I may have missed an amazing sewing event last Thursday, but because of it I was able to get down to business with a wardrobe staple.
Back when I first made this pencil skirt, I knew just enough to be dangerous. It was 2005, and I was coming off a lifetime of sewing according to my own rules, with a desire to learn a few proper techniques. That’s still my goal. By few, I mean all. Mwahahaha.
Because I haven’t completed a project in what seems like decades, and desiring a quick fix while my Clovers sit on the back burner, two Wednesdays ago I cut this out again at sewing club. I really need to remember to take hand sewing along with me. Strictly hand sewing. Anything else, and a social setting doesn’t jive with the manner in which I generally like to work. See, I forgot that I had wanted to change the back slit to a vent. And while at it, wanted to re-mark the tissue with my slightly slimmer curves.
That led to a weekend full of my first attempt at a skirt sloper. Huzzah! Hopefully that isn’t preemptive cheer, because I’ve yet to actually sew this in fashion fabric (always a tad different from muslin, ya know).
The first time ’round with this easy pattern, I did a handful of “proper” adjustments. With a two size difference from waist to hips, I used some simple math to subtract & divide myself into a skirt with a total of eight darts instead of four. This was to make up the difference in my smaller waist and hip circumferences. I also measured from the waist down to my hip, and noticed that it was a few inches lower than the outermost point on the pattern. Therefore, I transferred my new hip curve to the pattern & went on my merry way. I was pretty chuffed with the skirt, but never wore it until last winter. You may recall that was more of a proportion issue than a fit thang. I made the skirt again in 2009, the shorter version with the higher curved waist. I used the same adjustments that I had originally transferred to the tissue, and although I should take in the hips a smidge now, I wear it all the time.
Jump to this third iteration. Not only did I need to re-mark my hip curve, I needed to deal with the diagonal lines in the back. Even on my first two skirts those lines are visible, adjusted darts, hip curve, and all. Honestly, they probably didn’t mean much to me at the time.
So… back to the beginning for the sloper. This time I used the same size waist & skirt pieces, and darts as called for. I consulted a couple of books, opting for the second of the two methods above. I’ll admit to choosing it because it involved fewer steps, so hopefully that doesn’t bite me in the full behind! It may, because the first is from my tried and true favorite book. *UPDATE* I should note that there’s slightly more thought behind my decision to use the second method other than fewer steps ;) Engineering-wise, it just made more sense to me; this would displace the width down to where I’m fullest, while keeping the grain line below intact. I can then peg to my heart’s content. My first two skirts still have diagonal lines, despite change the side seam curve… so far this adjustment has worked on the muslin.
After the slash & spread, the front darts looked just ducky without adjustment. I did end up lengthening the back darts a tad, and putting a slight concave curve in them. I also took the side seams in for a nice snug/pegged look. Let’s see what happens as I sew this puppy up and get down in my new pencil skirt. I’m adding a lining this time, which will slow down the process slightly. In other words, I doubt I’ll finish it tonight.