Some summer sewing

I am perennially disappointed with high-street options for holiday-wear. Too flimsy, too frumpy, or too expensive; summer styles that suit me and look on-trend are always hard to find.

After discovering I had a pattern for a basic skirt with an elasticated waistband in my pattern stash, I decided last year to whip up some super simple skirts which would allow me to control both hemlines and costs. Unfortunately, I failed at my two attempts – one was cut far too short, and the other just looked a bit crummy (my first attempt at a curved hem did not go well!).

With a holiday looming, and more unsuitable clothing options hitting the shelves, I decided to give this unbelievably simple pattern another go.

First up: rescuing the too-short version from last year. I’m so pleased I kept this ‘skirt’ as I love the fabric, which is sadly no longer available. I was able to add to the length by adding a panel of grey crepe (leftover from this unblogged make) to the bottom, which I think goes really well with the orange and somehow neutralises the pattern. It’s a little messy on the inside, but I think it looks great from the outside, and I can see myself getting a lot of wear out of this item. It sits on the knee, which also means it will also be perfect for wearing to the office, if summer ever arrives here in the UK.

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The second version was made from some fabric salvaged from a remnant bin for just £2.50. I was feeling both lazy and impatient with this skirt, so I just cut one wide piece of fabric which I sewed into a tube. I then created the tube for the elastic waistband and fed the elastic through (without a safety pin to guide the way, this was probably the most arduous step of the whole thing). Finally, I sewed a rolled hem as the fabric frays easily, and I thought encasing the raw edge was a better option than a zig-zag stitch.

This version sits just above the knee, making it really versatile – I’ve already worn it with heels for a night out and with tights for work, and was perfect for a recent trip to Barcelona.

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