Guest Author - Kate Pullen
Although Barbie has been with us for nearly half a century, her appeal has not waned and she remains as popular today as she ever was. Nor indeed has she aged, and she remains for ever young, sporting the latest fashions and following the latest trends.
Owners and collectors of Barbie enjoy dressing her in a variety of clothes, ranging from skimpy summer clothes, to winter woolly warmers. Many clothes can be bought for Barbie, however for the crocheter, there is the opportunity to crochet lucky Barbie her very own designer items.
Crocheting clothes for Barbie can be extremely satisfying. It is probably the only time you will crochet up a full length ball gown in a night! Being a small project, the items are quick to make and extremely portable. This means they are also handy for trying out new stitches or techniques. Patterns can be easily adapted with some bits of lace or tiny crocheted edges to make an outfit more flamboyant.
The key to crocheting the small scale gowns and clothes for Barbie is to work with fine threads and hooks. Working with thicker yarn and larger hooks will result in chunky fabric that will not work well on Barbie's slender frame. This can be a good way to use up any odds and ends of threads, silks or other fine yarns.
Crochet Barbie Clothes Patterns
Some famous crochet designers have taken designing for Barbie pretty seriously. Nicky Epstein, who is well known for her knitting and crochet designs and books, has published a book (Crochet for Barbie Doll) which contains 75 crochet patterns. The designs in this book have a Sixties flair. There are 75 designs including a few for Barbie's boyfriend, Ken. The patterns include a camel coat, a granny striped poncho, and a gorgeous wedding gown, as well as assorted accessories and props such as hats, purses, pillows, and afghans.
Crocheting clothes for Barbie is cross-generational, and can be a great way for grannies, aunties or mums to teach youngsters some key crochet skills. This can make a great activity that combines learning new things whilst making items of interest. Youngsters could also be encouraged to make their own designs. This would give them an introduction to crochet design, and help them better understand garment construction.
Finding Patterns on the Internet
There is lots of information on the internet about Barbie and her clothes. Crochet patterns for clothes for Barbie are widely available free of charge. These range from patterns for beginners through to patterns more suited to the experienced crocheter.
BarbieBasics.com Great website with LOTS of Barbie clothes.
FashionDollFantasy have a fantastic range of patterns, including some which are crocheted with beads.
CrochetPatternCentral.com - as always a great source of patterns!