Sunday, 27 July 2014

On my sewing table

This weekend I had intended to get started on a blouse, and I've also got a partly made muslin of Vogue 8998 on Ruby, my dress form. I have discovered it is not easy to get princess seams to run smoothly over a large bust. Nobody wants a rippled bodice right on the critical protruberances. As I was feeling very tired after a busy week at school, I took it easy on the sewing front. I was digging in one of my fabric boxes and came across these:

 Mr Mouse is wondering if these butterflies are going to take flight. These are two A-line skirts cut out by my lovely sister. She said she couldn't see herself getting them finished in a hurry, so gave them to me.

You can only imagine the excitement when I discovered one of them has horses on it!!!!!
 My sister Meg has practically patented the quickest version of A-line skirts known to sewing humanity. She chops out two identical pieces for front and back, pinked around the edges. Then she folds the top over and sews it down. Then sews the sides and probably gets mad cause she has to put a zip in (am I right Meg?). Then she'll fold up the bottom, and sew a hem. Brilliant! Put on a simple top with cardigan, your new skirt, some tights and boots, accessorize liberally, and you look fab.

We can't make these skirts without a zips, so Mouse and I delved into the zip box and hoped we'd find some to match. I have been given quite a few old ones, some pre-loved and ripped out of clothing. We found some that would do, and all was good until Fergus stole one of them. He loves carrying them around victoriously. I had a bit of trouble locating it. He had deposited it next to his food bowl while he had a snack, then walked away.
 Because I am curvy through the hips and waist, I find some darts help skirts to sit nicely. Meg is a different shape to me so she doesn't bother. On one of the skirts she had sewn down the top, so I removed the thread with my quick-unpicker so that I could do the darts before folding over.
 Then I had the genius idea to use some masking tape to remove the annoying wee bits of thread. Just like a wax strip!
 I got both skirts sewn together and hemmed, but did not get the zips sewn in. Fergus stole a zip again, so I took that as a sign that I was done for the day. Hopefully I'll get both zips in during the week, providing my baby Birman doesn't hide them in the meantime.
I wore my Tartan Triumph dress on Friday and got quite a few comments about how great it is. Several people were amazed that I had made it. Lucky they couldn't see how I need to do some repairs in the zipper area. In fact I think I'll have to remove it and reinsert it because it has some unexpected ventilation at the waist. Oops. I also had a success with my Not Quite Coming Up Roses dress - the one that looks like it is needlepoint embroidery. It looked great and I had friends (thankfully not creepy strangers) wanting to touch the fabric because it looked textured but wasn't. Fabric - it can be so fabulous or so hideous. Beauty is definitely in the eye of the beholder.


  1. So awesome you are making the 30 minute skirt...yes, 30 minutes from material to skirt...even my zip putting in has been mastered though would make a decent sewer shudder with horror!!
    I am a horrific sewer but those A-line skirts have been a staple in my waldrobe for years and people love them!! I am sure your versions will be much more neatly finished!! Love you, Megxx

  2. I do believe that these can be achieved in 30 minutes! Woo hoo - almost instant gratification. I like the side zip too as a seam down the back can be at risk of a little strain from my generous rump. Strained seams are unattractive on anyone. Can't wait to wear these out and about. Especially the one with the horses!

  3. Wow they look amazing. Well done both of you! xxxx