My Skirt is done! Now the point review, links to skirt posts…
Blog post points, 1 point each? I started this site to learn how to blog, set up the site, looked forward to getting a pattern, visited fabric stores while waiting to see what kind of patterns I’d get. I posted several entries getting ready for the first pattern. These posts are about the skirt:
- Portland Rose Festival Open House. Photos of the Public Appearance!
- Finishing/Wrapping up! Nice photos of completion, mostly putting together the ensemble.
- Covered Buttons A special entry just for these. 🙂
- Skirt #0162 Waistband, buttons, hem, hooks…
- Scrollwork Dedicated to the intense, detailed, time consuming work of replicating the hand embroidery, couching.
- March 30th Skirt update Muslin fitting, start of scroll work, cutting out fashion fabric.
- Pattern Alterations Walking the waist, hips (high and low), hem and altering
- Pattern work From individual printer pages to tissue pattern pieces.
- Choosing skirt fabric Photos and comments on the fabrics I shopped for, bought and used.
Instructions & Changes– this pattern had them and I would change some of them:
–I was surprised that the layout included pieces with opposing up & down directions, back & front up, those wide side panel pieces down. I’m all in favor of efficiency but didn’t do this, afraid the nap would scream.
–I went back and marked the seam-matching point numbers on my layout page, found that very helpful.
–I got the pleat direction wrong on my muslin for the back pleats, saw that they should open under the back piece, not flaring out under the side panels, made a note to myself. Pleats fold under the front and back panels.
–I am so spoiled by modern layouts that I wanted to copy the instructions into a program where I could add the Section Headings, as they were in an early page, for Alterations, Cutting, Pressing. I’d list the seams by name, the waist, hem, and a special section with recommendations for buttons, waist finishing. Advanced options like lining, boning, interfacing should be highlighted, too.
–I serged fabric edges and pressed everything, as the instructions suggested, including the serged edges, so they wouldn’t add bulk.
Photos, a point each, up to 5. I worked on these, with an image editor called GIMP, since many images of paper pieces and otherwise low-contrast had to be optimized. I worked on composition, too. I hope you like them. Look at the links above. 🙂
Fit, Pattern & Garment Description- this long “day-length” walking skirt sits 3″ above the waist, at the ankle in front, slightly lower in back, but not to drag. It has a graceful fit over hips, flaring for a fuller swing in the back. I found the 25″ Waist description to be overly flattering in underestimation of the actual size. 😉 It is embellished with soutache braid (or use the scrollwork pattern included for couching). The two wide skirt side gores pleat under the narrow front and back panels. No facings or waist pieces are included.
–This pattern fit would probably be a modern pattern size 12? I have ready-to-wear sizes in my closet that range from 2-12, so who knows? Patterns from the ’50’s, I’d wear a 14. Now I alter for petite height. The waist and hips should be altered to fit each time this is made up.
–I thought it did not look like the photo because I don’t stand with my waist facing forward, emphasizing the “Virtual Bustle”!
–I like this skirt! It is comfortable to wear and the walking ease is lovely. I did catch the hem in my heel at one point when I had to reach down, was afraid I’d torn out some hand stitches, will have to be careful.
–Fabric used was a Pendleton Wool, tropical weight summer gabardine, see a blog post above.
Alterations– This skirt was too long for me. I shortened it. I was worried that I’d make a mistake with the overlap allowances for the front opening, so cut the seam allowances wide, ending up taking them back off, after leaving a generous turned edge for a nice supportive “facing” edge.
–I checked the pieces, yet the front panel still seemed off in length. I will be very careful with my next patterns. I caught this at the Patternmaker step, before copying onto tissue paper.
–I considered ways to reinforce the front button panel, facing it entirely, opening both sides, either with button holes or snaps.
–I faced the waist with elastic instead of grosgrain ribbon, then took it off and reduced the waist size, reapplying the elastic, so it didn’t pull the waist and pucker.
–I narrowed the front panel lines above the pleat, following the hip lines, so they didn’t look wider at the top, a very unflattering image, I thought.
–I considered facing the hem, before I saw how big the circumference was! It still needed help, so I sewed in a line of horsehair, then whip-stitched a dark thin ribbon over it, since I could only find white horsehair.
–The soutache braid called for would have been very hard for me to find, estimate yardage (trusted my ability to goof and need more! 😉 ). I used a crochet thread, couching it on by hand, detailed instructions in a post listed above.
–Buttons- I used covered buttons, including adding a few small ones at the base of the back panel, at the top of those pleats.
–Next time, I would alter the pleat height to start just below the knee in back, more flattering. It was probably placed there for the original length of the skirt, and I didn’t think to alter that position when I shortened it.
Techniques, Skills- There is a post for the scrollwork embroidery used in place of the soutache. Easing the hip curves was important, may need a note for beginning sewers. This pattern was not difficult, could be made by beginning sewers, but having a good foundation will make a big difference in the final garment, reinforcement stitching, pressing at every opportunity, understitching, experience with fitting. Proceeding from stitching lines instead of outside edges of seam allowances is not basic, was very helpful.
Conclusions– I would recommend this pattern for others, really like this skirt. I would compare it to the Folkwear Walking Skirt Pattern, the advantage here being that the waist and hip silhouette may be more graceful without the back gathers seen on the Folkwear pattern. The narrow front and fuller sides and back of both are similar.
1. Ladies Skirt May 5, 1912, La Mode Illustree #0162
2. Sewing skill, beginner to advanced, benefiting from added care taken.
3. Rating 5 out of 5 (top). I loved this skirt, simple yet fun to embroider, fit, execute and wear!
4. Skill needed- This skirt would benefit from advanced sewing skills, experience with well-designed garments, so that techniques not described in the instructions could be added, like horsehair for the hem. Optional boning, heavy interfacing or lining are suggested but not described. Understanding these steps is assumed.
5. Instructions- see above.
6. Fit/Sizing- see above.
7. Alterations- see above