Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Award and A Fun Green Skirt

Thank you Sarah for the Kreative Blog award! I'll do some indepth research this afternoon finding out if any of you creative bloggers hasn't gotten one yet and pass it on. :)

In other news, I got piece #4 of my SWAP finished! Just ... 7 more pieces to go. Gulp. Don't think about it, just keep pressing on... And fortunately the last bunch (save for the pesky jacket) should be easy. Knit yoga pants, another skirt from this pattern, a couple more cowlneck sweaters, and a handful of quick knit shirts should do it.

Anyway, the skirt.

(review copied wholesale from my Pattern Review review.)

From Simplicity 3754

Pattern Description:
A set of denim-style skirts with narrow and flared options. Different lengths and trim make the pattern very versatile.

Pattern Sizing:
True to size! Yay, simplicity!

I measure a 14 but have learned to beware of the Big 4's assumption that I like ten inches of ease in fitted stuff and so traced and pinfitted a 12. It was just this side of snug (meaning that, amazingly enough, this pattern seems to run true to size!) so I went with it but sewed 3/8" side seams, effectively giving myself an extra inch. I also, during the pinfitting stage, pinched out a bit from the back waistband and skirt and, from that, redrafted the back waistband to be a little smaller and added darts to the bottom back of the skirt, all to account for my swayback.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?
Yes it did! I found it to be a very cute, very well designed pattern. Great job, simplicity! Granted, I would have liked to see approximate lengths of the skirts, instead of the line drawings they have with no point of reference. Ah, well, can't have everything.

Were the instructions easy to follow?
Yes, though I tended to just use them when doing something I'd never done before. Like the faux fly front. Tip: bypass their faux way of doing it and just do it the right way. I've never put in an actual fly front but I've been told it's very easy, especially when using Sandra Benzine's (did I spell that right? Credit the right person?) method. I'll do that next time since the faux fly, while looking right, feels very odd when I'm zipping it. Like I short-sheeted my zipper opening.

Another tip: the belt carriers are not too long. They look it when you just lay them flat on the waist band and they overlap by a good 1/2". That's because they need to puff out a bit to hold the belt. Lesson learned. I'll need to do a little deconstruction and fixing to get that right. My excuse - it was 2:30 in the morning when I got to that step. I'm just thankful my finger isn't a part of this skirt.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
Great fit and style and comes together very quickly. A lot of look for a low investment. LOVE the deep pockets, very handy! And the little criss-cross belt carriers are a great detail. Dislike? The faux fly front. That's really it, everything else was and is great! Oh, and for those not sewing on an all-metal workhorse, this does have you sewing through (pauses to count) 8 layers of material at two points. My lovely vintage Singer slant-o-matic handled it without slowing down but I know my previous machine would have gone on strike, especially with this thick corduroy.

Fabric Used:
Chunky cotton corduroy from Joann's. Not the highest quality but a great, bright color and not something I was going to cry too hard over if it didn't work out.

Pattern Alterations or any design changes you made:
The pattern has you use the body fabric for all of the pattern but that would have been major bulk with this material, so I cut the pocket lining and facings out of a gorgeous bright pink and green paisley cotton. You can't see it when I wear the skirt but I know it's there and it makes me happy. I omitted the bias binding on the pocket edge - no need - and understitched and topstitched at every opportunity. For just a few minutes investment it adds a great finished look to the garment. Beyond that (and adding the back dart as described many sections ago), I actually left the pattern alone. Strange for me.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
In a heartbeat! This was piece #4 for the SWAP I'm working on and I still have another two bottoms to go. I'm seriously considering making this up in a longer version from some tropical weight wool I have. Very flattering, very fast to throw together (4 hours from pulling out the pattern to wearing it and that includes the 45 minutes of messing up the zipper three separate times - it'll be faster next time) and very wearable.

What more can I say? It's a great, great pattern! Unfortunately Simplicity's website says it's out of print so Ebay or an understaffed Joann's might be your best bet for picking it up. Seriously what's with discontinuing such a great pattern? Ah, well, just means I'll have to keep up my habit of hording them at pattern sales.

1 comment:

Becky said...

Having one of those "why didn't I think of that" moments-- I have perpetual issues with patterns running a little too loose in things-- I think I'm right in the middle between size 12 and 14. The pinfitting before sewing just sounds like it makes a lot of sense, and I'm going to have to try that! Also, your skirt looks great, and wonderful review.