1970’s Skirt Copy

This time I actually have a garment to show you… thus far garments have been sorely lacking, despite my intentions for this blog.  This is actually the first garment I’ve made that I’m proud to wear in public, so I guess it’s a fitting first one for the blog.

This skirt is made with quilting cotton from Joann’s, purchased in 2009, before I’d done much sewing.  Even as quilting cottons go it is stiff and coarse (and slightly off-grain), but I love the pattern as much now as I did then.  I wish I had taken a picture of the skirt before I washed it; the stiff fabric made the tiers stand out quite a bit, and I had many doubts before it was finished.  Fortunately, washing it and letting it hang to dry made it look much more as I had envisioned.

Left: Vintage 1970s skirt Right: My 2011 version

The pattern is knocked off from a vintage skirt I bought on Etsy, probably from the ’70s.  Since the bottom two tiers are just straight ruffles at a 2:1 ratio, it was a very easy pattern to knock off.  The difference in length is due to me changing my mind on the fly about how exactly to attach the ruffles and finish the seams.  Other than that, it is very similar to the original, right down to being somewhat too small for me in the waist.  Oops, I guess I should’ve done something about that; it would’ve greatly increased the versatility of this skirt.

I decided to go without trim for this version.

The fabric of the original skirt is lighter and softer; much more noticeable in person.  I just love the pattern of the original skirt, too; something about the light colors mixed with black and cream really tickles me.  Unfortunately, the inside of the skirt is completely unfinished; combined with the age of the skirt, it is a rather delicate piece to wear.

The original tag. You can also see an unfinished seam, fortunately not shedding because it is on the bias.

My favorite lack-of-finishing on this skirt.

I went with a much cleaner finish on my version.  I’m quite pleased with how I did the seam allowances; I’ve not really seen this exact method anywhere else.  You see, I wanted a French seam, but I didn’t want to deal with the hassle and bulk of one side of my seam being ruffled.  So, I sewed the pieces together wrong sides facing, as for a French seam, and then I wrapped the piece that was not ruffled around both seam allowances, and stitched in the ditch to hold it in place.  It worked quite well, and makes me very happy.

The wrong side of this fabric is difficult to photograph...

I'm pretty pleased with my zipper, although my waistline seam doesn't match very well.

A closer look at my hand-worked buttonhole. Next time I will make my stitches narrower.

In conclusion, I am quite pleased with this skirt, especially as it was something of a wearable muslin.  I learned quite a bit while making it, and I’m looking forward to doing another, improved version soon.  The improvements will be a better fit at the waist, and the proper seam allowances to do the zipper, baste and attach the ruffles, and do my wrapped seam finish.


About DragonFrog

Hello. I am the DragonFrog, and welcome to my website.
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