So, I finally got off of my buns and sewed something…a skirt for Pattern Review’s take on The Great British Sewing Bee!
After my short stint in the Fabric Mart Fashion Challenge 2, I figured I was ready for another bout of intriguing competition. It also doesn’t hurt that I’ve had a lot of fun with Pattern Review contests in the past (especially this one.)
The idea behind this contest is that everyone will sew the same thing every week; there will be four rounds with a winner declared and a group of participants sent “home” each week.
Here’s this round’s challenge per Pattern Review:
Sew an A-Line Skirt with Lining. An A-line skirt is a skirt that is fitted at the hips and gradually widens towards the hem, giving the impression of the shape of a capital letter A. source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A-line
Your finished skirt should have all of these components
3. Button/hook or any other closure
My first thought? Easy! I can do that.
My second? How do I make this skirt stand out?
Then came fabric selection. I knew I needed something solid or nearly solid to really show off the pleats. And then I saw it: the lovely, royal blue silk with body (it’s almost between a broadcloth and a taffeta) that my coworker very kindly brought back for me from Thailand the first time he went to visit his now-wife’s family. I’ve had this fabric in my stash for about four years (I think), and have been asked many a time by said coworker if I had used the fabric yet (understandably).
The thing about getting special fabric from Thailand is that it’s special fabric from Thailand. It can be hard to find a project you feel is worthy. I think we’ve all been there with special fabric of any origin.
The silk was quite easy to work with, but because of its pretty sheen shows all of the lumps and bumps and blips, like where the invisible zipper ends. It’s sort of satin lite in that regard.
I chose a gray rayon bemberg lining fabric to finish it off.
I didn’t start working on the skirt until Tuesday, and finished tracing my pattern and cutting my fabric out on Wednesday. I decided to start fresh with a size 40 instead of the modified 38 (AKA enlarged) I used the last time. The fit is pretty good, but I might consider taking the hips in a bit. I also shortened it 4″ like I did the last time.
Thursday I spent about 2.5 hours sewing, and estimated I was more than half done. The pleats alone took me more than an hour; I am so slow with those things!
The deadline was yesterday (Friday) at 11:59 EST. I’m in the central time zone, so that means 10:59.
I got working on my skirt again about 7:30. I got everything machine stitched on that I could and then spent about two hours hand stitching. I hurriedly took photos on my dress form, impatiently uploaded them to Flickr and went about adding photos to my official contest review.
I officially entered the contest at 11:59 PM EST; the last possible minute.
I was totally hot and sweaty and slightly manic after cutting it that close.
NEVER AGAIN. (says the procrastinator)
Seriously, though, I never thought it would take me another four hours to finish the dang thing…making it 6.5 hours of just sewing, not including cutting. Of course, I rarely keep track of how long garments actually take me to sew.
135 or so sewists completed the first challenge, and they all really rock! Make sure to check them out if you have a chance:
We find out who won the first round and who will go on to the second round later today…we’ll see how it goes. Good luck to all, but especially to the couple of awesome bloggers I know are participating (I’m looking at you, Carrie and Meigan!).