Panda Magnum Soft 8 ply; col: 4614 black, Lot #765361.

The coloured dots were created from the following stashed yarns:
Orange: Kmart Homemaker Acrylic 8 ply col. 378 Lot #774542 used 10g/31m
Purple: The Art of Knitting Acrylic Plum/dark fuchsia no col/lot no. used 5g/8m
Light blue: Moda Vera Marvel 8 ply acrylic col. 1042 Cloud Lot #774600 used approx 1g/3m + scraps
Yellow: Carnival 8 ply acrylic col. 036 Lot #760362 used 3g/10m
Red: Carnival 8 ply acrylic col. 095 Lot #760466 approx 1g/3m + scraps
Mid blue: Lion Brand 'Bonbons' Acrylic Sport Weight  'Pastels'  no col/lot no.  5g rem used double stranded.*
Mauve/pale pink: Lion Brand 'Bonbons'Acrylic Sport Weight  'Pastels'    no col/lot no.  5g rem used double stranded.*

*This yarn was a 4 ply but using two strands together gave an equivalent 8 ply (DK) weight.

Black Strappy Top

Panda Magnum Soft 8 ply Col. 4614 black, Lot #765361.
Finished top weighed 6g / 12m

Black Sandals

Panda Magnum Soft 8 ply Col. 4614 black, Lot #765361. 
2 sandals (without ch straps) weighed 4g
Estimated weight with strap = 5g
Approximately 2.5g / 5m per sandal 

Pattern Details

Kwokkie Doll was worked from patterns published by Lily / Sugar'n Cream which can be found on the Yarnspirations web site.

Lily / Sugar'n Cream, Yarnspirations:
"Lily Fun in the Sun Doll" free pattern:  used for Red Dress.
"Back to School Lily Doll" free pattern: 
"Born on the 4th of July Doll" free pattern:
"Denim Doll" free pattern, Yarnspirations:

Yarnspirations, "doll" search results:
This search produced links to the Lily / Sugar'n Cream Lily Doll patterns which have thankfully been re-listed.

Other Links & References

Jodiebodie, "AKA (Annie K Amigurumi)" project page, Ravelry, November 2013:

Jodiebodie, "AKA Wardrobe 1- Dotty Daywear" project page, Ravelry, December 2013:

Jodiebodie, "AKA Amigurumi", blog post, Lupey Loops, 31 December 2015:

Little Colourful Teacher, blog:


  1. I really love that colourful skirt. I wonder could I make one for myself.

    1. Would you knit or crochet or sew or something else? Little Colourful Teacher has a lot of polka-dotted clothes and accessories and she brightens up the world wherever she goes. I hope Kwokkie Doll's skirt gives you lots of inspiration, Gillian.
      Jodie xx

  2. The skirt is amazing Jodie but sooo many ends to sew in, a real labour of love to have the patience for that! x

    1. It certainly was a labour of love, Sharon. I knew the skirt wouldn't be finished in time to give it to the Little Colourful Teacher on her last day so Kwokkie Doll was ready in her sundress and shoes, and the skirt was delivered at a later date with a collection of other 'travelling clothes'. I don't think I would have had the patience or motivation to tidy up all those ends if the love wasn't there. I totally recommend it as a stashbuster though!
      Jodie xx

  3. That is ridiculously cute, Jodie!! Reminded me of when my youngest had a baby doll and would arrive at my elbow informing me that "Baby needs..." and demand it be created forthwith! She had quite an extensive wardrobe in the end, but she was MUCH bigger than this little one...I don't know that I'd have had the patience for such creative fiddliness!

    1. Oh, how adorable (your youngest). That is so cute! Did YOU have fun making the doll's clothes? I surprised myself at how much fun it was. It was also a necessity - from the moment Kwokkie Doll was born, she required a practical wardrobe - and I got carried away with the enjoyment of it all, despite the fiddliness (and yes, it WAS fiddly!). Whatever happened to all the baby doll clothes that you made? My mother and grandmother used to make clothes for my dolls and teddies - I wonder whether the pattern book is still existing somewhere as I would love to find it. I can remember the cover and pictures because I spent many hours as a girl browsing through it and 'making orders' like your youngest for new clothes for dolly.
      Jodie xx

  4. So clever! I'd like a pair of glasses just like that.

    Rachel xo

    1. Hi Rachel,thanks for dropping by!
      I suppose I could have sourced glasses from a doll or teddy bear supplier but it is often tricky for me to get to the shops. With a short timeline, it was quicker and easier for me to use the materials at hand plus I could fashion the glasses into just the right shape. There are a few more details about these glasses, including a close-up photograph of them, in the blog entry "AKA Amigurumi" (December 2015):
      I had never seen or made anything like them before so it was a fun challenge. Thanks for your kind words.
      Jodie :-)

  5. these clothes, that little doll, this post are all AWESOME. AND, I LOVE her glasses.

    1. I hope she has brought a smile to your face today, Mary-Anne. So many people wear glasses and yet so few dolls or toys wear glasses. Isn't that strange? These glasses were fun to devise and make but took some mathematics to work out the best order of crocheting the frames. I suppose Kwokkie Doll will need more than one pair at some stage.
      Jodie xx

  6. Hi Jodie, I love all your little makes! The doll is so cute and the wardrobe you made for her suits her well! :) I love all the little touches and ideas behind it all. Perhaps you could make a little scarf or shawl or sunhat, too? Great way to use up bits and pieces! Likewise it would be a good idea to sew a few little things from scraps of fabric?

    Lovely to see your creativity at play!!!
    Ingrid xx

    1. Funny you should say that, Ingrid. I made sure that Kwokkie Doll owns at least one scarf and a glittery shawl for those evening outings. I am sure she will show them off very soon. Dolls' clothes are fantastic stashbusters. We could sew some clothes from fabric too but I do love when it is all yarn.
      Adults need playtime too! - It would be awesome to have a 'playdate' with everyone and their crochet. Shame we all live in different parts of the world but I am always thankful that we have the internet and blogger to find other like minded crocheters (like yourself). xx