bottom-halfs wardrobe

Rachel Comey + Vogue 1247 Skirt

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There are so many iterations of this skirt (by Carolyn alone) that I didn’t exactly feel the need to be the millionth blogger to write about it, but as a newbie to this blog game, I feel like it’s excusable for me to write about a skirt pattern that is probably quite boring to you at this point. I mean, who is reading right now anyway? (Please comment so I don’t feel so alone in this wide, wide, blogging world.) Third post, here I go:

The Pattern: The ever-loved Vogue/Rachel Comey V1247 Skirt
The Fabric: Periwinkle 100% Cotton Denim (remnant from Fabric Depot, $6.99)
The Size: 6
The Adjusmtents: +1” to length

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This is a skirt I’ve been eyeing for a long time. I got the pattern for the blouse, sewed it right up without a muslin (including matched up French seams on that tricky front middle!) in a beautiful light-weight white wool woven I picked up in France a couple years ago that I had been saving for something real special.

And then I regretted it immediately upon trying on. The drape of the fabric is all wrong; it’s got too much stiff and not enough flow. It looks like the top half of scrubs. And for being a petite human, I’ve got a few curves on me and wearing baggy shirts don’t actually do me or my waist any favors (a lesson I’m still learning after 30 years in this body). It hangs like a heavy duty hoodless sweatshirt you get at a mall-kiosk screen printing store. And while I have the urge, I’ve denied myself from touching that pattern for years. But enough about V1247 The Blouse, let’s talk about V1247 The Skirt.

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The skirt has sewn up divine. I hemmed and hawed over whether or not to use this fabric, since it’s not every day you run across a periwinkle brushed denim in the wild. Even when I had the pattern laid out on the table, I was still sitting in front of my laptop scrolling my way through a myriad of potential patterns (I mean, can you imagine this as an Inari? Or an Astoria altered to suit wovens? *swoon*). But at some point, I had to look at this fabric and face that it only cost me $6.99 for a single yard remnant and the only reason it hurts me to cut into it is because I know it exists at all. (Sorry to get all existential on you folks 3 posts in.) Shifting my paradigm even let me treat this as a wearable muslin.

And you know what? I’m so glad I did. No forced matching seams; no toes crossed while sewing; all the maths added up. You know when you get a fabric that is so easy to work with that you barely have to incorporate the word ease into any of it? That’s what this denim+skirt combo did for me. In other words, it hit all my OCD pleasure points.

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I added an inch to the length, because I’ve got a high natural waist. I didn’t want the length to enhance the very slight A-line of the cut, so I eased the inch in by keeping the same bottom width.

I made one other slight alteration to the pattern, though. I know, I know… the inside binding is a design feature and not a flaw, but the binding I picked up to approach this thing with was just so purple (or is it blue?) that it was hard for me to stomach. And sewing binding around all those curves? I’ll take an easier route, danke schön.

My solution to the pocket non-binding was Emily’s French Inseam Pocket Technique. Consider me addicted. After my first run-through on the navy linen maxi, I’m pretty much a convert. Once you get the hang of it, it sews much smoother than you’d expect. And this denim sewed up like a dream.

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I did end up binding the back seam allowances, and in retrospect, I probably should have done the same with all the side seams and pressed them flat. It lays much smoother than the 4 layers of french seams at the sides. One thing I should keep in mind for the future too, is that with the weight of the fabric, my French seams ended up taking up more than the allotted 5/8” seam allowance (probably closer to 6/8” and sometimes even 7/8”). This wasn’t such a big deal here vertically since I had cut an extra 2 inches to the bottom, but those fractions of inches add up and can definitely end up altering the fit dramatically, especially on something so fitted.

I also used a blind hem foot for the first time on this skirt! Call it courage or stupidity, but I’m at a point in my sewing life where if I’m learning a new technique, I tend to just wing it on my actual garment. I did it with my navy linen dress and Emily’s Pocket Technique (where I only had to unpick once!) and I did it with with the blind hem on this skirt. It took me a couple tries to see how much allowance I needed on the hem side, but what’s a sewing project without spending quality time with my best friend, Mr. Seam Ripper? Below, (if you zoom) you can see on the finished garment the difference in visible stitch length from the first part I started sewing and the last part. I briefly considered unpicking, but I realized it’s something that only I can see (and you can see too now that I’ve shown you), but no one else will ever analyze this garment long enough to see the 2mm difference in stitch length. #unperfectionistgoals

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Also, if I can just swoon over this fabric for a minute: I know, it looks a little ho-hum. I oscillate between loving and meh-ing the actual look of it. I loved the color pre-wash (it was a little more vivid, but less vivid than the wrong side), but post-wash it came out with visible bleeding where the folds lived while spinning in the washing machine (Does anyone know what the solution to this is? Do I turn the spin cycle to a lower setting? Bag the whole length of it?). But what I love about it is that this might be the softest denim I’ve ever laid my hands on, without feeling like I traded in the quality. It’s thick, it’s durable, it has only the slightest amount of give, and it’s been brushed to pillowy softness. I could rub my face on it all day, but then I wouldn’t have a skirt, I would have a lot of weird looks.

Suffice it to say, A++, would make this skirt again.

 

7 Comment

  1. Your skirt looks wonderful I really admire how well you finish your garments. My overlocker had made me a bit lazy when it comes to pretty finishing.

    1. Thanks so much Emma! I really enjoy the technical aspects of sewing, but I totally understand the use of an overlocker, especially when you just wanna finish something quickly!

  2. Oh this looks so lovely and the fabric sounds divine too! I should have added length the way you describe this as when I added length I just added to the bottom and it ended up more a-line. I haven’t made this pattern in a few years and should really give it another go! Your version is gorgeous!

    1. Thanks Kathryn! This pattern is definitely one to repeat… it’s so versatile and I love seeing everyone’s different versions!

  3. This is so adorable! Great sewing skills. I have been trying to find this pattern for a while, but no luck. If some generous soul would scan and email me the directions, I could adapt the pockets to another skirt…..and would be eternally grateful!

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