Sewing project #1

As I have a sewing machine, some material and a box full of dresses to alter/amend, I am trying to challenge myself to complete one sewing project per week. I’ve recently discovered a lot of mojo and what better than to channel this into doing something creative which will add to my wardrobe and make this box seem a lot less intimidating? I’m also sick to the back teeth of walking into shops and back out again because there’s either nothing in my size or nothing I can ‘make work’. I figure the more I can teach myself, the more chance there is of creating a wardrobe full of pieces that I actually like that fit properly. That’s the dream, anyway.

That said, for my first sewing project I decided to go to Fabric Land and buy a couple of bits of new material to make an easy, elasticated waistband skirt with. Disclaimer here: I may speak a lot about sewing, amending, etc. but an expert I am not. I haven’t sewn properly in a few years and whilst I was never amazing, am more than a bit rusty so am trying to do a few more basic items whilst I work myself up into the seamstress that’s screaming inside of me.

For this skirt, I decided to use some super-thick black elastic for the waistband and the following flamingo-print fabric after a friend of mine had been talking about a flamingo skirt they’d recently purchased which I really liked the sound of:

fabric

The sewing machine I have is a Brother XL-5050 (which was my 21st birthday present many moons ago) – I know next to nothing about sewing machines but I will say that I’m particularly fond of this and find it very easy to use, thread up, etc.

machine

Now, I’ve made many a fancy dress item ad-hoc, but this is really the first piece of clothing I’ve made which I’ve wanted to last more than one drunken night. Overall, I’m really pleased with it but there is a lot to say about the straightness of stitch when I was attaching the main body of fabric to the waistband – I think I cut far too much material for this, which meant I had to stretch the hell out of the elastic to sew on, which was actually quite painful. Next time, I’ll cut a bit less fabric and even though it’ll have less ‘swish’, I think it will definitely improve the overall finish:

skirt

The skirt is actually quite big on me as I was really cautious about making something that would be too tight, so at some point I’ll have to take it in but it’s wearable and I think for a first effort isn’t too bad.

The only camera I own is on my phone so excuse the rubbish angles/shot, but here’s a photo of me looking particularly proud of my effort – I’ve teamed it with an oversized, gold mermaid top from H&M and I think it looks jolly good (even if I do say so myself):

skirt and body

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4 thoughts on “Sewing project #1

  1. If you hand sew two rows of running stitch at the top and then gather loosely you can keep the fullness without having to stretch the elastic quite so much 🙂 looking lovely tho 🙂

  2. Lovely skirt Jaqui, I got rid of my sewing machine a few years ago when I moved, I may have to purchase another one soon; after the wedding perhaps?

    • I would definitely do it – I’m really surprised at how much progress I’m making already and how quickly it all seems to be coming back. It’s also really nice having a project to keep me occupied/creative!

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