Hi there, it’s been a while! I am still sewing and make at least two garments a month, but some things are not that blogworthy and others refuse to be photographed. Today’s post is about one of the fastest things I made for myself this year: a long summer skirt.
I haven’t worn maxi skirts and dresses for at least 15 years. I used to wear them quite a lot as a high school student in the mid-90s, but they gradually disappeared from my wardrobe. Ever since last summer I have been wanting to make a long skirt, but I had trouble deciding what kind of fabric and pattern to use. This problem was solved when I found this length of floral cotton at the thrift store.
The best thing about this piece of fabric, which was c. 1m wide and 1.5m long, are the two ready-made ruffles with embroidered trim attached to one of the selvedges. The fabric likely dates to the 70s; my mum recalled attending a wedding in 1973 where all the women were wearing floral maxi skirts.
I toyed with the idea of making a frilly blouse or shorter dress, but I felt that a long skirt was most fitting for this lightweight but opaque fabric. In fact, a previous owner had already basted the raw edges together, but then abandoned the project. When I showed the skirt to my sister on Skype, she said that the fabric must be so happy to have become a skirt at last!
Admittedly, I put in a little bit more effort than the title of the post suggests. The fastest solution would have been to close the side seam and gather the skirt at the waist with elastic. I, however, prefer a bit more shaping at the waist, so I used the yoke pattern pieces from the skirt I made last year and gathered the rest of the fabric onto that. To preserve as much of the lenght as possible, the yoke facings are made of leftover black cotton. The skirt closes with an invisible zipper in the side seam. Now that I have started to get the hang of inserting invisible zippers, this is a surprisingly fast way of adding a closure.
Overall, the skirt only took a couple of hours to make. I finished it Saturday morning and immediately wore it out to celebrate the arrival of warmer weather. The skirt is definitely fun and easy to wear. Ideally, it should have been a little longer to be called a true maxi, but as is often the case, I was working with a limited amount of fabric. Now that I know that I do enjoy wearing longer skirts, I might sacrifice a larger piece of fabric in my stash to make another one.
Little time was spent taking posing for pictures, as I had my daughter with me and we were on our way to the playground. She was wearing one of my old summer dresses from c. 1980 and a Pippi Longstocking backpack from c. 2016. Oh, how I would have loved to have had one of those in the early 80s! I guess that one of the perks of being all grown up and living in Sweden is that I can now buy all the Pippi clothing and merchandise I want.
Materials and cost
Fabric: 1.5 x 1m floral cotton with double ruffles from the thrift store (Kringloopwinkel Helmond), EUR 1.
Invisible zipper from Jonic textilimport, SEK 8.5 (c. EUR 0.9).
Scrap of cotton and interfacing for yoke facing.