Founding Fathers 18" Doll Clothes Pattern

5 reviews   |  

The Flossie Potter "Founding Fathers" wardrobe pattern is based on historical sketches and other artwork as well as descriptions from historical fashion books about 18th century attire. America's founding fathers would have worn clothing that resembles the garments represented here.

Two similar yet distinct styles are given in this pattern. One would have been worn by an affluent gentleman who might be influential in his colony. The second would be worn by a laborer; perhaps a silversmith, shopkeeper, or farmer. The gentleman might also have worn these clothes when not in public.

A laborer would wear his WAISTCOAT (pronounced wess-kit) unbuttoned. His SHIRT also would have been partially unbuttoned. A painting of Paul Revere shows him in a similar outfit with the cuffs of his sleeves tucked inside rather than rolled up.

A gentleman would wear his waistcoat and shirt completely buttoned. At the neck he might sport a cravat (a very long piece of light-weight fabric such as silk) which he would have wrapped twice around his neck and then tied in a knot or bow. It was fashionable to tuck the ends through a button hole. (This pattern does not have a cravat, since it would be very easy to cut a long strip of fabric without requiring a paper pattern piece.) However, there are instructions for making another style element, the FRILL. This was a waterfall of lace that would be worn cascading down from the front of the collar.

The gentleman's CUTAWAY COAT had split tails that could be worn down or folded up into triangles that exposed the lining. The coat usually was worn open, but it could have a long row of decorative buttons and would have been highly adorned with trim.

And, of course, they both wore BREECHES.

Something intriguing about these outfits is that the shirts were very long - nearly to mid-thigh length. Could it be for extra warmth? Could it be to use as a night shirt? Let your imagination decide.

Pair this pattern with Flossie Potter's "Colonial Accessories" (tricorn hat and shoes) to complete the ensembles.

This intermediate level PDF sewing pattern has 19 pages of instruction with full-color photo illustrations, 8 pages of printable summary instructions (to save on printer ink!), and 11 pages of pattern pieces.   

This PDF sewing pattern is designed to fit 18" dolls such as American Girl®

Recommended Fabrics: cotton, batiste, brocade

Supplies Needed:
1/4 yd of medium weight fabric such as cotton
Remnant for lining
Iron-on interfacing (5" remnant)
Buttons (1/4"), desired number
Optional Snaps (small), same number as buttons

1/3 yd of medium weight fabric such as cotton or broadcloth
Buttons (1/4"), 8 - 10 as desired
Snaps (small), same number as buttons
2/3 yd Pearl Cotton thread

Cut Away Coat:
1/3 yd medium weight fabric or light-weight upholstery fabric or brocade
1/3 yd lining fabric
Interfacing 12" x 12" (approximate) remnant
(Optional) decorative trim

Shirt #1 (plain):
1/3 yd light weight fabric such as batiste
Interfacing (remnant)
Buttons (1/4"), desired number
Snaps, same number as buttons

Shirt #2 (fancy):
Same as shirt #1 but add:
8 1/2" of Lace (3/4" wide)

9 1/2" Grosgrain ribbon (1/2" wide)
30" of 3/4"-wide lace (length can vary for preference)
1 Snap

Point turner
Zig-zag sewing machine
Embroidery needle
Hand needle
Fray-stopping liquid

Skill Level:  Intermediate

What You Get: One 44 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!

*Creating a customer account will ensure that you have the ability to access your purchased (and free) files at any time.

For detailed information and answers to the most common questions, be sure to read the Terms of Use and FAQ's related to the doll clothes patterns sold at Pixie Faire.

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

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Teresa A.
United States United States

Beautiful professional looking clothes

The instructions and pictures were straight forward. I'm not a beginner, but the only complicated piece for me was the pocket welt on the waist coat. I haven't done those before, but there's always Youtube! I absolutely love the way things came out--and I was able to make everything out of my scrap fabric stash. My daughter wanted a boy doll for Christmas with colonial era clothing to go with her girl doll, but the boy clothes ready made were so expensive. This pattern was the perfect solution for her gift!

United States United States

Instructions assume sewing proficiency

I love the results I had using all the pattern pieces. I found some of the instructions difficult to follow because the photos are not too clear, and not every step of the procedures are pictured. I think a sewing beginner would not have success. I found success because I have made many garments in the past and could draw on my sewing experience.

Pixie Faire Founding Fathers 18 Doll Clothes Pattern Review
A Pixie Faire Customer
United States United States

Founding fathers

I made the waistcoat and the shirt. I especially like the waistcoat. I enjoy Flossie's historical notes. I sometimes find her instructions _too_ detailed, so that I sort of lose where I'm headed. But her patterns are uniquely wonderful.

Pixie Faire Founding Fathers 18 Doll Clothes Pattern Review
Bill Y.
United States

Quality designs and patterns

The overall quality of the patterns is excellent. The directions are easy to follow and well-written. I have never had less than wonderful results with any of your patterns, and this one in particular was fun to do. I really do like collecting and using historical patterns. You all have outdone yourselves with this collection!


Love It

I have not made the complete item but i just have some other dresses bedding and other outfits to finish love the patterns pixy fairy hope to get the items done by December! Hope to post some pictures soon!!