How to Sew an Eyelet Hem

on June 16 | in Books, Sewing Tutorials + Patterns | by | with 115 Comments

This giveaway is now closed. Thank you!

Erin Hentzel is the creator and designer behind Avery Lane Designs, an indie sewing pattern company. She has authored two sewing books with C&T Publishing. Her first book, Sew in Style, is a book for kids to learn to sew for their dolls. Her new book, Doll Days! Sew an Everyday Wardrobe for 18″ Dolls: Stylish Patterns to Mix, Match & Embellish, teaches you how to go beyond the basics, while creating a modern-vintage wardrobe for 18” dolls.

From the publisher:

    Create fashion-forward outfits for today’s 18″ dolls! Whether you’re sewing for your own dolls or the little doll lover in your life, these mix-and-match styles offer unlimited possibilities! Sew tiny garments inspired by vintage styles, including a buttoned blouse, party dress, and scallop-hem skirt. Sewing enthusiasts who already know the basics can build a complete wardrobe from nine basic patterns. Learn techniques for hemming sleeves, adding ruffles and trims, and modifying patterns for additional looks.

Erin joins us on her Doll Days! book tour with tips for sewing special hems. Add eyelet to your favorite pattern or use the darling designs in her book to make something extra-special!

Would you like a copy of Doll Days!? Just tell us why you need the book and your comment will enter you to win… (U.S. addresses eligible for a hard copy book; international winners will receive an eBook version.)

Hi there! I’m Erin and I’m really excited to be here for my new book Doll Days! blog tour. Doll Days! is a doll clothing pattern book for 18” dolls, such as American Girl Dolls. It’s appropriate for confident beginners and up, and includes many photo tutorials and tips for making super looking doll duds. The designs are vintage inspired with a little modern flair.

The patterns are extremely versatile. I love to change things up and create many different looks using just one pattern. Sometimes it’s all about the details, so I created a little tutorial to show you one way to focus on just that. In this tutorial I’ll show you how to embellish a hem with pretty lace, creating a totally different look.

My tutorial will show you how to create this special hem on the Vintage Party Dress from Doll Days!, using a contrasting fabric and pretty eyelet lace. You’ll love how quick and easy this is to do. This technique can also be used for the Modern-Vintage Sundress pattern in the book, or for any clothing item you sew!


  • I used the Vintage Party Dress pattern + supplies
  • Scrap of contrasting fabric: 2” x 28”
  • Cotton eyelet flat lace: 28” long

Cutting Instructions:
Cut the main skirt piece. If you’re using the Vintage Party Dress pattern cut the main skirt piece at 5 ¼” x 28”.

Sewing Instructions:
Sew the bodice just as instructed on pages 43-45 of your copy of Doll Days! Before you sew the skirt to the bodice, follow these instructions for a special hem. These instructions can be used for any hem!

1. Hem one long edge of the contrasting fabric piece.

2. Baste the lace to the right side of the contrasting fabric strip, keeping the raw edges even.

3. With the right sides together and a ¼” seam allowance, sew the contrasting fabric and lace unit to the lower edge of the main skirt piece. Finish the seam allowances and press them up toward the main skirt piece.

Optional: Top-stitch along the main skirt piece.

Follow the instructions on page 45 of Doll Days! to complete the Vintage Party Dress.

Isn’t that such an easy way to create a unique looking hem? It would be very easy for older kids to sew as well. I hope you’ll give this hemming technique a try.

Thanks for following along with the Doll Days! blog tour! Be sure to check out the other stops; you won’t want to miss any of the bonus patterns and tutorials. Happy Sewing!

Erin’s Doll Days! is full of sweet clothing items for you to sew!

Want to see more? Visit other sites on the Doll Days! tour:

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115 Responses to How to Sew an Eyelet Hem

  1. Marny CA says:

    When making pillowcase(s) this method would be wonderful.

    Thanks for the tutorial.

    My daughter is going to be 54 so sewing for her ended a very long time ago. But it was fun making and wearing mother/daughter dresses.

    Your hemming method would have been perfect!!

  2. Libby McGuire says:

    I love the clothing in this book, especially the dress! Would love to win this book!

  3. Linda Muszynski says:

    I love this book, would be perfect to teach grand daughter to sew.
    Thanks, Linda

  4. Pam says:

    I’d love a copy of the book. I love making doll clothes. It is my therapy in this crazy world!!! Lol.

  5. Diana says:

    I LOVE these patterns!!!!! SOOOOOO darling. I sew for fun!!!! I give away all the dolly clothes and accessories I create to little girls who don’t have anything for their dolls. It is such a delight to see their faces when they open their little bundle! Soooo rewarding!!!! Wish I could attach a picture of two little girls and their dolls all ready for swim lessons…They loved the little swim bundle I made for them!!!!

  6. Mary says:

    That is such a sweet dress. I need this book because I sew a lot of doll clothes for our 13 granddaughters.

  7. Michelle V. says:

    This would be a wonderful book to have for patterns. I get so excited when I see different embellishments and ideas and can’t wait to try them. Thanks so much.

  8. Chana says:

    My granddaughters love the doll I keep at my house for them. Their favorite activity is dressing her and “taking her out”. They would be thrilled to have a new wardrobe for her!

  9. Sue says:

    this looks like the perfect book for helping young sewers to learn, I adopt, restore and dress pre-loved dolls and this book would be a big help.

  10. Judith Martinez says:

    I’ve tried sewing doll clothes but often the pattern instructions are hard to understand. I would love to have this book as the techniques seem to be focused on doll clothes sewing rather then applying human clothes techniques to doll clothes.

  11. Margaret Schindler says:

    This book is amazing. I am loving all these patterns.

  12. PennyT. says:

    The more I designs I see from this book the more I think I need it for more variety in sewing the many dolls I dress each year for charity.

  13. PenntT. says:

    This is a clever embellishment idea, yet so simple to sew. Thanks for sharing it on the blog tour.

  14. Audrey says:

    My two girls love dolls, and would love to have some new clothes for them

  15. Jen says:

    Thank you so much for the giveaway! I would love to win this book <3

  16. Cheryl R says:

    I need this book to help grow my sewing skills and confidence, and of course, to make doll clothes from the beautiful designs in it!

  17. Jo says:

    I sometimes feel like I’m “in a rut” with my doll clothes making, and would like this book with all of it’s ideas on how to create new looks for old patterns.

  18. Nancy says:

    I have a 5 year old granddaughter that I need to start making doll clothes for her doll. Actually, her mom’s old doll. We got her a doll but she likes mom’s better. I love the little purple dress and since purple is her current favorite color I need to try that one.

  19. Amy Bray says:

    I would love a copy of the book the Sabrina pattern she has on Etsy is one of my favorites, I use it often.

  20. Yonda Grinslade says:

    I’ve got 2 little girls who love their dolls and the clothes I make for them. They love picking out the fabrics and helping put it all together. The more options the better!

  21. Diana Lacy says:

    My granddaughter would love these clothes for her doll.

  22. Paige says:

    My daughter loves her doll and making new doll clothes brings a huge smile to her face.

  23. Kathy h says:

    So many of my friends have new granddaughters. I need this book to make some really cute outfits for their dolls.

  24. Mary B. says:

    I need this book to sew doll clothes for my grandaughter’s American Girl dolls. I am just starting to sew again and this book is just what I need,

  25. Anne says:

    I love the clothes made by my Mum and still have them and my dolls from the sixties…they look very retro!
    Would love to win the book.

  26. JessZ says:

    My 3 yr old loves her AG dolls! I would love to make them a little wardrobe so she can mix up their outfits. These are so cute!

  27. Tonia Jeffery says:

    I have two girls so the need for doll clothing is never ending.

  28. Karen says:

    I need this book to add to my doll clothes pattern addiction! Seriously though, I love to sew for 18″ dolls. I also have several little girls in my neighborhood who come over to see my doll clothes and they have expressed an interest in learning to sew for their dolls too. With their Moms’ permission I would like to use your book to teach them to make cute outfits for their own dolls.

  29. Duana says:

    I love sewing for the 18″ dolls and one can never have too many patterns. 🙂 This book has so many neat designs. I would love to have a copy and free would be even better.

  30. Delia Jones says:

    What a great book! I have 4 little girls that love their dolls. It would be fun to sew some clothing together.

  31. Amber says:

    I’d love to win! Your site is super cute, fun, and informative. Thx so much for this opportunity.

  32. Jolyn C. says:

    My 8 year old daughter sews and would LOVE a copy of this book to make clothes for her dolls!

  33. Mary Hasse says:

    Oh, I would so love to receive your book. I try to teach my grandblessing life skills and she does want to learn but has many issues that make such things hard so the more I have my act together the better I can teach her.

  34. Ceciliz says:

    Hi, I am just about to create my own sewing courses for little girls. I want to make them sew for their doll, and I am sure this book would be a great inspiration !
    Would be great to get a copy… Thank you very much !
    Ceciliz from French Brittany

  35. Susan G says:

    What a great looking book. My youngest local granddaughter is the only one of three with an affection for dolls and it would be fun for her to help me pick out fabrics for the Mandy and Jenny dolls that were her mother’s way back when. @susansquiltstudio

  36. Jo Sullivan says:

    I would like to win the book so that I can make more clothes for my dolls and my sister’s dolls 🙂

  37. Kathy Hassig says:

    My granddaughter would love these clothes for her doll.

  38. Judith says:

    Our long-awaited granddaughter, at 17 months, loves the trucks, tractors, chickens, mud puddles, and gardens that dot her life. But she is also beginning to love a doll …. and I may finally now make doll clothes! Hip, hip, hooray! Please show me how by sharing this book!
    Bless you!

  39. VickiT says:

    Oh my gosh, she really has some super cute outfits in her book. I would love to own her book to make clothes for both my Granddaughters. Each of them have 18 inch dolls; one an American Girl and the other an off brand doll. I’d love to be able to make them cute outfits like those in the book because buying the outfits can be very costly and I can’t buy them too many. But, I could make as many as I wanted to do.

  40. Margaret Haffner says:

    A sweet granddaughter to sew doll outfits for!

  41. Carmen N says:

    I have a little girl that would love me to make her these clothes!

  42. Brenda says:

    I really would like this book to sew American Girl doll clothes, ostensibly for my five young nieces and great nieces, but really so that I can have the enjoyment of designing and decorating fancy clothes that SOMEONE can wear without spending a fortune doing so. I have often thought about buying an American Girl doll for myself, just to be able to sew clothing for it, but will settle for sewing for the girls.

  43. ELAINE GREGORY says:

    My daughter is crazy for her American girl doll. I would LOVE to stitch up a wardrobe for her this Christmas.

  44. Lisa says:

    I so need this book to make pretty little dresses and outfits for Waldorf dolls! 🙂

  45. Maria says:

    I would love to win such a fabulous book i am teaching my granddaughter to sew i make dolls clothes for a few different charities and would love some new patterns

  46. Emma Andrews says:

    Oh my goodness! That is too awesome! I have several sisters with 18″ american girl size dolls. I would love to make these for them <3

  47. Marjory W says:

    I need this book because I have many American Girl and Gotz dolls to sew for and the clothing in this book is wonderful–so fresh and exciting!

  48. Sonia Klein says:

    Why do I need this book? Well, my whole life I have wanted to sew for dolls. With raising kids and working and life there just never seemed to be enough time. So now I am retired, widowed, and an empty nester. Now is MY time. I plan to sew to my heart’s content!

  49. Janine R says:

    I just love that puff sleeve blouse. Can think of so many ways to use it.

  50. Linda Cmar says:

    I love making doll dresses! I would love to have this book for more ideas! Thank you!

  51. Jeanette says:

    this book looks great. I have 4 granddaughters who love their 18″ dolls and I love sewing for them.

  52. Della says:

    I love making clothes for my granddaughters American Girl doll. Would love to have this book.

  53. Rosalind Gutierrez says:

    I need the doll pattern book because my doll has no clothes. I found her naked at a thrift store and would love to make some dresses or play clothes for her.

  54. Paige says:

    Any little girl would love these for her doll! Adorable!

  55. Doris McCarty says:

    I need this book because I have two grandaughters that have these dolls. They have been asking me to make doll clothes. Thank you for the chance to win this book.

  56. Kelly P. says:

    Great tip! I’ve been doing this in a very awkward way for years. I love the double edging on your dress. Thanks for sharing.

  57. Judy says:

    Thank you for your tutorial! I have had my eye on this book for my GD who is not quite old enough yet. Your sample garments in this tutorial are so adorable and intriguing because the photos show the detail of professional techniques so important in learning to sew.

  58. Alicia White says:

    I need this book to sew cute, versatile, and easy doll clothes for my daughter, nieces, and friends! How fun!

  59. maryanne says:

    I have a six-year-old daughter who LOVES to sew. This book would be a great one for us to work through together – and I think it might get my ten-year-old interested in sewing more, too. That eyelet hem dress is darling!

  60. Jackie Friest says:

    Thanks for the great idea on the eyelet hem…I will definitely give that a try.

  61. Debbie says:

    I hope to be able to teach my youngest niece to sew for her dolls. This book looks like it would be the perfect patterns to start her off with.

  62. Sarah says:

    Such cute clothing for dolls!! My daughter has so many dolls, but not enough clothing for all. This book would be a great start to helping me create clothes for her dolls:)

  63. Lori Morton says:

    Oooooh my gosh!! I Loooove these clothes!! I NEEEED this book, because my Grangirlie has a doll like an American Girl Doll…and I am making some clothes for her…would LOVE to win this book, and make her some fun surprises! 🙂

    Thank you for chance to win your give-a-way too 😀

  64. Tammy Zegac says:

    Would love to see other new 18″ doll patterns. My mom makes tons of doll clothes so I’m always on the look out for new, fun patterns.

  65. Kara says:

    I would love this book to teach my daughters how to sew fir their dolls and pass on the joy of knowing you have created something you self.

  66. Diane L. says:

    I constantly lose patterns – a book of a basic wardrobe would be ideal!

  67. Jennifer G says:

    This book looks awesome! I need this book because we have several undressed dollies here. Thanks for the giveaway.

  68. Kelly says:

    I love making doll clothes for my daughter and love to learn new ways of doing things, so winning the book would be awesome. Thank you for the opportunity!

  69. Tina says:

    My daughter would love this!

  70. liz says:

    hi i would love this book! i love to make doll clothes. thanks for offering a give a away

  71. June Vanover says:

    I would love to have a copy of your Doll Days book. Your clothes are so cute, look easy to make and fashion forward but appropriate for the 18″ doll. I see you also have wonderful tips for making sewing easier and outfits cuter.

  72. Karen Addleman says:

    I have 3 little girls in my life that love for me to make clothes for their dolls. This book would give me new ideas.

  73. Marge R (mer) says:

    I’m retired & love to sew for friends’ grandchildren & always need new options for 18-inch doll patterns, so this looks like a valuable & fun new resource — thanks for sharing!

  74. Karen McMahon says:

    I need this book to sew for my daughters American Girl doll!

  75. Jeanne Bleil says:

    Thanks for this tutorial. I have the perfect eyelet for it, if I ever can get to it!

  76. Pat says:

    I need and want this book. I have five granddaughters and theyball have American Girl dolls! Help!

  77. Myrna Goddard says:

    I would love to have this book and the opportunity to do the patterns in it. I love making up new patterns and experimenting with different fabric and different details (ribbon, lace, buttons, etc) to see what I like best. Usually the little girls have different favorites than I do thus the need for many choices. I love getting books from sewers rather than buying the Simplicity (etc.) patterns made by professionals.

  78. Hi. Erin
    I don’t need this doll clothes pattern book for my self but would like to win one for my 6 1/2 year old granddaughter. she is learning how to sew and she seen my book and said grandma, I want my own book. these patterns are sew easy and sew cute ideas. She has her own sewing machine.
    Thank you

  79. Mary H. says:

    I definitely need this book because I could use some help in how to embellish basic patterns.

  80. Bonnie Schultz says:

    Is this where we enter to win a copy of this adorable book?
    I’d really love to win a copy, otherwise I’m not sure when I’ll be able to afford one.
    Medical bills are getting us down. 🙂

  81. Dee says:

    Would love to win a copy for a friend who makes these dresses to sell at her church. They’re adorable.

  82. Amanda says:

    I would love this book. I have three nieces with American Girl dolls and I would love to spruce up their dolls’ wardrobes. Purchasing the outfits cost so much!

  83. Karen Wagner says:

    I can’t wait to get this book. Maybe just maybe I could be lucky enough to win it 🙂

  84. I believe that sewing is my passion. That book looks amazing. I’ve never been on this site before and I was missing out. I will be by more often. Thank you for the chance to win the book.

    I do not have a website yet but I do have samples of my work on FB.

  85. Rebecca says:

    The blouse pattern is really cute! I would love to be entered in the giveaway.

  86. gerda says:

    Between my granddaughters and I we have 25 American girl dolls. I’m always looking for patterns

  87. Rachel Rudd says:

    Pretty please! I guess I don’t technically “need” the book, but I’ve seen numerous posts on Doll Plaza about it and I’m just dying to have one! 🙂

  88. Angela says:

    My daughter loves new clothes for her baby and to be honest AG clothes are expensive. We want to make our own. We would love to have the book. It would definitely keep some babies from being naked!


  89. Sharon Thomas says:

    I need this to continue making clothes for my 5 granddaughters dolls.

  90. Sharon Peddie says:

    OMG! I would love to win an e-copy of this book! I love trying new patterns and techniques!

  91. Debbie Richards says:

    Love these blogs. Thanks for them.

  92. Jaci Gasior says:

    Would love to win Erin’s book for my granddaughter! She’s just learning to sew!

  93. Meat to learn other methods to see clothes

  94. REBECCA RIVERA says:

    WOW! Just looking at the photos and reading the excerpts I’ve learned something already! So you’ve perked my curiosity. I want to see more. I’ve been sewing for over 20 years and you just taught me there is always something new to be learned..GOD Bless

  95. Hello! I’ve always loved sewing, and now that I have a toddler who LOVES dolls, my mind has been turning more and more to sewing for dolls, both my own childhood dolls, and for my daughter. My pattern collection is very small, but what better way to jumpstart it than the Doll Days book? Thanks for the giveaway and the tutorial!

  96. Ellie Aud says:

    I would love to win a copy of this book! My 2 little girls would love to help design their dolls clothes!

  97. Cary in VA says:

    I would love to own this book. When little friends come to visit I enjoy having fun things for them to play with. And…doll clothing is just so tiny and fun to make.

  98. Pat S says:

    I remember sewing these styles for myself and I’d love to recreate these designs for my grand daughter’s American Girl dolls. Looks like a great book!

  99. Emily says:

    My daughter has just entered the age & stage of 18″ dolls. She told me last night that she hopes I will sew her doll some dresses. Then i see this post about this book. We need this book!!

  100. vicky stine says:

    This is such a cool book! Mix and match make so many more outfits than one piece. The tips are useful and things I may not have thought of.

  101. Kristin says:

    My sister had a dream that I was making her dolls a custom wardrobe so I definitely need this book! :o)

  102. Deirdre says:

    I have one daughter that loves her dolls. Having a wardrobe reference manual would be awesome!

  103. Cindy S. says:

    I would love to have this book to make a wardrobe for my granddaughter’s doll.

  104. Helen says:

    I have 4 granddaughters, ages 7 – 2, so there are lots of doll clothes in my future. Besides their own dolls, I have 3 18″ dolls here for them to play with. I am a quilter so I have LOTS of fabric scraps waiting to be made into some cute clothes for the dolls.

  105. My granddaughter has great fashion sense and would love some new designs for me to sew for her American Girl doll.

  106. Margaret says:

    I recently found out that premies can wear 18″ doll clothes before they can wear newborns. I would like to not have to design them and would like to just start sewing.

    Thanks, Margaret

  107. Marilyn in WA says:

    My daughter would love for me to sew doll clothes for her dolls!

  108. Donel says:

    The clothes are gorgeous. Thanks so much for sharing the tips.

  109. Cindy Fraher says:

    I have 3 granddaughters and another on the way. The oldest will be six this summer. She is old enough to learn to sew— and loves her 18″ doll.

  110. jonquil says:

    Grand #3 would love those dresses for her Mary Ellen doll. Such cute fabric choices as well!

  111. Elizabeth says:

    Those little clothes are just toooo cute. I would love this book. I’m going to make matching clothes for my granddaughter and her doll.

  112. Buzby says:

    Perfect Timing !!! My younger sister has just passed on her collection of dolls clothes to my almost 7 year old daughter. She’s just had twin boys so isn’t expecting to need them 🙂 I’ve been reading everything on making dolls clothes to add to her collection and would love to get my hands on this book. It looks fantastic and exactly what I was looking for !!!!

  113. Anne Marie says:

    What a wonderful book – I need this so I can make a doll wardrobe for my only grand daughter. After five grandsons, I finally have a little girl to sew doll clothes for!!

  114. Michelle says:

    What a beautiful book. I would love to make these dresses fit my daughter’s doll.

  115. Jolyn C. says:

    My 8 year old daughter sews with me and would LOVE a copy of this book!

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