Basic Pencil Skirt Pattern instructions are up

Just wanted to let you know that the instructions are up for a basic pencil skirt pattern.  Go here to view them, or alternatively go to the TUTORIALS section at the top of my blog and you’ll find it that way too.  This skirt has no separate waistband but is faced and explanations on how to draft the pattern using your own skirt block are there.  Note you will have had to download one of the spreadsheets so you can create your own skirt block (or sloper, as they’re called in the USA) first.


PS:  I will work on other skirt styles soon but might need to scratch my itch and make myself another shirt first!  Can’t wait!!  xx


Back on track

I can’t believe how wonderful it feels to have spent time in my new sewing room. I was so thoroughly enjoying it and it was a shame that I had to come out and live my other life too (not that I don’t enjoy my other life, but the world of sewing is so therapeutic and I can’t get enough of it).  I’m happy to say that I think I’m back to stay, although my daughter has mentioned that she would like to come home for 3 weeks at the end of June… does this mean that I have to pack all my sewing away during that time to make room for her bed?  Surely she’ll be OK with sleeping under the ironing board!! LOL

Yesterday I whipped up another skirt using my skirt block as a basis and you’ll notice that this skirt isn’t a pencil skirt… it’s an A-line skirt and it’s made with 7 gores. In hind sight, I should have made it an 8 gore skirt but chose to place the centre front panel on a fold.

RTW skirt block 041I don’t really have time today to explain how I used my skirt block to create this simple pattern but for those that are interested, I will sit down during the next week and show the workings so you can also start creating various skirt patterns. Please let me know if it interests you to see the workings for this pattern.  For now I will just show you a few photos so you know that I’m definitely back into the swing of my sewing and I’m loving it so much.

RTW skirt block 018RTW skirt block 013

The fabric I used is a wool blend and it was so easy to work with – I think I really like sewing winter clothes because they have more bulk and are not as slippery or flimsy to work with.

RTW skirt block 001And believe it or not I actually enjoyed sewing in the lapped zipper and OMG, isn’t Steam-a-Seam such a wonderful product??!!  How did I survive all these years of sewing without that incredible tool in my kit?  It worked so well in holding the zipper in the correct place without the use of pins that tend to distort the accuracy. Absolutely loved it and am so pleased with the end result.

RTW skirt block 025Oh, and did I mention that the skirt is fully lined in red Bemsilk lining???  I LOVE that touch too!  So racy in an otherwise boring skirt.  Boring or not, I love the skirt and know that I will get plenty of use out of it during the cooler months to come. It’s warm and the fit is perfect, although I would probably make it slightly shorter next time.

So who has had an attempt at creating their own skirt block using my spreadsheets?  Seriously, it only takes about 20 minutes to do and then once you’re happy with the block’s fit, you can start designing other skirts.  I’d love to hear any feedback on the spreadsheets and if you’re confused or have any questions, please don’t be shy.  There’s no such thing as a silly question! (remember learning that at school??) LOL

Happy sewing everyone!  I’m off to clean my house!

Spreadsheets are ready…

I am happy to announce that the spreadsheets are finally ready for you try out.  Go to my tutorials page and choose the correct spreadsheet for you to download, based on the information I gave you in part 1 a few months ago.

Can I just remind you that this is only a skirt BLOCK (or “sloper” as they’re known in the USA), which is the basis of making your own skirt pattern (of any style (pencil, A-line, pleated, gathered, etc!) I will talk more about this soon.  Feel free to ask any questions and let me know how you’re going. I’m so excited!!

Happy drafting…


Proof that I’m alive…

I honestly haven’t forgotten you all and I know you’re dying to see the Excel spreadsheet that I’ve created… believe me, it’s not far away (I just have my lovely “testing team” trialling it, particularly my imperial friends!) and as soon as I’ve received the OK from them all, I’ll go live.  :)

Just as a teaser here’s my self drafted basic pencil skirt that I whipped up today and I hate to admit it but I had an appointment to get to so I decided to leave the belt loops until later and guess what?  Well, it’s now “later” and something else has come up and who knows when the belt loops get fitted (but they will!!!!) LOL

pencil skirt 043

The fabric is so busy that you can’t see any of the darts or seams so I’ll try to get a plain fabric skirt happening soon so you can see more detail but you’d have to agree that the fit is pretty good on this one, isn’t it?

Side view

Side view

pencil skirt 049The fabric is just a drill fabric and nothing special and I guess while I was sewing it up I felt a bit bored and almost felt like stopping but now that it’s finished I love it! The split at the back is a box pleat and it’s all super neat and tidy and there’s a zipper and a hook/eye closure at the top.  Obviously the sky is the limit when you make it yourself!  It’s HOT and humid here in Perth today and it’s so nice to be wearing a skirt!  Oh, and do you recognise the top?  I’ve worn that one to death and it’s really nice to wear it tucked in for something different too!

Anyway, tomorrow I plan to make an A-line skirt and hopefully by the end of it you’ll be dying to get hold of the spreadsheet so that you can create your own skirts too.  I’ll also tell you how I drew the actual patterns and give you tips, etc.  Again, let me remind you that I’m no expert but this is the method that is working for me and I’m loving being able to share it with you.

So who’s looking forward to having a go at making their own skirt?  Tell me, tell me, tell me… I really need feedback right now.  Loving the way it’s all panning out and hoping to have many happy campers around the world soon!  Stay tuned…

Carola x

Drafting your own basic skirt block…

I posted Part 1 under the “tutorials” tab of my blog but it’s not appeared in my Google Reader yet and I’m not sure whether it will ever show up in there so I’ve decided to add this tiny post with a direct link so you don’t miss out.   Does anyone know whether notifications are sent out to followers when the owner of the blog posts a new “page”?  Either way, forgive me if I’m doubling up and please let me know coz then I’ll know to be more patient in the future.

So without further ado, click here to see my new page.