The Gold Dust skirt (Hotpatterns 1011 Plain and Simple 24/7 A-line)

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The Gold Dust skirt (Hotpatterns 1011 Plain and Simple 24/7 A-line)

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Morning fruit bats! I’ve got a nice, simple skirt to show you today. One that is making me eat my words – the ones in the vein of A-line skirts suck. You’d think that would make me feel modest and perhaps a bit diffident, but it seems to have the opposite effect. I’m feeling quite combative. Yeah, OK, so A-line skirts might be alright. You suck, and your little friend Stacy London can take a hike.

Would you like to see it? OK! Here is the A-line version of the Hotpatterns Plain and Simple 24/7 A-line skirt

Ah, yes. We are firmly in bad-lighting territory for the year. Expect to see the quality of my photo sessions continue to degrade as I deal with the lack of daylight.

I made the skirt from a silk/rayon blend from Hancock that I’m quite partial to, although I don’t expect it to wear all that well. I continually load up on these silk blend wovens and they pill up something terrible – even just the handling while constructing the skirt start to wear the fabric! I like the drape of the fabric, though, and the idea of it. This one has gold and grey checks woven on a cream background. Perfect winter-garb for the owner of a white basset hound, wouldn’t you say?

I made the A-line version of this pattern just to try it out. I really liked the pencil skirt version I just finished, and I while I’m perfectly happy just making pencil skirts over and over, I thought it might be a good idea to try something different. It seems like every fashion advice magazine, blog, article, book, overly-saturated-with-makeover-shows-new-acquaintance agree on one thing: A-line skirts are the most flattering skirt style in the history of the universe. My experience with a-lines has been not so great. I have a lot of high hip width (just like Beyonce, I keep telling myself :-) and A-lines tend to pull unattractively over my widest part and then flare out from there. Ewww. I was pleasantly surprised with this skirt. I wore it to work yesterday and it felt nice to wear – sort of flowy and flippy. I’ll admit I didn’t love it in the mirror, but after the photo session I must grudgingly admit it’s not a bad style for me. I will make more.

Here’s the inside (after a day of wear, hello wrinkles!) I lined with white Bemberg Ambiance lining. That’s probably why it felt so nice to wear! Again, I used my serger to hem the lining. Yay serger! This skirt has the same waistband as the pencil skirt – shaped and narrow. Not a style that works well with tucking. I might try another A-line with a straight waist and wider waistband (a’la Colette’s Ginger.) I tend to like a higher, cinched waistband that grabs around my more narrow midsection rather than my natural waist. I’ve been slightly obsessing over how to get that wider waistband to fit a bit better, as they can easily get a bit too baggy after a few hours of wear and gape at the top of the waistband. I’m thinking of trying a version in stretch denim to see if that helps out.

I altered the pattern a bit – I didn’t sew the darts (I don’t really need them – they tend to pouf over my tummy) in the front and back. To keep true to size, I trimmed the width of the dart from the side seam, easing from the hip to the waist. The photo above is a closeup of the inside of the waistband. One new thing I tried for this skirt was to stitch in the ditch along the bottom of the waistband by hand. I always have trouble doing it by machine – there’s a lot of bias going on and with the two layers I end up with ripples, even if I use my walking foot. Doing it by hand worked like a dream – you can see some of my stitches above. I’ll definitely be doing this by hand from now on!

The pattern includes a hem facing cut on the bias. I really like this type of hem treatment, although I’m usually too lazy to do it. This particular facing was just bias cut strips, not shaped. On autopilot, I sewed the facing on the wrong way so that the seam allowances where the strips were joined were facing out instead of hidden against the fabric of the skirt. Rather than rip and restitch (this fabric is unravels easily and doesn’t do ripping very well!) I just zigzagged over the exposed seam allowances, which tamed them quite nicely. I also understitched the facing, which looks nice. I don’t remember if it was in the instructions or not – as anyone who has used Hotpatterns will know, there’s really not a lot in the way of instructions!

A better closeup of the rolled hem and understitching on the hem facing.

Let’s do three looks, shall we? As usual, this is my favorite. Skirt-tank-cardi… Holy blurry, batman!

The length on the skirt is a bit longer than I like. I’m not sure I’m a fan with heels and flats, as it cuts off at a wide part of my calf. It’s a great length for boots, though! Here, I tried it with a fitted coat. This would be in the Stacy London spirit of A-line skirt that flows away from the body with a fitted jacket so I’m locked and loaded. Not the best silhouette as far as I’m concerned, but not terrible.

And here it is with the turtleneck and heeled boots treatment. Very 70’s social worker, right? I actually love this look. I’d like even better with a grey turtleneck and grey boots – I love me some cream and grey!

All in all, a fine skirt. I suspect we’ll be seeing a lot of each other!