Fortune Teller Costume for 18 inch dolls

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Mysterious and beautiful, carnival fortune tellers were a staple at the carnivals of days gone by and remain a favourite costume, even today.

There is evidence that fortune telling was practiced in many ancient cultures, even as far back as 4000 BC.  The image that most people conjure up when thinking about fortune tellers is based on Romani fortune tellers, who sold fortunes at fairs by reading palms, tarot cards, scrying crystal balls and who created charms and spells for customers.  Fortune telling was an important part of Romani tradition and this pattern is based loosely on traditional Romani dress.  This pattern coordinates with the KeLibu Fortune Teller Tent pattern and if you are looking for shoes for your doll, try the Full Circle Sandals:

KeLibu Fortune Teller Tent pattern for 18 inch dolls             



  • 3½ inches by 15 inches of solid coloured, lightweight fabric such as cotton batiste, rayon or poly-cotton blends
  • 4½ inches by 25 inches of patterned, lightweight fabric such as cotton batiste, rayon or poly-cotton blends
  • 2½ inches by 45 inches of lightweight fabric such as cotton batiste, rayon or poly-cotton blends
  • 3/8 inch wide elastic as long as your doll’s waist measurement (approximately 10 ½ – 12 inches long)
  • Sharp/universal needle
  • Matching thread



  • ¼ yard of lightweight cotton, silk, polyester or blends. Batiste, voile, or crinkle gauze are all good choices.
  • Elastic thread and an empty bobbin
  • 14½ inches of 3/8 wide elastic
  • Dressmakers paper and wheel or other temporary marking tool
  • Sharp/universal needle
  • Matching thread

This pattern uses elastic thread in the bobbin to create shirring as a part of the shirt design.  For most machines, you will not need to adjust your sewing machine tension to use the elastic thread.  You will just need to use a longer than normal stitch length. Wind your elastic thread onto an empty bobbin by hand.  Try to wrap the thread evenly – not too loosely and not too tightly.



  • 5 inches by 7½ inches of mid-weight leather or vinyl
  • 6 x ¼-3/8 inch wide eyelets with washers (or jump rings) OR
  • 6 jump rings
  • 21 inches of thin cord or ribbon to lace the belt
  • Optional – 13 inches of dangly trim for the bottom edge of the belt. This can be purchased in the drapery department of most fabric stores.
  • Leather/vinyl needle
  • Matching thread
  • Eyelet setter
  • Punch or awl
  • Double sided tape (optional)
  • Wonder clips (or similar) to hold pieces together while sewing (optional)

Bonus Headscarf

  •  22-23 inches square of lightweight fabric*
  • Sharp or Microtex needle
  • Matching thread

*I used rayon and chiffon for the headscarves pictured in this pattern.  If you decide to use a fabric that is heavier than rayon/chiffon or that has a stiffer hand, you will need to add a couple of inches to your headscarf in order to be able to tie it – e.g. 25 inches square.



Specification: Fortune Teller Costume for 18 inch dolls

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Traci Akierman is the designer, creator and owner of KeLibu.  Pronounced Kee Lee Boo, the name is a mashup of her daughter’s and son’s initials and nicknames.

Traci’s passions for pattern making, sewing, costuming and dolls came together four years ago when her daughter got her first 18 inch doll and started asking for doll clothes.  Her focus is on Steampunk, Fantasy and Mori Girl styles.

She makes her home in Calgary, AB, Canada with her husband and two children, ages 7 and 11.


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