Simplicity 2154 - "Changing Leaves" Autumn Pencil Skirt

Several posts ago, I mentioned my fall sewing to-do list - which has all but gone out the window - which included wool variations of Simplicity 2154 (undetermined at the time). However, after the success and ease of my last corduroy skirt, I've decided it would be a good idea to use pinwale corduroy as a muslin/toile for all of my new skirt patterns. This way, I can whip it up quickly and tweak the fit easily while still having a perfectly wearable, unlined skirt. So, when I saw this pretty autumn red in Joann's, I thought it would be a good match.

Bored with the brick wall, this is the field and wood behind our property.
To see additional shots (without the sunset haze), click here.
As before, the material was very easy to work with. The pattern was great as well. Of course, It only has 3 pieces - waistband, back (x2), and front - so I wasn't expecting anything complex. Both the front and back have two darts on either side of the center, it has a side zipper, side tab with hook and eye, and a center back vent.

The instructions were short and easy to follow (not that one really needs them with this type of garment). My only intruction change would be to leave the vent basting stitches in until just before you hem the skirt. This way, theres no risk of tension from the side seam and the vent will lay perfectly flat when not in motion. To eliminate bulk, I also recommend
  • folding the waistband pattern under 5/8" along the long, unnotched side and cutting the fabric along the selvedge
  • mitering the hem at the vent
Of course, those modifications are rather minor and the skirt would look just as lovely without them. It's a great skirt.

Since this is a muslin, it does need a bit of tweaking.  DH2b (I think this acronym makes the most sense, don't you?) pointed out that I commonly make my muslins too large, for fear that I'll make them too small. (I'm not a fan of the stuffed sausage look and I'm under the impression that I have very large hips.) I cut a size 14 for this one based on the measurements listed on the pattern pieces but, the waistband is loose and my hips are apparently straighter than the pattern is designed for, as some needs to be taken off there as well. Luckily, I don't think the skirt is unwearable as is - obviously, I've worn it twice already - but, it shifts quite a bit, I do think it looks a touch matronly and makes my hips look even wider than they are.  Speaking of martonly, that reminds me of the only major modification I did: I knew this would be too long so I started by removing one inch from the length at the petite line.  Just before hemming, I removed an additional four inches because DH2b and I found the look overwhelming on me. However, I may still try my first wool at the full length, since the fabric is much less bold.

DH2b clicked away as I opted to play with the birthday girl over posing.
This one shows a bit of bagginess in the hip area.

The addiction to corduroy skirts continues! The next one will be a more practical camel version of my green skirt.  Though, I do owe DH2b a corduroy item or two first ;).

Thanksgiving goal tally: 8 7 6 items planned, 1 finished, 1 cut, 1 week to go.  (Help!)  Are you sewing items for Thanksgiving?

Have a great weekend everyone! x


  1. I love the idea of using corduroy as a muslin, what a fabulous idea! I haven't looked through the corduroy at my fabric shop, but I think I need to give it a try. From the photos, you skirt doesn't look matronly, it just looks like a great wardrobe staple (but we are our own toughest critics, so if you don't feel fabulous in the skirt, I understand the desire to make additional tweaks)

  2. Yes, definitely! The newer pinwales are unlike the thick cord we (or at least I) wore growing up and they're so comfortable.

    Thank you, @Annabelle! Your kind words are always so encouraging! I certainly agree about being our own toughest critics so, maybe I should leave it alone for a while and see how I feel after a few wears.


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