Fabric polka dot cotton (?) that I presume is supposed to be for cushion covers and things but it came up quite soft once washed (I was good and prewashed and ironed this time). I bought a metre (it’s 54″ wide, sorry about the mixed measurements) which looked loads but I only just squeezed all the pieces out. Oh and I cut up a ripped pair of hubby’s pajama’s to make the pocket lining.
Ease of pattern matching Come back checks/plaids all is forgiven! I think the giant polka dots would be so obvious if badly matched, but unlike the stripes of a check fabric they’re not always visible at the edge of the pattern piece. Cutting each piece on a single layer really helped rather than cutting 2 pieces at a time on the fold. I’ll give myself 7/10 as there aren’t any glaring errors but I know where I could’ve done better…
Customer service Excellent. Jennifer forwarded the pattern after I ordered it to be sent to an old email address that I’m locked out of and answered a question about how to lengthen it.
Pattern instructions These were very clear, with diagrams (I find these clearer to follow than photo’s, especially when printed out) and written instructions that covered everything. They felt quite grown up too. “Finish seam as desired” caused a momentary panic. What do I desire? What are my options? Then I calmed down and realised that with fabric that was clearly going to fray, the seam already sewn and no access to pinking shears or an overlocker (serger) and no urge to learn how to make and use bias binding to finish seams (and then make some bias binding), the only viable optionI knew about was my trusty overlocker foot on my sewing maching. And breathe. Hey, I can do this grown up sewing instruction thingy.
new sewing vocabulary learntGrade Seam – which via internet search and the diagram I worked out meant trim in half the seam allowance of one layer of fabric. And Understitch which I found a good tutorial for here.
Alterations As I was a little scared of the shortness of the skirt I lengthened my skirt pieces by the width of the band that is on view B, which was very straightforward as there is a lengthen/shorten here line marked on the pattern. I didn’t want to add a band, as I thought that would look weird with the polka dots. In the end I turned up 2 1/2″ when hemming though to avoid having part of a row of a polka dots on the hem (obviously hadn’t thought that through properly when cutting out) and I may shorten it further. I also added belt loops, as per the Coletterie belt loop tutorial.
Ease of make pretty straight forward actually. Even the zipper. I carefully followed the tutorial, even though I wasn’t sure why I was doing some of the steps, and it turned out really nicely. The only hairy moment was the waistband. Which was at least an inch shorter than it needed to be. No idea why, it was midnight at this stage and I was pressing on so I didn’t investigate. I got an extra half inch out of repining it, took half and inch out of the top of the centre back yoke seam (graded down to meet the rest of the seam), had tiny seam allowance on the end, crossed my fingers and winged it.
Finish I used some gold thread I had lying around to topstitch the fly, the pocket openings, the hem, the belt loops and I topstitched the yoke to skirt back seams down too. I found a funky gold star button for the waistband.
Fit It’s a bit baggy. I measured myself to be between 16 and 18 and more the latter than the former so I made an 18, which is larger than my usual size of 16 in trousers and 14 in skirts. But on reflection I’m not sure how well I measured myself, or if I did it at the best possible time of the month. Or maybe my seam allowances were on the small side, which might explain the small waistband.
Cost £5 for fabric, £5.30 for pattern, £1.95 for zip (the one in my stash was a jeans zip that couldn’t be cut to size as needed), £1 to replenish my red thread supplies (loads left now), about 80p for button (was being helped by a small girl, can’t quite remember that one), lining fabric and scraps of interfacing from my stash.
Most unexpected comment “That’s a nice skirt. You look like a dalek.”
Make again? Possibly. I’m not much of a skirt wearer so I’ll see how this much use this one gets. If I do I might be brave and make it View A length, plus I’ll remeasure myself and make a smaller size. I think patch pockets at the back would look good, if they didn’t interfere with the yoke. I might make the waistband half an inch wider and if I added belt loops again I’d baste them to the skirt to make sure they were in the right place rather than to the waistband, before sewing the waistband on (and then baste the other end of the loops to the waistband before sewing it to the facing).
pockets and belt loops
fly and button (slightly crumpled after a days wearing)