Sewing through the sneezes....

I finally got my little sewing box out today to give it a bit of an outing in the dining room with a revolting skirt (stunning fabric, hideous shape) bought 3 years ago in a sale for £4.00 and a newly acquired charity shop top which cost me £1.50......

And so I set to work, sniffing and sneezing, snipping and sewing ! I thought a picture gallery of the whole affair might be good so I did some snapping inbetween too!

The skirt, consigned to the pile of 'clothes ready to be chopped up and reborn' is made with a beautiful mix of prints. Main accent is chocolate brown with teal and coffee mixtures thrown in. I loved the fabric the second I saw it BUT the shape..... yuk! It had an illfitting waist, a deep straight yoke with a slight shaped V, and a straight skirt gathered onto it. It made me look like the back end of a bus, most demoralising. I have curvy 14/16 hips and a small waist (which only serves to make my bottom seem even larger.....) so this style was NO good! I prefer skirts which are fitted at the waist and skim the hips with a bit of flare at the base. A line styles are perfect!

I firstly cut that awful gathered waistband yoke off. Then I cut a slither off of each side, I didnt really need to do this! But those slithers came in handy later..... read on.

After a jolly good squeeze under the iron I folded the skirt in half then I pinned one of my favourite patterns onto it. Matching up the fold as the centre front of course.

This pattern has 2 darts, front and back for a little shaping. This close up shows how I avoid all labourious tailor tacking and cheat on darts..... Shocking behaviour but it saves oodles of time and thats precious! I snip ever so slightly into the top of the dart on either side. I then push a pin through all layers at the very tip of the dart.

I carefully fold back the layers to find the wrong sides of the fabric and being careful not to loose that pin, I mark a little dot with a moistened watercolour pencil. Use a colour you can see. I have used pencils for this for years! The marks wash out.

All 4 darts made and neatly pressed facing inwards.

Invisible zip carefully placed and pinned ready for stitching.

Nice and neat!

I gave up using faced waistbands with interfacing a long time ago as soon as I saw a waistband like this on a skirt I bought. You need some nice cotton bias binding for this the size of the waistband edge plus 2". Starting at the open zip edge with the right side of the fabric facing the right side of the bias tape, pin the tape about 10mm down from the top edge, allowing about 20mm to overhang on the zip edge as shown. I only pin the start but you can pin all the around if you want to.

Open out one side of the tapes little folded edge and carefully stitch in this little crease as a guide. The picture speaks a thousand words on this. Once you have gone all the way around, snip the tape allowing a 20mm overhang again. Over to the ironing board and turning that tape inwards, with the wrong side of the skirt facing you, carefully press the tape flat.

Stitch as shown on the wrong side carefully! See how important ironing the darts was!

Here is the finished waistband and zip.

A conservative, nothing added view in fading light! The skirt seams were ruckley when I bought this, never mind as long as my new seams arent! And because it looked so PLAIN and I cant have that, I rushed inside and using that little slither of offcut and a few buttons, a snippet of organza ribbon and 5 minutes.....

A removeable corsage was made to bring the whole thing together.

Add my favourite petticoat in a surprisingly perfect colour match with one of the fabrics and Dah Dah.......

I love it! I shall wear it to weed the leeks on Saturday.........
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