“Autumn Leaves in Color” for the Little Darlings

Gina is here to show off another autumn ensemble (this is my last for the Little Darlings) that I have made for her.  I fell in love with this tiny oak leaf cotton print and just had to buy it to make a fall dress for a certain sweetie.  The colors of the leaves in pumpkin, warm red, greens, and greys are so pretty.

autumn leaves in color 343

autumn leaves in color 359

This vintage styled headband (hat) design was floating around in my head and seemed to work nicely with the ensemble.  I designed the sweater with sleeves wide enough to go over the dress and a tad bit shorter to let the dress’s sleeves peek out a bit.

autumn leaves in color 351

Wool felt leaf appliques are hand cut and embroidered onto the sweater and headband.  Do you like my tiny acorns?  They are bronze Czech glass crystals with a curved bullion stitch at the top.

autumn leaves in color 386

At the top of the lace are alternating hand sewn 14k gold filled beads and topaz colored seed beads.

autumn leaves in color 376

I have been trying on and off to make a sleeved dress pattern where I can neatly hide those raw edges and not drive myself crazy in the process.  Finally…I did it.  The armhole sleeve seam allowances are tucked underneath the lining which is hand stitched and the sleeve’s hems and underarm seams are doubled over and hand stitched.  The result is an inside with no seam allowances or raw edges showing.  I know, you’re probably thinking I’m crazy, right?  These little things make me happy, sorry.

autumn leaves in color 393

autumn leaves in color 399

For more information on Gina’s new ensemble please visit my website’s “Available for Sale” page.

“A Toasty Warm Autumn” for the Little Darlings

This new 8-piece ensemble called “A Toasty Warm Autumn” will keep every Little Darling who lives in a cooler climate cozy and warm throughout the fall months.  The hand knitwear (sweater, hat, scarf) are all made with Peruvian Highland wool.  The sweater is a bit longer length and the hat has cute ear flaps for those chilly brisk days.  I found that when I keep my neck warm I stay warm so I made a generous scarf to wrap around the Little Darlings neck to help her stay warm too.

a toasty warm autumn 173

a toasty warm autumn 182

Even though it is fall, if you look closely enough you might still be able to find a few blossoms blooming.  Gina made a small bouquet with the blossoms she found.  A pretty blue silk bow is attached to the bouquet along with an elastic cord to help the Little Darlings hold it in their cute little hands.

a toasty warm autumn 189

a toasty warm autumn 212

The fine wale cotton corduroy dress can be dressed up with jewelry and a hair bow.

a toasty warm autumn 208

Most of the fullness in this drop waisted dress is towards the back and sides which give a bustled look to the back of the skirt.

The squirrels here in northern Illinois have been so busy collecting acorns that it got me thinking that I had better get busy with some cool weather wear.  What do you think?  Will it be another cold fall/winter?

For more information on this set please visit my website.

Also, look for a new price on ” Orange You Ready for Fall? ” for the Little Darlings.

“Tiny Punkin”, a dress/hat set for Amelia Thimble

Well, fall is officially here.  Bring on the fall colors!  Here is Amelia Thimble modeling her new fall dress/hat set for you.  It is knit in a hand dyed light shade of pumpkin and hand embroidered with teeny tiny bullion stitched pumpkins, white blossoms, and greenery.  Oh, and every pumpkin needs a perfect little stem.  Amelia’s cap is pumpkin shaped and decorated with more embroidery.

tiny punkin 304

tiny punkin 308

tiny punkin 331

tiny punkin 332

tiny punkin 315

For more information on “Tiny Punkin” please visit my website.  Amelia says, “Thanks for visiting and have a great fall night.”


Orange You Ready for Fall?

My Little Darling, Gina, sure is.  Here she is modeling her new one-of-a-kind fall dress and sweater set.  I’ve had this wool/angora yarn for a few months and finally got to use it for this fall ensemble.  The sweater is so soft and warm I wish I could wear it.  Vertical lace panels decorate the sleeves, front edges, and the back; bronze Czech glass beads button up this cozy sweater.  The dress is a pumpkin color cotton print with lots of wonderful colors used for the flowers and dots.  The dress features a lacy panel on the bodice and a frilly tulle ruffle at the hemline.  The dress is entirely lined in white cotton lawn with all of the seams hidden between the lining and fabric; the lining is also invisibly hand stitched.

I think this set is perfect for picking out the perfect pumpkin in the pumpkin patch, don’t you?

orange you ready for fall 141

orange you ready for fall 151

orange you ready for fall 166

orange you ready for fall 147

orange you ready for fall 157

For more information on Gina’s one-of-a-kind fall ensemble please visit my website.

It’s Almost Fall

Yes, it is.  Although it is technically still summer (and yesterday morning was 80 degrees) today it is 20+ degrees colder.  When I go outside I think of Halloween.  No, not yet, please…

Here is my Little Darling, Gina, modeling a new fall outfit for you.  It is made up of a cotton floral dress, hand knit and embroidered sweater, hand knit beret, cotton tights, and a bracelet.  I bought the dress’s fabric from Vogue Fabrics in Evanston, IL many years ago.  I fell in love with the colors in this muted, yet colorful fabric.  The top I made for myself fast became a favorite of mine which I wore so much that I wore it out.  Looking back at my photo albums the top I had made found it’s way into many pictures over a period of 2-3 years.  My favorite colors in this floral print are the violet and blush pink so I chose to highlight those colors for this 5-piece ensemble.


it's almost fall 967




For more information on Gina’s “It’s Almost Fall” ensemble please visit my website.

A Visit to the Chicago Botanic Gardens

I’ve professed my love for the Chicago Botanic Gardens in a previous post.  Well, we finally made it there today for the first time this year.   Since we usually only get there once a year, it’s interesting to mix up the visits as to the time of year.  At the end of the summer the vegetable garden is in it’s full glory and it is massive.  I kept saying to my daughter, “I wish I lived here.”  Today they had a little farmer’s market too, and we were able to buy some of the vegetables grown at the Chicago Botanic Gardens.  Yum!

botanic gardens 017

As we were walking through the apple orchard we noticed that the trees were bare of fruit, like our apple tree in our backyard.  I wrote about our apple tree last year and took pictures of Amelia Thimble climbing around in it.  Well, this sign told us why.

botanic gardens 128

I looked up and took this picture of the grapes growing above out heads in the arbor, so pretty against the blue sky.  I wanted to pick a bunch and start munching on them, but didn’t…

botanic gardens 134

I brought my Pukipuki Sugar and Izzy with me.  We found a pink rosebush that happened to be in the shade while we were still in the vegetable garden.  Sugar climbed up and I got a picture of her.  The roses match her dress so nicely.

botanic gardens 139

In the walled English Garden I took a few pictures of Izzy and Sugar under a tree with dappled shade.

botanic gardens 077

botanic gardens 103

Then they each wanted to climb a tree.  :)  Hang on tight!

botanic gardens 106

botanic gardens 121

Here are a few more pictures of some things we saw today.



botanic gardens 027

botanic gardens 052

botanic gardens 038

  Hope your day was as beautiful as ours was here in Illinois.

Fall?…No… It’s Still Summer!

Fall is right around the corner…!?  No, say it isn’t so!  I think it was just the Fourth of July yesterday.  (thinking about it…)  Oh no… that was almost two months ago.  Yikes.  Where did our summer go?

I do like fall, I really do.  Here in Illinois autumn is usually still feeling warm and usually sunny.  So, no complaints with fall (autumn).  It’s the season that tries to slide in unnoticed right after fall, (and sometimes even before fall has finished up it’s time in the spotlight) now that’s the one that I don’t particularly like and that’s saying it nicely.  Anyway… (I’m not even going to think about that bully of a season right now.)

I’ve been creating some things for fall, but not too fall”ish”.  Don’t want to dive right in when I can get by with simply dipping my big toe in, right?  And, I’m not quite ready to let glorious summertime go.

a rosy autumn 929

First up, is a new ensemble for our favorite Effner Little Darlings.  It is colorful yet with a muted palette goes beautifully this time of year.  Gina’s floral print cotton dress is reminiscent of the 1970’s with it’s folksy feel and the 1980’s with those large cabbage roses.  The muted shades of rose, blue, yellow, green, and white are on a ground of chocolate brown.  See, a fall palette can be quite colorful.  The lace cardigan is hand knit out of fine baby alpaca/silk in a rosy pink tonal colorway.  Tiny Delica seed beads knitted into the sweater add sparkle amongst the lace panels.  Pink glass pearls button up the sweater, if desired.  Gina’s cap is a slightly slouchy style with a hand made tassel.  Both the sweater and cap are hand embroidered, with rosebuds on the sweater and a rose on the cap.  This fall”ish” ensemble is finished off with rosy hued pastel cotton knit tights, a bracelet with a cloisonne bead and metal heart charm, and a white cotton lacy sash that ties in the back.

a rosy autumn 925

Another lace panel is on the center back of sweet Gina’s cardigan.

a rosy autumn 902

a rosy autumn 928


 Next, is a dress/hat set for little Amelia Thimble and Izzy which I call “Tiny Bit for Fall”.  Aster colored colonial knot clusters, warm pink bullion rosebuds, and straight stitched fall grass decorate this hand knit oat colored mohair/silk set.  The tiniest pink satin ribbon bows are sewn onto the dress and hat for some extra “pink”.

tiny bit for fall 974

tiny bit for fall 994

tiny bit for fall 004

tiny bit for fall 972

For more information on these new ensembles, please visit my website.

Our Summer Garden

I am back from a wonderfully long and very relaxing vacation.  I was able to spend time with my entire family and have many memories that I will always treasure.

I returned home last Tuesday and am still finding my way back to where I left off four weeks ago.  Am getting there little by little…

I started “Our Summer Garden” for Patience and Amelia Thimble before I left, did some knitting while away, and was able to finish it up within this last week at home.

Just like my flower garden this sister set is in full bloom and oh, so colorful.  Hope you enjoy the pictures.

our summer garden 828

our summer garden 821

our summer garden 842

our summer garden 859

our summer garden 862

our summer garden 868

Patience’s sweater and Amelia Thimble’s soft and cuddly dress/hat are knit with lace weight mohair silk yarn.  The embroidery coordinates with the colors in the cotton print used for the dress.

our summer garden 827

I pulled out some of my vintage paper flowers which were the perfect color of blue and attached a pink silk ribbon bow for a sweet little bouquet.

While on vacation my sister let me raid her bead stash… so fun… Patience has a bracelet from my scavenging.  Thanks, sis!  You’re the best!

“Summer’s Sweetheart” for the Little Darlings

I was able to complete one more summery sundress outfit for the Little Darlings.  I think this is the last one though… :(

I made the bodice of this dress the focal point so I designed a bolero to show off the lace and silk long tailed bow when it is being worn.  The lace is a scalloped rayon that is hand sewn onto the dress with tiny seed beads at the points of the lace and a line of pink embroidery at the top.  The bolero is as light as a feather being made out of lace weight mohair/silk and knit on slightly larger needles.  The rosebuds are colorful shades of pinks and purples and placed along the neckline and bottom corners.  Finely crocheted ballet slipper shoes, rose hair ties, and a bracelet complete the look.  Oh, underneath it all is a pair of prettily embroidered panties.

summer's sweetheart 652

summer's sweetheart 649

summer's sweetheart 630b

summer's sweetheart 667

summer's sweetheart 668

summer's sweetheart 675

summer's sweetheart 643

For more information on this set please visit cindyricedesigns.com

“Violas & Violet” for Amelia Thimble

My new “Basically Amelia Thimble” doll suggested that I make her a viola embroidered dress too.  What a great idea she had!  Her blue eyes look so pretty with these colors.  She even got a little hat to go with the dress.  (Pukipuki Sugar is a bit jealous, but that’s the way it goes…)  This dress is embroidered with viola blossoms each in a different combination of purples and blues.  What fun!

violas & violet 564

violas & violet 558

violas & violet 553

violas & violet 563

violas & violet 618

violas & violet 548

For more information on “Violas & Violet” please visit cindyricedesigns.com