Free Sewing Tutorial: Socks to Doll Tights
My new pattern that I am working on is screaming “tights!” to me. Tights would completely look adorable with this design. I’ve seen a lot of people’s tights they make from knee high socks, so I thought I’d do it that way, too. Well, I tried 1 tutorial, but didn’t like the fit. Tried a few others and just didn’t like the fit.
My problem: they were too hard to get on and when I was taking them off, they would pull on the legs. I don’t want to damage my doll in the name of wearing tights for a photo shoot. I sulked for days, thinking I can’t make tights. I kept this to myself and was too embarrassed to post any photos of my tights, even though they looked fine.
Then I remembered:
“You must do the thing you think you cannot do.” ― Eleanor Roosevelt
So I put on my big girl pants and tried again. I adjusted the tutorial and realized what the problem was (for me at least). The tutorials are only using one sock, which makes the waist and hip area very narrow—Too narrow in my humble opinion.
Now socks come in pairs (when you buy them new at least), so I experimented with a pair that was not the right scale for a doll –the dots were too big and scattered weird. The result was much, much better fitting. The waist is a normal size and the tights go on and off easily. No wrestling going on or pulling her leg. Here you can see what I’m talking about.
Do you see what I saw? The American Girl Doll has an 11″ waist (or more if your doll is a pre-matel AG). Why am I trying to shove her into a 5-6″ waist band? No wonder.
So I decided to record my process of re-designing the idea to use both socks, which will then create a waistband that was properly sized for my doll.
Here we go:
2 knee high socks, adult size
stretch machine needle
Start by turning the socks inside out.
Measure 4 inches down from the top of the knee socks. Make a line at this point.
Measure 12″ down for the top of the knee high sock. Make a line along this point.
Measure 1 1/2″ from side (the opposite side from where you made the first mark). Draw a line along this 1 1/2″ point. As you near the line along the 4″ point (which will become the crotch of the tights), widen slightly to 1 3/4″ -2″.
I also angled the “toe” area, just because I think my dolls like less bulk there. I think they may have tactile sensitivities 😉 I did it to both sides, but forgot to take a picture after marking the slanted line to match the other side. I did take one of the polka dot trial run
Sew along the lines. Use a narrow zigzag stitch – I set my machine at 1.5 width. Back stitch at the start and end of your stitching lines.
Cut away the “foot” of the sock. Then cut right next to the stitching as shown below.
Carefully cut open the center front and back to the top of the knee high, so it can open up like shown.
Set this sock aside and repeat all steps for second sock (remember it’s a tutorial using 2 socks instead of 1?)
Turn 1 sock right side out and leave the other inside out.
Place the right side out sock into the wrong side out sock, matching seams and top edges together. The socks should now be right sides together. Pin and sew the center front, crotch, and center back seams with a narrow zigzag stitch. Remember to backstitch to secure your stitches and seam.
Turn your tights to the right side and they’re done!
I hope you liked this tutorial and try it.