Saturday, 1 March 2014

A Simple Stretchy Skirt

Stretchy Skirt

This is by far the most comfortable item in my wardrobe at the moment. Actually, if I am honest, it is not making it to the wardrobe and is perpetually in the wear-wash-dry-wear cycle. The fabric has been in my stash for quite some time. I am not really sure how it got there, I am pretty sure it was given to me, so free fabric. I have known for some time that it was going to be a skirt and when I first laid my eyes on the Everyday Skirt Tutorial, by iCandy Handmade. I knew it was going to be THAT skirt.

I had a few reservations about the straight bottom edge on the skirt in the tutorial, though. I think if you are making a skirt with horizontal lines, then a straight edge along the bottom is probably not a bad look. But when you are making an A-line skirt, those bottom corners are just a little bit funny to me. I don't mean to criticize the tutorial. I think it is a fabulous tutorial, and the skirt looks great on, it is just me being a bit fussy.

Stretchy Skirt close up

So, rather than set about drafting myself a pattern for the skirt, I thought I would take a short cut and use a skirt pattern that I already have drafted myself from the book "Sew What Skirts". I traced my original pattern, adjusting the length to allow for the bigger waistband,and put a diagonal line across the pattern to line up the stripes on to get the chevron effect. Even though I could have used the same pattern for the back as I did for the front, I traced a second pattern piece to make it easier for me to lay out my pattern pieces on my fabric and ensure it was all going to fit. When I cut the skirt out, I very carefully folded my fabric in half, lining up the stripes, and instead of placing the centre front/back on the fold, I added seam allowance, and cut it out fully .

Stretchy A-line skirt

Of course, this skirt pattern was going to be too big. Far too big. I knew this, but it was bigger(er?) than I thought it was going to be. In the end, I just kept shaving fabric off the edges until I was happy with the fit. I would sew it, try it on, cut off my seams and re-sew it until the fit was right. Trial and Error. Once I was happy with the fit of the skirt, I set about making the waistband.

I didn't have enough fabric to make the full-sized yoga band in the pattern, so I cut myself a waistband that was half the width, and then cut it horizontally to make a front and back waistband - so my waistband is half the height of the waistband in the tutorial. I ended up cutting a fair bit from the sides of the waistband, in much the same way I did with the skirt. I then also trimmed this several times until I felt that it was tight enough to support the weight of the skirt. This was based on instinct, so I am unsure how I could tell someone else how to make that judgement, other than to try it and know that you can always pull it apart and sew it back together until you are happy with it.

Stretchy Chevron Striped Skirt

Have I mentioned how much I LOVE this skirt? Seriously, I want half a dozen of these. Not only is it comfortable, but I don't even need to iron it. When the weather turns cold I will wear it with tights. I was on tenterhooks the first time I washed it as I couldn't remember ever pre-washing the fabric before I made it, but it all turned out fine (phew!). I do need to organise myself to trace the skirt off to make a more accurate pattern for the next skirt. I do think the ideal size is going to vary according to the fabric and how much stretch it has and how heavy it is too, so probably will still need to do a fair bit of trial and error.

My goal this year is to make at least one item for me each month. This was my "Made For Me - February" item. In case you missed it, you can see my January item here.


  1. Adore that skirt too! I haven't had much luck sewing skirts in the past. I thought they'd be easy... But apparently not. I don't have much patience for trial & error.

    I'm going to join you & try to make an item for myself each month.

  2. That is awesome, Sally. I used to make things for myself all the time. Kid's clothes use less fabric and the fitting is simpler, so I got swept to the wayside. Not anymore - sewing for me is rewarding and I deserve clothes that fit me and make me feel good about myself. I am glad you are joining in :)

  3. What a great skirt , I love it!

    1. Thanks Clare. It's really comfy too :)

  4. Oh this is AWESOME!! Looks sensational on you too. I'm loving your making something for yourself. Once I get past these next couple of markets, I might join you .... a little lol

    1. Thanks Jane - I can't wait to see what you make!


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