Hmmm and I can’t seem to take a ‘good’ photo of this skirt either. Anyway step 2 of my three point Clothkits plan, the turquoise skirt. Now I have made quite a lot of Clothkits stuff and normally I love all their stuff and find it easy to sew with great instructions, however, this skirt . . . not so. The first problem, which really compounded all the problems that followed may have actually been my fault because I still can’t figure out what went wrong, you see the first point in the instructions said to measure yourself to find which size to cut out, so being good I measured myself. Normally I don’t because waist wise I’m a 14 – 16 (UK size) however as I’ve found Clothkits skirts to be a little on the small side before, I thought I’d better measure just to be sure, so I measured, compared my measurements to their chart and then keeled over in shock, according to them I was a size 22, so I thought that can not be right (I was after all still fitting into my shop bought size 14 – 16 clothes) but I thought, well it’s their pattern, they should know how it fits and their clothes do come up a bit on the small side, so I compromised and cut out a size 20 (I repeated my measurements several times by the way). The next few stages went ok, although I’d recommend to anyone attempting this skirt to mark out somehow which are the back, side and front panels as they all look nearly all the same, so can be a bit confusing when putting together in the right order if you’re making the elasticated version of the skirt (which I was, as it was recommended for size 20 and above). So I joined the skirt up, slipped it on (without the waistband) and (you can guess what’s coming can’t you?), I looked like one of those after photos in one of those diet ads, the skirt was way too big.
Ok, I know at this point I could have unpicked everything and recut the panels, but I have so much sewing on at the moment and as much as I was already not feeling that much love for this skirt, at the same time I wanted it finished and out the way, so I decided to shorten the waistband a little and to create more of a gathered effect at the back of the skirt to make the skirt fit. So I followed the instructions to make the elasticated waistband and that is where the pattern instructions really fell down, maybe by now my sewing mojo had completely left me or something but parts of the pattern for the elasticated version of the skirt seemed to contradict each other and try as I might I could just not see how to get the waistband onto the skirt following their method. Now I know I was making life more difficult for myself trying to fit a slightly smaller waistband on a bigger skirt, but there were parts of the instructions where I couldn’t see how you could fit the waistband on at all. So I gave up on their instructions and made it up as I went along. I managed to get the waistband on, but somehow I had encased the elastic so that there was now no stretch and I had gone from a skirt that was too big to a skirt that was now too small. So in desperation (or perhaps should I say annoyance) I took a pair of scissors to one of the seams and hand sewed in the zip that had come with the skirt for the zippered version and the skirt then fitted and I am wearing it today.
I say that I am wearing it, which is in a miracle in itself really as things kept going wrong with it (and now by the way it fits fine, if ever so slightly a little loose) but I’m not sure I like it. For a start this skirt on me looks quite a bit shorter than the skirt on the Clothkits website (see link above), I can only assume their model is short (as a rule with all Clothkits skirts they’re a little short on me compared to on the models they use, thinking about it), I’m 5ft 9 ish for the record. The gathering at the back also makes my bum look big and the front doesn’t do much for my permantly4 month pregnant looking tum, put it this way this is not a skirt I’m going to wear without a long top covering the waist area, however most of my tops do that anyway, by necessity. However much as I am slightly dubious about this skirt I will wear it, partly because my current wardrobe is pathetic and I need new clothes and I will accept anything at the moment. This skirt will probably do fine as a ‘work’ skirt (by work I mean mainly tutoring, which I hope to do a lot of this year and possibly for some crafty related work stuff to), my working wardrobe is even more pathetic than my casual wardrobe. But the main reason why I will wear this is because there is something about making an item of clothing yourself which goes completely against the throw away clothes culture, put it this way, if I had bought this skirt on a whim in Primark (not that I go in there these days), I would have worn it maybe once or twice, decided for all the reasons I listed above that I didn’t like it and not worn it again, however now that it’s me who’s sweated over the sewing machine, of course I’m going to wear it and a lot more than twice. Which makes me a hypocrite, although not really, as like I say I don’t go into Primark anymore because I do think about the person on the other end of the sewing machine now.