A while back I wrote about sewing clothes that properly fit with what I wanted to wear, and I mentioned the tulip skirt. I loved the shape and I really saw space for it in my wardrobe. I was completely right. It was my first time buying from Sew Over It, and despite it using verified by visa (my nemesis) I absolutely would again. The instructions are detailed, the drafting is good (despite some fit issues) and I loved the overall shape of the skirt. It was exactly as advertised and I really do recommend it.
I got this silk at the wonderful Sacré Coupon in Paris last summer, for €15 I got a little less than three metres, a joyful bargain! I didn’t use a huge amount of fabric, the pattern recommends 1.8m, which I think is a little much. That said, I did make a 9 (graded between the 8 and 10) in the shorter length, but if I really tried, I could maybe make it out of a metre.
This was actually my second attempt at the tulip skirt, I’ll blog my first one later and go through all my issues, but for this I reduced the seam allowance (hint: the first one was too small!) and eliminated the pockets. I eliminated the pockets partly because I ended up in knots last time but also because of the silk: it is quite light-weight and I didn’t want pockets dragging on it.
Because the silk is quite fine I decided to underline it (I think that’s the word, basically I cut out each piece twice put them on top of each other then treated it as one piece), I had some grey almost-jersey that I’d yet to figure out how to use. It’s not stretchy enough for a tshirt so it was a bit of an enigma. With this silk though, it’s perfect. It adds a bit of structure without taking the nice drape out of the silk and a bit of warmth also.
The skirt is very straight-forward, the pattern demands darts, pleats, an invisible zip and an interfaced waistband. The silk wasn’t too tricky to work with, but with the underlining it was a bit bulky with the machine and the layres did slip a little.
The major challenge was the machine I used. I’m currently away from my singer so I used an older model…from the late 1950s! Oh yes, this machine is not electric, only has a straight stitch and is tricky to thread because you have to individually put the thread through each hole. It took me a while to get a rhythm with the machine, and I still can’t stitch slowly (you have to keep a rhythm going), but I made a skirt with it!
Onto the review of the actual pattern, I adore this skirt and pattern. I think it’ll work well with drapier fabrics and with slightly stiffer ones also, and I’ve many planned for the future. The instructions are clear and the pattern is simple enough that a beginner could easily sew it, I think. My only issue is the sizing: I’m not convinced it’s completely accurate. Judging from the size chart I fell right between an 8 and a 10 having a 27″ waist. I graded between these with my first skirt but the skirt is too small and I’m currently making the seam allowance smaller. So with this skirt I made a 1 cm seam allowance at the sides but I do think that it’s still a little too tight. I think in future I’ll just make a size 10, which according to the size chart should be too big as it would have 1.5″ ease, which seamed insanely large to me!
These issues will absolutely not stop me from buying from Sew Over It again, I’ll just size up if I fall between sizes and make adjustments from there. I’ve my eye on a few more of their patterns so clearly I’m pleased with this company!
I wrote about this skirt in my post on what I wanted to sew and about wanting to sew things that fit into my wardrobe. I have to say that this skirt is perfect. It falls somewhere between a pencil skirt and a circle skirt and I love how with a stiffer fabric it could really give the impression of a real hourglass figure.
Overall, despite a few issues I’m completely in love with this skirt and pattern.