The Saga of the Sad, Saggy Skirt….A Summary

Is anyone still with me and that red skirt? If so, read on!

Obviously the skirt won its share of battles (the zipper, the fabric vs style, the embellishments, the fit), but I won the war. It is finished.

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It is finished!

My worry was that this skirt would be a big disappointment after my grand idea met with such frustration. So, here is the takeaway: although not the garment I envisioned, I do like it, with one caveat: if the fit had been right, I would like it quite a bit. The blooming thing just continues to grow and stretch! (You will never see the picture of the skirt as it was hiked up nearly to my bosom — frightening!) But my new unadorned skirt is a lovely color and has a nice “swish”. The fabric was stretchy and a pain to press, but very easy to sew. It’s a good weight, and the two front godets provide very nice movement and interest. I’m sorry that doesn’t show up well in the picture. My vintage-style pattern was a breeze to stitch up, zipper issues (operator error) notwithstanding.

What did I learn?

A picture may speak a thousand words, but that is not necessarily helpful in recreating a garment with no clues or description. That requires some imagination.

Make sure the all your materials play well together, and actually fit the pattern and the planned use. Imagination only goes so far, then reality has to take over.

Before hemming let the garment hang for much, much longer than you planned – this silly skirt dropped 1/2 inch in the godet portion just overnight!

Sometimes sewing doesn’t come first and a garment will sit, and sit, and sit some more…..and that’s okay, too.

Will I make this pattern again?

Yes!

Something like this...

Something like this…

In fact, I’ve already selected a lovely wool blend – taupe with a bit of light blue and a tiny, tiny hint of pink. It is quite similar to this selection from Mood Fabrics.

My next question is, do I go down another size (oooh, that sounds so nice) or will the wool fit more true to size than the polyester since it has no stretch? Of course the answer is obvious — make a muslin first! Yes, I promise to do so. Honest.

What about those lovely embellishments?

While I still love that original skirt, if the need arises for a skirt with fancy doo-dads, I’ll certainly chose a stiffer, dressier fabric. Perhaps a MOB rehearsal outfit?

This lace overlay is pretty...from The Sewing Rabbit

This lace overlay is pretty…from The Sewing Rabbit

And a different pattern; possibly this one pictured above, which is actually not a pattern at all, but explained in a handy tutorial I found on The Sewing Rabbit. Those box pleats are so pretty, and they would do nicely with a bit of frill. Maybe? Maybe not? What do you think? Perhaps I’ll just use a pretty patterned fabric and leave the doodads to a necklace. Oh, and should the pleats be stitched down a few inches, or will that cause poofing at the hips? Can a person with hips even wear a box pleated skirt? hmm. Too many questions.

Have Machine, Will Sew

I do have projects in the works….or at least in my head. And I have a slowly growing pattern stash, both paper and printable. Sadly, my fabric stash consists of only remnants, time to shop! And Stella is ready and waiting for our next assignment.

At the ready....

At the ready….

The agenda includes, in no particular order: my first pair of pants, pattern courtesy of Teresa’s giveaway at Navy Blue Threads; a dress from Gavanna Patterns; the skirt pictured above from the tutorial; a sweet peasant blouse from a pattern given to me by Sharon at Maven Patterns; a pair of pajamas (or nightshirt or robe); holiday gifting and decorating; possibly December’s The Monthly Stitch and Make a Garment a Month; and Linda’s Designin’ December; and designing a capsule wardrobe for the SWAP 2016.

Oh, and let us not forget the cello lessons! A bit optimistic, perhaps? I could very possibly be out of my mind.

Afterward:

Much has happened since I wrote this blog and took the final photo, and a rather significant change seems to be on the horizon. My sewing and blogging have been impacted, but as the dust settles, I’m hoping to get back on a slightly “adjusted” track. More on that at a later time.

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The Not-So-Humble, Dual-Personality Apron

The apron project is finished! But before we can begin, the first order of business is to apologize for the photograph quality. I will blame it all on the heat. The blurriness, the washed out color, and my “it’s-too-hot-to-care” hairdo compensated with red lipstick – all due to the summer that refuses to end.

Okay then, here we go.

The Maria Wrap Apron pattern I found on Etsy, by way of Pinterest. I ordered the downloadable pdf and was all set. It seemed straightforward enough, to make a reversible cross-back apron, right? Just make two and stitch them together. Well, not so fast. I knew I’d need help with this and Sharon, creator of Maven Patterns, was kind enough to create a tutorial for a reversible version.

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My plan was to have black (or charcoal) linen on one side reversing to black/white dots on the other. This is what I ended up with – navy linen, and coral ground with blue birds. Not quite my original plan, but so much better!

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Congratulations Ms Miller, you have a fine new … tunic!

Good news! My tunic at long last is complete (KwikSew 3870). And more good news. I’m actually rather pleased with it. Now considering this might be the most basic pattern in all patterndom, that may not be high praise, but compared to my first attempt (here), it’s a big improvement.

My expression here has less to do with the garment than it does with my camera/model capabilities. Imagine, if you can, this was the best pic of the lot.

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Tunic No. 1 versus Tunic No. 2

My topstitching was not too straight the first go-round. If only I had checked into the goodies that came with my sewing machine. Such as this handy presser foot – the Bernina Edgestitch foot #10. What a marvelous discovery for Tunic No.2!

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Too bad I discovered it after finishing the topstitching at the neckline, but thank goodness for a busy pattern and disappearing white thread. Also, the neckline is supposed to come to a point. Mine comes to a very special kind of point – rounded! Argh. Does anyone have any tips?

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With no new adjustments, Tunic No.2 seems to fit a little better than No.1. It might be the higher neckline on this version, the other one just falls off my shoulders. The whole thing is much too long for my stumpy legs. Should probably nix the tunic idea for now and try a proper blouse next time. I do prefer the longer sleeves of Tunic No.1, but No.2 is very summery (summer is almost over actually, so my timing may not have been perfect).

While I may admit to poor seasonal timing, I refuse to be held completely accountable for any mistakes….how can one follow instructions when said instructions are so thoroughly hidden? Guard cat is a tad too committed.

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So now what?

My next project is ready to go – pattern downloaded, fabric(s) purchased. It’s an apron, but not just any apron, and I hope it lives up to my expectations.

And after that, a skirt, and then pants! PANTS for Pete’s sake! I’ve had several suggestions, so think I’ll start with pj’s and then move on to a pair of real pants.

And somewhere along the way, I am planning to make a nice bag.

Is it ever acceptable to begin a sentence with “and”?

Some of my favorite bloggers have remarked lately on losing their sewing mojo (sew-jo?) and it seems that mine is finally ramping up. However, I sew at snail speed (slo-sew-jo?). Hopefully this little detail will improve with time and practice. Or perhaps I’ll just determine that my perfect pace is a leisurely one and embrace it!

Happy stitching everyone!