another journey finished

Finally, at last, the skirt is finished. I feel it has achieved the delicate balancing act of being able to get on and off my bicycle without a wardrobe malfunction, whilst also achieving a flattering shape. This is one of the few patterns I am going to put in the bin. I will not inflict this on anyone else. It would not be kind!

A few modifications I added (to the long list already shared previously) to complete the final look. I didn’t create a full duplicate of the shell in the lining, I attached the vent extensions to the outer shell vent as otherwise it would have been a lot of fabric. It now happily hangs in place.

To ensure the vents stayed in place (they had an annoying habit of flipping out) I top stitched the crease where the folds are so they are inclined to stay in place. Though I still need to be careful when sitting down so they don’t crease too much.

I do actually quite like waist band which is a good width. Wearing it for a full day made me wonder if it could do with being a little more snug. But we all have our days when a bit more room is needed so maybe this isn’t a bad thing!

Courtesy of a friend, here are some “in action” photos to show I can cycle in it, and yes I did cycle to my friend’s house as well as to work today in that outfit.


its a blooming miracle!

After about a month and a half of picking this project up and putting it back down again the end is actually in sight. A solid weekend spent focusing on getting the fit sorted and ploughing through the remaining details means apart from hemming the lining and finishing off the lining insertion its actually nearly done!

Suffice to say I will NOT be using this pattern again. I have nearly lost sight of how much I have taken this in by. I actually have generated some shape compared to the cereal box I had before and feel happy about how it looks. But it has taken a LOT of work. I don’t think I will be making any more straight skirts either based on this experience. I think what I have created is more a hybrid between this and a pencil skirt.

I have also finished another little child project today, photos of that to be shared shortly. In addition to that, I have made a cute PJ pattern for a charity for children needing heart operations. I love the fabric (tepees) and its currently drying on a rack.

I’ve cut out a shift style jersey dress for my friend’s little girl which shouldn’t take long to make up as its not lined. All these little projects are good for honing technique and I a lot more confident about using jersey compared to in the past.

So – the latest photos of That Skirt.

lets get this straight – this better fit

It appears I made an error in judgement when purchasing my skirt pattern. Due to the lack of modelled skirt back I naively assumed it would be more fitted. Apparently this style of skirt is more straight up and down. I, when it comes to my back, am not. Suffice to say it has been a learning curve (pun intended) and one I won’t forget!

Counting up the alterations made so far:

  • initially took in the side seams at the upper hips by a quarter inch on each side.
  • pegged in the side seams (tapered) to the hem by an inch and a quarter
  • taken in the back seams by 1.5cm each (tapered) from the mid hip to where the vents start.
  • reduced the curve at the front seams just below the waist band to reduce the excess material in this area. Probably by another quarter inch.

Plus that’s just to the lining. I then have to transfer the last two actions to the skirt itself. Good job I have a sturdy stitch ripper. Then I have to reposition all that lovely piping.

However, the good news is that it is looking a fair bit better in terms of shaping. The back vents are looking a little odd as I need to still hem this and attach it to the main skirt.

pipe down, peg in, raise up – the long awaited skirt

Ah yes, something was mentioned about making a skirt a while ago. Then it all went quiet. Because deep down I knew Simplicity 2475 was going to require some fitting work. I’ve not had much fun in the past getting some projects to fit. So when I know it needs doing I find distractions. Like other projects!

Anyway, having completed my “little” projects (literally in size and scope) there was no putting it off any further. So this evening I sewed the front and back of the skirt together, and did the one alteration I knew wouldn’t be too bad – by pegging the hem in by a total of 2 inches. It instantly looked better.

But, better does not mean finished. Oh no, that would be far too easy. The front is not looking too bad, but a side profile makes me look like a cereal box. A pencil skirt is supposed to be slightly more shapely than this, no?

So, as my housemate has suggested, I may end up taking in the back seams to create a bit more curve. Unfortunately this is the skirt that I chose to add piping to. Which means if I do make any changes I have to sew it all back in again. Any minute now, I’m going to have a small fit – of frustration.

This is why I like A-line skirts. I know what I am doing and the shaping is far easier. Still, you learn by trying. Even if this is turning out to slightly more trying that I had hoped. Wish me luck readers!

The fit so far. With hem pinned up at the front and front waist band seam allowance turned under.



a nautical sidestep

You know when you have plans for some fabric. Then lay everything out. Gazing at your patterns pieces. It dawns on you. This is just not going to work. Because there is no way near enough fabric? well, this was the beginning of this project. Which was going to be turned in to dungarees.

Instead, it got be a little dress. With the cutest striped puffy sleeves with a polka dot lining. This truly was a blend of leftovers. We had the lining from making my corset (yup, I know, it needs to be finished), the fabric from the Colette skirt (need to find some missing pattern pieces), the sleeve lining from a previous little dress, and the rick rack from aforementioned dungarees when I decided it was going to work on it as planned.

Its from Newlook 6236, a project I have made several times before (a great value pattern!) and perfect for the amounts of fabric I had available. With some design modification and tweaking (I bound the sleeve edges with bias binding instead of sewing an exposed shoulder armhole seam) it all came together.

Speaking of which, the dungarees are almost finished (button holes required), as is the matching romper. The skirt I have been working on using Simplicity 2475 has a completed shell and lining, and I need to sew them together, add a zip and hem then this too will be done.

So, some more blog posts to follow shortly!