When I was asked by Allison at E+M Patterns (k, maybe “asked” isn’t the word I’m looking for. “Informed” as she sat at my kitchen table sketching it out may be a more accurate description…) I figured I could swing it as M’s Christmas skirt and skip making her a Christmas dress all together. And of course, Allison just happened to know I had bought some serious yardage of Christmas satin that was just sitting around waiting to be used. So I won’t say that she MADE me do it, or MADE me use satin, but I’m a total sucker for new patterns from E+M so it just kind of happened I guess. And she ‘reminded’ me that it would be a great opportunity to learn how to sew satin.
And yes – that’s correct. I’ve NEVER sewn with satin. And I may have ended up with nearly 10 yards of it on sale (In my defense, it is a fabulous print!). I even went and bought a big, flouncy dress pattern to make with it, but quickly realized that having never worked with satin before, that probably wasn’t the best idea. And of course, I needed 2 more colours to complement it completely, so I had to go and buy even more of it…
So, Girl’s Skirt Pattern No. 18 it was! The pattern is perfect for both an everyday skirt made from pretty wovens cottons, or a super duper special occasion piece if you’re daring like me and make it from something slippery, shimmery, and shiny. With a flat front, elastic back, and scalloped overskirt, it has lots of opportunity to really make it your own. And the BOW! Oh man, the bow really puts this one over the edge. Stitch it on, or make it removable, but you MUST make the bow. I don’t think I’ve ever had a bow turn out so dang perfect.
This pattern was a quick sew. Allison includes pattern pieces for the entire skirt, however if you prefer to make it even quicker she includes measurements for nearly every piece so you don’t have to use up all your printer ink and time piecing together a pattern. It’s so lovely to have both options. If you’ve ever made one of her patterns, you’ll already know that her photo tutorials have wonderfully clear directions and are quite well laid out, making them some of my favourite PDF patterns to make. Oh! And the way that she constructs the scallops – GENIUS! I’ve done scalloped edges before, but I swear, this method will be a go to technique from here on out. So incredibly simple!
So back to satin. I used Allison’s measurements and cut out all my lovely satin pieces. I made a size 6 waist (Allison’s sizing measurements were spot on so I recommend using them!) and a size 4 length for M. I didn’t have 3/4 inch elastic on hand, so instead of doing two rows of elastic in the back with casing, I just slid some 1.5 inch elastic I had on hand in there and skipped making the casing all together (and personally, I think I prefer it). I modified the skirt somewhat from the original pattern. I interfaced the overskirt, which gave it quite a bit of body. So instead of cutting it to the size 6 full width (and dealing with some really bulky gathers) I cut my skirts to the size 4 width. I was really happy with the way the overskirt sat on top of the underskirt with the interfacing – made it almost look like M was wearing a pettiskirt and gave the look some great volume. I also interfaced that FABULOUS bow, and I’m thrilled I did. It really made it stand up and get noticed!
Because of the added bulk of the interfacing, I used an embroidery thread to gather all the skirts together when attaching to the waistband. Just take a thread, and feed it through under some wide zig-zag stitches as you go. Allison uses a large seam allowance of 1/2 inch, which really helped with this method. Oh, and did I mention she has the seam allowance at the top of EVERY PAGE!?!? This is the most amazing thing when you are the type of sewist who has multiple projects on the go and forgets which allowance goes with which project. No flipping around a tutorial attempting to find it. THANK YOU ALLISON!
Now every one else can thank Allison for some amazingness as she has her Skirt No. 18 Pattern on sale for $4 through Thursday!!! Go get it, and Santa will thank you! (So will your sewing timeline, cause it’s such a quick, easy Christmas dinner/photoshoot worthy pattern!)
After some impromptu shopping at H&M to find the perfect shirt, we finally had the perfect Christmas outfit. To celebrate, we scooped M up and took her to the North Pole to show off.
Even Santa thought that she looked fabulous.