I think I mentioned a while ago that I made myself a nice sewing to-do list for spring. I've already referred to it several times and I feel like it's been helping me stay a little more focused. All the items on the list were garments for spring and summer, with the exception of one leftover winter project, Simplicity 2451, view C. Yes, the skirt everyone has made except me.
I was dying to make this skirt in the fall, but somehow didn't get around to it. My grand plan was to knock out a muslin, and then make the real deal in one of the Anna Maria Horner velveteens I'd bought. I wasn't super crazy about the fabric I got for the muslin, but sometimes I think that's a good thing - there's no great sense of loss if it doesn't work out. (Queue eery foreshadowing music.)
I started having problems as soon as I traced the pattern: I originally traced a size 12 (for my waist size) and didn't grade out at the hips, thinking the pleats would give me the ease I need there. Once my pieces were all traced though, I thought, "That looks awfully small." I took some measurements of the pattern; the waist added up to 27". But it looked so small.
So I decided to measure my waist. And this is when I discovered that my waist is no longer the 27" I've been sewing for, but now 28"! Ah, middle age. You really throw a kink into the works.
Back to the drawing board. I traced out the next size up . . . and then it just sat. For a couple of months. I just couldn't get inspired to sew it, as much as I loved the design. But it really bugged me - do you guys get bugged by "unfinished business" like that? So the other day I decided to just knuckle down and sew the darned thing.
I was slightly more enthused when I found a piece of silk in my scraps that made a nice match for the facings:
But obviously not enthused enough to change to matching thread on either my serger or my sewing machine. Making the vent was fun and easy, and I'm happy with how that turned out, although if I were doing it for real, I'd be much neater in sewing back the edges inside:
Things were going along pretty smoothly for the most part, except for my continued dislike of the fabric, which emits a strong and unpleasant petroleum odor when pressed. Yuck.
I decided it might not be a bad idea to try the thing on before installing the zipper and waistband facing. And that's when everything ground to a screeching halt.
WOW! This is NOT a good style for my body shape! Aside from being too large (really? after all that business with measuring the pattern?! You're killing me, Simplicity!) I'd forgotten that pleats in the abdominal region and low-curved skirt yokes are not my friends. Now, if I'd taken a few minutes before even buying the pattern to think back to the 1990s, I'd have remembered this. Those of you who are old enough might remember pleat-front chinos, the slightly dressier sister of the Mom Jean. Yeah, it's that bad.
(Insert harp arpeggio and flashback montage here.)
This style made me look so much wider and pouchier than I really am. Now, before any of you comment that I'm being too hard on myself, let me reiterate that I'm quite happy with my body! And I've learned over the years what styles work for me and which ones don't. There's a reason I wear flat-front pants and a-line or dirndl skirts. I ought to have remembered that in this case, but I got distracted by how cute it looks on all the other (less curvy) bloggers who have made it.
So this one is going straight into the Goodwill pile, unfinished. And the pattern will be useful for a swap or something in the future - this view was the only one I really liked.
Have any of you ever done this? Made something totally unsuitable for you just because it looked good on somebody else? It's a good lesson to me to think a little more deeply about this in the future!