Pattern Pyramid Pick Progess (De-80s-fying). And a Sewing Dare!

So, to refresh your memories, I had selected the Very Easy Very Vogue Pattern to Take Out9647 from the winning Pattern Pyramid.  There were two main reasons for this; one, it was in my size, two, it was touted as “very easy”.

Now, not sure if you can see from the picture or not, but this pattern is definitely very ’80s.  Especially, the incredibly expansive shoulder pads.  They are actually large enough to land a plane on!  Seriously!  And for those of you afraid to fly, picture a Kitty perched on each shoulder and walking around all day like that.

I wanted to try my best to De-80s-fy the pattern (yes, I coined that phrase, please feel free to use it and share).

This is what I came up with to bring it into this century while lancing the shoulder pad design detail:  De-80's fying the pattern pickI opted to make the top half of the dress in B (the short sleeves) and the bottom half of the dress in A (the full skirt), while also shortening the dress to about knee-length.  I’m using a periwinkle blue cotton voile that has a flower design embossed on it, and is almost sheer where the flowers are embossed.  I thought it would be delicate and flowy and deter from that ‘boxy’ look.  I then decided to sew an Obi Style belt out of the cotton floral fabric to cinch it at the waist while still keeping that light and airy look (as opposed to using a heavy leather / plastic belt).

So, these are my plans to de-80’s fy, what do you think?  In my mind, it looks fabulous! :)  In reality, we’ll have to wait and see.

And, I have been charged with a Sewing Dare by Jagoda from FitNottoFit:

Catja, I don’t know what your plans are for March, but I CHALLENGE you to make something from Ikea fabric. Hopefully something wearable, for yourself, not for the kitties. Do you accept?”

Yes, I accept!  Although Kitty is a tad disgruntled.  Here is my plan:sewing dare2I love Ikea fabric, but it can be a challenge to sew clothing with it, as it is mainly designed for home sewing projects.  I am going to make Butterick B5285 in Version B and use this Ikea fabric pictured.  The fabric design is:  Malin Akerblom, 2010.  The floral print is quite large and I’m hoping that with the addition of the pleats on the skirt, it will look like an abstract floral pattern.

Karen, from Did You Make That? made the same version (B) of the Butterick skirt in a fabulous fabric, check it out here.  It looks terrific, so if mine comes out half this well, I will be stoked!

A Skirt in Two Rectangles

Two Rectangle Skirt

This skirt is likely the easiest style to sew.  It is really just two rectangles plus an elastic waist.  You can put a belt over the elastic waistband casing to finish it off and make it look a tad more complex than it really is.  The fabric I used was a stretch cotton sateen, which gives it a heavier drape and a lovely sheen.  I have seen these in every beginner sewing book and everybody has their favourite way of constructing them.  Here is an outline of the steps that you can adjust to suit your own tastes.

Skirt in two rectangles

First, you measure out two rectangles, the length that you desire the skirt to be plus about 4 cm (2′) for the double folded hem and another, approximately 4 to 6 cm (1.5 to 2.5″) for the waistband casing, depending on how wide you want your elastic.  For more on how to construct a waistband casing, click here.  The width of the rectangle will be your waist measurement, plus anywhere between 5 to 25 cm (2 to 10″) depending on how much you want the skirt to gather and how much “give” or stretch there is to the fabric you have chosen.  Keep in mind, if you have very curvaceous hips, then you will have to leave enough room to be able to pull the skirt on over them to get it to your waist.  The width of the elastic will be up to you, but you will have to adjust the waistband casing accordingly, and the length of the elastic will be your waistband measurement minus about 5 cm (2″).  Pin it and try on first, for comfort.

Elastic Waistband Casing

Elastic Waistband Casing

Then, you sew the two rectangles together, giving two side seams, and double fold the hem.  For this, you fold up the hem 1 cm (half-inch) and press, then fold up another 1 cm (half-inch) press and topstitch close to the edge.  After this, you fold back the top of the skirt about 0.5 cm (quarter-inch), press and fold over again the width of your elastic, plus about 0.5 cm (quarter-inch).  Sew around the skirt, making a casing and leave a 5 cm (2″) opening.  Thread elastic though this casing, sew the elastic ends together then stitch the casing closed.  Done!  It takes no time at all, and makes a very simple yet appealing and easy to wear skirt.