Utility Skirt 18" Doll Clothes Pattern

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The “Utility Skirt” pattern, by Karen Lorraine Design, offers an opportunity to create a flattering A-line, mini skirt, which contains classy functioning pockets, contrast stitch detailing, and the option of eyelets and stringing. This modern skirt can be embellished and dressed up, or left minimal to suit the utilitarian style. This pattern is designed to be made out of woven cotton, and is fat-quarter friendly. It will fit 18-inch dolls such as  American Girl® or Our Generation™.

The “Utility Skirt” pattern contains in-depth tutorials on how-to-create the front safari pockets and the back welt pockets. The working pockets are explained in careful detail with clear illustrations. The front safari pockets demonstrate a box pleat type of pocket with the option of a pocket flap. There is also the choice of whether to line the pocket flap and safari pocket, or the option of leaving them unlined. The welt pockets are also functional and contain a charming pocket bag hidden behind them.

When it comes to the eyelets, there are two options for when the eyelets can be inserted. The first option focuses on the immediate stand-alone pattern piece where the eyelets need to go. This option allows you to insert the eyelets without the concern of messing up the entire skirt. The second (and preferred) method is to insert the eyelets at the end of the skirt construction.

All pockets can be finished with topstitching, as can the bands and pleat on the skirt.  A simple back closure allows the skirt to be used by little hands

Note: The tops in the cover photo are from the “Tyrol” blouse pattern, which can be purchased separately. The white blouse shows the pattern as written, while the striped sleeveless top shows the pattern without the sleeves and collar (and with the armlines and neckline simply folded under).

The model I have used for these patterns is an American Girl® doll known as Josefina (and is the 2014 version). Here are her measurements as follows:

  • Chest 11"
  • Waist 10½"
  • Hips 12"
  • Biceps 4¼"
  • Wrist 3½"

For this pattern, you may want to measure your doll’s waist and hip sizes. While this is a fitted skirt with no elastic in the waistband, you can easily alter the pattern if necessary, and some instructions are given for how to do this. This pattern has also been tested on various 18-inch dolls, including different-sized American Girl® dolls.

SUGGESTED FABRICS: Non-stretch, woven medium- to-lightweight cotton fabrics like quilting cotton and broadcloth for the main fashion fabric. Non-stretch, woven lightweight cotton like lawn or voile for the lining fabric.

Supplies Needed:

  • Main fashion fabric 20" (wide) x 13" (deep), non-stretch woven cotton (like quilting cotton, broadcloth). A fat quarter will be enough fabric for this pattern.
  • Lining fabric 7" (w) x 3½" (d) non-stretch lightweight woven cotton (like lawn, voile).
  • Eyelets and eyelet applier. The size of your eyelets will depend on what your store has available. I have used eyelets that measure 8mm on the outside and 5mm on the inside. Ideally, I’d prefer slightly smaller eyelets than what my store has. I have used 10 eyelets on all skirts.
  • Marker pen, pins, or safety pins for marking pleats and pockets.
  • 22" of stringing for use in the eyelets; for example, suede thonging, ribbon, cording, thin rope, chain (with a width to fit your eyelets like 1/8- ¼").
  • Matching or contrasting thread.
  • Hook and loop tape, snap fasteners, or hook and eye closures.
  • Additional embellishments like ribbons, beads, and lace. (Optional.)
  • Stabilizer like interfacing for strengthening the fashion fabric pleating area at the centre front of the skirt (which will be pierced with eyelets) and for the waistband. (Optional.)
  • Fold-over elastic to use instead of the waistband piece. (Optional and not discussed in this pattern.)


    Skill Level:  Intermediate

    What You Get: One 45 page sewing pattern that you digitally download as a PDF file so you can start your project immediately! The PDF sewing pattern provides full color step-by-step illustrated instructions and full size pattern pieces. A PDF reader is required to view and print the files (example: Adobe Reader or Preview for MAC). The download link is received immediately after the transaction is complete. Print copies are NOT available.

    Download, Print, Sew!

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    Pixie Faire and the designers featured are not affiliated with American Girl®.

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