Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Pattern Review: Sashay Skirt

Last August, I got a pattern and some material, and planned to make a skirt from some DC Superheroine fabric. This past weekend I finally made it, and a beret to match (naturally). The Indygo Junction pattern for the Sashay Skirt could not be easier unless it sewed itself.

There is a single pattern piece, it's sized by adding panels to the trumpet skirt, and has an elastic waistband. The directions call for serging the seams, leaving them exposed, with the option of sewing them to the inside. I don't have a serger, and I don't care for the look of all those exposed seams, so I sewed them to the inside. Honestly, it took way more time to pin all those panels than it did to sew them together.

The hem is curved and I quickly discarded a rolled hem as being a huge pain in the butt. I ended up using bias tape to do an enclosed hem instead. The coordinating quarter inch tape stiffened the hem a little, making it tend to stand out a bit; it's an effect that looks quite nice. It was time consuming; my hem was nearly 6 yards around because of the number of panels I used. For all the pinning and seams that had to be sewn, I still got it done in a day.

It's a really cute skirt, hitting me just below the knee. The flared hem is flattering and the elastic waist comfortable. It moves nicely, swirling with my steps, and twirling in it flares it out without being immodest since it's straighter at the hips. The way its pieced lends itself to many different combinations of color and pattern. Make it all one fabric, or make every one different -- it's up to you and your own sense of design. I used 4 different patterned materials from a single design line from Camelot Fabrics, but this won't be the last time I make the Sashay Skirt. And because you custom size it by the number of panels, I can easily make a skirt for my daughter using that same single pattern piece, unlike with most patterns where you have to cut into a multiple-sized pattern pieces, making them useless to make another size.

NOTE: If you have a directional pattern on the material, you're going to need more fabric than the instructions call for unless you don't care if some of your panels are upside down. (One of my blue panels is -- oops!)

You can see here that the light blue panel on the left of the photo is upside down.
Lots of nice flare at the bottom.
Showing how the bias tape gave a little body to the hemline.
The bottom of the beret is of a sparkly pink material that doesn't quite match the
bias tape, but coordinates nicely with the pinks in the material.
I chose to add a little bling to my skirt with hot-fix crystals, and used the assorted color pack of 300 from Tulip. Cost-wise, they were 300/$15 for 12 colors (at Joann's) vs. the Swarovski Elements 90/$10 (for two coordinating colors). Since I wanted to add them to the skirt and to the beret, and since I had a lot of colors to choose from, Tulip was the way to go, even if they're not as nice as the Swarovskis. I have added 3 to each panel of the skirt, and then finished the beret so I knew I would have enough for both, and plan to add more to the skirt.

These are not as sparkly as the
Swarovski Elements iron-on crystals,
but they're about half the cost.
I consider myself a novice seamstress. I haven't done a lot of garment sewing. I've never sewn in a zipper, and I've never done buttonholes. Pattern directions often confound me because they don't make a lot of sense, so I tend to wing it. This pattern was a piece of cake. I'm so happy that I bought it, and I'm thrilled with my results. I highly recommend it.

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