Paris is, of course, known as being the city with romance and style at its heart. Therefore, I think it is only natural that one should want to make beautiful clothes with a fabric dedicated to this very place.
J’adore the print on this Fabric! It’s bold and fun and although neutral in the main, has a few fabulous bursts of bright red on the hearts and bows.  Thinking about wearing a dress or skirt in this fabric over autumn and winter I thought I can pair it perfectly with dark woolly tights (a cold weather staple) and one of my many red cardies – perfect!
I decided to make a fit and flare skirt so I could have lots of fabric folds showing off the print of the fabric. The Skirt Pattern I chose was a 1950s vintage design from Simplicity, 8458. There are two options of skirt and I chose the side-pocketed version. The other option is the same shape skirt but with an extra front panel and six side buttons. I love the details on this but thought it would distract too much from the ‘Paris’ print so I went with the simpler design.
Sometimes, more is just more so as well as having a novelty print fabric I decided to add some extra detail to my skirt. I picked out the black and the red and used a line of Ric Rac Trim in these two colours to border the skirt and the bottom of the side pocket. I saw a tip not too long ago suggesting you use an overcasting foot as a guide so that you keep the line of stitching perfectly even and central on the ric rac, this was really helpful because keeping the needle dead centre was a very nerve racking business!
I thought that because of the size of the side pocket (it's huge), it might gape open in an ungainly fashion but actually it manages to stay flat against the rest of the skirt, perhaps because of the angle. If this hadn’t have been the case I had a lovely red button on hand which I was going to attach to the centre top, to keep it closed.
After having made a few trickier garments recently I really enjoyed the simplicity (no pun intended) of this pattern and being able to finish it over one weekend. There is nothing very fiddly in this construction and if you’ve made any style of skirt before I’m sure most of the instructions will be familiar to you.
The instructions in the envelope are a re-print of the original instructions from 1951, but it does state on them that the modern instructions are available to download from the Simplicity website if you wish. I thought it would give it a go from the ‘vintage’ set and see how I got on. Apart from accidentally skipping over applying my interfacing to the waistband (I know, school girl error!) I had no problems understanding and using them.
I used a different technique to normal for finishing the waist band and I really like the look of it so will definitely be doing this more often. Usually I press under the seam allowance for the inside of the waist band and then slip stitch it to the inside seams of the skirt. This time I used bias binding on the inside edge of the waistband, then topstitched through the skirt/waist band join so that the binding was attached at the same time. It looks really neat and polished, I’m glad I gave that a go.
The skirt pieces, zip and waistband came together in really good time – helped by the fact you only really have one fit to get right, the waist. Then, I observed excellent sewing protocol and left my skirt to hang overnight. This is so that the bias cut skirt could drop and settle before I hemmed it, and not afterwards leaving me with a potentially wonky edge.
Et voila!
I love how this skirt turned out. Such a simple design and so classic but in a novelty print giving it another dimension. I’m going to get so much wear out of this and I’m positive the pattern will be used again because I don’t think you can have too many of these fit and flare skirts, regardless of the season.
Thanks for reading and happy sewing!
Rebecca