When I saw the tartan skirt in Issue 9 of Love Sewing magazine I knew I would have to make it some time as is just the sort of skirt I like. I love skirts, tights and boots in the winter but missed the opportunity when the original issue was published so this Autumn it was on my hit list.
The tartan material I chose for the skirt was bought during my first trip to Barry’s fabrics in Birmingham when I attended the SewBrum meet up at the end of October. This was the second SewBrum get together – I couldn’t make it for the first one so was super excited to attend this year. It was organised by sewing blogger Charlotte from English Girl at Home and is basically a free event for people who love to sew.
We met in Birmingham at the Edwardian tea rooms in the Birmingham museum and art gallery (such a fantastic building) and then had a wander around the rag market and quite a few went on to Barry’s fabrics to indulge themselves in fabric shopping! And what a place to indulge yourselves/get overwhelmed by choice!!! I mean just look at it….
The afternoon was spent at Guthrie and Ghani in Moseley (always happy for a G&G trip!) where there was a raffle, fabric and pattern swap and of course more opportunity for fabric purchasing!
It was a really lovely day. I was exhausted at the end of it – I felt like I was back at Freshers week at uni making new friends! What an easy group of people to get on with though and with one common interest there was always something to talk about! Charlotte also organised an optional merit badge swap ahead of the event. With this you were paired with another attendee and the idea was to make them a merit badge to take along with you on the day and swap badges. It meant that there was at least one person there that you could look out for if you didn’t know anyone, even if it was just recognising them from their blog pictures! My swap partner was Amy from Sewn in the attic. Amy was lovely, as were the others in the little group that I spent the day with, and we found we had more in common than just sewing which was great. This is the badge that Amy made me….I love it!! So clever!
I hope that the SewBrum meet ups continue as it was really a fantastic day out and so lovely to meet up with other people that are as passionate about sewing as I am.
So anyway back to the skirt!!! From Barry’s fabrics I bought a lovely polyviscose tartan £4.95/m and green habotai lining £1.95.m. The pattern only uses lining for the pocket flaps however I wanted to line the skirt itself in order to make it a bit warmer and not do the cling to your tights thing! All the pattern pieces were included in the pattern sheets that accompanied the magazine and the pictures to accompany the tutorial were really clear. All in all it was a relatively straight forward sew. The new part for me was to line the skirt, more on that later!
The skirt is made up of a yoke section at the top and then the main skirt pieces. In order to get a contrast in the tartan pattern I used the same cutting layout as the magazine version and cut the yoke pieces on the straight grain and the main skirt pieces on the bias. The pocket flaps are literally just flaps – they aren’t proper pockets and the skirt is closed using an invisible zip at the side seam.
So here are some pics…
The pocket flaps are sewn first as a separate piece with the lining on the reverse and then pinned into the seam between the yoke and main skirt piece before sewing. The button is then sewn on at the end. The buttons are from John Lewis.
The invisible zip at the side seam:
Included in the SewBrum goody bags that we received at Guthrie and Ghani on the afternoon of the SewBrum meet up, were some labels by Nominette, a company that make custom made labels. A SewBrum label had been made up with the intention of using it in a garment that you have made using SewBrum purchases so I was excited to include mine in this skirt! I think it gives the garment a really professional finish so can see myself ordering some of my own in the future.
And finally to the lining. Having never lined a garment before I needed some guidance! My go-to for tutorials is Tilly and the Buttons and she didn’t disappoint! I don’t think I followed the tutorial exactly but it was enough for me to understand the principles of lining and I surprised myself how easy it was! Yet again a superbly useful tutorial from T&TB.
So since finishing it I have worn the skirt a lot. I wash it on the hand wash function on my machine due to the lining and it comes out lovely!! I would definitely recommend this project to anyone thinking of a first skirt as if you follow the stages it is straight forward and a lovely sew!
Until next time