A few months ago I was inspired by this huge gingham skirt on Pinterest, worn by Brigitte Bardot. I just knew I had to have it for the coming summer months and when Annika Victoria’s latest Make Thrift Try challenge was gingham-themed, well my project was already decided for me.
I realized quickly a simple circle skirt was not going to work to keep the lines straight, so I purchased 3 yards of black gingham fabric and cut it down to a rectangle of 3 yards by about 28 inches. I used this blog and this Skillshare video to get an idea of what I was in for. I have never tried to gather 3 yards down to 32 inches and I definitely ran out of thread with two rows of running stitches at the gathered point and then sewing the hem that I re-did twice after I forgot to add the trim.
I thought that the straight lines would help me with knowing exactly where to sew, but I had a fair bit of trouble adding the waistband and the invisible zipper. At the time of the zipper I was rushing a bit too much and it definitely needed more patience to make sure the lines matched.
Last but not least, I found 5 yards of vintage eyelet trim on Etsy. There was a fair bit of discoloration, but I was able to salvage just enough for the 3 freaking yards (!!) of fabric. I think on Bardot’s dress, the trim is actually attached to the petticoat but I didn’t want a skirt that was too poofy that I wouldn’t wear very often. I used this tutorial for attaching the trim, but I think in the future I will hand stitch the hem instead of being lazy so I don’t have this unsightly line running through the edge.
But that’s okay! I love it in the end! The waistband might be a tad wonky and the zipper pull is more visible than I would like, but I made a thing!
I have recently become obsessed with vintage fashion, lovely lounge wear, and sewing. This pattern felt like the most logical first step to creating my first piece of clothing from an actual pattern. Bear in mind, this blog post is not a guide to using this pattern, but rather a documentation of all the mistakes I made on my journey to becoming a competent sewist.
First of all, don’t use flannel. I legitimately just wanted to test my pattern following skills and wasn’t too focused on making it pretty, so I just grabbed a random couple of yards of this cactus print fabric from my stash. This pattern would really shine with a light cotton and would drape much nicer and similar to the 60’s style as intended. I also omitted the ruffle at the neckline because I really couldn’t be bothered. The next time I use this pattern I will definitely add some delicate lace trim and it will be awesome.
Secondly, learn how to choose your size I guess? I was incredibly confused by the size guide. I picked the size that was closest to my measurements (which was a much larger size number than I am used to but I thought it might be one of those weird sizing things), but I guess it was supposed to be your measurements plus how the garment is supposed to fit, but it ended up being a tent. I sized down quite a bit and it fit fine. Is this a normal step for sewing? We’ll find out.
Lastly, pattern direction is super important. Think things through before just going for it! The pattern is for non-printed material and I blindly followed the layout instructions instead of taking a minute to realize what I was doing…
In the future I will use a better suited material and will use the instructions to add the tie as seen in the longest version on the pattern. I was lazy when I was taking the final shot below and just grabbed a measuring tape, but I ended up making a matching belt/tie out of the scraps and I like the fit better. Eventually I’ll probably make the shorts version too ’cause dang that’s cute. All in all, I give this pattern a solid meh and a definite redo.