Step 10 : Gather the Blouse
Now it’s time to fit the blouse to your individual Hitty, and gather the front of the neckline with pretty, decorative pleats. The blouse can be gathered around the waist, or left loose. The skirt waistline must be gathered and matched to your Hitty and fitted over her blouse.
The neckline will be loose in the front, as you can see above. You will need a needle and strong thread, preferably in a color matching your blouse. Hiding your knot inside the garment, between the two layers, stitch a running stitch across the front of your neckline, close to the edge. This area is a little thick, since it is four layers with the seam, so your stitches must be long enough to allow the fabric to fold into gathers. In some blouses, like the green blouse shown below, there might be only a few structured pleats. The green blouse has six.
Leaving the thread loose and needle attached on the inside, try the blouse back on Hitty, pulling the gathering thread to the right length for her. The two corners should meet at the back of her neck.
Tie off the threads when the neckline is the right size for your Hitty. Hide any knots or loose threads on the inside.
You might wish to gather the waistline of your blouse as well. If so, measure the blouse on your individual Hitty so that the gathers will be at her waistline.
Draw a line all the way across on the inside, at the level you wish to place the gathers. For most Hittys that will be about 1/2 to 3/4 inch above the bottom edge. Sew a running stitch all the way across from one back edge to the other, using small stitches. Gather to fit your Hitty’s individual waist, and tie of the thread.
I think it’s nice to finish the bottom edge with a blanket stitch in a matching decorative thread like embroidery floss. I used Lizbeth Tatting thread.
Normally I like all of my edges finished, and that could have been done here, but it would double the fabric thickness and add a lot of bulk in this area. With Hitty’s skirt and underpants also at her waist and hips, I like to finish the shirt in this way so it looks pretty, and is sealed against fraying, but doesn’t add any unecessary thickness.
Now it’s time to fit Hitty’s skirt. She’s almost ready for the Christmas Party!