Vintage Sewing

My New Pencil Skirt; The story so far…

May 8, 2014

I am making myself a new pencil skirt. I want to make a red one (but haven’t yet found a red fabric I like enough) and a black one. You may remember that I already made a black one, ”What do you need another one for?” Well, it shrunk in the wash.(That’s my story and I’m sticking to it!!
Anyway… This is the book I got my inspiration from, and as Gertie was inspired to make all the Vogue patterns I am going to try and make most of Gerties patterns. (I say most because some are versions of another thing, like a pencil skirt with flounces)

I actually steamed straight in and made a lining…It was enormous! I made the next size down, I was a smaller size than I thought what was my size…Still huge! I measured myself again extra carefully and measured the lining, What was going on? So I decided to read further into the book again and found a sizing chart. Turns out it is American sizing so I am only a size 8 ! (Yes 8!) I decided to read the instructions extra specially carefully after that!
I wanted to do interlining, so I did it almost like the instructions! I actually cut the lining and fabric separately and then pinned them together. I basted using threads I recycled from the old lining I had made.
Also I used another technique I had never before and that was making dart and zip marks etc using a spiky wheel (tracing wheel) and sewing carbon paper…

The next step in the instructions was to stitch the darts…

Then I actually ironed the darts! (And baste stitched them flat within the seam allowances just to be posh!) I even removed the centre dart tacking and rewrapped it around my empty bobbing so I can use it again.

This is how neat I am hoping it’s going to be when finished! And the boning is my next job. Will I follow all the instructions carefully..?


You can see a bit more and some extra photos on my blog here…

  1. Pre-wash your fabrics just like you will wash and dry the garment after its made! Then you don’t have to worry about shrinking afterwards. 🙂

    I’m always surprised at how different sizing is across the world. Seems like everyone is using a different scale and not just the units!

  2. D’y know I actually did that this time! Washed it first, I thought it a bit of a bore cos it meant waiting for it to dry etc. before I could make but I remembered reading that somewhere before. You have confirmed it for me that it was the right thing to do! (I think the shrinkage may also have had something to do with the fact that neither my bottom or waist haven’t shrunk in the wash, and both those things combined are not good!)
    I despair of sizing!
    Now in shops I take a variety of sizes in and go for the best fit!
    I have also ‘now’ learnt to check before I make and measure again to confirm!

    Thanks for reading. JX

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