What a surprising Sewing Pattern this is. It is very easy to dismiss it on first glance, but look closer and you will see that with modification the pieces are very wearable. 

You need to choose a fabric which hangs well and so this Pinstripe suiting Fabric is perfect. Before you do anything else take your measurements because this skirt needs to fit closely down the body to the flounce, where it kicks out beautifully when you walk. I cut out a size 10 but adjusted the waist to accommodate my own body measurements. I also realised that the skirt would be way too long. If you look at your skirt pattern you will find a line straight across where you may alter the length. I removed two inches and then stuck the pattern back together. I also measured and marked five inches from the bottom of the flounce and removed that too.  

I wanted to line the main part of the skirt down to the flounce and I used the lining as my toille, allowing extra seam allowances by drawing on my lining with tailors chalk. I tacked the darts and the seams and tried it on. If you need to make any adjustments then you can pull the toille apart and use it when cutting out your actual skirt. Otherwise go ahead and sew it together, it’s always nice to get the lining out of the way I think. 

Cut the skirt pieces out next, being thoughtful about pattern matching. You will not get everything to match everywhere, but aim to match patterns at the centre front and centre back and make sure the darts are symmetrical.

To add to the drama at the back of the skirt I inserted a 22” Brass Metal Zip  and left the teeth exposed. It is always easier to stabilise your fabric when inserting a zip so I used some iron on seam interfacing down the sides of the  back skirt and pressed the seam allowance to the wrong side. The folded edge needs to be positioned so that the zip teeth are close to but not touching the seam edge. Even though the skirt is being lined you will need to protect your skin and lingerie from the rather rough metal zip, so stitch a length of grosgrain ribbon on the zipper tape at the right side of the skirt back. We will trim it later. 

Join the skirt flounces together, pattern matching as much as possible and attach it to the skirt bottom. Don’t forget to neaten your seams! The inside of the skirt  hem will be visible from the outside as the back dips, so your hem needs to be neat. I created a small hem by using a narrow overlock stitch and turning it up by the width of the overlocked edge. I then topstitched it neatly in place. As the hem is curved  keep it as narrow as possible and ease the edge gently into place as you go.

Create a bar tack across the zip and grosgrain ribbon about six inches from the bottom of the zip. This will stop the zip from opening too far which is not necessary.

Finish the hem of the lining and press the seam allowance at the back to the wrong side.

Insert the lining, wrong sides together and baste it inside the seam allowance at the top. You have a number of choices to finish the waistband with. There is fold-a-band which is incredibly easy to use or you can use petersham as I am doing. I cut my waistband according to my measurements, adding a couple of inches at both ends. The width  needs to be twice the width of your petersham plus 2 x 5/8” seam allowances. Stitch this in place onto the skirt right sides together and then machine stitch the ends along the seam allowances to make the overlap. Slipstitch the waist band to the wrong side of the skirt, folding it over the petersham. 

Slip stitch the lining to the zipper tape on the inside all the way from the top to the bar tack, making sure that the zipper pull will not catch on the lining. Gradually taper the lining from the bar tack to a point where it meets naturally and stitch the rest of the seam by hand or machine. 

You will need to add a button and buttonhole to the back waistband, so now is the time to get your machine manual out if you are not certain how to do a buttonhole. Always do a test buttonhole first.

For added detail and to echo the design of my final garment in this outfit, I added a ribbon decorative finish at the back. The back is the focal part of this garment and I wanted everything about it to say “look at me”.

Neaten any loose threads and give it a final press.

This skirt is designed to be worn with the blouse I made last month. It can be worn tucked in or left out. When you see next month’s final addition you will agree with me that this is one totally stunning outfit, suitable for absolutely any occasion! I cant wait to show you the full outfit!

Thank you for reading this,

Angela