Wow! My last post put out a request for little hospital doll gowns for A Doll Like Me. What a fantastic response! In all honesty, I am not surprised, just grateful. Here are a few pictures of the gowns made so far.
These cuties were made by my sister, Tina! She used soft flannel. Don’t you love the prints she chose.
Check these out! Twelve tiny hospital gowns were donated by Jean. This collection is so sweet; Jean used a variety of fun prints and colors.
Dawn made six gowns and also created six whole cloth quilts. These are super cute and much appreciated! Thanks Dawn.
If I am counting correctly, Pat made NINETEEN gowns for Amy. That is amazing. What a fantastic donation for A Doll Like Me.
In total thus far, one little post garnered forty doll size hospital gowns. This should keep Amy supplied for a good while! Of course there were seventeen responses asking for the mailing information and offering gowns. This means more are in the works. I say it all the time, but the generosity of this community never fails to amaze me! The need for these little gowns is ongoing so if you just feel like you want to make something simple, use up a few bits of fabric, make a charitable gift, feel free. These are always welcome!
I was asked how to fit the pattern pieces on a fat quarter. It can be a bit of a trick. I took a picture that might help.
If I am using a fat quarter to make a doll gown, I fold one length over just wide enough to lay out the front piece on the fold and pin it down. Then I fold the other side down for the back piece, which isn’t cut on the fold (because it needs to open in the back). It will lay end to end with the front piece and will look like it is over lapping. but it isn’t. I hope this helps. Does it make sense? Some fat quarters might be a tight squeeze but it does work. The size of the doll gown is flexible and if it is just a wee bit narrower, it will still work. Just in case you need it, here is the link to the free pattern.
Much time has passed since I last made anything for A Doll Like Me. You might remember back in 2018 I held a Spread the Love Campaign asking quilters to make doll quilts for Amy to include with the dolls she makes for children with limb or other physical differences. The campaign was an overwhelming success. Amy continues to receive doll quilts from people who heard about the need. The knowledge of A Doll Like Me has grown tremendously in the past five years or so. Amy’s work has been featured on many news sites, social media sites and popular magazines. All of this is important as the main goal for Amy is to increase awareness of the need for children with physical differences to be able to have true representation in the world. She wants each child to see themselves as enough, to see their own physicality represented in toys and dolls, and to feel accepted.
A few months ago, I chatted with Amy on-line just to check in with her. I wanted to see how she was doing. It is tough building a non-profit, raising three active kids and making doll after doll. But she is one driven person! Anyway, she and I visited a bit. Toward the end of the conversation I asked her if she needed anything from the quilting community. Her response was…. ‘well, now that you mention it….. I could use more hospital doll gowns.” She is always so grateful for whatever we provide and doesn’t want to impose on people.
Do any of you remember making these? Above is a picture of the first few I made.
The gowns we make and donate to Amy are given to children who have one of these dolls and are facing a hospital stay. There is a very therapeutic aspect in playing with their doll. Being able to dress up the doll in a hospital gown is one more way to deal with possible fear or anxiety around the upcoming stay. Many of Amy’s children bring their doll with them when in the hospital and it is beneficial to have the hospital gown on the doll. This somewhat familiarizes the hospital process for the child.
Looking back at blog posts and pictures, I learned it has been a very long time since I made anything for Amy. Time to sew up some sweet gowns for her dolls! In the pictures above, I put the gowns on dolls smaller than what Amy makes. But it is fun to see them as they are used. Princesses, Pooh Bear and baby dinosaurs as well as a fun blue print were chosen for this round. Of course all were made from the stacks of fabric I have stashed away. Fortunately I also have a large selection of (thrifted) bias tapes which makes things really easy.
Six gowns ready to be mailed to Wisconsin. How about you? Would you be able to make a few of these and send them to A Doll Like Me? They are easy to make and require very little fabric. Use just one fat quarter and some bias tape to make one gown! Here is the tutorial for you. Amy would be grateful for any gown(s) you feel comfortable making and sending to her. If you are interested that would be just wonderful! Many of you already have her mailing information. However, if you need it, let me know in the comments and I will email it to you privately.
OK – that is it for now! I am working on my Positivity Quilt. Yesterday I made a little butterfly using Dresden pieces. It is adorable and I think the quilt needs a few more! We have an abundance of Swallowtail butterflies in the yard this year and they seem to really enjoy our flowers.
This week hasn’t been one of the best. Lots of migraine kept me down most of the week. Such is life. There isn’t much to be done about it except take naps and wait for it to be finished.
Once I was feeling a bit better, I decided to make a few hospital gowns for Amy. Remember last week I posted an update on A Doll Like Me? I mentioned Amy is running low on these sweet gowns she provides to children who are facing a hospital visit.
Each of these gowns take about one fat quarter or similar size scrap. You also need a bit of narrow, double fold bias tape. Check out this tutorial for instructions and a template to cut the pieces. The fun of this project (other than the satisfaction of making something to create a smile for a child) is picking fun fabrics to use.
I had a bit of this Disney princess fabric in a scrap bag given to me by a friend. I was just able to squeak a gown out of it. It is a 1/2″ shorter than the others but I don’t think that will be an issue. Luckily I was able to center Cinderella on the front of the gown. I hope there is a princess-loving girl out there who needs this gown for her doll.
I also used a bit of this vintage red print. Last year, after Valentine’s Day, I saw several rolls of ribbon in a clearance bin at Michaels and snapped them up. It was fun to use some to create the ties on the back of the gown.
Also, thinking it would be fun to play with those decorative stitches on my machine again, I used a heart motif to finish the edges of the back side of the gown. The hearts aren’t the best, but it was fun.
I packed these up and hope to take them to the post office. I have heard from a number of you who are making gowns for A Doll Like Me. This is awesome and I really appreciate your time and creativity! If you want to give it a try and feel unsure or have questions, I am happy to help!!
Linking up with several fun link parties, including the DrEAMI event over at Sandra’s blog!
Last year I had the immense pleasure to start a friendship with Amy Jandrisevits, owner and creator at A Doll Like Me.
You might remember the Share the Love Campaign hosted here. Many, many quilters joined in to make special doll quilts to be sent with the lovely dolls Amy makes for children with physical differences.
So many sweet doll quilts were donated!
The campaign resulted in well over 300 doll quilts and I still receive emails now and then from quilters who want to send one to Amy.
I wanted to provide a brief update for readers as it has been nearly a year since the campaign. Of course the need for these amazing dolls is on-going and Amy continues to sew constantly in an effort to keep up with the demand. The amazing thing is Amy’s work has been noticed! Not just by us and the families she works with. Lately, she has experienced a surge of interest by the media as they are made aware of the important work she does.
Media exposure is a wonderful thing as it helps to spread the idea that all children want/need/deserve representation. They need to see themselves as ‘normal’, to know that their differences are not to be hidden or embarrassed by. Receiving a doll that reflects them and looks like them helps them to do this. Having the media spread the word as they have been doing over the past weeks is going to teach a huge lesson in acceptance for readers who haven’t necessarily thought in these terms or been exposed to this idea.
One of the ways this media excitement started was due to an honor bestowed upon A Doll Like Me by the Go Fund Me organization. Amy has had a campaign running on Go Fund Me for quite some time. Last December the organization really took notice of Amy by giving her the Hero of the Month award in December. Each month Go Fund Me does a story on a campaign they feel is worthy in the hopes of spreading the word even further. When they gave this award to A Doll Like Me in December Amy’s campaign spread like crazy and donations in excess of $20,000 poured in. The donations continue as does the exposure for this cause.
Largely due to the Go Fund Me award, many media outlets became aware of the work Amy does. The story was picked up by the local CBS station in Wisconsin, providing great publicity for this important work. Click through to see the five minute video segment – it is fantastic!
Photo from an article in Highlights Magazine’s blog.
Amy’s work was also featured in a blog post for Highlights Magazine – remember that magazine from when we were young?
I am so happy to see the increase in exposure for A Doll Like Me and the fantastic financial support Amy is garnering with the Go Fund Me campaign. She will be able to continue to work on these special dolls and with the funding, provide them to families who might not be able to afford them.
Three of the quilts I made for Amy last year.
I chatted on-line with Amy this morning to check in. She has sent out in excess of 200 quilts since last year!! She still has a supply to work with but it makes her so happy to have shared so many. The quilts are such a special addition to the dolls and both child and family seem to value them greatly.
Doll clothes and hospital gowns donated to A Doll Like Me.
In addition to the doll quilts, several of us made tiny hospital gowns for Amy. She requested these because many of the children experience a high number of hospitalizations. The gowns make the experience even more relatable as they can dress their doll in one when they are going to have another stay. Pretend play and working through the anxiety of each hospital stay is made a bit more relevant with these gowns. When Amy sends one to a child she knows needs it, she gets marvelous feedback. The parents have told her it makes the doll a complete ‘mini-me’ for the child. Some moms have told Amy the hospital gown brought tears to their eyes (and to one father’s eyes as well). These tiny gestures are incredibly valuable.
It turns out Amy is just about out of the gowns. She has asked me to let you know this in the hope some of you would like to spend an hour and make one or two for her. They are so simple to make. See this post for details! It only takes a fat quarter, some bias tape and about an hour of your time to make one. If you could, please do spend a little time on this! I am happy to provide the mailing info for A Doll Like Me. Just email me – I don’t want to post the mailing information publicly on this post. My email is [email protected]. There is no time limit on this – she would love to receive them whenever someone is inclined to make one. Questions about this can be left in the comments and I will get back to you.
That’s it for now. I am so happy to see the word spread about A Doll Like Me. Thank you so much for taking part in this earlier and for helping out as time goes forward. Amy is humbled by and grateful for your support.
Linking up with a few favorites. See the list at the top of the page, under Link Ups.