October Flowers

October is a summer month in San Francisco, so I made a skirt to match. It has been such a cold, gray, foggy summer, I am really looking forward to some warm sunny days (hopefully)!


I used Sewaholic’s Hollyburn pattern, and I love the way it turned out! I had doubts; I’ve never really liked the way circle skirts look on me. This pattern hangs very nicely, though, probably due to the grainlines. My measurements put me into a straight size 8, but I found the waist a little snug for my liking and used a smaller SA for the back seam to accommodate.


The fabric is a designer pick from Fabric Mart. I think it was Ralph Lauren, but not 100% sure. It’s a lovely cotton sateen that was so much louder in person than I thought it would be! For my shy self, it only barely works as a skirt! I did use some of it last winter to line my puppy’s raincoat–it worked beautifully for that and matches his personality perfectly!



The perfect skirt

Photo May 22, 8 24 26 AM

It’s taken me weeks to post this skirt, in part because it’s so very boring. Just a black skirt, nothing really to say about it… except that it’s one of the most amazing garments I’ve ever made! I’ve worn it at least once a week since it was finished.

Image from Grainline Studio

I used Grainline’s Moss Skirt, which has a shape that I’ve been hunting for years now. I love that the skirt registers as straight, not a-line, but doesn’t require a vent at all. I made the banded version straight from the pattern with a tiny bit added to the side seams since my first version turned out slightly small. The fabric is a cotton/poly bottomweight twill from JoAnn. It was bought to make a workhorse of a skirt, but it actually sewed up and is wearing far better than expected.

Like everyone else out there, I’ve been thinking about personal style and making things that really fit into my life. This skirt is one of those pieces!

Finished: Moss Skirt


This post is a bit bittersweet because I think this skirt is already no longer with us. I saw the longer version of the Grainline moss skirt on someone’s blog (sorry, can’t remember now!) and thought it would make a great casual skirt for work. I chose a brown tweed wool/poly blend that I actually really like. It was on sale from fabric.com and the quality actually seems pretty good.


Unfortunately the fabric has a rather loose weave, which combined with the skirt turning out smaller than anticipated and my not doing 1″ SA (why??? I always do 1″ on the side seams with new patterns, just in case!) caused my seams to just be too fragile. I wore it once, but the second time I noticed the side seam had pulled apart. I love this fabric but I don’t know if there’s a way to save this one…


Oh well. I’m rather horrified by the pocket show through in these photos anyway. I am on the hunt for more brown tweedy wool to make another skirt, though, and I quite like the pattern. It’s really perfect casual business casual, which I need more of!

Finished: Cozy Flannel Skirt

Photo Dec 14, 12 29 01 AM
These photos were taken during the Bay Area’s recent deep freeze (meaning it got below freezing…) So cold and windy!

I’m usually a careful planner when it comes to sewing, but lately I’ve been hit with sudden inspirations, this skirt being one of them. This is one of the first pieces of fabric I ever purchased,and, like the black ponte in the last post, it was meant to be a shift dress too. I made half of it into an unlined pencil skirt several years ago, which didn’t work out so well, and decided suddenly that a full skirt would be much better.

Photo Dec 14, 12 27 27 AM
I have no explanation for the waistband. I swear it was straight when I cut it out!

I think it is… but I’m afraid it’s a bit frumpy. Part of that is because I saw what it looked like before it was hemmed, and I’m going to give it a chance to change my mind at this shorter length.

Image from Pattern Review

I used Simplicity 2215, which has asymmetrical pleating, a feature that drew me to the pattern in the first place. I’ve read complaints that the irregular pleating kind of looks like you did something wrong, and though I love the idea of it I’m nervous about that too. I think it looks okay, but again, I’m not entirely convinced.

So we’ll see about this one. I really want to like it!

Working basics

Lately I’ve been inspired to make some simple, versatile work clothes that can withstand being thrown into a tote for my hilly, windy bike commute, and it seemed like a good time to finally make a pencil skirt out of this remnant of nearly-black denim I’ve been stashing for at least two years.

I used McCall’s 5590, which is now OOP despite being wildly popular a few years ago. I made this skirt back in the day, and though the skirt fit well I decided that I like my skirts to have a waistband, and I never really expected to make it again. Well, apparently waistbands take a tiny bit more fabric than no waistbands, and I just didn’t have enough fabric this time! This pattern is really worth keeping around for those scraps of skirt-weight fabric leftover from another project.
Image from Pattern Review
I don’t have that first skirt anymore, and I totally forgot how high the waistline is on this pattern! Super high waists were trendy a few years ago, and it didn’t bother me at all back then. Now I think it looks kind of silly, especially since I’m on the small side. Oh well, this will only rarely be worn with anything tucked in and the slight stretch in the fabric makes it super comfortable. It’s interesting how styles change so quickly!
No side, back, detail, or shots that show the ridiculously high waist – I was lucky to get photos at all! July has been so busy over here, and my sweet photographer and I see each other so rarely these days that blog photos are not exactly a priority. I don’t expect my blogging to magically improve in frequency or quality anytime soon, but I do hope to at least start commenting on your blogs again – that’s the reason I started blogging in the first place!
In closing – have you ever made a pattern for a second time several years after retiring your first make, only to discover that the style that you thought suited you just doesn’t work as well as you remember?