Making doll clothes has never been easier, thanks in part to the 1948 creation of Velcro by George de Mestral, a Swiss inventor and nature-lover. He modelled his invention to mimic the way that burrs stuck to his dog's fur --- smooth on one side with tiny fabric-grippers on the other. Before Velcro, making fasteners for doll clothes was tedious and time-consuming, requiring very small buttons and buttonholes or hooks and eyes. Doll collectors may still prefer these methods, but amateur hobbyists and casual doll-clothes makers use Velcro because it is easy to apply and safer for children's toys.
Sew the doll dress leaving the back open. Dress the doll and overlap the flaps of the back opening to determine where to place the Velcro strips. Do not to overlap the flaps too far or the fabric may bunch up at the waist.
Measure the length of the opening from top to bottom and record the measurement on a piece of paper. This will be the length of the Velcro strips. Remove the dress from the doll.
Lay the dress flat on a smooth, hard surface with the back of the dress facing up. Cut the Velcro into a strip the length recorded in the previous step. If the Velcro is wider than 3/8 inches, trim it to the correct width. Apply nail-polish remover to a lint-free cloth and clean any sticky substance from the scissors.
Smooth the back of the dress as flat as possible with the flaps open. Separate the two sides of the Velcro strip and apply the rougher side of the Velcro (sticky back down) to the bottom flap of the opening, pressing down to secure it. Apply the softer side of the Velcro strip (sticky back down) to the inside of the upper flap of the opening, pressing down to secure it.
Sew along all sides of both strips with a whip or running stitch, using a heavy-duty sewing needle and buttonhole thread. This secures the strips to to the fabric. Put the dress on the doll and fasten the back opening with the Velcro strips.
Use sticky Velcro dots in place of Velcro strips especially for very small garments like Barbie doll clothes. Pin smooth-back Velcro strips into place if you don't have sticky-back Velcro. If possible, use sticky-back, 3/8-inch Velcro for doll clothes. Textol systems is one source for this product. http://www.textol.com/textol.asp