OK, so project #1 of the fall wardrobe project was NOT simplicity 2501 as predicted. (And with my never-ending indecision as to whether I want a contrasting waistband on that one or not, who knows if I’ll ever get it done!) Instead I decided to go straight to Hotpatterns 1063, a cute little A-line skirt with a huge potential for serious, bad, hind-end attention grabbing. I was sucked in by the unrealistic drawing on the pattern envelope and the black boots. (also on the pattern envelope drawing…)

The skirt, wonderfully, beautifully, gets a B. It would get an A except for the wierd puckering on the side by the zipper, more on that later. Suffice to say it’s likely the pattern actually is an A++ and it’s my sewing skills that are in the C+/D- range.

Here’s a picture of me rocking what I like to call the secretary look. You can see the hind-end detail, but I like it!

The details of the skirt were all around the oddly shaped pieces that make up the yoke and waistband area of the skirt. I found it difficult to get them to all line up and had to resew a few times. They’re pointy and triangle-y and fit together perfectly when they are lying flat, but don’t make as much sense when trying to get them to fit together to sew! The other thing that I was worried about was how to get the ends of the trim to look nice and the directions were very clever, directing me to sew the trim on in an order that meant that the ends got sewed into seam allowances. Here is my difficult seam-matching work…
The picture on the left is the NON-zipper side! The trim looks pretty good – the seams actually didn’t line up, but I was able to fix with the trim (TIP!! If you’re a bad sewer like me, try lining up from the bottom of the skirt. The wonkiness of the triangle pieces makes it hard to line up from the top). The picture on the RIGHT, however, is a right mess. It was the zipper. The pattern called for an invisible zipper, and even though I pretty much hate invisible zippers, I decided to be a good girl and follow the directions which was a very bad idea. FIRST! The fabric is upholstery fabric. Thick. That plus the trim made for a bad situation with the zipper. SECOND! The whole hip curve thing. Good lord. what I do NOT need is anything drawing attention to that part of my hip! The muslin looked fine, but when I made the muslin I was lazy and just put in a regular centered zipper. The first run of the yellow skirt (and invisible zipper)  was HORRIBLE! It looked like I had some sort of third head growing out of the side of my body. I did it again, cutting the zipper MUCH shorter, really just enough to get the skirt up over my hips – here’s a picture showing how short the zipper is (and my ax-murderer job of applying a hook and eye)….
You can see, the zipper really only goes about an inch and a half past the facing. It’s maybe 5 inches long in total.
Once I shortened the zipper, I steamed the heck out of it and hand stitched the side seam to meet up with the original side seam. It’s rumply and not great, but it’s bearable. My second choice was to sew up the side seam and fashion some sort of decorative zipper cover from the yellow fabric to cover for the lack of a seam allowance to put in a zipper in the center back. I decided I could live with it. The next skirt (and yes, I think there will be a next one) will have a center back zipper from the beginning.
Other details. The lining, the hem. The facings. The fabric. The trim.
I used yellow heavyweight poly/cotton upholstery for the skirt. I was a little worried about the stiffness of the fabric, but I like it. It works. Since I wanted the skirt to have a nice drape, I wanted a nice flowy lining fabric. I looked around and finally decided to use a white printed poly charmeuse that I had in my stash. I also wanted to work in some gold brocade that I used to line a jacket that I mean to wear with this skirt. I decided to use the brocade as a hem facing. The pattern has pieces to make a bias cut facing for the hem, but I wasn’t paying attention, and didn’t cut the pieces on the bias on the first try. I didn’t have enough fabric to recut on the bias and didn’t want to deal with gathering up the facing to get it to lie smoothly, so I cut the bottom 4 inches off the skirt pattern pieces and used that to cut facings that followed the curve of the skirt correctly. If that makes sense. For the final details, I used a bit of lace hem facing (ready made) to hem the lining which I left hanging free. The trim was purchased from Joanne’s, some crocheted stuff that I got to match the trim of the matching jacket. Here’s a couple of pictures of the lining, the hem facing, and the lace edging on the lining…
So for the rest of the pictures, here’s a more detailed look of the front and back, with no fussy sweaters or jackets to impede the view. I always just want to see the details
And, in keeping with my new wardrobe goals (sew and buy things that work with a variety of other things!) Here’s a few more looks…
Left to right… The skirt with the jacket that I’d already made, the naughty secretary look and what we’ll call the weekend look until we think of something better!
If you’re dying to find out more of what I think about this pattern, head on over to the review at patternreview.com!  Next up… I’m thinking of trying out New Look 6808 (view C).

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