I’ve always loved the look of rich Autumnal tan colours, and faux suede is something that’s appeared in my wardrobe from time to time over the years too. When this fabric popped up on Clothspot’s website last year I knew some of it had to find its way into my life. As is often the case though, the lovely fabric sat unused and lonely in my stash for several months (cue sad violin music). However, after I dallied and flirted with other fabrics and patterns for some time we were reunited a while back (don’t you just love a happy ending?) and I decided a skirt would be the right garment for it (though I still have some left to make up in something else).
70’s influenced designs have long been a favourite of mine (along with 60’s fashions too) and after browsing Pinterest for ages…yes, I’m afraid I did get lost on there for a while…. happens. every. time 🙂 I decided on a knee-length panelled skirt with a hint of flare. A lot of suede skirts that I saw seemed to have panels and topstitching details and so that’s what I wanted to emulate with my faux suede skirt. See what I mean by this example (click image for direct link to Pinterest and image source) :
I also liked this longer length one that Alexa Chung wore
The starting point
So my starting point is a basic straight skirt pattern that most of you will probably have in your collection and I know that if you’re like me then you most likely have a sizeable pattern stash…come on, we’re all friends here…you can admit to a large stash…no judging, I won’t tell anyone else, promise 😉
Hehe, so anyway, I’ve cut and changed the basic pattern shape as follows:
- I drew a line vertically down the centre line and across the width at roughly halfway down.
- Cut the skirt along the drawn lines.
- On the lower sections only, slash up the middle of the pieces and spread slightly for a small flare.
- Place the slashed and spread sections on more paper and draw around the new pattern shapes.
- Be sure to re-draw grainlines and add seam allowances to the edges.
The sewing bit
There are now four front and four back pieces in all. I stitched each lower section to its corresponding top piece and then overlocked and pressed the seams open. The seams were then topstitched on each side as you can see in the close-up photos. To get the topstitching even I used the edge of my machine foot as a guide along the seam.
Next, the centre front seam was stitched, overlocked and pressed open. After that, the front seam was topstitched in the same way as the lower sections were. The centre back seam is where I put the zip and to tie in the topstitching nicely I stitched the zip in with equal widths of seaming either side and stopped and started the zip stitching to blend with the topstitching. the side seams are left un-topstitched in case future adjustments for weight fluctuation are needed.
I had some lovely jacquard detailed acetate blend lining in my stash that had been given to me ages ago and it was a smashing colour match with my fabric. I think it gives quite a luxurious look to the inside of my skirt, plus it makes it feel nice and substantial and warm too. For the waistband, I did a very simple binding finish and a button and loop closure. I’m never fond of bulky deep waistbands these days. Funny how tastes change isn’t it? I used to love a deep waistband…can’t bear them digging in me now.
Well, I’ve worn my skirt with ankle boots, knee high boots and lace-up oxfords. I rather like my pussy bow blouse with it too for even more of a 70’s vibe. So it’s pretty versatile. I wonder what I could make with the leftover fabric though. There might be enough for some kind of top or a mixed media make…hmmm… Pinterest calls again methinks!
Ok, that’s it for this weeks post. I have my day dress to finish for the Day and Night Dress Challenge next. Be sure to check out Elizabeth’s blog from the 22nd Feb onwards as the first of the guest blogger posts kicks off on her blog. I have until 27th before my post goes live, but I’ll be sure to show you a quick peek at my dresses beforehand to let you know.
I’ll probably have another post lined up for here between now, and then though, so until next time, bye!
PIN FOR LATER!
This is a great style of skirt – New Look has a pattern very similar to your self draft – but of course, a self draft from a skirt that fits you is always going to be the best option. Thank you for sharing your finishing details – always helpful to other sewers. It looks stunning on you.
Thanks, Sarah Liz…You know it’s funny, but I often don’t think to look at patterns when I want something new, If I think I can just as easily hack a pattern into what I want then I’ll just adapt something I already have. I’m going to have a look at that pattern now…I’m curious!
Another great use of fabric & pattern – I think the smaller pieces & seam details make the faux leather look richer & more “real”! Looking forward to seeing what you make with the remainder – I would go boxy, but to each her own!
That’s so kind of you Chloe, thank you. Ooh, actually I don’t mind the idea of a bit of boxy…you’ve got me thinking now…..
The skirt is gorgeous and does indeed remind me of the 1970s. Thank you for the tutorial on the pattern making. I think many of these skirts were made that way to accommodate odd pieces of leather as I remember my Mum doing similar things, but it does create such lovely style lines. I might see one of these in my future too!
Thanks, Sue. Yes, I think you’re right. The seam details were most definitely due to smaller pieces of suede/leather and I love the style lines resulting from it. This style skirt would definitely suit you 🙂
What a fantastic fabric choice! I love the topstitch details and the style. Thsese boots go well with the skirt. It looks stunning on you.
Awww, thanks so much Eli xx
Your skirt is fabulous! And what’s not to love about 70s style – I’m a big fan too!
Yay, a fellow 70’s lover. I can just see you in this style skirt Lynne, and the same colour for that matter. Thanks for the skirt love too.
I love this skirt! Totally my style!
Ooh, thanks, Maria. I’m so pleased you like it!
Love the skirt…suede is such a show stopper and it looks so cute paired with your anle boots. I have similar Fabric in my stash that I’ve been waiting to use, looking for the perfect pattern. Your mixed media top idea sounds cool or maybe a patchwork skirt.
Thanks Linda! I nearly paired it with knee high boots for the photos, but remembered these boots and how well the go with my sweater, so went with them instead. I’d love more suede and as luck would have it I found an online store that sells a great range of fab faux suede…I keep imagining a jacket…
Fun idea for the leftover fabric too by the way. Loads of food for thought…
Love the skirt and thanks for the pics of drafting process! A mixed media top or some mismatched ruffles at the bottom would be great!
Hi Pauline, thanks for stopping by! Thanks for the skirt love and I knew you’d have some fab ideas for the leftover fabric 🙂
I’ve only recently found your blog Diane and I love your style. Perhaps it’s the fact that we are probably about the same age and clearly have an addiction for skirts 😉 This one looks great and the top too, what pattern and fabric did you use for that please?
Hi Chris. I’m so pleased that you found me. Welcome! I’m glad you like my skirt. My top is actually RTW, I’m afraid. It’s a sweater by Biba that I bought early last year. It’s actually longer than it looks on the photo too, as I’ve tucked it in.