I definitely think that after a few years of sewing, I have become more mindful about what I should be making as opposed to what I want to make....
and while I don't always follow that logic, swayed wayyyyy to easily by a floral or print that I would never buy in a retail garment, I do feel this skirt - black/ cream, an interesting detail and works with a variety of shoes (that should be No 1 !) does finally fit the sensible category and will hopefully get a lot of wear.
Spot the cat!
I was on the hunt for silks in B&J Fabrics a couple of month ago and this caught my eye when I went rogue and wandered down the wool aisle.
I was instantly smitten and intrigued, its gorgeous and tactile - definitely one of those fabrics that you know you just have to have, even when you have no idea what to make with it.....
The label said "Calvin Klein, made in Italy, double faced cashmere with silk fused nylon thread". Its a medium weight wool with a surprising amount of drape and softness, and I thought it was really special.
The nylon feels somewhat like very fine zipper teeth and I can only imagine that the silk that was used to create the effect is what helps keep it lightweight and flexible.
After procrastinating for a few months, I decided that this could make a beautiful skirt and so I went back to my favorite and much used skirt pattern, the free Marfy PDF 0757.
and still think it's such a good pattern to use as a jumping off point as it only has two pieces and can be so easily altered.
Taking into account the medium weight of the wool and the fusible, I figured that a tighter midi length pencil skirt would work well, and help keep bulk at bay.
And it was actually a really nice straightforward make. I cut the back panel in to two, moved the zipper placement from the side to the back and added a long split at the bottom center back
I also used a silk organza to underline the skirt, not only to help the wool remain stable and supported, but as this skirt is fairly tight, to add reinforcement to the seams.
and it came together quickly overall, there was some pattern matching and I did extend the darts an inch or so to help shape the bulky wool but once I was left with this, I panicked a little....
I really felt that the uniqueness of the fabric had all but disappeared, and the only thing I could come up with was to peel some off in order to highlight it a little more again.
But I won't deny it, I was more than a little anxious when I started peeling off that fusible, having no idea what length was going to work best for the cream panel...
It came off fairly easily, but definitely changed the top of the cashmere to a light fuzz instead of that lux sheen its know for, which was slightly sad (and hopefully not noticeable to anybody but me)
I also removed it as best as I could from the inside seams so it was more comfortable to wear.
I then added the usual hand picked and beeswax thread 7" zipper and Petersham waistband.....
and hand sewed in a very light silk charmeuse lining to help keep bulk down.
Before finishing all my usual hacked hems and seams with a quick catch stitch.....
and seriously steaming and pressing that garment to within an inch of its life......the fusible took the heat well but it was a full on fight to get all those seams to lay flat and not "bounce" back up again. I think I almost had to melt and then cool the nylon threading to get it to submit...but it did :-)
So hopefully this will be a good basic for the closet, it's certainly very easy to wear.
Can't stop watching......
Thank you Liz- my Southern Coco Chanel for the link xx
Anyone else excited to see the Mets new May 5th exhibition “Manus x Machina” ?? looks bloody audacious, and is promising interior views of the garments and an atelier studio set up..... I admit I already pre-ordered my ticket!
Iris van Herpen (Dutch, born 1984). Dress, fall/winter 2013–14. Silicon feather structure and moldings of bird heads on cotton base. Photograph by Jean-Baptiste Mondino
and I read that they are making a Alexander McQueen biopic.... No doubt it will be fascinating to watch (again and again and again!)
The kids are on winter break this week, and I do have a couple of finished items to blog about but next up to sew will be some version of this from one of my favorite Instagramers -
I'm imagining that I might get more wear if it has some kind of waist and a fuller skirt but the jumping off point with definitely be the Grainline Archer and I'll see where it goes from there. Seriously so gorgeous no?
Have a great week everyone
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