My Deer and Doe Myosotis

My Sewjo had taken a bit of a battering over the winter (major work worries which are now thankfully resolved) I kept chipping away here and there, mainly with quick and easy projects (I made three Sew Over It Heather dresses and lived in them all winter) but the enthusiasm just wasn’t there. I made most of a coat but decided I didn’t like it, I never got around to sewing in the lining which was all there was left to do. I knew it was serious when I decided to have a new year stash diet and didn’t miss buying fabric! It’s taken a few months but I think inspiration has finally returned.

The pattern to rekindle my enthusiasm was unsurprisingly a Deer and Doe; the newly released Myosotis dress. I’m an unashamed Deer and Doe fan girl, in a desert island situation I would quite happily be marooned with just their back catalog and be perfectly content to sew nothing else. They’re a good fit for my body shape, well drafted, everything fits together perfectly and there’s never the need to ‘fudge’ anything. They are basically a real joy to sew (and sewing is supposed to be a joy isn’t it?)

There’ve been a couple of developments with Deer and Doe’s last two collections, the most significant being the availability of patterns in PDF format, which is good news for sewists outside Europe. Another plus has been extending their size range (although the extra sizing is only available in PDF) I think this is a really good move on their part, making the patterns much more accessible and inclusive.

The Myosotis sizing ranges from 32-24-34 to 41-33-43 in the printed pattern and up to 46-38-48 in PDF. Going by the finished measurements (which are true, I measured) there’s basically five inches of ease on top of each size.
I bought the printed pattern rather than the PDF, even though I was an inch or two over the biggest size (my measurements are currently around 42-35-42 depending on my mood and associated level of chocolate consumption) I figured there was plenty of ease so no real danger of it being too tight.

The fabric is a Liberty Lawn called Florence, bought from Standfast and Barracks on our way home from the Lake District two years ago. (I can’t find the same colourway but the brighter version is available here) It very nearly got used last year but it was a half hearted project and I’m glad I hung onto it.
I had two and a half meters, 53 inches wide (sorry for mixing units) and with a bit of creative cutting was left with a piece just a bit bigger than a fat quarter (potentially one pair of knickers and a couple of meters of bias binding) I’ve another version planned but only have two meters of fabric, I think I’ll need to find a contrasting fabric for the facings, pocket bags and under collar.

I opted for view B, the appeal of the plain dress was it’s potential to be another Sureau in my wardrobe, I’ve made four and they’re probably my most worn woven dresses, great in winter with tights and boots or in Spring/Summer with sandals (They’re what I reach for when I can’t decide what to wear)

The dress is straight forward, front facings are topstitched to form the button band with three functional buttons (although it’s easily slipped over the head so could be stitched closed) I used half inch purple mother of pearl, if you want to use bigger buttons you’ll need to increase the distance of topstitching to accommodate them. The stand collar sits nicely and was easy to attach. The skirt is simply gathered (the buttons don’t continue below the waist) and of course, it has pockets. All in all it was quite a quick sew.

So what about the finished dress, did it live up to my expectations? Definitely, it’s the first thing I’ve sewn this year that I’ve really enjoyed and has done the trick with relighting my Sewjo. It’s very ‘me’ and I feel comfortable wearing it. The loose fit is wonderful in the hot weather we’ve been having. I’ve only worn it once so far, I’ve been taking part in Me Made May again this year and have pledged to have no repeat outfits, come June though it will be difficult to get me to take it off!

A nice little extra, as Myosotis is the Latin name for forget-me-nots it’s coincidentally been released as they are flowering. There’s some dotted around in my pictures but I took a close up, they really are one of the prettiest flowers around!

Spots, Stripes and a Plantain Dress

There’s a bit of a theme going on with today’s post. These co-ordinating spots and stripes were part of my (quite extensive) haul from the recent Leeds meet up. I bought a metre and a half of each, I’d been planning a Breton Deer and Doe Plantain for a while so navy and white stripes were high on my shopping list. Leeds market is so good for fabric, I overdid it a bit but compared to the limited choice I have at home it was a matter of ‘get it while I can’. I kept asking myself ‘will I regret it if I don’t get it?’ the answer always seemed to be yes but I’m pleased I didn’t leave any of them behind!

WP_20150426_002 1

Anyway the Plantains were made exactly the same as my others, I think I have eleven now!

6tag_300415-185118

I’ve been wanting to try the Maria Denmark Kimono Tee pattern for a while. The pattern is free when you sign up to her newsletter. I had a little under half a metre of each fabric left and just managed to squeeze the pattern on. The neckline is finished with either self binding or fold over elastic. I’d run out of fabric and didn’t have any FOE so I just turned the neckline and sleeves over twice and stitched them in place with a twin needle.

6tag_300415-084535

The Plantains will of course get a lot of wear, they are perfect with jeans and a cardie for work, which is probably why I’ve made so many. I’m so pleased I got around to trying the Kimono tees though, they’re perfect little tops to wear with a skirt, something I realise my wardrobe is lacking. I will definitely be making more, especially as they use so little fabric and are such a quick make.

I wanted to make a dress out of the red stripy Ponte but couldn’t decide on a pattern. I contemplated making a Lady Skater but the curve of the waist would make the stripes off balance so that plan was shelved. As the Plantain fitted so well around the top I thought I’d have a go at lengthening it into a dress.

There isn’t any rhyme or reason to the following measurements, I just traced the original pattern and added a bit. I posted a picture on Instagram and was asked what I’d done so I’ve gone back, measured and taken a couple of photos and I’m hoping it makes sense!

I wanted more of a boatneck so raised the neckline by 8cm and reduced the width of the shoulders by 3cm.

WP_20150504_024

I lengthened the centre front and centre back by 24cm and followed the curve of the side seam down until it was 37cm from the centre. I also curved the hem slightly, the same as the original pattern.  I made the same adjustments to the back piece (but didn’t alter the back of the neckline)

WP_20150504_031

WP_20150504_029

I added patch pockets using my trusty cardboard template and sewed the pockets on first. Once I’d sewn the shoulder seams I decided to take another inch off to widen the neckline a little more. I constructed the dress the same as the original pattern.

6tag_030515-174840

WP_20150504_019

I was a bit unsure whether it would work but once finished I tried it on and did a little happy dance! Like the tee, it fits perfectly around the shoulders and bust before gently skimming over the lumpy bits, the perfect little knit dress! I think it comes into the secret pyjama category as well as it’s so comfortable, without any restrictions around the waist.

WP_20150504_045

WP_20150504_051

WP_20150504_048

I think next time I will have a play around with the neckline, raising it higher and taking a bit more off the shoulder seams, just to make it more of a boatneck. There’s also the opportunity to vary the sleeve length which will make it useful for the cooler months.

So that’s all the tweaking that’s been going on. I’ve been planning to tweak the Deer and Doe Bruyere into a shirt dress since I made the original, I’ve got the fabric (a blue/grey Chambray) contrasting Liberty for the pockets and facings, I’ve even got the buttons and the top stitching thread but the poor thing just keeps getting bumped. Now I’ve got a stash of shiny new fabric I think it,ll be waiting a little longer. So much to sew – so little time!

 

The final instalment of the Deer and Doe Sureau Trilogy (and a Miette Cardie)

After making my last two wearable muslins of the Sureau I finally felt brave enough to cut into the liberty Mitsi fabric (the pattern and fabric was a Christmas present so I really didn’t want to mess it up!)

WP_20150321_015 1

For this final version I:

  • Cut a 44 in the shoulders and 46 for the bust and waist (no FBA)
  • Shortened the side zip
  • Added side seam pockets
  • Moved the gathers down a bit so they were in line with my bust apex
  • Curved the waist darts
  • Added a little cuff to the sleeve

It came together really quickly but not without sacrifice, while attaching the skirt to the bodice I was concentrating so much on keeping the gathers straight that I sewed straight through my finger!

WP_20150324_019

I didn’t hem it as short as last time and ended it just around my knee, I figured I can get away with a shorter skirt if I am wearing tights but exposing my bare saggy legs is not a good look (especially with how white and pasty they are after the winter!) I spent ages looking for the right buttons and eventually settled on the mother of pearl flower ones.

WP_20150404_074

WP_20150404_069

WP_20150404_034

I have been taking a good objective look at which things I actually wear in my wardrobe, particularly knit wise. My most worn RTW cardigans are Navy (one plain, one polka dot) and grey (again one plain and one polka dot!) I usually pick yarn purely on whichever colour takes my fancy at the time which has led to some lovely cardigans but with fairly limited ‘wearability’. I decided to fill an obvious gap by knitting a Navy Miette. I have knitted the Miette twice before and for me it is the perfect cardigan; fitted and simple with a little bit of lace to add interest. Another plus is the raglan sleeves, I’m quite broad in the shoulders and I’ve found that set in sleeves can look quite boxy on me, (I slightly resemble a rugby player!)

WP_20150222_004

I cast on a size 42 and used Cascade 220 in Navy 854 bought from laughing hens. The only modification I made was adding 4 inches to the length (another 20 rows) I blocked it in my usual fashion by putting it through a wool wash in the machine. I used ten mother of pearl buttons, 2 more than the pattern to account for the extra length.

WP_20150404_066

WP_20150404_063

WP_20150404_057

I finished both in time to wear for the Easter weekend. I love the whole outfit and have worn the cardigan almost constantly since it was finished (I’ve since cast on another Miette in Silver Grey!) I like the style of the Sureau and now I’ve added the pockets it’s earned a place as a TNT pattern in my collection (pockets are a serious deal breaker for me!)

WP_20150404_076

WP_20150404_010

 

WP_20150404_021 1

 

WP_20150404_014

 

The Liberty Tana Lawn is lovely to sew with. I’ve got some Liberty Cotton Poplin to try which is possibly going to become a Chardon.

WP_20150410_001

I also took the plunge and bought two and a half metres of their Summer Tana Lawn which I’ve been lusting at for over a year (No idea why they named it Summer, it’s the least summery fabric they have) I’m thinking of a simple dress with possibly a pleated skirt, not decided on a pattern yet though so I might try using the Emery bodice and drafting my own skirt (I’ll definitely be making a wearable muslin first)

WP_20150410_002

I was hoping to have enough of the Mitsi left over to make some matching knickers but I’m afraid it wasn’t to be. It has reignited my longing for more Liberty knickers though, I’ve found a couple of remnants that are big enough so I think I’ll have to start the production line again soon!

2014: a year in sewing (and a bit of knitting)

2014 has been a very productive year for me, I managed to make a grand total of 38 items: 13 dresses, 4 skirts, 3 shirts, 8 tops, 1 jacket, 1 swimsuit, a bag and 7 pairs of knickers (I’m counting the knickers as one!)  I’ve also knitted 4 cardigans, a hat and a pair of arm warmers.

Me made May was a catalyst in being able to see what suits me, what I feel comfortable in and what, in essence, is ‘me’.  You can have a quick look in the mirror before going out the door but there’s nothing like photographic evidence for getting a true picture of how an outfit works (or doesn’t) on you.  There were a few items that went in the Charity shop pile after seeing the pictures but there were also a few pleasant surprises.  My main realisation was that I prefer to wear dresses and this is reflected in the thirteen I’ve made this year.   I think in part this is because they are easy to wear, you can just throw them on without having to figure out what goes with what.  Another reason is that being on the short and curvy side they help to ‘elongated’ me, whereas separates tend to break me up a bit too much.

I know it’s traditional to do a top 5 hits and misses but I struggled to pick these,  so I have decided to do favourites, most worn and things left languishing in the wardrobe.

Favourites

My Swishy Anna Dress

WP_20140510_14_40_22_Pro

I really love this dress, it fits perfectly, the fabric is lovely and it’s very ‘me’.

My Flock Simplicity 2444 and the accompanying tartan frankenpattern

WP_20141002_024bst

WP_20141220_004 1

I think the tweaks to this pattern have resulted in not far off the perfect fit.  I also have happy memories linked to them as I wore the grey flocked one for the Sew Brum meet up and the tartan was, of course, my Christmas dress!

My Purple and leafy Chardons

WP_20141018_014

WP_20141206_014

This has proved to be the perfect flarey skirt pattern for me, I love the inverted pleats, it gives a bit of body without having the bulk around the waistline.

My Bombshell Swimsuit

WP_20140819_013 (3)

I enjoyed making this so much and I’m really glad I went for the bottle green.  I am also rather amazed proud that I not only blogged it but posted photos of me wearing it!

 

Most worn

My Ladyskaters

WP_20141025_042

WP_20141025_059

These have been like wearing pyjamas, so comfortable yet respectable enough to be seen in public.  I actually prefer the blue one, the purple one is starting to bobble a bit but they are both everyday workhorses.

My Maya dress  

WP_20141011_011

I’ve worn this loads over a long sleeved tee and leggings, it’s so easy to wear, doesn’t need ironing and it’s got flowers around the bottom!

My Archers

WP_20140809_049

Perfect for wearing with jeans and have therefore been worn a lot at work.

My Miette Cardigans

WP_20140506_12_23_38_Pro (3)

I think the Green Miette is my most worn knitted cardigan, I really love the colour and I’ve managed to combine it with a lot of things in my wardrobe.  Another Miette is on the cards once I’ve finished my owl sweater.

My Trixie Lixie Knickers 

WP_20140429_11_34_42_Pro

Without a doubt my most worn by far.  I made seven pairs back in April and have worn them daily since.  They are a really good fit, exceptionally comfortable and they have gingham ruffle elastic!  I really need to make a few more pairs as some are starting to look a little too well worn

Languishing in the wardrobe

My Liberty Cambie

WP_20140614_12_07_10_Pro

WP_20140614_19_04_17_Pro

I’m a little sad that my most expensive dress has ended up being barely worn.  The only reason is the fabric, I really liked the dark green and kinda expected the dress to turn out a darker colour but the reality is a very wishy washy yellow colour.  I still can’t figure out how it happened, it’s like some kind of optical illusion!  It just doesn’t work with my skin tone and it’s probably my biggest disappointment.

My Spotty scout tee

WP_20140621_17_03_34_Pro

The one time I didn’t pre-wash the fabric, it shrank, ended up in the bin, lesson learned!

My navy eyelet Laurel

WP_20140705_16_01_44_Pro (1)

Great when I’m standing up, rides up far too much when I am sitting down and flashes a bit too much leg for my liking!

My outfit a long outfit

WP_20140727_20_46_20_Pro

WP_20140727_20_48_07_Pro

I do like this but I think I’ve only worn the dress twice.  I was never happy with the fit around the shoulders and it didn’t feel very ‘secure’.  I haven’t really worn the cardigan much either, there’s too much fullness in the sleeves and although the colour is a perfect match for the dress it doesn’t really go with anything else in my wardrobe.  Another disappointment as I had been hanging onto the fabric for a couple of years, I do have another two metres left of it though so not a total loss!

Some thoughts for 2015

  • I really need to consider if something will suit my body type before jumping on each new shiny pattern that get’s released!
  • I think I need to slow down a bit and  concentrate on quality rather than quantity.  I’ve made a considerable amount of garments this year but the one’s I’ve most enjoyed the most have been those I’ve taken the time to achieve a good finish.
  • I’m going to try and rid myself of my list making obsession.  Lists and plans have helped me focus but they’ve also taken out the spontaneity and added a bit of pressure.  This year I want to try and go with the flow and just sew whatever I feel like at the time.
  • I really need to get the stash under control.  I’ve got enough fabric to last next year and beyond.  Now I’m not committing  to a total fabric fast, a year without fabric shopping is a far too depressing prospect!  I just need to have a really good sort out of what I’ve got and ‘maybe’ set up some kind of system so I know what I’ve got and how much yardage without having to rummage and measure every time I want to sew something.
  • I am going to commit to a ‘ready to wear’ fast though.  I don’t think this will be difficult as I’ve only bought a handful of rtw garments this year.  I honestly don’t miss going clothes shopping, being liberated from size labels and shop changing rooms is one of the best things about sewing my own.

So that’s another year of sewing.  It has been a brilliant year, I have met some wonderful people through sewing, both online and in real life.  I’ve loved reading comments, blogs and particularly developing my instagram addiction!  Seeing everyone’s creativity has been inspiring and I feel very fortunate to be part of such a fabulous community.

Wishing everyone a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year!

A leafy green Chardon and battling the winter blues

This Deer and Doe Chardon is the last thing I sewed for myself and that was nearly six weeks ago. Towards the end of October my brain promptly went into hibernation (I think I must have been a bear in a past life) I should be used to it by now as it happens every year. The sensible thing to do would have been to take it easy but I’m not one to take my own advice.   I normally manage running the project days, as it’s a horticultural therapy project it works both ways.  Unfortunately it coincided with the busiest time for paperwork; monitoring, evaluation and annual accounts to do. I tried to bumble through as best I could but with everything taking twice as much time, energy and effort I spent most of the time feeling overwhelmed, exhausted and slightly confused. I was just starting to surface again at the end of November when my Mum was rushed into hospital.  She had suffered a small stroke and is fine now and back at home, but we had two weeks of stress and worry.

The point of this ramble is that I haven’t sewn any clothes for weeks and I’m missing it badly! I didn’t want to start any major projects as my lack of cohesive thought would very likely lead to me making a mess of it. I have tried to keep myself busy with easy little side projects, I finished knitting my Wiksten Jul hat just in time for winter to take hold in earnest. I’ve also got one and a half matching arm warmers. I’ve got the yarn for my Owl sweater but I want to wait until the holidays before I cast on.

hat

Spurred on by Marilla Walkers Christmas decoration swap I vowed to be as crafty as possible this year. I made a couple of stuffed Christmas trees with bells on for Caroline my swap partner:

WP_20141204_003

I’ve also made my own Christmas cards this year, having a very therapeutic evening with buttons, paper punches and a glue gun:

 

WP_20141212_004

I’ve just finished making a Parliament of Owl heat bags:

InstagramCapture_3456f901-07b2-4a52-b949-bf3815d7840e

I’ve enjoyed these little crafting projects but haven’t had the same sense of satisfaction from making them (ie I can’t wear them!)

I normally hate cutting out but it seemed to be a task that was quite manageable and so I have a few make-up bags ready to sew. I’ve also cut out an Archer shirt for the little one (who is now nearly as big as me) as he keeps wearing mine. I’ve cut the same size as I figured he would grow into it and when he grows out of it I’ll be able to have it! I had planned to make some knickers for presents but there has been a bit of debate about how appropriate they would be. The little one is adamant that you can’t give someone a pair of knickers for Christmas, I’ve tried arguing that they will be liberty print with gingham ruffle elastic but the Jury is still out on that one.

WP_20141031_002

Anyway, the skirt. This is my second Deer and Doe Chardon skirt. I used a metre and a half of this 45inch wide William Morris based quilting cotton, which I bought on holiday earlier in the year. It’s medium weight, a little lighter than my previous Chardon. I sewed it up exactly as last time, cutting a size 44.  I used some of the fabric from my previous one for the facing as it was just that little bit stiffer.

InstagramCapture_d08623fe-87c6-43d3-bf11-a1178e52e4bf

I bound the hem with green satin bias binding (will definitely finish all my hems this way in future) I am even more in love with this pattern now and it is my number one little flarey skirt pattern.

InstagramCapture_c619ed25-fef8-484e-a175-e456bba6a802

WP_20141206_015

WP_20141206_014

Even though things have been hectic (and will continue to be as Christmas approaches) I really feel the need to sew a Christmas dress getting back to a bit of selfish therapeutic sewing. I had a look through the stash and have found the perfect fabric; red tartan!  I’m going to use the bodice from Simplicity 2444 with the skirt from the Colette Peony. I may even go all out Christmas present and put a bow on it. As far as time goes it’s my birthday next week (even though I stopped having birthdays a few years ago, I have settled on being eternally thirtysomething!) Everyone is at work and school apart from me.  The other half wanted to take the day off work so we could go out somewhere but I managed to dissuade him. All I want to do is have a day to myself, sewing my Christmas dress. The prospect of no interruptions, a lit fire and possibly a Cary Grant film on Netflix sounds like a perfect day. I have a box of chocolates at the ready and might even have a bottle of fizz (I actually sew better after alcohol!) a whole six hours of uninterrupted me-time will be bliss!

Anyone else sewing a Christmas dress and if so what are you doing?

My latest Deer and Doe – the Bruyere Shirt

Just as I was drawing up my autumn/winter sewing plans Deer and Doe released the Bruyere shirt pattern. I was really taken with the pictures, loved the longer length and fitted waist and so it was added to my already Deer and Doe heavy list. Fabric for the Bruyere was top of my shopping list when I went to the SewBrum meet up (along with the pattern which I managed to get at Gutherie and Ghani) I originally had a Chambray or Swiss Dot in mind but this blue floral cotton poplin was the first thing that jumped out at me at Barry’s fabrics. I bought two and a half metres after a quick google for the fabric requirements, it was only after that I realised I had misread in my excitement and the two and a half was for 60inch wide whereas my fabric was only 45inch (doh), undeterred I figured I could wing it and if it came to it could use a contrasting fabric for the inner workings.

WP_20141025_069

I never used to wear shirts very often, I think the main problem with ready to wear was the length, particularly the sleeves which were at least four inches too long. Shirts often ended just a few inches above my knees giving the effect of junior school art classes where we brought in our Dad’s old shirts to wear as overalls. The beauty of sewing your own is having sleeves that fit, being able to wear them under a sweater and not having to roll them up all the time.

I knew I would have to shorten the sleeves and also take a fair bit off the ‘skirt’. Somewhere along the way I have got into the (very good) habit of measuring pattern pieces and working out how they compare to my own measurements. I usually have to shorten bodices by at least an inch but after checking the pattern pieces this didn’t seem necessary. I cut a size 42, grading out to a 44 across the bust and then back to a 42 for the waist and hips. I shortened the sleeves by four inches and took four inches off the length of the skirt.

I had to be a little creative with the cutting layout and just managed to fit it all on (part of this was due to me shortening the sleeves and skirt.) I very nearly made a major mistake with the bodice front, as I was cutting it in a single layer and forgot to flip the pattern piece, nearly ending up with two left fronts (I was watching Luther on Netflix at the time, lesson learned!)

WP_20141102_001

The instructions are very succinct but easy to follow, everything is French Seamed to give a really neat finish. The pattern is classed as advanced but I think it is on a par with the Grainline Archer in terms of difficulty and would class it as an intermediate. Unlike the Archer the Bruyere doesn’t have a collar stand which makes things a little easier.

Bruyere deer and doe

WP_20141103_001 1

I really like the drafting of the Deer and Doe patterns I’ve tried so far; everything fits together perfectly. With a lot of other patterns I find things that don’t quite meet up; an extra few millimetres at the waistband or darts and pleats that don’t quite match and need a bit of tweaking. I had put this down to my sewing but maybe this could partially be due to drafting and grading problems. It was only after I had attached the bodice and skirt to the waistband that I realised I hadn’t checked if everything did line up, I was completely amazed to find that both front and back darts and pleats matched perfectly. The Bruyere went together so neatly and was a real pleasure to sew. The fit is also spot on, there’s just enough ease to be able to move around comfortably (and accommodate a substantial lunch) I found I was right not to shorten the bodice as the waistband falls just on my natural waist, although if you are taller and have a longer torso it might be as well to check the measurements to see if you need to lengthen it a bit. It is also lovely to have sleeves the right length!

WP_20141108_011

WP_20141108_006

I will definitely be making more Bruyere’s in the future. There is an option for a sleeveless version which would be great for summer. I really want to try lengthening it into a shirtdress though, I think this could work well in a fabric with a bit of drape. As you can probably tell I’m rather smitten with Deer and Doe, I’ve still got the Belladone to sew and have added another four onto my Christmas wishlist. There is the distinct possibility that I may have to add a sub heading to the blog title in which ‘Helen sews Deer and Doe’!

A Purple Deer and Doe Chardon Skirt

My Autumn and Winter sewing plans include a bit of a Deer and Doe binge, I’ve got the Belladone dress, Bruyere shirt and more Plantain tee’s in the queue but thought I’d start with the Chardon skirt. I wanted to check the fit of their patterns and for me the waist measurement is key. The patterns are drafted for hourglass figures and a C-cup, I’ve found with most patterns that if the waist sews up as true from the given measurement, then the bust and hip usually follow. I’ve sewn a couple of plantain’s before and even though they are knits the fit is spot on around the bust and shoulders.

chardon

This purple cotton was originally intended to be another Megan Nielsen Kelly skirt (another thing I never got around to!) however the weight makes it ideal for the structured pleats of the Chardon. I also had half a metre of this perfectly co-ordinating cream cotton with little purple flowers left over from another project which was perfect for the pockets and facing.

WP_20141014_007

I must say that the packaging is very pretty and the pattern is printed on thick paper so designed to last. I cut a size 44, which was enough to give me a bit of room to breathe! The instructions are brief but it is a straightforward sew. There are nine inverted box pleats, five at the front and four at the back. I made sure that I back stitched the end of the pleats well as they are in a very high stress area (I actually bust the pleats on my Colette Zinnia after one too many Danish Pastries!) The pleats are also topstitched down for added security. I understitched the facing to help it lie flat and prevent it creeping out. The pattern suggests a lapped zipper but I only had an invisible one in my stash so I went with that. I’ve finally realised where I’ve been going wrong with my zips recently, I’ve had a new iron which runs a fair bit hotter than my last and I think it’s been slightly melting the teeth of the zips which would account for them sticking (doh!)

InstagramCapture_06ee59da-0669-4517-8585-8d15b8ae93c0

I opted to add the belt loops, it’s quite a high waisted skirt and I figured a belt would define where my actual waist was (rather than giving me that stumpy torso look) I followed the placement for the loops on the pattern, I thought it was a bit strange as there are two on the front and four across the back but after thinking about it they are perfectly placed as belts do tend to ride up the back once you are sitting.

InstagramCapture_d1e5970f-8d7b-4d8f-971a-5c37b39d1408

The pattern recommends using bias binding to finish the hem, as I had used the contrasting fabric for the pockets and facing using bought binding would have just looked wrong so I decided to invest the time and make my own. I’m really glad I did, the bound hem looks lovely, I’m quite tempted to finish all my skirts like this in future. I think the contrasting fabric really elevates this skirt and I am unashamedly proud of it! I really enjoyed sewing it, the pattern is really well drafted, everything comes together easily and most importantly it is true in size.

WP_20141018_009

WP_20141018_014

As you have probably gathered this is my new favourite skirt and will get loads of wear throughout the winter. I’m curious to see how this pattern will work with a lighter fabric with more drape so I have another in the queue. I have high hopes that this will become my number one TNT skirt pattern and I’m really looking forward to sewing more Deer and Doe.

Do you have a favourite pattern company?