Sunday, 28 June 2009

Tourist Trap

Remember the vintage California souvenir tablecloth?

It's now turned into this:

I sewed this skirt last weekend, but had no buttons for the pockets until yesterday.

This is the second skirt I made using Sew What! Skirts, a wonderful book (I blogged about the first one I made here):

It contains lots of different styles of skirt - apart from this simple A-line, there are pencil skirts, circular skirts, layered skirts, tiered and ruffled versions, and wrap-around versions. All the skirt patterns you could ever need, in fact. If you want to see other styles from the book made up by real people, try looking at the Sew What Skirts Sewalong group on Flickr.

There are instructions on how to draft a pattern for each style of skirt, so you can make a skirt to fit you, whatever your size. All you need are your measurements, a measure (a long wooden ruler works best for drawing patterns), a pen and large sheets of paper. You can buy proper dressmakers' tissue paper, but I used large sheets from the FT.

The book assumes no knowledge, so clearly explains the basics. However, it doesn't skimp on the more complex stuff; for example there is advice on adjusting for fit and explanation of how to make darts. I think I could have improved the fit on this skirt by including darts at the waist, so next time I sew an A-line, I will have a go at making some.

For this skirt, I had to make facings and attach custom patch pockets:

I also had to put in a zip. I hadn't sewed a zip since 1985, and I couldn't actually remember ever attaching the zipper foot to my sewing machine before, so I'm not sure how I managed it previously. This time, I used the zipper foot and zipped away nicely.

I'm very pleased with my retro skirt, and because of the tablecloth edge, I didn't even have to hem it!

I shan't be wearing it to work though. This is definitely a holiday skirt.


  1. That is just awesome! I love your skirt, very unique.

  2. That is a really cool skirt! Definitely holiday!

  3. great skirt! Funnily enough I bought the book a couple of weeks ago too.