Wet Sunday in the Doll Room

A New Dress for Rosie

Sunday was a cold, wet day so it seemed like a good time to get on with a job I’ve been meaning to do for a while; making a new dress for Rosie O’Donnell. Rosie came in her original outfit but as she doesn’t fit regular Barbie clothing I thought I’d try my hand at creating something for her. I wrote recently about finding a pair of shoes to fit her. I recently got some Fashion Royalty shoes which fit but are a little loose. I solved this by putting tiny pieces of material inside like insoles but after only wearing them for a few hours Rosie had dark coloured marks on her feet so I’ve taken them off for now. Rosie, and anyone else that wears these shoes will need to wear them with stockings to avoid this problem in future. I’m not made of Remove-Zit. It will solve the sizing problem anyway.

Rosie O'Donnell

Now for Rosie’s wardrobe I’d found a couple of dresses that she could wear. I had some handmade cotton dresses I’d bought years ago which must have been made to fit a Tammy or Sindy because they are a bit loose on Barbie. I found Rosie could wear them although the bodice is snug. I found a generic skirt, blouse and jacket that also fit her but although I liked the colour I thought it looked a bit cheap and still not quite what I wanted.

Next I tried making her a skirt from some stretch material that I had. It didn’t look too bad with the white blouse but it was a bit bulky on her and I really wanted something more fitted. I decided to keep experimenting with stretch material as I felt it would be more forgiving if I didn’t cut it right. My sister recently gave me a box of scraps of material that she’d acquired from somewhere and there were some pieces of stretch material amongst them, the sort you use for a neckband and cuffs on sweatshirts. I thought this might be good for Barbie clothing that required minimal sewing. I’ve mentioned before that I’m hardly an expert seamstress.

I have a lot of dolls clothes patterns including old ones from women’s magazines in the 60’s and 70’s. I thought these would be a bit more generously sized. I wanted to make Rosie a plain black dress with a bit of shaping. In the end I chose a sweater pattern and added length to it to make it into a dress. I put two darts in the  front piece and then added a seam under the bust line. I tacked the dress together by hand so I could see how it fit and when I was satisfied I machine stitched it.

Rosie O'Donnell modelling her new dress and shoes.
Rosie O’Donnell modelling her new dress and shoes.

I must say I was very happy with the result although I had intended it to be a bit longer. I had bought the chain Rosie is wearing for the photos some time ago and it was the reason I wanted a plain dress, to show it off better. I took Rosie outside to photograph her so you can see the details of her outfit a bit better.

The dress close up.
The dress close up.

While I was doing all this I decided to do something else I had been meaning to do and wash some of the stiffening out of Rosie’s hair to make it look more natural. She looks pretty happy with the results and I’m now thinking about making her a coat, a shawl and maybe a better skirt.


  1. A perfect LBD for curvy Rosie, great job. That style suits her very much.

    I don’t own a Rosie so I have no idea what her body looks like. Is it comparable with the Happy Family Grandma’s?


  2. This classic dress is so smart! I was putting her in a knit maternity dress and before that in posh spice/galoob mini.She does wear Grandmas clothes quite well, but seeing this most excellent dress maybe I will take her out of Tammyand maternity wear. One of my Rosies is re=headed with a celebrity head/scarlet o’hara..so I plan on displaying some plus size home-made fashions.Great tip on the shoes.I was putting socks under ken shoes,but it looks silly with dresses.


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