Step it Up! Series: Make a Sleeveless Doll Top with the School Bell Blouse Pattern Hack

Your Oh Sew Kat! PDF patterns can just be the starting point for so many more outfits to make for your dolls.  One advantage of using PDF digital patterns, instead of commercial, tissue patterns, are they are much simpler to print a new copy, and make a few tweaks, to make something a little different than the original pattern design. You can find a long list of easy pattern hacks of Oh Sew Kat! patterns on the Tutorials Page.

Try this fun pattern hack to make a sleeveless blouse for your 18 inch Doll.

This post will show you how to take my popular fall long sleeve blouse pattern, the School Bell Blouse, and make an easy, breezy sleeveless top for warmer weather too!  Now you can use this pattern all year long!

Make a cute, sleeveless top for your 18 inch doll with this easy pattern hack of the School Bell Blouse sewing pattern by Oh Sew Kat! #americangirl #welliewishers #ohsewkat #dollclothes #patternhack

See more ways to change up the look of the School Bell Blouse pattern here and here. The School Bell Blouse is available in 3 sizes. This hack will work the same for all three.

Easy sewing pattern for 18 inch dolls by Oh Sew Kat! School Bell Blouse for DIY doll clothes. #ohsewkat #18inchdolls #sewingpattern #dollclothes

Purchase the pattern here or on other sites where Oh Sew Kat! patterns are sold.

To make the School Bell into a sleeveless blouse, you really just need to make one change to the pattern.  You can use either View A, the pleated neck top, or View B, the peplum top for this pattern hack.

View A:  Make Sleeveless School Bell Blouse with a Pleated Neck.

Make a cute, sleeveless top for your 18 inch doll with this easy pattern hack of the School Bell Blouse sewing pattern by Oh Sew Kat! #americangirl #welliewishers #ohsewkat #dollclothes #patternhack

View A:  Pleated Neck Sleeveless Top:

  1.  Cut out the front and back for the top of your main fabric. Do not cut out the sleeves or the facing.  Cut out an additional front and back using the pattern pieces from view B. This will act as the lining (inside) for your top.
  2. Serge or zig zag stitch the bottom edges of the lining front and back.
  3. Create the neckline pleat as directed in the pattern.  Press.
  4. Sew the fronts to backs at shoulders as stated in the directions and press seams open.  Do the same for the lining pieces. (Main fabric to main fabric and lining fabric to lining fabric.)
  5. With right sides together, pin the lining to the main fabric at the neckline and arm holes.  Stitch, clip curves, press, and turn to right side.  Press well.  (Note:  this turning to the right side can be tricky with smaller doll sizes.  See this tutorial and this one to see the ways and tools I use if you start to have trouble. Just take your time.)
  6. With right sides together, open up side seams and pin them together.  Stitch as one seam (you are stitching the main fabric front to the main fabric back, and the lining fabric front to the lining fabric back in this step.)
  7. Pull it down, right sides, out and press arm hole if needed.
  8. Hem and finish the back opening according to the pattern directions.

View B:  Make a Sleeveless School Bell Blouse with Peplum Skirt

Make a cute, sleeveless top for your welliewishers doll with this easy pattern hack of the School Bell Blouse sewing pattern by Oh Sew Kat! #americangirl #welliewishers #ohsewkat #dollclothes #patternhack

View B:  Peplum Top:

  1.  Cut out the peplum, two front pieces and two back pieces.  Do not cut out the sleeves or the facing.  Your additional front and back pieces will act as the lining of your top.
  2. Serge or zig zag stitch the bottom edges of the lining front and back.
  3. Sew the fronts to backs at shoulders as stated in the directions and press seams open.  Do the same for the lining pieces. (Main fabric to main fabric and lining fabric to lining fabric.)
  4. With right sides together, pin the lining to the main fabric at the neckline and arm holes.  Stitch, clip curves, press, and turn to right side.  Press well.  (Note:  this turning to the right side can be tricky with smaller doll sizes.  See this tutorial and this one to see the ways and tools I use if you start to have trouble. Just take your time.)
  5. With right sides together, open up side seams and pin them together.  Stitch as one seam (you are stitching the main fabric front to the main fabric back, and the lining fabric front to the lining fabric back in this step.)
  6. Pull it down, right sides out, and press arm hole if needed.
  7. Attach the peplum, sew the hem, and finish the back opening according to the pattern directions.
Sew a doll dress for your American Girl doll with easy print at home PDF sewing patterns by OhSewKat. #60sfashion #diydollclothes #sewingpattern #swingdress

You can also make a sleeveless version of the School Bell Blouse Dress, by combining this pattern hack with this one.

Find more ideas for the School Bell Blouse pattern here and here.  What will your doll wear today?  Find the patterns at the links below.

School Bell Blouse Pattern for 18 inch Dolls (like American Girl®

School Bell Blouse Pattern for 14.5 inch Dolls (like Wellie Wishers™ and Glitter Girls)

School Bell Blouse Pattern for 16 inch Animators’ Dolls

Sewing patterns to make doll clothes by Oh Sew Kat!