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Circle Skirt Sew-Along: Completed!

October 7, 2011

This September I’m sewing along with Casey at Elegant Musings. A bunch of talented seamsters and I are all making circle skirts, and this post marks the completion of my skirt.

Ladies and gentlemen, let me introduce you to the newest addition to my closet:  the circle skirt.

It’s not just a simple circle, either.  This skirt has quite a few surprises.  Self-drafted pockets.  An invisible zip.  A flower pinned to the waistband closure.

The fabric is an indigo-dyed batiste from Fine Fabrics.  I wanted a lighter weight neutral, and while this one likes to hold on to its wrinkles, it’s a delightful almost-denim blue.  I can imagine pairing it with almost anything I’d pair with jeans.  Which is everything, basically.

At the last minute I added horsehair braid to the hem – the half-inch horsehair braid that you can get from your local craft store.  I loved the way the fabric fell without it (see here and here to get an idea), but I also wanted to see just what the horsehair braid would do.  The skirt now falls in a few large billows of fabric instead of many small ones.  It also has body and character.  Maybe more of a 50s sock hop kind of character, but character all the same.

The hem was a bit of a challenge. Threadsquare hit the crux of it when she asked,

Do you pull the skirt out, then mark, or let it all hang naturally? There is so much volume, so it must take ages.

My husband and I pinned and pinned until we settled on a hem that was more or less parallel to the ground.  To do so, I put on the skirt, and then he used a skirt marker I bought on Etsy to pin at evenly spaced intervals around the skirt.  We did our best to let the skirt hang naturally while pinning.  And, it was pretty obvious when a pin was out of place.  It took forever to pin and just about as long to sew – even though I used my machine for all of it.  I originally wanted to hand sew the entire thing, but there just wasn’t time.  Work has been all consuming lately, and it took all of my free time as is.

I finished the skirt last night and celebrated with a little twirl.  This skirt can dance!

Overall, I’m very happy with this skirt.  I learned a lot about drafting and drape and grain.  I now know the exact circumference of my waist and just how many inches above the ground a below-the-knee length skirt should be for me.  That said, I did hit a few snags.  As Kristin found, my waistband came out without the one inch overlap.  Next time I’ll have to double check my math.  To save it this time around, I made the seam allowances smaller to give it a bit of a lap and then used a pin my parents gave me for my birthday to hide the flaw.  I also didn’t get the pockets quite right – twice.  This type of pocket is nearly invisible in my Crescent skirt and Lonsdale dress, but here mine gaps a bit.  I thought I’d understood roughly how Tasia had drafted hers, but I obviously don’t have it quite right.  Even when I went back to the drawing board and cut the pockets out a second time, they still weren’t quite right.  Something to add back to my to-do list.

I can’t thank Casey enough for hosting this Sew-Along.  It’s been a wonderful learning experience for me, and I’m extremely pleased with the outcome.  When I can find the time, I now have the confidence to draft a simple dress that takes advantage of a circle skirt.  But, first, I have to finish my bombshell dress and make quite a few gifts for others.  Until then, happy sewing!

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13 Comments leave one →
  1. October 7, 2011 3:44 am

    Your skirt turned out lovely! =) The flower is a nice addition, and I love how swingy the hem is. I really wanted to try horsehair braid on my skirt, too, but I couldn’t find it locally and didn’t order any online in time. Maybe next time!

    ~Kristin

  2. October 7, 2011 7:37 am

    I love it! It’s so twirly and fun!

  3. October 7, 2011 8:57 am

    Amy – This skirt looks great. It’s such a basic colour that you will be able to combine it with a zillion tops and shoes. I think the tiny pocket gape looks like a design detail and adds character!

  4. October 7, 2011 1:59 pm

    Pretty, pretty! I love those pockets and the horsehair braid definitely adds character. It’s a great length too.

  5. October 7, 2011 2:04 pm

    You’ve done a great job. I just love the way your skirt falls and the picture of you twirling – great shot!! I actually thought the pockets were like that ie not an error. The trend is to have them quite gapey now – I think it looks great!!

  6. October 10, 2011 9:59 am

    Your skirt is so pretty. I love the pockets! I forgot to put my pockets in twice, so I just ended up leaving them out. :) The little flower pin is really cute too, and you can probably switch it out for another pin to change the look of your outfit. Great idea!

  7. Victoria / Justice Pirate permalink
    October 10, 2011 11:36 am

    This is one of my favorites out of all the people who sent Casey photos of their skirts. I love the material you chose too!!

  8. October 10, 2011 11:58 am

    Hopping over from Casey’s sew along post. Love your skirt.
    The colour is really pretty, and next time I’m adding pockets too ;)

  9. October 12, 2011 9:14 am

    You should be so proud AND make your husband take you dancing! The skirt looks fabulous, Amy!!! I love that you found a cute workaround to the waistband issue, as this has happened to me on many an occasion, and the horsehair braid was a great addition. Thanks for answering my question, btw :) I’m totes jumping on the circle skirt wagon this evening.

  10. October 20, 2011 1:39 pm

    It’s beautiful and it suits you! I love the pockets as well.

Trackbacks

  1. SWAP 2012: An Overly Ambitious Goal? « Sew Well
  2. Deja Vu: Circle Skirt Two « Sew Well
  3. The Circle Skirt Remake « Sew Well

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