Friday, 18 July 2014

My First Self-Drafted Skirt: A-Lines and sunshine

Pattern drafting terrifies me.  I am not an artistic person, and I never feel terribly creative, although I can follow patterns or instructions pretty well.  So self-drafting my very own A-Line skirt did not seem like something I could do.

Unfortunately for me, circumstances forced the issue...well, I say circumstances, what I actually mean is that having got an idea in my head I was too stubborn to change it so had to find a way to make it work.

A few weeks ago there was a fabric warehouse sale in Aberdeen, and I bought some bright yellow and bright orange Tana cotton lawn, 2m of each.  My friend suggested that I could do a sort of two layer skirt with the other colour poking out at the botton, and I loved the idea.

A few google searches brought Ysolda's pocket ties skirt on Craftsy, it looked easy, had all the elements I wanted and seemed to need minimal cutting out.  After pre-washing and ironing my fabrics, I worked out the measurements and started to put them on the fabric. Then I tried again, then I changed how I had folded it, then I remeasured...

It turned out that the fabric was only 34" wide, and no matter how I adjusted it, there just wasn't enough for me to work with.  I may have stamped my foot, or possibly had a bit of a no point did I fling the fabric across the room...

Anyway, I decided to see what I could do to rescue the situation.  I wanted to make the skirt that weekend, and as our printer has died, I needed something that I could just mark on the fabric.  An A-Line skirt seemed like the answer, but the maths I was finding on some sites made my head hurt.  Then I found Melissa Hart's blog, The Cordelia Files and it sounded so easy.  Essentially, you take your waist and hip measurements, as well as the distance from your waist to your hips, and from this just draw out the skirt.  The only difference I made was to cut on the fold to save fabric.

This is the result
Please excuse the washing line through my head and the dodgy pose.  I made the cutest little pocket and used the orange to make the waistband.  From here it looks like I have bound the skirt with the orange, but it is actually a lining.

I love this skirt, and it is so summery and happy, I can see me wearing it all summer, and even in winder with some thick tights.

I do want to put a couple of darts in the back as I built in a little too much ease, but that can wait for another day.

A couple more photos...
You can see where the darts need to go to stop the creasing in the back, but with a long top, it's not noticable.

Have you got a favourite item that just makes you smile when you wear it?


  1. Hi Well done you on your first self draft. I've just made my very first skirt block and am planning an a line skirt with high waist (which is the dodgy self draft bit) - scary stuff! Your skirt looks super.
    My recent favourite item is my frill top I made a short while ago.

    1. Your frill top looks brilliant, and fun to wear. Can't wait to see the high waisted skirt once it's done