Since having an operation on my neck I’m trying to vary the sewing I do each day,so a bit of dressmaking one day, quilting another and hand-sewing too. This has resulted in me doing a bit more dress-making – which is good as my stash needs using!
Earlier in the month I made a jersey top, I pulled another length out of my cupboard, thinking I’d make another top, even if it wasn’t the same pattern. Unfortunately the patterns I looked at I never had quite enough fabric, particularly as I felt it would suit a long sleeved top, rather than sleeveless or short sleeved. I played with the fabric a bit and I loved the drapiness of it, it has that nice weight that you just know will hang nicely. I decided to make a simple skirt…a very simple skirt!
Due to the size of the piece I literally just stitched a back-seam and rolled the top over some broad elastic and stitched it down to form a waistband! The skirt was as basic as that! As jersey is prone to stretch a bit I put it on my dressmakers dummy to hang for a couple of days which turned into a couple of weeks. Today I decided to have a finishing day and I did a narrow hem using a stretch stitch and my skirt was finished. I wanted a real maxi length, if I find it’s a pain I can always shorten it, but I can see this skirt getting a lot of wear in the summer.
The next length of fabric to fall out of my stash cupboard was a beautiful length of Abraham Moon fine wool in a gorgeous teal colour. It feels wonderful! We’re very lucky as the Abraham Moon mill is in the next town and they have a mill shop where everything is £20 a metre where as usually it’s £35 upwards. I spotted this teal remnant folded on the side, I think I got 1.80m for £30.
I decided to make a straight skirt, again I didn’t have much choice with the size of the remnant. I picked out a new pattern, Simplicity 8792. I measured myself and to my dismay all numbers pointed to at least a size 16, I say dismay, as my pattern only went up to a 14!! Over the last few months with all the lockdowns, I haven’t gained weight but I think everything has moved a bit south!! Having said that, all the straight skirts which I’ve made over the last few years still fit me.
I decided to still use the pattern but cut it generously on the adjusting seams. With 1/4 ” added here and there I added about 2″ altogether. The pattern went together nicely, the wool was a dream to sew. I found some lining in my stash which worked colourwise. It was a tad short but I thought by the time the hem was stitched on the skirt it would be fine. It wasn’t, it was too short and looked it. I then remembered a tip on another blog, she added a lace trim to her skirt linings so if anyone got a glimpse it would look like a pretty underskirt! Of course I didn’t have any in my stash but after a furtle on ebay I had some on order. In a couple of days it had arrived and I love the effect.
I also ordered some buttons. I find it really hard to buy buttons on line, the colours on screen are so hard to marry with fabric in your sewing room. I decided that the chances of me getting teal to match were small, but navy blue would work well. I decided I just wanted very simple matte buttons. I’ve used this style for years but never known what they are called. They’re smartie buttons! They come is a wide range of colours and sizes, I like them and the navy works perfectly.
Right up to the final fitting I was worried that it would be too small, I even had a back up plan of putting a placket behind the centre front so I could move the buttons to the edge. In the end it fit’s nicely. I’m not sure about the deep waistband yet, though I think maybe I just need to make some pretty blouses. It feels lovely to wear too.
When I bought the buttons they came in a packet of 8, typically the pattern called for 9, so I ordered two packets…and used 8!! The pattern I used also included some wrap skirts with an asymmetrical buttoned front. I remembered the linen skirt I made last summer, the wrap one which flashed far too much leg – like all of it! It was a navy blue skirt…this one –
I found it and added some buttons – I think there is a chance of this being worn in public now, it’s a beautiful weight of linen and the buttons matched perfectly.
So a top, two skirts and an upgrade and it’s not even the end of January yet!