April marked #SelflessSewingMonth so I decided to get involved! Where there is a challenge to be had, I love to partake! I have made a couple of items for my sister before (the Cleo dungarees and the Coco dress) but never tackled anything for my mother. I knew that if I didn’t make her something soon, she might get jealous… and since her birthday was at the start of May, it was perfect timing!
I chose to sew the new pattern, the Emmeline skirt, from Sew Over It. I am a big fan of their patterns, though do get quite concerned that some haven’t been properly checked through due to the speed at which they are now released, and have spotted errors in the past (many of which they then correct). I love the speed and cheapness of pdf patterns, but I have to say, the faff of printing them out, then cutting out the paper, sticking them together and then cutting that out before even starting on your fabric is hugely tiresome!
I bought two fabrics for this pattern as I wasn’t sure which to opt for. I chose one of the new Lisa Comfort fabrics – a pale green one – but when it arrived I thought it was rather translucent and could imagine my Ma not being too pleased. Therefore, I stopped off and bought an Atelier Brunette fabric, which I am really pleased with – I really like the quality and the weight. It is very hard choosing fabric when it isn’t for you! I pretty much bought what suited me then hoped and prayed it would look nice on her too…
I’ve been struggling with time a little bit at the moment – whilst I have found this large party I’m organising in July (aka my wedding) very stress-free – which has been utterly delightful – I have realised that I need to spend a couple of my free evenings actually concentrating on my computer, rather than watching tv / sewing. Therefore, suddenly I found myself on Friday 4th May, precisely one day post my mother’s birthday and precisely one glass of wine and a pizza down, with the fabric cut out, but not a stitch in sight. No problem, I thought. Time, and the pressure of it, can sometimes work in your favour! Therefore, at 9pm, I plugged in the podcasts and got out my machine!
Sew Over It claimed this was a perfect afternoon project, and I don’t disagree, but I was working pretty much constantly for 4 hours, so it really depends how long you define as ‘afternoon’ (and bear in mind that I had already cut out the fabric and ironed on the interfacing). The skirt is fairly obviously constructed, with pleats at the back and front and (HURRAY) no zips, but instead a line of buttons down the front. I really like that style, along with the high-waisted element, which is what particularly drew me to the skirt. It also has quite a sweet little tie belt.
Most of the construction went very easily, including all the pleats, which can lead to severe brain-ache in other patterns. However, I’m slightly baffled how I didn’t manage to end up with an excess of 1.5cm on each side of the waistband to tuck the ends in as was required (instead it fitted perfectly), and thus I had to sew with about a 1mm seam allowance rather than 1.5cm… In addition, I would never recommend sewing button holes onto a skirt after midnight. I had bought these beautiful mother of pearl buttons that were about 1.5cm in diameter. Little old me decided to make the button holes only 1cm in diameter, and consequently I had to scrabble through my mother’s button tin at home to find anything suitable to sew on! I chose some baby clothes buttons that she had since I was a young lass… I’m also very under-practised in button sewing and the result is a slightly uneven bottom hem due to ill-placed buttons. When I make myself this skirt with the Lisa Comfort fabric, I will be sure to correct all these errors…
I gave the skirt to my Ma over the weekend, and I hope she liked it…the reception was mixed! I made a size 10, which she claims was a little small, but I know that she can’t be larger than that, so I do query my sewing skills / the pattern. I think it looks nice and would be a perfect summer work skirt without tights or perfect for a summer picnic!
I hope you all had joyous weekends – the sunshine makes such a difference to people’s general moods! I love the sunshine, but I think the beauty of the weather in the UK is the hope for the sunshine and then the joy when it comes. Personally, I love watching the changing seasons and experiencing the varying temperatures. We went for the most delicious lunch at the Lickfold Inn near Petworth in West Sussex – I honestly could not recommend it more highly- and I completely and utterly fell in love with that area of the country and the colours and greenery. I would move there in a heartbeat if I could persuade Charlie!
Finally, I apologise for Sewing with Sweet’s recent hiatus, but I have a few more posts up my sleeve and will be cracking on with them! I had forgotten how nice sewing time is until Friday evening and am keen to not entirely abandon it (and any other part of my life, for that matter) in the next few months with my approaching large party.
Lots of sewing love and sunshine happiness,