Thursday, November 17, 2011

Wrapping Up My Colette Fall Palette Challenge

I knew in my heart that I would probably fail to complete this challenge - it's been over for a few weeks now and I completed one garment within the duration of the challenge.  When it came to my second piece - this skirt, I had full intentions of finishing it in early November.  A number of things got in the way of that, including putting my sewing machine away for a whole week while our house was being painted.  Not to dwell too long on the negative - I have a new finished skirt that I love!  This is a 1940's a-line skirt with front welt pockets.

Although the pattern didn't call for it, I decided to make this a fully lined skirt.  It all started with the pockets, I didn't want to use the wool fabric because it is a thick, winter-weight and I thought it would add too much bulk where I wouldn't want it.  Not having much else that was appropriate, save for three yards of silk that I was hoping to use on a 1940's slip, I wasn't sure what to do.  Then I found myself thinking surely I can use a minuscule amount for the pockets.  This spiraled into I bet I can squeeze my skirt lining and the slip out of these three yards.

So, I did what I could to creatively place (while still following the pattern grain lines) all pattern pieces onto the three yards of silk.  It was a good choice, I think the taupe silk is a great compliment to the dark wool.  And nothing feels better next to the skin that silk, plus an extra layer means more warmth.  With winter fast approaching, I'm happy to have a warm skirt in my closet (this time last year we already had a lot of snow on the ground).

The more I sew, the more I see the importance of the extra steps taken to finish a garment.  For this skirt I used a lapped zipper (using Casey's method), bound button hole (using Gertie's method) and a ribbon hem.  Additionally all of my seams are surged and finished with french seams or bound seams.  I love how it looks just as great on the inside as the outside.

This will wrap up my fall sewing challenge.  I know I planned to make the blouse from the same pattern - but I feel good about leaving it until summer and making another one of these skirts.  I can see it made up in a pastel light weight wool or pretty floral cotton with a contrasting color for the waistband and welt pockets.  How about you, do you have any ideas of how you would make this skirt?

Live in this moment and love life!


  1. Those sewing challenges can be awfully hard to stick to when life gets in the way (which it so often does). Whether they fit into the timeline or not, the important thing, though, is you made two great new pieces! This skirt looks fantastic and I love it paired with the green! I'm quite envious of your silk lining and that button is too cute. Those extra little touches can really make a difference and they were definately all worth it. I would agree, this would look great in a pastel wool. Or a pretty cotton. Once again, I'm no help :) Whichever you choose, I can't wait to see it!

  2. Thanks Jennifer! What to know a funny thing about the blouse, it was in my pile for goodwill! I haven't worn it for a while because it was too short to wear with my low rise pants - but it is perfect for a high waisted skirt!

  3. Ah, welt pockets! I've been terrified of these ... on my list "to learn to do sometime"-- yours came out lovely! and i love the flower button you chose. The skirt is a pretty shape.

    Silk lined sounds heavenly ... where do you buy your silk? I don't think we have a fabric shop near here that sells silk. Maybe in Houston? I'll have to do some internet sleuthing. the nicest material I can get for lining locally is bemberg rayon.

    I'm slowing down with my projects too and taking time with the details. It's nice to have something really lovely inside and out.

    Love the windows ... looks like there might be a bit of white outside this year too?

  4. Hi Caroline! The welt pockets really weren't that bad (but trust me, I was a little intimidated by them before I started). Yes, silk is wonderful to use - I get mine from an independent fabric retailer near my home. I am super lucky to have such a wonderful fabric shop that stocks high quality fabric at a very reasonable price. And you did spot a bit of snow on the ground, it has since melted, but more is on the way.