Hey dudes! I’m super tired at the moment, because I have an assignment due on Thursday – mostly done, but I have no time to work on it tomorrow. It’s a music one, and I always find them difficult – either they come super easy, or I have to force it and force it. Today it’s the second one. I’m also unimpressed with the skirt in question because the zip just broke – on my first day wearing it, no less – but I wanted to write this post because it’s the last day of the Monthly Stitch Inside-Out Month, and this skirt is definitely worthy of being turned inside out (besides the broken zip, that is. So grumpy about that).
The history of this skirt is that months ago, Sophie-Lee of tworandomwords posted about a straight red skirt she’d made (uh, I just found the post, it was in May last year). Evidently it made an impression on me, because many months later, I found myself desperately yearning for a red pencil skirt when the Monthly Stitch announced the February solid colours challenge, and my colour was red. I ran out to the shop and bought this gorgeous red linen from The Fabric Store, and promptly left town for two weeks and lost most of my sewing momentum in doing so. When I came back, I got as far as making a muslin of the pattern I had before February ended, got disheartened by the adjustments I had to make, and it sat there for another two weeks before I could bring myself to do them. Having done that, it sewed up in a weekend, and then by the end of the week I’d done all the hand-sewing to finish it (which was quite a lot, I was trying to make this skirt perfect on the inside). So this is a skirt that took either ten months or one week, depending how you look at it.
And here it is!
I am super proud of this skirt. It fits well – the darts are a bit pointy, but that’s all – and every time I look at it I go “man, I look good in that”. I’ve spent a long time not being happy with my body, and it still feels pretty amazing to look at myself and not want to change things. Also, the skirt is pretty perfectly finished on the inside. Which makes it extra frustrating that the zip has broken now.
As I mentioned, I had to do some decent adjustments on this. I did a full butt adjustment before even cutting the muslin – because the largest size of the pattern was just one size to small for my hips, but accurate for the waist. Then after the first muslin I did a full tummy adjustment – or whatever you call it – which made a huge difference to how I feel about it. Honestly, I almost scrapped the pattern entirely after the first muslin because I felt uncomfortable in it (I’m trying to avoid the word “unflattering” because I hate the whole idea of flattering/unflattering. I think we ought to be celebrating what bodies are, not trying to “flatter” them, but honestly that’s probably the appropriate word. I’m still unsecure about my stomach size, and the original pattern really drew attention to it). Anyway, it worked, as you can see:
Let’s talk darts for a moment. You can see in both those photos that the front ones have ended up kinda bubbly. It doesn’t really bother me when I’m wearing it – I know almost no one is going to notice (although, does anyone else study other people’s clothes for construction details, scrutinise stripe-matching, or mentally criticise fit? I have been known to do all of the above since starting to sew…). I think it’s just because the full tummy adjustment made the darts fatter – splitting it into two on each side should fix that, right? In the photos it looks like the back darts might also be bubbling, though I honestly can’t tell in person.
As you can see, I only did a slit at the back, not a vent, because the pattern didn’t have one and I didn’t think of it until after cutting the fabric. I also made it shorter than I think I would in future – though that’s mainly for aesthetic purposes, it’s long enough to be functional. Oh, and I think I might peg the hem a bit more next time. In fact, if it hadn’t been french seamed, I might have done so this time.
Ok, now let’s talk about the exciting bit – the insides! I actually put this on inside out to demonstrate these. It’s fully lined, the hem is done with lace, french seams galore, hand-rolled hems on all the edges of the lining, hand-stitched to the zipper to keep it out of the way…
(These photos were seriously difficult to get good, and none of them adequately show the colour. It’s probably closest to the photo of the zip, but redder.)
I love wearing something this solidly constructed. I just sit there being happy that my skirt is perfect on the inside. My favourite is the lace hem, I think. Cream and red is my current top colour combination, and the hem is actually invisible from the outside. It is wonderful.
And to finish, a gratuitous shot with my harp – have I mentioned that I play the harp? I’m not sure if it’s made it onto my blog yet. But I had to move it around to get the photos, and I thought I might as well let it have a photo too. (note: this is not at all a good skirt for actually playing harp in. I tried today, and it was a disaster.)