See this pretty double rainbow from Tuesday evening? I think it illustrates how happy I am to feel at least somewhat better than I have over the last month. I actually spent the afternoon yesterday sewing. Whoo-hoo! And I have a successful Finished Object to show for it:
Burda WOF, 07-2006-125, Banana Skirt
Completed: April 27, 2011
Fabric: Leftover double-knit (possibly rayon/lycra) from another project, 60” wide/1 M.
Pattern: Burda World of Fashion magazine, 7/2006 #125. Unlined 6-gore skirt with elastic waist.
Notions: non-roll waistband elastic, 1” wide; sewing thread, black; serger thread, black; wooly nylon thread, black.
Comments: This was a fairly heavyweight fabric to use for this pattern but I think it’s going to be a very wearable skirt. I consider it a freebee after also getting a dress cut from the same 2.5 M fabric piece. I’m now pretty sure it’s rayon and lycra because it gets stiff when wet like rayon and you can see the sparkle of the lycra on the wrong side. It also steam-presses quite flat despite its thickness. You just never know when you buy fabric at Dressew whether the labels are correct or not – if they tell you anything at all besides the price. “100% Unknown Fibres” is a common occurrence. And there’s no hint on the bill either so you’d better take notes as you get your piece cut.
It was a big nail biter when cutting out the single pattern piece 6 times on the fabric. I used my iron-erasable crayon to trace each piece and when it didn’t come out right the first time, I ironed the fabric to “erase” the lines to start again. I barely managed to squeeze it in probably due to my sizing it up enough to fit me. I nearly needed to redraw the seams narrower. Got it in the end though!
Since this double-knit doesn’t fray I just stitched 5/8” seams and pressed the seams open flat. I used card under the seam allowances to avoid show-through on the right side:
I also used the clapper to flatten things really well. The waistband on this skirt is very simple and effective. I cut the elastic 2” shorter than my waist (could maybe have been 1” smaller still), ends overlapped 1/2” and stitched in a circle. Then I tried the skirt with the elastic on top on Debbie Double so I could mark the seams with a Sharpie so I knew where to match up to when stretching the elastic to fit. I tried something a little different for this waistband and put most of the fullness at the back instead of distributing it evenly. That way it fits more smoothly over my tummy and pulls in toward my swayback. Then they have you stitch the elastic on to the inside of the waist. I used my serger (or you could zigzag):
Fold the edge down covering the elastic and stitch in the ditch at each seam to secure. Steam-press the fold carefully so as not to damage the elastic. It’s pretty much invisible from the outside as you can see on the picture of the skirt on Deb above. (It’s a bit light because I had to use the flash but at least you can see the details.)
The hem was turned under 1 cm and pressed and then I used my serger’s coverstitch with wooly nylon in the looper to finish it. Underside:
I decided that since I have a perfectly functional coverstitch on my machine I should use it – even if it is rather tedious to set up! Each time gets easier and quicker so the practice is worth it. I didn’t mess with the length at all and the skirt ends a couple of inches below my knee which for me is very practical and comfortable. Now I will have to wear it for awhile to make sure the waist stays where it’s supposed to and the hem doesn’t ride up or something. You never know until you test.
I really like how one single pattern piece can make such a cute skirt with a bit of an asymmetrical kick. It’s easy to sew and could be made in an infinite number of drapey fabrics. I’ve complained before how I would have missed this garment completely if I hadn’t accidentally noticed a positive review on PatternReview! Burda, take note: über-styling your photo shoots does you no favours. Just show us the darn clothes, dammit! Personally I’d be happy if they shot each one with the model standing against a blank wall. Probably bore the heck out of the photographers and stylists!
I also finished up the baby bibs but one FO is enough for today, doncha think?