sun on the legs! it’s time for skirt season.

these white legs are going to see some sunshine.  it’s a little scary but I’m a brave woman. I started making this skirt when I joined in with the fantastic sew-a-long cal patch is hosting on her blog hodge podge farm.  cal patch skirt

the sew-a-long is so exciting because it includes drafting a skirt pattern yourself.  cal is, of course, the expert on this and offers great tips to help it happen successfully both in her book and on her blog.  I made my muslin in the standard method with darts but when it came to make the ‘real’ skirt I decided to play around a bit.  I skipped the darts and instead used the dart placement to create panels of fabric.  I created a kind of faux-piping using strips of a lovely cinnamon and raspberry voile fabric I had on hand and sewed the front together with the “piping” sandwiched in between.  last I added on these beautiful rust-colored vintage buttons I picked up recently.  it is all decorative, though the end result makes it look a bit like a sailor skirt.

skirt detail

the waistband is made using bias tape and I put in a side invisible zipper (all of this per cal’s instruction).  I will absolutely wear this skirt…perhaps not every day since I don’t usually tuck in my tops.  do I have to tuck in my shirt if I wear a skirt with detail like this?  I feel so stuffy with a tucked-in shirt on.  I enjoyed making the skirt pretty in front but my shirts cover it up.  anyone have an opinion on this?  I have literally zero knowledge of actual fashion rules so I’m open to (read: in desperate need of) assistance.

I made another skirt, too. I feel in love with this print, it’s called charleston farmhouse and it’s by felicity miller.

sew u skirt

I was preparing for teaching my a-line skirt class, which I haven’t taught for a long time. I really needed to make the whole skirt again to remember the sticking points and important tips (the pattern is from Sew U by wendy mullin).  I decided to try a few things I’ve been wanting to experiment with. so, I used the skirt waistband facing to make a top band and I altered the pattern to add a bit more flair to the skirt body.  I will definitely wear this skirt.  I really love fun prints but I shy away from wearing them regularly.  so, this skirt will encourage me to get over that. I’m still debating about adding a button or two to the upper green band at the top.  any thoughts, dear readers?  am I just going to add a cute button and then cover it up with my un-tucked shirts again?

the zipper is in the middle at the back, which might be my favorite place for a zipper.

back of summer skirt

sometimes I just find it difficult to sew in a side zipper and keep the integrity of side seams, it always puckers out a little bit.  ya’ know.  see how well that back seam lined up!? complete happy accident.  somedays things just work like that!  the hem is a blind hem stitch.  the blind hem stitch is, by the way, what I require my students to do even though it’s tricky to figure out.  everyone in my classes always hates it while they are figuring it out but the professional look can’t be beat!  really.  look at that!  it’s awesome.  plus, it’s a true blue accomplishment to get it right.

blind hem stick

when I was finishing up these skirts I chanced upon a great sewing challenge happening at crafter hours making, of all things, skirts!  how about that for timing?  so, I’m throwing both of these in the ring.  I highly encourage you to check out all the amazing skirts being made for the challenge, they are super. and, if you have made a skirt in the last two weeks join skirt week! do it! why not? you have until tomorrow! (I know. sorry. little late notice.)

as an aside: I happen to think that blind hem stitches should be challenge 1 on a sewing smackdown sometime in the future when there is finally a TV channel dedicated 100% to sewing.  have they done that yet on British Sewing Bee? probably they have.  also, can you believe I have the most olive tone to my skin of everyone in my family? yup.  turns out the Irish just don’t tan quite like Lutherans from Minnesota do.

18 Comments on sun on the legs! it’s time for skirt season.

  1. Drea
    June 5, 2013 at 4:54 pm (5 years ago)

    I enjoy reading your blog all the time, even though I don’t sew or craft myself (or maybe I like it because I don’t sew or craft? like an anthropological study?)… anyway, I enjoy it all the time but quotes like this make me happy for days: “I have literally zero knowledge of actual fashion rules”.

    Love it. Also: tuck your shirt in, show off the cuteness.

    • ahappystitch
      June 5, 2013 at 8:54 pm (5 years ago)

      Why is that so funny? You already know that about me. Tuck it in, huh? Oooh. I’m gonna have to get comfortable with that. Do you suggest something blousy? You live in LA, you know the rules.

  2. Jane@Buzzmills
    June 5, 2013 at 8:18 pm (5 years ago)

    oooo, i love both of your skirts!! I, too, have fallen in love with that print of your second skirt, but haven’t bought any yet. ha, ha, I don’t have any knowledge of actual fashion rules either, but I’d say wear the skirt with an untucked shirt…i would!! And, I say no to a button on the second one. And, I never do a blind stitch, oops…I’d fail 😉 But that’s an excellent blind stitch job!

    • ahappystitch
      June 5, 2013 at 8:57 pm (5 years ago)

      Thanks Jane. That print is great, isn’t it! I was trying to avoid buying more fabric but it drew me in, it was terrible. Also, you know you be the champ in other rounds of the sewing smack down. never fear.

  3. Carla
    June 6, 2013 at 12:50 pm (5 years ago)

    Nice skirts that anyone would enjoy wearing. Nice job!

  4. Michele
    June 6, 2013 at 10:24 pm (5 years ago)

    oh they are pretty Melissa! you’re such a champ at this sewing stuff, eh? one day, I’ll actually make clothing again. It’s been such a long time, I don’t think I remember how anymore. 🙂

    • ahappystitch
      June 6, 2013 at 10:31 pm (5 years ago)

      What? Huh? There are things you can’t sew? Could have fooled me. Thanks for your sweet compliments, Michele!

  5. Daniela D
    June 7, 2013 at 10:26 am (5 years ago)

    both skirts are so great, melissa! yes, tuck the shirt in. it looks perfect the way you have it in the photo.

    i am very behind on making my skirt for cal’s SAL. going on vacation in two weeks, a new me-made a-line skirt would be perfect, don’t you think? oh boy, i think i just gave myself a deadline…

    • ahappystitch
      June 7, 2013 at 10:36 am (5 years ago)

      Oh yes you did just give yourself a deadline. Hop to it! (Although I hardly think that Cal is going to be hard-nosed about deadlines! Ha!) Thanks for the fashion advice. I need it.

  6. Susan
    June 8, 2013 at 10:44 pm (5 years ago)

    So cute! Thank you for sharing. (Good timing for the sew along!) 🙂

    • ahappystitch
      June 8, 2013 at 11:25 pm (5 years ago)

      Thank you! It was good timing, wasn’t it! Lucky me.

  7. cal
    June 10, 2013 at 5:16 pm (5 years ago)

    the cutest! oh my goodness! love your piping and buttons. do you have any tops you could wear it with that don’t tuck in, but aren’t so long that they cover the whole detail? that would be my choice. i’m not a tucker-inner. and RULES SHMULES!

    • ahappystitch
      June 10, 2013 at 9:56 pm (5 years ago)

      Oh, thank you so much! You are so right about the top. That is exactly what I need (to make?). Maybe a white top with a kind of peplum waist…in white eyelet perhaps. Blast those rules, screw ’em!

  8. Sewing Princess
    July 12, 2013 at 5:51 am (5 years ago)

    I love your skirt…it´s so creative! the piping you chose is just perfect….and those buttons…I´m in love. I understand you don´t like the tucked in look, but as an observer I would say that you don´t look stuffed in at all. I would pair it with a dark red,grayish or even blue top. I´m not a tucker inner myself but I find it´s nice from time to time (I´m wearing a tucked-in top today actually)

    • ahappystitch
      July 12, 2013 at 9:11 am (5 years ago)

      Oh, thank you so much. Such fantastic compliments. It’s a tough decision..tucking in or not tucking in! 🙂 I might just have dug up the courage to go for it.

  9. Debbie bowers
    May 5, 2014 at 1:58 pm (4 years ago)

    Wowzers… Love both of these skirts! You are such an inspiration, and much to my husband’s dismay, make me want to order more fabric and patterns!! Really enjoy reading your blog post x

    • Melissa Q.
      May 5, 2014 at 9:15 pm (4 years ago)

      Thanks so much Debbie! My new rule is I have to make something with the fabric I own before I buy more! It’s helps me finish project. Ha! Good luck.


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