Hi Everyone – After getting all excited about the start of spring following a beautiful sunny few days, I dodged wind and rain to take photos today and the heating is back on. But on a positive note, I just had a week off work, a lovely Easter weekend with family and lots of sewing happened this week.
I finally got round to making the Deer and Doe Chardon skirt. I have had this pattern for a few months now and bought some fabric for it a while ago but I hesitated about getting started. When I first saw this pattern I really didn’t think it was my style at all, the bell shaping at the hips is quite distinctive and as someone who is always keen to avoid drawing attention to that area I assumed it wouldn’t suit me. But this pattern works well on so many people – see here, here and here. I had also got used to pleats on my Skater Princess dress which I love and wear every week, so I was feeling positive about a skirt with a bit more volume.I made up a quick muslin to see how it looked on me and I decided to go for it. I initially cut a 44 waist going up to 46 hips and it may not have been great idea trying the muslin immediately after a weekend of chocolate and roast dinners as my first version was rather snug. I sized up the waist but the final versions are now a little too loose. I could go back and take the sides in but I have a feeling I am not going to bother (what do you think?).
My first version used a soft grey chambray fabric from Abakhan. This skirt comes together surprisingly quickly – the pleats and top-stitching are definitely the most time-consuming part of the whole process. After I had done all this on the grey skirt I realised I didn’t have a suitable zip to finish it off. Since it was already too late to buy one that day I ended up cutting a second skirt and by the morning I had two skirts that just needed a zip!The black skirt is made from a cotton ‘linen-look’ print that I bought at Ditto in Brighton last week. It was lovely to have the chance to visit a new to me shop and Ditto has so much beautiful fabric. I saw this print on their website first – called ‘Japanese Circles’ but it is no longer on the site so I guess it sold out. This fabric is much more crisp than the chambray and really holds the pleats well. I cut the skirt out of a metre and a half so I didn’t have room for about print matching. It isn’t disastrous but it would have been nice to have made a bit more effort since I really love the finished skirt!One of the joys of the Chardon is the insides – I love how neat the hem looks finished with bias tape and I did include the pockets even though I absolutely never put anything in pockets (except occasionally my hands). I used leftover cotton from my swallow Hawthorn dress for the pockets on the grey skirt and crepe backed satin on the black skirt.This was also the first time I have really used my overlocker on woven fabric projects and it does make finishing seams so much easier than before. I always feel that zigzag finishes aren’t that durable, so I love my neatly finished overlocked seams and I can’t imagine being without the overlocker now!Finally, the Chardon skirts have thrown up an important wardrobe realisation – I don’t have tops that work with such high-waisted skirts. I wouldn’t normally wear a t-shirt tucked in and most of my tops are a bit longer. The top I am wearing here is a Deer and Doe Plantain tee (free pattern!) made out of lovely silvery jersey from Clothspot.
Has anyone else reconsidered a pattern that they assumed wasn’t for them – and did it work or did you just not care because you liked it so much?