I have been experimenting this weekend, with mixed results
- creating a new skirt shape
- using a unique fabric
- breaking the fashion rules (to make areas recede, wear darker colours)
- taking photographs indoors with an iPhone. At night.
It shouldn’t really work on me – a light skirt with a dark top. But I think it is OK. I made the skirt longer than I usually wear, hemming it just below the knee. I have accessorised it with a dark belt to emphasis the slimmest part of the skirt.
I used unique fabric – home-printed beige viscose-linen by Fleur de Carotte. You can read the story of how she made it, and see the skirt she made for herself in the same fabric. I like the idea of the two of us walking around in the same piece of cloth (that is her skirt, top left) . I love the cheery, subtle design and the scale is perfect for me. The fabric is lovely – easy to sew, with a nice drape. It was not the ideal, first choice fabric for a fairly structured skirt. But it is heavy enough to just about hold its shape although it does crease badly.
The pattern is home-made too. I used my self drafted curvy-pencil skirt pattern again.
This time I adapted it to include a grown-on waist band. This means that the waist band is omitted and the skirt front is elongated and shaped to finish slightly above the natural waist. It is quite an easy adaptation. Just draw in a new waistline say two inches above the waist line of your trouser or skirt block and extend the darts with parallel legs to the new waist line. Create matching facings.
I like this look on a pencil skirt as it helps create a long slim line, which is why I made this skirt a little longer. If you are blessed with a long, slim torso this look will celebrate it. Also anything with an apparently high waist will elongate the legs.
I like a grown-on waist on trousers too, creating the high-waisted look that was so popular in the 1940s, for men as well as women. It allows plenty of fullness around the hips but draws the eye to the slimmer waist. Now tell me something – is this detail called something else in the States? Is it a Hollywood waist, by any chance? This, from the Threads website, confuses me slightly:
Hollywood waist means a fitted waistline with a facings rather than a waistband. It was very popular on the A-line skirts of the late 1950s and early 1960s, when the hourglass shape was in vogue. It can be used on a high waist, a natural waist, or a low waist/hip hugging waist. Most high-waisted pants are faced rather than banded, so they’re also Hollywood waists.
If you are pear-shaped, the grown-on waist works a treat. I made another skirt up, this time a short version. I also took a risk on using a check fabric, a nice piece of wool from the remnants box at Misan fabrics (£3) which shouldn’t work for this skirt. But I think it does. However I would love to hear other views! Do you wear light coloured skirts or trousers even if you have bigger hips? Or vice versa? If so, what makes it work?
Probably when using a check fabric (and again it is lighter shade than the dark brown T-shirt) it is better to use a pattern with a straight side seam. I chose this fabric because I liked the colours and the slightly heavy but flexible fabric. I found that the skirt goes really well with my Chanel-style jacket, creating a nice little suit. I have been trying to think what might go well with that jacket for ages, and now I seem to have fixed that dilemma almost by accident. It is funny how the visual/colour part of the brain works.
The check skirt is taken in daylight. You need light to take a photograph. Elementary error with the top two pictures.