craft, Disney, Mary Frances sewing, sewing

Chapter XX: Part two

My continued adventures bloging through the 1915 children’s sewing book “The Mary Frances sewing book; or, Adventures among the thimble people.”

The next pattern to tackle was the dressing sack (lounging jacket being a much nicerterm). This was the final, 4th, outfit to be made with this single pattern.

Screenshot-2017-10-15 The Mary Frances sewing book; or, Adventures among the thimble people - maryfrancessewin00frye_bw pdf

Because all four of the garments have essentially the same construction…how COULD I mess it up again?

The instructions were easy.

  • Cut out by pattern of bath robe, making it only as long as the row of pinholes marked Dressing Sack.
  •  Finish the fronts and neck, and sleeves by “pinking,” or notching closely with the scissors; or,
  •  Transfer the pattern for scallops given below. To do this—With a soft lead pencil, trace scallops through the tissue paper.Turn the tissue over, and lay the picture of scallops against the sleeves (and fronts), and trace over on the wrong side. This will leave a penciled outline on the goods.Instead of this method, the outline of the scallops may be traced through tissue and “carbon” paper.
  • With embroidery cotton, work the scallops in blanket stitch.
  • The Dressing Sack may be finished with ribbon or BANDS, in just the same way as the kimono. Embroider the ribbon or bands with Feather Stitching.


This is prior to adding the scalloped edges.

Things I did wrong:

  1. That neckline is closer to that of the nightgown (which cinched) than the robe. This means the neck hole is WAY too large.
  2. The fabric leftover from a dress I made and I added the applique leftover from another dress I made this summer.*..and it’s too thick/stiff. It’s not going to drape on the shoulders at all even if the neck hole were small enough…which it isn’t.
  3. Never checked to see how it fit. I just loved my clever jacket and went on!

On to the edges! Learning a new skill. Here’s a tutorial I used for figuring out how to do the blanket-stitch scalloped edges.




I added a pleat in the back, three button holes in the front and some buttons. Salvaged.

Then I went back and cut a lighter-weight fabric ( prepare yourself for MORE crazy patterns) correctly and assembles another light open lounging jacket.

I skipped over doing any fancy edging or embroidery because the print was crazy enough. I simply lined the opening with some left-over black lace (last seen on the skull-print morning dress).

As for the feather stitch I skipped. I have a giant crazy quilt in process and legally don’t have to do any extra embroidery if I don’t want to.


Mary uses the feather stitch to her…um..advantage to make a riddle for Sewing Bird to close out the chapter:

Good!” as Mary Frances held up the samplers. ”Here is a puzzle, riddle, or conundrum:

“Mary Marie is feather-stitched— Yet not a feather is on her.”

Mary Frances laughed,”I wonder how she’d look in feathers,” she said—

Then Sewing Bird sang:

”She’d make a fine bird, Upon my word, She’d sing a sweet song, And the only thing wrong— Her feathers and song Would be tightly glued on!”

“Oh, Sewing Bird!” laughed Mary Frances, shaking her finger, ”how did you know the voice of a ‘talking doll’ was ‘glued on’?”


I get the “conundrum” but if someone could explain to me that whole voice/glued on thing I’d be much obliged.

Coming soon: Aunt Maria the hated spinster makes a visit.


Excerpts From: Fryer, Jane Eayre, 1876-. “The Mary Frances sewing book; or, Adventures among the thimble people.”



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