What did you do this year on your birthday?
I’m betting you didn’t wake up and think: “I know! It’s been almost 20 years since I sewed anything. I think I’ll make myself a skirt!”.
That’s pretty much how my day went and it was delightful. I am not good at long term craft or sewing projects. Over the years I have tried knitting, long stitch, tapestry, latch-hook, cross-stitch and other such lady-like accomplishments. In Year 8 I made some macrame owls that my mother insists on keeping in her laundry. They are truly garish. But when I was first at uni I did used to come home in the holidays and sew clothes. Dresses mainly, because I can never get dresses to fit me in shops. Lately I’ve been looking for skirts for summer and just found nothing. This might be because I live in the regions and our shopping is limited. It might also be because there aren’t many skirts around. I don’t know.
About 5 years I bought my own basic sewing machine. At the time I was keen to try patchwork. The fiddliness of that totally tried my patience and the machine has sat in the cupboard ever since gathering dust. A few years ago I covered it with a tea-towel but that was all the attention it received. Until today.
Sadly, the only place in town to buy material is Spotlight which is like a giant bargain basement. After my parents finished mocking me and what they perceived to be my hopeless sewing abilities, I dragged my mother along to find a pattern and some material. I wanted to simplest skirt pattern available – preferably A-line. Anything with a zip got the flick. I will attempt that later. We chose this:
Elastic waist, no zip, various lengths. The lady on the packet looks happy so how hard could making the skirt possibly be?
Then after much deliberating I decided on a dark patterned material (in case I made a dreadful hash of it), bought some thread and took it all home.
I got the sewing machine out of the hall cupboard, gave it a dust, switched it on and hoped for the best.
I was fine with the cutting out of the pattern and the material. I decided not to worry about the fancy-schmancy bow, because bows and I don’t really get along. I read all the sizing and decided to cut the biggest pattern and just do bigger seams if needed. And hey, whaddya know… I have a skirt. I only ran into trouble once – when the bobbin ran out of thread and I couldn’t remember how to fill it. But (and here’s my sewing tip of the day) if you Google filling bobbin Janome MS 2008 some lovely instructions appear through the magic of the internet. My mum helped me with setting the waistband casing to thread the elastic through but I did all the sewing myself. I cheated on the hem and zig-zagged it on the machine because I hate hand-stitching and this was just an experiment. Two and half hours later….ta da I had a skirt.
And it’s not just any skirt. It’s the 39th Birthday Skirt.
I’m going back to Spotlight tomorrow to buy some slightly heavier material as I think it will hang better. I’m also going to get this for Christmas.3 Comments »