A self drafted pencil skirt, a fellow sewist in need, and one of my many neurosis.

I have never made a pencil skirt before because I thought they were too simple to sew.  You know, why sew something that you can buy.  I had always had this idea that I would only wear pencil skirts in neutral colors, until I saw this fabric on the clearance table at joanns. It is a home decor fabric that I thought would be terrible for my home but amazing as a pencil skirt. Now after making my first pencil skirt I think I may be addicted.

First, it is super easy to draft a pattern to fit your body perfectly. I used this website and it is great, lots of details with the instructions, easy to follow and great results.  An interesting thing I learned is that many pencil skirts need 4 darts in the front rather than two depending on your waist to hip ratio.  So since  my hips are extra big, or my waist is extra small (depending on  how I am feeling about looking at myself on any particular day) I need extra darts to get a really good fit.  This is great since every store bought pencil skirt I have ever bought has not fit around my natural waist which is what they are supposed to do.  In order to fit around my ample hips I have always put up with a bigger waist band therefore having a poor fitting skirt.

Second, who wants a boring neutral skirt (okay ya sometimes I do) when you can have a colorful, fun patterned original.  Here is mine…

I am absolutely in love with this fabric.  The skirt fits well and is fully lined so feels good when I wear it also.  On a side note I made the lining first as my muslin which I have read here and there that some people do and it is a great idea.

I decided to follow the lovely Liz’s idea over at zilredloh and do a godet instead of a slit in the back.  Liz has a lovely blog that where she sews and knits all sorts of cute vinatgey clothes.  She is so stinking cute, and she has bunnies, how cute is that!!!  Anyway she has a great blog but my fellow sewists Liz is in desperate need of help right now, she confessed on her blog last night that she spent three hours she had planned to spend sewing playing video games with her husband!  COME ON LIZ, VIDEO GAMES with your HUSBAND, where are your priorities!!!  So as a sewing community it is our duty to post all sorts of amazing sewing stuff on our blogs to pull Liz back to the dark side where she should be, at her sewing machine making amazing creations for all of us to look at.  There I have done my good dead for the day, “you are welcome Liz”.  Soooooo anyway here is the godet…

I didn’t get a really good pic but you get the idea.  My only change I would make was to make the godet longer.  I made mine 7 inches and I think 9 would have been better.

Now onto my neurosis.  Now I am not meaning to brag here, but usually when I make something new and unique I get lots of compliments, I am sure any of you out there who sew know what I am talking about because you get the same (see I am not braging if it happens to all of you too).  So anyway I wore my cute new outfit to church thinking I was going to get complimented like crazy because I really LOVE this skirt, like one of my favorite things ever love.  I got not one compliment.  So ya ya ya I should sew for myself and not others, and I should be secure in my own likes and not need other people to feel good about myself, and I really am okay with it.  I have had many times where I have made something I liked that no one else did and that is okay, but I thought this one was great.  Then I start wondering, “am I crazy, do I really look like a weirdo most of the time”  then I get annoyed that I even feel that way.  For heaven’s sake I am 34 years old, can’t I have some confidence by now!  So I go back and forth with caring then not caring if people like my stuff, does this ever happen to any of  you?


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13 Responses to A self drafted pencil skirt, a fellow sewist in need, and one of my many neurosis.

  1. Meredith says:

    I was going to compliment you on it, and now I’ll add that Montana people are crazy! It is amaaaaazing. Joking aside, I LOVE pencil skirts and this is so cute! I would normally not think a strong pattern is great, but I would totally wear this everyday if that were normal. This is why you have a blog, so people can appreciate your genius.

  2. Tanit-Isis says:

    I think it’s lovely, and goes perfectly with that blouse! I have a hard time wearing pencil skirts as I tend to destroy the back slit… I think I would need a godet right up to my butt ;). But they sure look nice and sleek, especially on those of you with actual hips. (I, of course, have the exact opposite issue… I suspect that when/if I did draft my own pencil skirt, it would have no front darts at all.)

    As to your inconsiderate church members, well, perhaps they just didn’t notice the skirt since it’s on your bottom half? (I’m trying to be charitable for their unforgivable lapse. 😉 ). Or perhaps it’s so professional-looking it didn’t occur to them that it might be of your own making?

    As I already commented on zilredloh, I am guilty of wasting much of my sewing time in the last week in exactly the same way…

  3. Ginnie Wise says:

    I have the same neurosis… we probably all do! I think your skirt is fantastic. People just don’t know what they’re looking at. Too much ‘fashion’ to notice good design and fit. 🙂

  4. Anonymous says:

    Back in the day, and I mean the 70’s, when long skirts and blazers were all the rage and I was actually thin, I made a long tweed wool A line skirt in brown tweek and wore it with a brown twill blazer. I remember we were having a family get together and some one said, You made that skirt?! I thought you bought it. It doesn’t look made! So there you have it Karen; you sew so well that no one even thinks of your clothing as achievements but rather they probably think all you do is shop and spend, spend, spend. Ha-ha

  5. You did an awesome job! I totally bought this fabric as soon as it went on clearance, too! I just love the print and you styled it so beautifully! =)

  6. erin says:

    Does it happen to me? haha all the time 🙂
    No one said anything probably because it looks so well made that they thought it was something you bought 🙂

  7. prttynpnk says:

    If I had been in a neighbouring pew, I would have been wrestling the covets too frantically to come over and say hi……

  8. Pingback: Completed: Pencil Skirt with Back Godet | zilredloh.com

  9. Amy says:

    I love those flowers and the color… they look like little larkspurs. It’s such a great feeling to have something perfectly fitted to you. Thanks for sharing about the extra darts and the godets–I have a few bought pencil skirts but they never get worn, probably because I feel a bit restricted in the hem.

    Alas, sometimes those little voices like to rise up every now and then just to pick at your confidence–they mellow out but definitely don’t go away with age. I like to be a bit warrior about it and tell them they are not allowed in my head today!

  10. dixie says:

    1. That whole outfit is amazing!
    2. I’m ashamed to admit but I sometimes get very distracted by video games (I’m talking to you, Lego Harry Potter on Xbox)
    3. As others have suggested – people most often compliment me on clothes I’ve made when it is pretty obvious that I made it. But now that I’m much better at sewing that doesn’t happen as often because my clothes look more RTW. And if I do get a compliment on it and I say I made it they are usually very surprised. Think of it as a compliment that you’re so good at sewing that no one can tell it is homemade!

  11. What a great match for your orange top! I like the print too, I would have been drawn to its bright colors. Great outfit!

    I do get addicted to the compliments sometimes, and then when they don’t come I get paranoid that I look horrible. Oh well!

  12. angie.a says:

    That skirt is amazing!! I’m the exact same way sometimes, all paranoid if people don’t notice something new I’ve made that I love. But I’ve come to decide (as others have said) that they probably assume I bought it. And also that sometimes people are a little afraid of different garments…like unusual prints, which I love. I’ve had several tell me “after” I’ve worn something that they loved it, because of the print or whathave you, but never said a word while I was wearing it. 🙂

  13. Anonymous says:

    how do you get the hip to be so perfect mine always is too curved and sticks out any tips?

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