Wednesday, June 22, 2016

A Boho Skirt

I wore my pinstripe denim skirt to work a couple of weeks ago and I decided that I needed a Boho Gathered Skirt. 'Cause like Marcy says, the more fabric at the bottom of a skirt the better. Okay I'm paraphrasing but the gist is that I wanted a swishy skirt with a lot of fabric at the bottom of it, too.

I knew that I had Simplicity 4605 in my pattern stash because I'd paired it with a piece of black 'n white seersucker last summer. So I pulled the combination back out figuring it would make a great skirt. Then as I pulled pattern piece after pattern piece out of the envelope, I realized why I hadn't made the skirt last summer...there were too many dayum pattern pieces to make a simple boho skirt!

So I ditched that pattern but kept my fabric and tried to figure out what I wanted.  This is what I came up with...
Notice that remote in my hand -
that means I took all of my own pictures for this post!

Supplies ~
  • 3 yards of a black/white plaid/print seersucker purchased from Fabric Mart last summer
  • 1" non-roll elastic
  • Waxed dental floss for gathering the tiers 
Now before I get into the construction of the skirt, can I say that I made a couple of these at 17 in the 70s and I remembered why I only made one or two...all that dayum gathering!  Seriously...too...much...gathering!

Cutting and Construction ~
My first challenge was how to get the skirt I saw in my head. I knew I didn't want a bunch of tiers - they wouldn't work with my fabric. I also wasn't sure if I wanted a maxi length or a midi length. I decided to let the fabric and the tiers work for me.

Finally I decided to use my TNT flare skirt pattern to get the skirt I was seeing in my mind.  The pattern I used to make this skirt. I cut the fabric for the skirt so that it ended at my knee. 

1. Then I measured to the floor and divided that number in half to get 2 panels. 2. It worked out that each panel measured 10" wide. 
3. Because I knew the bottom 2 tiers should be wider than the skirt bottom, I cut 3 panels for the first tier and 4 for the second.

Now came the hard part - gathering those two tiers so that they would fit the skirt. Honestly, this was the longest part of making the skirt. After discussing with Gaylen, the best ways to gather the skirt, I went with the dental floss method.  But not before checking to make sure that I didn't have a gathering foot for my serger - no - but I'm going to rectify that with a quickness!

Applying the dental floss with a zigzag stitch (3 width/3 length setting) was easier than I thought it would be. I did have to sew slowly and try to be precise but it wasn't difficult. Would definitely recommend this method if your sewing machine or serger doesn't have a gathering foot.  One tip though - I pulled the floss a little every couple of inches to make sure that I wasn't catching it in the stitching.

Adding the dental floss was the easy part, now pulling the floss to gather the skirt was another story. It took several days to do each tier (because I did them after work each evening) and apply it to the skirt. Halfway through I thought that I'd made a mess of the skirt but I preserved and I love my new skirt. Seriously...love...my...new...skirt!

A few pictures ~



Worn with a cardigan ~

Conclusion ~
When I first wrote this post, I was determined that I would not make another one. These were the reasons why - one because it was just too much gathering and pulling for a simple skirt. Two because it's such a distinctive skirt, that I just don't need another one.  And three, it's finally summer here and I have so many things that I want to sew that I'm not sure I want to make another one.
Wearing it to the Vlisco Exhibit

However, I've worn this skirt twice since making it and it's so fun and easy to wear! I've gotten several compliments on it and while it's a dressier look for my office, I felt like I fit in. So I may make another one, now that I know what it takes to get it done! *LOL*

I'm ending with as twirly a shot as I could get taking my own pictures!
  

...as always more later!


39 comments:

  1. Gathering is a PITA. That's why I use a ruffler attachment. So far, I've made 7 of these, mainly for my daughter. She says they are her favorite skirts.
    http://badmomgoodmom.blogspot.com/2015/09/black-watch-tiered-skirt-7.html

    I love that you wore your skirt to the Creative Africa show. I booked a trip to Philly just to see it. After that, I'm spending 4 days in NYC. Want to get together then?

    ReplyDelete
  2. Great skirt and all that gathering has paid off!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Are you thinking of making one in an Ankara wax print?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. No I wasnt. Was actually thinking a tencil denim. I loved and was inspired by the exhibit but don't own any of the wax prints.

      Delete
  4. So true, it is lovely to wear a long swishy skirt. I can still remember my first ball gown, yards of floating chiffon down to the floor, and being waltzed off my feet! Your skirt looks really nice, and is worth the effort of all that gathering. I really like the grey/white stripe, very chic.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Very nice. I think you have matched your fabric and skirt pattern / styling perfectly. I am hoping maxi skirts are around for a while because I have made two and love them.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Thank you for such an inspiring post. I so admire your use of your TNT pattern. I appreciate your detailed explanations regarding fit and your thought process on creating garments you envision with those TNT. You have inspired me to attempt to do the same. Thank you
    Marie

    ReplyDelete
  7. Lovely skirt Carolyn. Admire your patience with all that gathering.

    ReplyDelete
  8. TWIRLY SHOT!!!

    Am I crazy or am I seeing some marcy-poses here? I love it!!!!!!!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Really cute Carolyn! It flatters you!

    ReplyDelete
  10. you are very cute in this! Congrats on taking your own photos.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Pretty! Great proportions with the top and cardigan. Love the fabric.

    ReplyDelete
  12. I'm glad you stuck it out! Sometimes, if I know (roughly how big the finished piece needs to be when gathered - I will anchor the dental floss so it won't pull out and gather it up as I'm zig sagging over it. Also - if you have a gimping foot there is a little guide that you can use to direct the floss so you won't stitch over it.

    I can't wait to see what else you do with this boho skirt look! :) g

    ReplyDelete
  13. I love this skirt on you, Carolyn! This is such a pretty skirt.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Love this! This style has grabbed a hold of me too. Don't you just want to twirl and sway!

    ReplyDelete
  15. The skirt is so wearable! Lovely,lush fullness makes it look really cute. I think a few more in prints would be a nice addition to your fantastic summer wardrobe. Keep up the great work!

    ReplyDelete
  16. Carolyn, your creativity is amazing! I love your skirt! It look great on you.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Fabulous skirt! The fabric looks great in that style.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Yes, I wore these skirts also in the 70's and early 80's with platforms and lace up sandals. It's amazing how styles return. It looks great Carolyn--I love the way you get an idea and execute it with gusto. Fabulous!!

    ReplyDelete
  19. I really like this skirt!! I can imagine what it was like to make this with all those gathers. Looks good on you!

    ReplyDelete
  20. All you need to do is add some rick rack to each tier's hem and you have yourself a patio skirt, my dear! I'm going to swish around in mine tomorrow in your honor!

    ReplyDelete
  21. What a lovely skirt! It just says "summer".

    ReplyDelete
  22. This is a lovely skirt and it was so worth every "painstaking" minute you gave those gathers!

    ReplyDelete
  23. Working in a university costume shop taught me to pin gather -- it's both the most accurate way to distribute gathers, and ultimately the fastest. No math involved, just folding to get the halfway points and then pinning them together, section by section. Helps the speed of the application if you don't mind sewing over pins. And remember to sew with the gathers on the bottom, to avoid pesky unwanted tucks in the straight edge of the garment.

    Have sewn many and many a period costume skirt/blouse/sleeve this way, as well as some ruffled and gathered garments for my own DD over the decades.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. P.S.: Oonaballoona divides sewists into SOPs and NOSOPs ... Sew Over Pins or Not Sew Over Pins.

      Delete
  24. Love it and I feel you the gathering tho! I wish I had known you were coming to Philly I would have loved to met up with you ladies for the exhibit. I am going to see it with my daughter but I live right outside of Philly.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Michelle - I will let you know the next time I'm in Philly! It would be nice to meet you too!

      Delete
  25. I was always more afraid of the ruffler feet and ruffler attachments than zigzagging over string/floss/anything. I was afraid that I'd run out of fabric as I was going around, but with zigging you can adjust your length. I love the ruffler attachment, I've practiced with it, but never used it for a real application. Some day. The skirt is cute.

    ReplyDelete
  26. It looks great on you! I personally love the style so much a gathering foot is on top of my shopping list!

    ReplyDelete
  27. So cute! I just got a ruffler and this will be my first foray into gathering...

    ReplyDelete
  28. I positively LOVE at his skirt, style, color, fabric, everything. But, this is also maybe my most favorite garment I've seen you wear that you've made. You look great in this! Maybe it's the comfort factor? Whatever, it's very flattering and I don't find it dressy really. It's what I'd call summer elegance. Just lovely!

    ReplyDelete
  29. "At his". Should be THIS. I HATE auto correct sometimes and obviously don't proof well.

    ReplyDelete
  30. This is EVERYTHING. It's SO fun!

    ReplyDelete
  31. Have you tried a gathering foot - different from a ruffler. It uses the feed dogs to create gentle gathers when sewing 2 pieces of fabric together. I have used it several times on tiered skirts. The longer the stitch the more gathers you get.

    Tiered skirts are my go to here in South Carolina in the summer - plenty of air flow.

    ReplyDelete

Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment! It is so appreciated.

LinkWithin

Related Posts with Thumbnails