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18 October 2012

My fourth pencil skirt!

I am Lucia, I am a fabricholic. I buy and I buy and I never make anything. Here is to changing that.

Oh dear, I am falling behind again on my blog-writing! My mantra needs to include "must blog once per week!" Anyway...

First up in the what-I-sewed-this-summer series: a cobalt blue pencil skirt and a short sleeved white cotton blouse. 
Skirt pattern Burda 01-2009-128 by Laurel and blouse pattern Vogue 1915 by Anne Klein

The skirt pattern is Burda 01-2009-128. This is one of their designer patterns, by a German company called Laurèl. I must admit I had never heard of this company before, but I loved the fit of this skirt so I went to the Laurel website and I did like a lot of what they make. This skirt pattern has a matching jacket, in raincoat style, which I also like a lot. Unfortunately I only had barely enough fabric for a skirt, so the full set will have to wait for another day. 
Skirt pattern Burda 01-2009-128 by Laurel
The skirt is relatively easy to sew: princess seams at front and back and a mock waist band. The curves of the mock waist band at front were a bit of a challenge because my fabric has a touch of lycra which invited waves any time I sewed at cross-grain.  But I practiced a bit on fabric scraps and I quickly improved my handling technique to minimize the waving. At the beginning I wondered if I would have to drop the topstitching, but my confidence grew with each seam and in the end I am very happy with how my topstitching came out. Of course most of the credit goes to my favorite new presser foot: a Bernina #10 edgestitch foot. A-mazing how easy it makes keeping your stitching parallel to the seam. 

Skirt pattern Burda 01-2009-128
My review of skirt pattern Burda 01-2009-128 is at Pattern Review but here I have to show you a photo of the skirt where you can see the mock waistband and the buttons. These buttons are "left overs" from the ones that my son chose himself for his 3-year old sweater. They are vintage glass buttons and they are a bit too heavy for his tiny sweater, but I couldn't say no to him. He chose them himself and carried the button card in his own hand the entire trip home from the flea market, plus he got the color spot on, good eye! So I was very happy when the two left over buttons matched perfectly the color of my skirt.

Now on to the blouse pattern, it is Vogue 1915 by Anne Klein from 1997 and now OOP. Mine is view A which has a peplum and a wonderfully angled side piece that flatters the waist. But now I have to make a confession. This blouse is a major disaster! I began sewing it sometime ca. 2001 and as happens too often with me, I was 95% done and then I stopped. I had forgotten why I had stopped but it was fairly obvious when I pulled it out of the box: I made it in the softest cotton voile but underlined it with an iron-on underlining that is too heavy. This resulted in a texture closer to popelin and, worse yet, the underlining shows through the thin voile... argh! This is why they always say to test first on a scrap!!!

Blouse pattern Vogue 1915 by Anne Klein

So yes, I thought quite a bit about whether to even bother finishing it. In the end I decided to do it just for the practice and to have the chance to model it for the blog, but it is not really wearable. I must say that I am quite happy for the extra practice, which I definitely needed. Since it is self-lined I topstitched all the edges which turned out very nice, even the sleeve hems and especially the peplum.  I must try to remember that self-lining blouses does provide a very nice finishing and is done (almost) all by machine!

As you can see in the photo the style of this blouse is quite flattering. I did shorten the peplum by a good 8cm as this is a more flattering length for my body shape. I am also happy to report that there is no gaping at all at the button closing and the flap underneath is wide enough for full modesty.

So despite my major screw-up, I loved the pattern and plan to make it again. My review of Vogue 1915 by Anne Klein is at Pattern Review.
Ah, glad to be back at blogging! Now I'll head over to see what you all have been busy with...