4.27.2012

McCall's 4875 - The "At Last" Full-Circle Skirt

I started dabbling in sewing around three and half years ago.  My first project?  A full-circle skirt, of course!  I've adored them for as long as I can recall and I was elated to find this pattern while browsing the catalogs at Hancock for the first time. (I was a newbie - I had no idea how easy it would have been to draft my own!)  I was a good little seamstress and immediately bought a cute length of fabric for it and only it.



I got started right away and, as I recall, it was coming together rather quickly (including hem!) until I got to the waistband.  It had two pieces and seemed to leave a gap on either hip.  At the time, I got frustrated thinking I didn't understand the directions.  Why would you ever want your skirt supported by two bows, not to mention expose your underwear at the sides?  Of course, I know now that I did understand the directions and it really should have two openings.  What I do not know now is why you would want this?

Anywho, in an attempt to figure it out, I tried on the partially unfinished skirt.  Much to my disappointment, I saw how unflattering this skirt would be, even if I could figure out the waist.

Twirling is not optional in a circle skirt! :-)
As I said, this was my first project, first fabric purchase.  I knew nothing of picking the right fabric for a garment.  I just liked the houndstooth!  Too bad it was a droopy, textured knit.  It looked very heavy and fell over my hips in the worst way - adding weight to the area at which no pear-shaped girl wants extra.

Discouraged, my first project became my first stash.

Then, I saw this week's Sew Weekly challenge.  And not only was it circle skirts, the call was for "true" circle skirts.  No gathers, no pleats, just a circle with a waistband. So... I had to figure out how to make the silhouette work for me.

Enter a petticoat.

Showing my petticoat - scandalous!
Of course!  A skirt such as this would have been worn with one (or more) anyway so, it just made sense!  So, the bulk of this week's sewing was spent gathering looong strips of muslin to each other to create three poofy tiers to support my skirt away from my hips (instructions here, courtesy of Sugardale).

I think a heavy skirt like this could really use another petticoat, as it weighed the first one down a bit. But, I do think the look is much improved and, at last, wearable!


Oh, and what did I finally do about the waistband?  I ignored the directions, closed one of the openings, and added a waistband a few inches longer than my waist, securing it with a button from my stash.  Easy!  (I'll probably always cover it with a sash anyway.)  If I ever make another one, I'll use a zipper instead.

By the way, you can read my [featured - eep!] Sew Weekly post, here.

How did your first project go?  Did you finish it?  Love the result?


Happy sewing! x

12 comments:

  1. This is just darling, and I love that you made a petticoat! I've been meaning to make one as well for the circle skirt that I made last fall. My first project was strapless dress that I wore to my brother-in-law's wedding. It actually turned out and I've worn it several times since - though it is not my favorite project.

    By the way, your tank top is really cute. Did you make it?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Annabelle! I don't know why I put the petticoat off - I'm so glad to have one know! The gathering was a touch tedious but, it's an easy make and worth the effort (so much cheaper too!).

      It's so nice that your first project turned out well and is still getting regular use! It looks *fantastic* by the way! Love the bodice! (I browsed your old posts in hopes of finding a post about it and did :-) )

      Thanks! No, I must confess it's quite a few years old and from Abercrombie & Fitch (cringe!) I generally only wear it on vacation but, I thought the aqua would pop nicely with the red and houndstooth.

      Delete
  2. My first proper project was a skirt and I loved it. Elasticated thick waistband, I thought it was the bomb. Now I look at it and think oh dear. Just shows how much I have moved on.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. How nice that your first project was a success! I do know what you mean though about looking back at them later, after your skills are improved, and thinking it could have been better.

      Delete
  3. This is super cute, and even your pictures are adorable! How awesome that you were able to rescue your first sewing project!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Aww, thank you! Hooray for rescues!

      Delete
  4. Work is very beautiful, and you make me remember my first act of sewing women was a skirt , and was successful, you know, I think the skirt circular have been designed for women who have fun in the movements and character of the free and you are shown the beauty Skirt circular in the view through the beautiful pictures and elegant color, accept my congratulations you look amazing in this skirt.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you!! How kind of you! It seems skirts are common first projects. It's great that yours was successful! I agree, circle skirts are definitely now worn by those with a fun, freer (but tasteful) spirit.

      Delete
  5. lovely skirt!! i still haven't made a true circle skirt, but after reading multiple posts about them, one might be going in my queue. my first project was a a huge stroke of good luck. i had an aqua bedsheet that i thrifted and decided to make it into a self-drafted sundress on my brand-new (to me) 1960s Singer machine that i'd had for about 2 days. it worked out better than i ever thought, and i still wear it all the time (with a belt to cover the uneven waist!).

    congratulations on a brilliant rescue!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you!! I do recommend adding a circle skirt to your queue because they're quick to make and so fun to wear! Wow! How brave to self-draft your very first dress. Great job! I love the way you used the sheets tucks at the bottom.

      Delete
  6. This is so cute! So glad you were able to rescue it! My first project was a chambray tunic dress-- it ended up looking like a prison uniform! Whoops! I still have it, but I haven't really worn it...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks, Ginger! I am too - I hate having waders and UFOs in my stash. I bet you could style your tunic just so and pull it off. Me-Made-May would be the perfect time to try it and you can get feedback! ::hint hint:: :-)

      Delete

Let's keep the conversation going! Feel free to comment below or on Instagram!

If you want to comment without linking to your profile (or if you don't have an account), please choose "Name/URL" from the drop-down and leave your first name (website optional) so I know who I'm responding to. I can't wait to read your feedback! x