I have been sewing my little heart out, and I’m totally excited to share my Sexy Secretary Skirt.
Before I type another word I have to say this is the best fitting garment I have ever sewn. Happy Dance! Happy Dance! Happy Dance! So my diligence is paying off. So excited! Off to the next project…
Not so fast, of course I’m going to give you the nitty gritty on making this skirt. I mentioned in True Confessions and What’s Coming that I was taking my first official Craftsy course. I wasn’t sure if I would like using my tablet while sewing, but I really enjoyed this method of learning. The skirt pattern is from The Sewing Studio with Diana Rupp. The pattern comes separately with the book that is required for the course, Sew Everything Workshop. The book comes with 10 patterns and the Craftsy course includes video instructions to make two of the patterns in the book: a French Seamed Envelope Pillow and the Sexy Secretary Skirt. The book alone is a good overall sewing guide and I will reference again and again. The content includes everything from how to thread your needle to a detailed overview of fabric choices.
Overall the video instructions are a great help to people who aren’t familiar with the normal sewing jargon. It covers a biased waistband, inserting a lining, and sewing darts.
I opted not to purchase fabric for this skirt and raided my stash. When I started sewing a few years ago, I would purchase fabric whenever I came across it something interesting. When I saw the straight lines of the skirt I decided to opt for this pink fabric. I don’t recall where I purchased it from and I had over 5 yards of it. If memory serves me correct, I purchased this at one of the large fabric warehouses here in Dallas. In their remnant rooms they usually have a final price on a single cut of fabric. I saw the colors. Fell in love and went straight to the register.
Lesson learned … never purchase fabric without opening it up to look at it. This is what I found when I unfolded the fabric to put it in the wash.
From now on, I will completely unfold any remnants I purchase. I could cut around this stain because I only needed two pieces for this project, but if I were making a jacket (as I originally planned with this fabric) or something else more substantial, I would have been in trouble!
The pattern was rather simple to cut out, and the instructions accompanied by the video made this project very easy. I did sew a muslin first before cutting my fabric to ensure the fit was proper, and the pattern was a good fit. The video covers how to size down the pattern, but it doesn’t provide direction on what to do if the fit is a bit snug. Speaking for women with hips and butt everywhere, this would have been a nice addition! There could be occasions where someone would have to take out that generous seam allowance, and it would be nice to have the same guidance. Another area I found lacking was the lack of instruction on the pattern and in the video for adjusting the skirt length. If I would have followed the instructions and cut the excess length from the bottom of the skirt, I wouldn’t have that sexy secretary split at all. I’m 5’0″. Yes, 5′ even. If I would have cut the excess length from the bottom of the skirt I would have NO split. Needless to say, I would not have been bringing Sexy Back! Even though there are lengthen and shorten lines on the pattern piece, the instructions are to cut the excess length from the bottom of the skirt. This change I had to make using what I’ve learned from my sewing teacher. I shortened the length, which was made a little complicated by the slit extension, but I think I did a pretty good job for winging it.
Once I had my muslin locked and loaded, I moved onto my fabric. I’m not sure what family this fabric falls into, but it is definitely of the linen realm. It ravels very easily, so I decided to break out that brand new serger of mine and put it to use.
The skirt is very straightforward. Two pieces … skirt front and back. There are darts on the back and front which provide a good fit. And I used baised tape as instructed for the waistband. Because I will be using this skirt for work I wanted to keep the length a little long just below the knee. But I wanted to create interest in the back with not only the slit in the back, but with combining it with a top with great back detail. I did use an invisible zipper, which is the best I’ve done so far. Yay me!
The thing I’m most proud of is the sides of the skirt. I worked really hard with the notch placement to ensure the strips look good from the sides.
Overall, I’m very happy with this skirt and will wear the heck out of it. This is what I’m wearing to work. I can hear your thoughts … where does she work where she can get away with that shirt. I am BLESSED to work for a rather large tech company, and our attire is casual. It isn’t unusual to see Bermuda shorts and flip-flops during the summer months. I work in sales, so it is always a benefit to dress my best. We will have a few more months of heat here in Dallas, so I’ll definitely get a lot of wear out of this. As we transition to Fall, I’ll pair this with a cardigan for the cooler months.
Overall, this was a fun project. More than that, it is something I am proud to wear. Come and check me out again. I’ve you’ve liked what you’ve read, please comment or follow this blog.