Monday, 20 October 2014

Checked (rather than tartan) skirt

I just loved this checked fabric when I saw it in Edinburgh Fabrics a few weeks ago so that was that, sold to the woman feverishly clutching a bolt of it! 

This photo doesn't quite do it justice but my excuse is that I photographed it yesterday evening when it had got dark. The background is a light grey, with black cerise pink and also a purple stripe you can't really see. There's also tan/brown colour underneath the black checks. Tasteful eh? Just the kind of thing I love!

Now, I knew I wanted to sew a pencil skirt with it, line it and fill a gap in my wardrobe for a winter wool skirt. The question is, how to make it more Vivienne Westwood and less Auntie Beanie or the Prime of Miss Jean Brodie...and it had to keep me interested when sewing what is a basic, simple pencil skirt pattern and one I've made before and blogged about before too. 
Here's the pattern. So, spurred on y all you bloggers out there, I decided to give the skirt some purple lining that matched the purple stripe in the check.

Then I went a bit off piste with the rest of it and found some black pvc bias binding. I never knew such things existed! So I decided to add some around the waist instead of a waistband. 

Just to keep things interesting and to challenge myself I decided to try an exposed zip. So after googling tutorials I found lots and genned up ion the topic. 

And if that wasn't enough I decided to improve on the finish of the inside of the skirt too by hiding the facing in the skirt construction. No that's not easy to explain so here's a photo-
I then used the lovely bias binding to bind the waist edge of the skirt. I made a bit of a dogs dinner of sewing it but I figure I never wear things tucked in anyway so nobody's going to see it! I used a leather/pvc sewing machine needle when sewing the bas binding. It took a bit of persuading to get through all those layers of fabric and lining in some areas and to be honest I had to go back and hand sew areas I'd missed catching with the sewing machine. As I said, bit of a dogs dinner!

I made a much better job of sewing the bias binding around the hem. I completed the hem as I'd normally do, by hand sewing it. Then I machined one edge of the bias binding and then hand sewed the bias binding on the inside. That worked much better than the waist, probably because there were less layers of fabric to get through but my fingers were glad to finish hand sewing the bias binding! Here's a rear view photo showing it in all of its neatness (unless you had a close-up shot of the waist obviously. 

And here's a photo of me wearing the skirt. I absolutely love it even though it's far from perfect but I know I'll get lots of wear out of it. It's been an epic but it's been worth it! 

What have you been sewing for the cooler weather?  

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