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Get the lead out pencil skirt

December 21, 2011

My bestie left yesterday, after making his annual stop for a few days at ours on his way home for the holidays. I must say, I’m feeling a bit ronery after seeing him off, so I’ve brewed myself a cuppa and have settled in to some last-minute holiday gift making. I’ve got that post-vacation feeling, you know. But putting on a couple of my fav holiday albums and getting down to crafty bizniss will help me forget that we live too far from our tightest pals. Also, this cheery ensemble should do the trick.

I was trying to weasel my way into a photo shoot a la our college days, but this princess is too precious for weather that keeps frozen peas frozen. Don’t let that sunshine fool ya. It was chilly. Not the blizzards of Christmas visits past that relegated us to epic movie marathons, but we did get in several episodes of Spaced betwixt Somerville/Cambridge/Boston wandering/eating/drinking.

I went on this wild stash organization frenzy last week when trying to find enough yardage for a circle skirt. Can you believe that I don’t have enough of anything? Well, I did find this woolen, so I tossed the circle skirt like a frisbee and revisited my tried ‘n true Burda 8155. This time I didn’t overfit, and went back to the way I’d been making it all along. There was barely enough fabric, so I ended up having to use a narrower hem than usual.

The hem tape I found in my stash took care of that, though, and happened to be a perfect match to the crazy lining, also a discovery. That lining is definitely not silk, making it much more slippery & difficult to work with, IMO. Nothing a little Sullivan’s fabric stabilizer couldn’t handle. I freaking love the color combo. I’ll forgive my 20-year-old self the horror of buying acetate for the prescience of a winning wonder of the color wheel.

I think I’ve perfected the lined back vent now, and am totally addicted to them. By making a slight mod to Sunni’s tutorial, I was able to get it right without any weirdness going on.

The zipper is another stash-buster – a vintage metal jobbie picked up two summers ago at the tag sale to end all tag sales. It was up against a couple other colors, but the Monaco blue was a clear winner, despite being a little short. With packaging that reads “slim, smooth, smart” and “feminine, flexible” how could one go wrong?

Hand-picked with silk thread, it’s just a little tease of extra color. Of course, I pre-shrunk, because the tape is 100% cotton. There is organza reinforcing the zip and vent, and interfacing the waistband, which was slipstitched on the inside. The lining was also slipstitched to the zip tape.

I decided to switch it up this time with my hemming technique, and went for the vertical hem stitch. My new favorite when using hem tape. The stitches aren’t perfectly uniform on the inside, but it was 3 am, and I had a party to go to the next day. There you have it: wool, acetate, organza, silk thread, metal zip. A stash-bustin’ holiday happy skirt that will be making as many appearances as the fashion police allow.

Speaking of fashion police…

Happy Holidays squared from yours truly, the man behind the scenes, and Miss Mushka. (sponsored by Borrego Solar? sure, i’ll give ‘em a plug, too. pun intended.)

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20 Comments leave one →
  1. December 21, 2011 1:08 pm

    You have a great taste in color! I love that teal and yellow. Don’t you just love vintage scarves? I tie them in my hair when I’m feeling lazy…which is pretty much every day. Great work on the skirt!

    • December 22, 2011 8:45 am

      Aw, thank you! I am addicted to vintage scarves. But you wouldn’t know it… I rarely actually wear them these days. They just hang from a scarf organizer, looking pretty. But I’m trying to incorporate them into my outfits again :)

  2. December 21, 2011 3:04 pm

    gorgeous skirt – glad you banish those over-fitting ghosts ;-)
    and by the way, what excellent sitcom taste!!!

    • December 22, 2011 8:48 am

      A full on exorcism while I come to terms with my shape! LOVE Spaced. I didn’t want it to end, on the other hand cringe at the idea of an American remake ruining a good thing. BTW, what is the advert Tim sings to the hooligan in the bar bathroom? I can’t for the life of me make it out :P

  3. December 21, 2011 5:11 pm

    Gorgeous skirt and I love your styling! You look smashing!
    We live far from our good friends, too, and it just never gets easier. I relish the times that we get to spend with them and quickly sink into a small depression when it’s over. But a sassy, colorful outfit can help!
    Wishing you the happiest of holidays, Lavender

    • December 22, 2011 8:52 am

      Thanks, Lizz!! It’s so hard living apart from friends, isn’t it? I just want to scoop everyone up into a 10 block radius and have dinners and coffee dates and babysit when needed. Sigh. Happy, merry, joyous holidays to you, too :)

  4. December 22, 2011 1:49 am

    Such beautiful work! I stopped over from Burdastyle.

    • December 22, 2011 8:54 am

      Thank you, Justine :) I’m off to find you on burdastyle!

  5. December 22, 2011 7:20 am

    Lovely and inspiring! Oh those shoes!

    • December 22, 2011 8:55 am

      Thanks, doll! If those shoes came in every color, I’d own them. I wish all heels were that comfy, that way I could look like a lady instead of some skater girl ;)

  6. December 22, 2011 11:19 am

    This is so cute! The skirt is super flattering! You know, I want to make a pencil skirt, but I CANNOT wrap my head around the vent/lining scenario! I’ve been puzzling over Sunni’s tutorial for some time (and I have an unfinished wiggle dress just waiting for me to figure it out)…

    • December 22, 2011 12:40 pm

      Thanks :) Was it you that asked about that before? Sunni’s tutorial started me on the right path, but then I just had to stare at a lined & vented skirt I picked up at Goodwill to really figure it out. I do it slightly different from her tute, but am hesitant to post about it because I don’t want to step on any hems (I’ve met Sunni, she is an absolute doll, and I know how much work goes into those tutorials). What to doooooo….? What would Ryan Gosling do?

  7. December 22, 2011 1:14 pm

    A lovely outfit, the pencil skirt looks great on you! Great color on the lining, too!
    I’m also interested in the top – is it shirred along the neckline? Looks pretty!

    • December 22, 2011 5:43 pm

      Thanks, Alessa :) Yup, it’s shirred around the keyhole. I found it at my hub’s grandparents’ house, and snatched it up to copy! It’s tucked in so you can’t see, but it’s kind of a peasant style, with elastic waist (brittle w/age) and a peplum. Definitely polyester.

  8. eunny permalink
    December 22, 2011 1:53 pm

    ohh! I love this skirt, and this whole outfit together! Very wiggly and slinky, but not too tight – so cute!

  9. December 31, 2011 3:09 pm

    Gorgeous skirt! Love the colors. Here’s to lots more sewing in the coming year!

  10. January 2, 2012 3:39 am

    I mentioned it over on Burda, but this ensemble is totally rad. Love the lining. Happy New Year!

  11. January 19, 2012 4:06 pm

    Oh, man! This is totally a project after my own heart! Stashbusting, wool, organza as interfacing, handpicking… yes, yes, yes. Love the result too.

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