Hey guys!

Welcome to another Minerva make from me... this one is an awesome corduroy skirt, perfect with the thick tights and boots we're all wearing now because it's soooo cold. Skirts are lacking in my wardrobe so I've been on a bit of a skirt making drive recently - but all from the same pattern, as I found one I really loved! I wanted to mix up the styles a little though, so I went for the Pauline Alice Rosari Skirt Pattern which is a popular pattern across the sewing community. You get two lengths, mini and midi, and all sorts of front and back pocket options. I felt that the midi length was too short, and the midi was too long, so I added some length on to the mini to get something a little more modest. I also graded between two sizes at the hip and waist, based on the pattern measurements on the envelope, to get a good fit.

I used a really soft black Corduroy Fabric for this skirt, as although I'm drawn to prints I need to have some basics as well to balance out the craziness! It's totally strokeable, like a velvet, and is a proper jet black. Although it has stretch to it, there isn't *that* much - more for comfort when wearing than anything else. I'd definitely make more things with this fabric, I've been eyeing up the Lander Pants recently and this fabric would be perfect!

I used some skull jeans buttons that I had in my button box to put my own touch to the skirt - I did consider using snaps, but was worried that if I sat down after a large meal (or even just sat down a bit too fast) they would all be popping open! That's definitely NOT what you want in the office or on the tube during your morning commute, so I went for the safe option of buttons. These buttons spin around on their shank though, I'm not sure whether that's normal or not?! I was anticipating that when they were hammered on to the skirt, they would stay in the position they were put - but nope, they rotate, which means that sometimes the skulls are upside down. A little annoying, but there's nothing I can do about it. The buttons are totally cool so I'll just live with it. I was tempted to blame the installer (ie, the husband) but he seemed to be doing them properly so I let him off the hook. Minerva have some similar looking Skull Buttons if you wanted to sew them on.

Even though I quite like a few of the Pauline Alice patterns (the Quart Coat is a particular favourite of mine), I've only ever sewn one - my Octopus Print Cami Shirt Dress (pattern available here if you fancy this one!) This dress was meant to have sleeves, but the pattern pieces were WAY too small to fit around my arms so I had to leave them off. In a way, this sort of made me a bit reluctant to try more of the Pauline Alice patterns, but I do have chunky upper arms. In fact, I have big shoulders as well so that's probably why I had fitting issues... I figured there would be less fitting issues with a skirt (and I really love the Pauline Alice range) so decided to give the Rosari a chance. I'm glad I did!

Just as a heads up - if you have a white (or light-coloured) animal in the household, their fur will magically be drawn from their body onto corduroy fabric. Seriously, I think there's more dog hair and dust and fluff on me than there is on the dog. Corduroy is an awesome fabric to make bottoms from but, like velvet is too, it's an almighty fuzz-magnet. Stock up on lint rollers (or just accept your fate to be furry, which is what I do).

Also another warning - if you're wanting to wear this skirt with tights, you're not going to be able to do it without either sewing a lining or wearing a half-slip. Mine was doing this weird thing where when I walked, all the fabric was bunching forwards so the skirt was really tight around the back of my legs and then all the fabric was at the front. Not a good look. I think I would put a lining in the next version I make (it would look good, as well as being practical), but I need to figure out the mechanics of it all to get around the front button placket - the best approach I can currently think of would be to trace the skirt pieces again in the lining fabric, piece it all together separately and then baste the lining and the main fabric together along the front opening edges before installing the placket. That way, the lining gets tucked into the placket and it (hopefully) should all work out ok. I'll let you know...

I'm not totally happy with the back pockets - in hindsight I think I would have preferred the traditional 'jeans' pocket shape - you know, squarish with the point at the bottom. The round shape is just a bit too... 'round' for me. I started getting ideas together for the design on the back pockets but then realised that my ideas outweighed my skills and equipment available - ie, an embroidery machine. I saw some really fab inspiration online for embroidered pockets!. So in the end I settled for a hand drawn little swirl instead. For a first attempt ever, I'm pretty proud of it, but there's a long way to go! They're not totally identical though, ones got a bigger loop than the other, but I'm cool with it. Life's way too short to worry about things like that.

I'd love to try the zippered pocket option for the next one - I think it would look pretty cool in a printed velvet. There's definitely a lot of fabric options and design combinations to be had from this pattern, so it's a good investment if you're looking for some new skirts! (Plus you get a cute tag in the pattern too!)

Well I hope you like the skirt guys, and hopefully it's inspired you to make your own! See you again next month :)

Sarah // Wanderstitch