Behind the Illustrations: Pavlova Instructions Sheet Photos | Esme Futurist

Pavlova Circus And Pre-Sale | Dec 15-20 | Cake Patterns

Things have been a bit different around here during the Pavlova Circus- I have a new space to play in now, and it’s good fun.   Esme the trick-riding ballerina (pictured above) is running a pretty good Circus Sideshow.

I was reminded of the Seurat when I was looking for cool circus images in the public domain to use for the Tiramisu Circus.  I saved this image to “Pavlova” and got on with The Tiramisu Circus.  She never left my mind while Mikhaela and I put together images for the Pavlova Wrap Top & Skirt cover art.

3 Hours Past | Esme Futurist | Shredded T-shirt Scraps Stuffing

3 Hours Past | Esme Futurist | Shredded T-shirt Scraps Stuffing

And now, gleefully, I’m working on an army of Esme Petit Four samples in real time over on and twitter.  I haven’t had a chance to sit and play for some time, and it’s wonderful.  You can play along, too- I’m sending the Esme Petit Four template to everyone who pre-orders a Pavlova Wrap Top & Skirt.

A-Making Esme's Pavlova Wrap Top & Skirt | Pavlova Circus | 18

Or- just sit back and watch and save the pdfs for when you do get a chance to play.  It’s almost holidays!

You can see the completed Esmes and the raw inspiration for the upcoming cloth dollies at Esme Petit Four.  I know a lot of ways to make rag dolls, let’s see which ways I try..

Meanwhile, I’m dying to share these photos with you.  It’s tricky to convey something as complex as sewing instructions to someone on the other side of the world, and here’s what I sent Masheka to work with for the Pavlova Wrap Top & Skirt instructions sheet and sent to Cake’s artists:

These photos represent a lot of work, but also a lot of fun: drafting, muslining, notes, editing my notes, sewing, editing again, sewing, setting up each photograph, sewing, editing each image, simplifying each cell concept and highlighting every important color-coded detail for Cake’s illustrator Masheka.

Turning Esme Futurist Inside out today... It helps to grip the hands.  I couldn't help but laugh, I think I know how she feels.

Turning Esme Futurist Inside out today… It helps to grip the hands. I couldn’t help but laugh, I think I know how she feels.

These (and many other) photos were used to create the instructions “cells” for the Pavlova Wrap Top & Skirt Instructions Sheet.

Later on, once Pavlova ships, I think we’ll play some kind of matching game with a big fabric prize and those gallery image…

3 Hours Past | Esme Futurist | Muffin Cover, Illustrated

3 Hours Past | Esme Futurist | Muffin Cover, Illustrated

That means I can do fun little things with the patternwork now that I know more about juggling pdfs.  Some of you have asked questions about the wrap top and the “muffin cover”.  I’m already making little cloth dollies, so it seemed natural to make an Esme Petit Four Pattern.

It’s only two pages, very neatly copied in pen and scaled to fit the Esme Paper Play pattern pdf that I’m sending out to everyone who pre-orders a Pavlova Wrap Top & Skirt before December 20th (midnight at the edge of the world).


If you have a question about the way the full size Pavlova Wrap Top & Skirt pattern goes together, why not download the 2 page doll clothes pdf to take a look?  This is an accurate, if simplified and strangely proportioned, version of the full size Cake pattern.  I labeled the Petit Four pattern with Pavlova’s pattern piece tags and numbers, and placed notches and dots in similar places as the adult pattern.

Esme | Petit Four Pavlova Pattern | Feature 650

It’s a sewable, simple preview of the Pavlova Wrap Top & Skirt pattern.  Click the image to download pdf.

Petit Four | Pavlova Wrap Top |Check it out.  Kind of cute, even if it is hand-drawn.  Petit Four patterns from Cake.

(The clothes are scaled the same as the Petit Four Template I’m sending out as a gift to those who pre-order the Pavlova Wrap Top & Skirt before December 20th.  Lila and I are also stitching up over at

Esme Futurist | Petit Four | Pavlova Skirt | Cake Patterns

Esme Futurist | Petit Four | Pavlova Skirt | Cake Patterns – the doll’s skirt has a tiiiiiny little pocket appliqued on…

Tomorrow: Pocket Details/Inspiration on 3 Hours Past  and a fancy quilting cotton Esme Glad Rags doll on (and I’ll leave the door open to the sewing room, you can peek in through twitter).

Do you like the galleries?  What do you think about the images behind the instructions?  How much do you want to go play with a scrap of jersey and the Petit Four Pavlova pattern right now?


    • hehe. I’m planning on setting up a pretty serious cuteness workspace in the morning. Crewel wool for her hair, fabric pens, embroidery silk, quilting batiks and cottons… I found a piece of “crackled” looking quilting cotton to use for the body. Might tea stain her a little or something… Hmm.. ;)

    • I have those days, too. In fact, I haven’t really been cooking much lately. It’s too darn hot, by dinnertime I have no desire to each much more than frozen stir fry vegetables. Pre-cooked. ;)

      But otherwise, everything is quite good. Keep watching. :) Hehe.

  1. Hi, is there an easy way to make the neckline of the Pavlova top lower? I want to make it but my boobs don’t suit high necks.

  2. Adorable! Heh, I want to make up a doll and clothes for myself! I almost wish I had a daughter so that I’d have the excuse to make things like this. :D

    • Lol, same here, though it will be a while before I actually want kids. I have some large (but not large enough for people clothes) jersey scraps lying around that would work for this. Little Esme totally wants me to make her a purple wrap top, amirite?

      • No one has to have kids to make dollies. Honestly, it’s handy that I have a doll-mad tiny girl in my house to blame my playtime on, but this is pretty much completely all about playing with fabric and having a bit of fun… :)

        Also- I know there’s a charity that accepts dolly donations for Africa

        And you could donate them to a hospital, a homeless shelter, a church or place of worship that runs ministries for the poor. When Lila had an accident as a little girl and we had to rush to the hospital, the nurses gave her a little comfort dolly that some kind lady had knitted up. Her little arm was in a splint and she was loopy from the drugs they gave her so she’d lie still in the cat scan. And then there was this little knit dolly tucked under her splint… I was ridiculously touched by that little kindness at the time, and I still get a little teary when I see the doll in Lila’s room…

        So if you wanna make a dolly, then do it! And then find her a home, you never know how much it might mean to someone… :)

      • Yes! Purple!! I’m thrilled to have finally been “allowed” to sit down and draft the dolly clothes, now I think I’ll sit down and throw together a few from the leftover Pavlova sample scraps.. hehe.

  3. i love that the doll can wear the same outfit as me (and i know a 4 year old who will probably want one too! just need to grade somewhere between dolly size and me size!). just ordered the pattern and waiting eagerly for tira sewalong after xmas!

  4. Pingback: Close- Up” Pintucked Seashell Patch Pocket | Seashell Buttons | Pavlova Circus! « 3 Hours Past the Edge of the World

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