Tuesday, 11 October 2011

A Project A Week 41: Leatherette midi skirt ( as seen in my Skirt Inspiration)

I gave in and decided that I wasn't going to wait until payday to get the fabric to make my "leather" skirt- I was just really eager to see how it would turn out, so on Saturday, after a trip to the hairdresser (I *finally* have the same lovely haircut as back in May- for £7.75!!) I went to my local fabric shop to have a look at their selection of leatherette fabric. Sadly, they did not have anything in the rich burgundy colours as the original inspiration skirt so I settled for a rich chocolate brown instead. I was thinking of following the instructions on Casey's blog (she had a circle skirt sew along a couple of weeks ago) but then found these very handy instructions on Ficklesense- on a very convenient PDF format which included everything from start to finish. The only problem was that I didn't have a clue on how much fabric I needed, and Casey mentioned that circle skirt do eat a lot of fabric, so I ended up buying 4 meters. I know, it's even more than for a dress, but I really didn't want to run out of fabric. So after purchasing the fabric, matching thread and a zip, it was back to the flat to start on straight away (then once home realised I still needed to seam my knitted blue jumper before starting anything else!).

The PDF gives you several choices of circle skirts: full, 3/4, 1/2 or 1/4. It has several really useful pics showcasing the different types of skirts. I hesitated between the full and 3/4 and opted for the latter as it seemed to look more like what I wanted. After a couple of calculations I drafted my paper pattern (as I am bound to use this again...)

I wrote 3/4 but it's not right, it's only 1/4. I was never really good at Maths...

and then decided to cut the fabric. 1st impression: there is a lot of it, so I just folded a bit and started cutting. 

You can laugh at me for the next bit: I just didn't get the instructions on folding and ended up cutting 3 separate quarters instead of a continuous one. But I just laughed it off and just sewed them together. 

By the way,  cutting and sewing this fabric was wonderful. It wasn't too thick or too thin, and was a pleasure to work with. Obviously it didn't fray either, which was fantastic.

I then followed the instructions for the waistband, but got to a standstill on the interfacing. I wasn't sure I would be able to use fusible interfacing on the leatherette without melting it/ ruining my iron/ causing a disaster, so decided against it altogether. The fabric is thick enough.  I also followed the instructions on inserting the zipper. They recommend the method of basting first, sewing the zip then removing the basting to let the zip through. I tried and it's allright, but I need more practice I think to achieve a better result. 

I then finished the waistband with some hook and tape (Velcro) rather than hook and eye- a lazy shortcut but it works! And it was done, since it didn't need hemming. I still let it hang 24 hours though (I'm not sure it made a difference this time).

It fits perfectly and looks fantastic, exactly what I wanted. Here are a couple of pictures!

Headless shot!!!

My mirror really needs a clean...

I will wear something more covering than this when I'll wear the skirt, honest!

And I just realised that the girl on the bag behind me seems to be looking up my skirt with a spyglass!

Once again, I am very pleased, and was very inspired when I decided to make a paper pattern- I'll definitely use this again. Needless to say, I have about 2 meters of leatherette fabric left- but I'll find something to do with it!!

The original skirt, from Ben de Lisi at Debenhams costs £175. I paid £5.99 per meter of fabric (in the end I only used 2 meters so that's £11.98), thread was £1.80 (I used Coats Moon- 200m on offer), 1 leather needle (£2.40 a pack of 5 so 48p)  and zip was £1.50, so that's less than £17- 1/10 of the price.

I think this deserves a little dance don't you think?



mahaila said...

Heya! WOW! I am so glad that you were able to construct this lovely skirt from the tutorial. You did a great job and you look fantastic! Thanks for the feedback, perhaps I need to make some alterations to the document/post. Happy sewing:)

Noas' Libellule said...

That looks amazing!! Well done!

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