The Pen(cil skirt) is Mightier Than the Sword

…..aaaand we’re back to the makes! I’m into the second week of my hospital placement now (so exciting!), and I’m pretty damn pleased to tell you all that I just about got all my planned sewing done for it…or at least, the important bits. Without further ado, my super-chic new pencil skirt!

Chcoclate Pencil Skirt

This is the pencil skirt pattern from Gertie’s New Book for Better Sewing, made up in a glorious chocolate-covered wool given to me by my great-aunt. Isn’t it a simply delectable shade?? This is the first time I’ve sewn a skirt thatΒ wasn’t just a full circle – and I don’t think it will be the last πŸ˜‰ Other firsts for this make include bias-bound seams, working with wool and a hand-stitched blind hem. And on the whole, I think it came out pretty well!

Chocolate Pencil Skirt

 

The first part of the construction – sewing the skirt pieces – was very straightforward and very quick! It’s easy to see why pencil skirts are often recommended as a good beginner project. I initially had fears that the skirt would be too small (based on holding up the pattern pieces to my body and surveying them with anxiety), but these quickly proved entirely unfounded as the sewn up skirt hung off my waist. I am really am not sure what happened there, but as the unaltered waistband ended up being the correct lengthΒ after I’d taken in both side seams several centimetres, I’m forced to conclude I traced out the wrong size. Whoops! Still, I’d much rather have traced too big than too small, as this was very quickly and easily corrected. The bias bound seams took a little extra time, but I was very happy wth how they turned out – the perfect solution to seam finishing on a thick fabric when one is serger-less. And I think the contrast binding looks quite cute on the inside!

Chocolate Pencil Skirt - Inside

Speaking of contrasts, I’m also happy with how the lighter zip and button ended up looking – I think they add just the right amount of visual interest on what is an otherwise very under-stated skirt πŸ™‚

Chocolate Pencil Skirt

The rest of construction was a little more time consuming, as lots of hand sewing was involved. The waistband went on nice and smoothly, but I think next time I’ll take out a wedge at each side seam, as it stands a little more away from my body than I’d like. It’s not very noticeable though, and I really do love the *super* high waisted effect it has. I’m glad I skipped the optional waistband boning step, too – I think the interfacing I used has plenty of heft all by itself! I sewed a little strip of lace from my stash onto the hem before turning it up – it doesn’t really serve any functional purpose, but it is the kind of sweet little detail that would make me squeal if I found it on a vintage skirt, so I definitely couldn’t resist sewing it in to my own πŸ˜‰ I hemmed using a hand blind stitch, the first time I’ve done so, and it came out a treat. The lighting in the photos makes the hem a little more obvious than it is in real life, I think, but the stitches themselves are virtually undetectable, and of that, I am proud.

Chocolate Pencil skirt

When your sister/photographer tells you to “work” it.

The only major design change (if you can even call it that!) I made was to shorten the slit at the back, by about six centimetres. It does seem to run on the high side, and seeing as I was walking in the skirt just fine, I decided to close it a little more just to make sure it was as placement-friendly as possible. I was also pretty damn proud of how even I got the hem depth at the back!

Chocolate Pencil Skirt

I’m so glad this skirt came out as well as it did! The only thing I’ve really noticed from these photos is that I am in need of some new shirts – my fancy new makes are really showing up my old $15 ones!Β Good thing that situation is already being taken care of (expect new shirt posts soon). I’m also planning on hacking this skirt pattern a little for an upcoming dress make – get keen, because that is going to be one fancy dress, and I really can’t wait to get to work on it! Excitingly, too, I still have veritable acres of this lovely, lovely wool left – I’m sure it can’t be too long before it pops up again πŸ˜›

Until next time,

Miss Maddy xx

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23 comments

  1. craftysarahsews · February 16, 2016

    I’m really glad I hound your blog, really enjoying your p

    Like

    • craftysarahsews · February 16, 2016

      Gahh! I hit post too soon!what I meant to say was… I’m really glad I found your blog, I’m really enjoying your posts and love your style. Feeling very inspired by you! Thank you.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Miss Maddy · February 17, 2016

        Haha, quite alright πŸ˜› But thank you so much for your kind words! πŸ™‚

        Like

  2. Amanda · February 16, 2016

    This looks great! I love reading your blog, it’s really inspiring to me and I really relate to your journey through learning sewing. Thank you! Also totally love that lace insert on the hem – stealing that idea for myself πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • Miss Maddy · February 17, 2016

      Thank you so much! I’m always so glad when I put effort in to finishing details like that, I think it makes all the difference πŸ™‚

      Like

  3. Hannah S · February 16, 2016

    Ooh,what a beautiful fabric, it looks so chic! The insides are gorgeous too, I think I might try Bias bound seams on my next project

    Liked by 1 person

    • Miss Maddy · February 17, 2016

      Thank you, that was definitely the look I was going for! I definitely recommend them, they’re such a satisfyingly neat finish πŸ™‚

      Like

  4. Piper · February 18, 2016

    What a lovely skirt! Your bound seams look so nice. I have found that Gertie’s patterns are drafted for an hourglass figure. I think if you give your hem a really good press on a ham those stitch marks you are noticing will disappear!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Miss Maddy · February 22, 2016

      Thank you! Yes I agree, and that should suit me – I do have curves, even if I am slender! – but the cigarette pants I just made from her other book fit perfectly so I think I did trace out the wrong size this time πŸ˜›

      Like

  5. SofΓ­a · February 18, 2016

    It’s SO pretty!! The fabric really looks amazing, and the curved waistband at the front is a really nice touch. And I love how you’ve finished the interior seams and the hem, it looks so fancy! I’ve no doubts that you’ll be the most stylish med student at the hospital! πŸ˜‰

    Liked by 1 person

    • Miss Maddy · February 22, 2016

      Thanks SofΓ­a πŸ™‚ unfortunately the hot weather has been really hanging around here in Melbourne so I haven’t been able to wear it yet – looking forward to winter when I can! πŸ™‚

      Like

  6. Jae · February 20, 2016

    I just bought this book and have this skirt of my very long list of things to make, :). Love your’s! Looks great.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Miss Maddy · February 22, 2016

      Thank you! I love this pattern and can’t wait to make more, good luck with yours! πŸ™‚

      Like

  7. Naomi · February 21, 2016

    Beautiful skirt! I love the blouse too! Did you make it? What pattern?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Miss Maddy · February 22, 2016

      Thank you! I must admit I didn’t make this shirt – it’s one I’ve had for quite awhile! Still I’ve just acquired a few shirt patterns, I’m hoping I can hack them into something similar – I’ll be sure to post the results πŸ™‚

      Like

  8. Jonathan Caswell · February 23, 2016

    Reblogged this on By the Mighty Mumford and commented:
    WOW…AND THE BUTTON-UP BLOUSE, TOO! πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Jonathan Caswell · February 23, 2016

    Color combination and fit look perfect! a really good modeling job! Pecil skirts with this blouse are mightily pretty!!!! πŸ˜€

    Liked by 1 person

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  12. Emma · March 10, 2016

    Love the waist band and the fit is amazing , look forward to your next make with this fab wool .

    Like

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