I’ve considered myself a runner for most of my life. I ran recreationally when I was little, and then, at the age of 16, I started running competitively, which is when running really took ahold of me. I made time to run nearly every day from then until the third trimester of my pregnancy. I would have kept running through my entire pregnancy if truth be told, but after a run at the beginning of my third trimester, I found a small amount of blood you know where, and after consultation with my midwives, I decided my pregnancy running days were over. I’d had two miscarriages prior to that pregnancy, and it wasn’t worth risking any complications with my current pregnancy to keep up my running streak.
Before having a baby, I always imagined that I would enjoy running with a stroller. When we lived in the Bay Area, I often ran past this one woman who was always running with her kid in a stroller. She was out there every day, and she looked so strong. But, when I got the okay to start running again after having my daughter, I was in worse running shape than I could remember, and I found it frustrating trying to get back into running while pushing a heavy stroller in front of me. I finally understood what my non-running friends meant when they would say that they didn’t enjoy running because now I didn’t enjoy it. And, I had too much on my plate to make time for something I wasn’t enjoying. So, I would maybe run once or twice a week. Maybe. And, most of the time I would only manage a mile or three when I did.
Then, a few months ago, I had a health scare, and it got me thinking about how well I had been taking care of myself. You can probably tell that I don’t sew as much as I used to (despite never having lost the joy that it brings), and, as I mentioned above, I definitely wasn’t running as much as I used to. I’d been slowly trying to make more time to sew, but I hadn’t made the same commitment to running. But, when I thought about it, I realized I missed running. Desperately. So, I came up with a plan, and… drumroll, please… I started a running blog. I feel like those were the last words of Sherry of Pattern Scissors Cloth before she disappeared from the sewing world and started rocking the running world. But, I don’t plan to disappear anytime soon. Right now I’m just thankful that the new blog has been good at keeping me motivated to get out there and run (until this last week when I caught my daughter’s fever – ouch!). After getting used to how the sewing blogging world works, I have to say that running blogs are a whole other breed. It’s been interesting exploring an internet frontier that’s totally new for me.
Anyway, to get myself pumped for a summer of running, I wanted to make myself some new running gear. I’d already picked up some basic fabrics for running tops, but I wanted to make some fun running skirts using Jalie 2796 (previously made here and here). It just so happens that Funkifabrics reached out to me to ask me if I would like to try out some of their fabrics. It was pretty easy to say yes but pretty hard to decide what to choose. Have you ever looked through their selection? If not, I’d recommend going with some search criteria in mind since 1600+ fabrics is a lot to scroll through! I ultimately chose five different prints with the intention of making four different skirts. However, you’ll notice that I ended up with five skirts… thanks to some careful cutting and some dips into my stash for things like the hidden bloomers and the pleated ruffles and such.
So, here goes – five funky running skirts!
First up is probably my favorite. I can’t even explain how much I like this prism print. There’s just something about it that screams crazy, trendy running clothes to me, and it makes me feel silly and happy. Funkifabrics must agree with me because they actually just released a slightly larger version of this print as a technical fabric as well. The striped ruffle is made from jersey left over from my ombre shingle dress, and the pink ruffle, waistband, and bloomers are made from bamboo jersey left over from my last running skirt.
Not only am I a big fan of the print, but also I learned from comparing this skirt to the others that I prefer the Jalie running skirt without contrast side panels. Unfortunately, I made all of these skirts assembly-line-style so it was too late to apply this lesson to any of the skirts made here. Well, too late unless I’m willing to pull out my seam ripper!
The black-and-gray chevron print skirt made from the jagger grayscale print is probably my second favorite. This one feels trendy in a stylish-even-outside-the-running-world kind of way, and I have actually already worn it for a day out that had nothing to do with running! The black ruffle and waistband are made from jersey left over from my Drape Drape 3 No. 3 top. The inside waistband and bloomers are again made from the pink bamboo jersey left over from my last running skirt. And, while this skirt has contrasting side panels, I don’t mind them here. Maybe it’s because the chevron would have been hard to match across those seams, maybe it’s because the skirt is already busy enough, or maybe it’s because the black doesn’t really compete with the busy front and back panels?
The navy polkadot and stripe prints are actually the two prints I was most excited about making into a running skirt when I placed my order. I thought they would be so perfect paired together. They’re printed on the same fabric base so there’s no need to worry about having troubles sewing different types of jerseys together, as I had to deal with when sewing my ombre shingle dress. And, the navy ink is the same for both, so there’s no need to worry about clashing navy blues. However, these skirts probably ended up tied for my third favorite because of my preference I’ve now learned I have against contrasting side panels. I have half a mind to rip them apart and switch the side pieces, but so far I’m leaving them be since I still really like them in theory, and I’m seeing if they’ll grow on me in reality.
When I chose the two navy prints, I actually thought I’d only get one skirt out of them. I knew I liked them both, but at the time I chose the fabrics, I hadn’t decided which print should dominate the front. When the fabric arrived, my inner debate as to which print should go where kept me from cutting into my fabric right away. And, that day of extra time is actually what led me to realize that if I used another fabric for the bloomers (again, I used the pink bamboo jersey left over from my last running skirt) and was okay with really skinny pleated ruffles, then I could squeak out two skirts from the fabric I had been given, preventing me from having to make a decision as to whether the stripes or the polkadots should be the main fabric for the skirt. I used the same idea for the bloomers in all of the other skirts since I then realized it would actually be nice to have the bamboo jersey next to me in all of my skirts.
Now, I really like the star print that I used for this last skirt – teal and turquoise are my favorites! – but, I have to rank this skirt as my least favorite of the bunch because of my strange new-found aversion to those silly contrasting side panels. Is it crazy that I think this skirt would have ranked up there with the prism skirt if I’d made it with matching star-print side panels?! Is it even crazier that I think I’m going to rip this skirt apart and replace the side panels? Even though I serged the side seams?! Ha! I’ll let you know how it goes!
Bonus: all of these running skirts feature five pockets. The two typical side pockets as well as three pockets hidden in the waistband. I recently posted a tutorial on how I made the waistband pockets, and while they are working out, they are not perfect. You’d think having made five versions I would have been able to perfect the technique, but since I made them all assembly-line style, I didn’t give myself the opportunity to learn as I went.
These skirts actually mark my first experience with Funkifabrics. After seeing them pop up all over the sewing blogging world, I’d been dying to make a pair of galaxy-print leggings, but I thought that since Funkifabrics was a UK company, they catered to UK customers. In fact, when we were emailing about fabrics, I asked as much. It turns out they ship everywhere! If you’re like me and wondering if their fabric fits into your budget and if you live in the UK or USA, their shipping rates are as follows:
- UK Mainland Customers
- £4.95 for 0.5-1 m
- £5.95 for 1.1-2 m
- £8.95 for 2-3 m
- £10.00 for 3.1-70 m
- Price to be agreed upon for orders 25 kg and above
- USA Customers
- £14.00 for 0.5-2.25 m
- £16.00 for 2.5-4.25 m
- £18.00 for 4.5-6.25 m
- £20.00 for 6.5-8.25 m
- £22.00 for 8.5-10.25 m
- £24.00 for 10.5-12.25 m
- £26.00 for 12.5-14.25 m
- £28.00 for 14.5-16.25 m
- £30.00 for 16.5-18.25 m
- £32.00 for 18.5-19.5 m
- Price to be agreed upon for orders 20 m and above
For everyone else, they charge shipping at cost based on weight, dimension, and destination. Shipping to some countries is calculated during the checkout process. Those countries include…
Albania, Andorra, Cyprus, Estonia, Guernsey, Gibraltar, Croatia, Israel, Lithuania, Latvia, Monaco, Malta, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Turkey, Austria, Belgium, Germany, France, Ireland, Luxembourg, Finland, Hungary, Poland, Portugal, Sweden, Bulgaria, Greece, Iceland, Norway, Czech Republic, Spain, Italy, Switzerland, Denmark, Netherlands
If your country is not on that list, then when they receive your order, they will reach out to you to collect shipping costs separately. Again, the quote you receive will be the actual cost for the size and weight of your order to your shipping address.
So, while those in the UK definitely get cheaper shipping rates when they shop at Funkifabrics, the rest of us aren’t left out if we want some crazy printed lycra for our own stashes. In fact, after my experience with these fabrics, I took advantage of their recent sale and bought some more crazy prints. I decided four meters was the optimal amount of fabric for my order since it allowed me to be just under the max allowable for their second tier of shipping costs to the USA. I couldn’t even believe it when the fabric showed up three days later! That’s twice as fast as I see from many US online fabric stores. What am I going to do with more crazy prints?! I decided I have enough running skirts for now, so I put the fabric in my soon-but-not-quite-yet pile. These are being saved for cooler weather since I want to turn them into leggings and running tights – galaxy leggings, here I come! (Note: I didn’t take advantage of Funkifabrics’ offer of free fabric to make the galaxy-print leggings I’d been dreaming of since I was pretty sure most of you had already seen that done once or twice or five-million times by now. But, since I am a huge fan of galaxy leggings, I figured it would be okay to use my own money to make them!)
Are you a runner who sews? A sewer who runs? Have you ever made your own running or exercise gear? What do you think about crazy prints?
Funkifabrics sent me the printed lycra for review. All opinions are my own.