It’s been pretty quiet here on the blog for the past couple weeks. I had every intention of posting about this skirt a couple days after I finished it, but it has been so gloomy and overcast here (and still is) and I’ve been pretty busy at work that it didn’t get done until now.
But that doesn’t mean I’m not excited to share the skirt with you, because I really really am!
Over the past couple months, suede mini skirts have been taking over my Pinterest boards. I scoured the internet for various patterns and came across Tilly and the Button’s Arielle skirt and immediately fell in love with the shape and the offset button opening. It also has the option to add a lining, which is something I had not done. So learning a new technique + getting a new skirt equaled a win-win for me.
For this skirt, I bought this faux-suede fabric from fabric.com and used some lining that I bought a while back from High Fashion Fabrics, here in Houston. I cut a size 3 and graded out to a size 4 in the hips and I’m pretty happy with the final fit. The two front and two back darts give the skirt a great shape as well.
While I’m pretty stinking happy about the finished product, it was really touch-and-go for a while. The instructions were very clear, so I have nothing bad to say about them. It was allll user error (well partly my machine, too). You better brace yourself for all of the issues I had…
First: the lining. I’d show you a picture of it if it wasn’t so hideous (that may be a bit dramatic)…somehow it ended up not lining up very well across the bottom, so it’s a bit wonky. I’m just going to count my minor victories of trying a new technique and it not completely failing. And the fact that you never would have known if I had not mentioned anything. However, this is definitely something I want to work on some more.
Second: buttonholes. You know how I said I was about 5 buttonholes away from throwing my machine about the window? Well…I’m now -1 buttonholes away. Seriously. Nick had to talk me down several times. I’d do two test buttonholes and they’d come out PERFECT (exact same thickness of fabric), so I’d decide to sew one on the skirt and it would mess up and start nesting and creating all kinds of havoc. I tried adjusting the tension, re-threading the bobbin, re-threading the machine, changing the stitch width/length, and had Nick take a look at it, too. But this just kept happening. If you have any suggestions for how I can fix this, PLEASE tell me!
SO. I finally decided to just “manually” make the buttonholes by using a small zigzag stitch. Now maybe that makes me a horrible sewer (sewist?), but I was desperate and not in the right mindset to learn how to hand sew a buttonhole. Add that to the list of techniques I need to try and learn.
Third (not really an issue,but something that looking back on it would have made the skirt even better): blind hem. I was so anxious to get the skirt done so I could get started on my December sewing plans that I just machine hemmed it. But you live and learn, right?
Whew. If you’re still reading, I applaud you. If you sew, hopefully you’re not cringing too much. And hopefully I’m not the only one who has had projects like this.
Again, these issues had nothing to do with the pattern or instructions. They were fabulous, clear and concise, as are the additional tutorials they have on their website!
Back to something more positive…the buttons! I picked these up on a trip to Dallas this past summer (Nick’s anniversary gift to me was fabric shopping, which was absolutely perfect!). I think they add a sweet touch to the skirt without being too overwhelming. And yes, I did have to hand sew these, so it is possible for me to do some hand sewing.
I’d like to make a more spring/summer version, maybe in a lightweight denim or twill, but it’ll have to wait a while because I need a break from buttonholes.
Have you seen Megan Nielsen’s Dove blouse? If not, check it out because it’s amazing and I’ve already made three! I think it would make the PERFECT retro outfit with with the flared or bell sleeves.
My December sewing projects are well underway, and I’m excited to share them with you!
Here’s to hoping they all go smoothly!