Drafting my first pattern- project 333 summer capsule wardrobe

Drafting my first pattern- project 333 summer capsule wardrobe

The reason I have been teaching myself to sew is because I want to simplify my wardrobe by having fewer clothes but making sure they fit and I love them. As I’ve been teaching myself I’ve been mainly using patterns. This has helped me to get a grasp of some of the techniques and the order to sew garments but unfortunately with many of them I’m still not that happy with the fit. However, I’m now getting to the stage where I’m getting happier adapting patterns for a better fit (although still making a fair amount of mistakes!!).

One of the key items I like to wear in winter is a satin wiggle skirt. I want to make some more wiggle skirts in different fabrics. Rather than make these from a pattern and then adapt to fit I thought I would try copying a skirt I have which fits!! Since I haven’t done this before I bought
Patternmaking for a Perfect Fit and followed the instructions on patterning a skirt.

I bought a large piece of foam core board (I use this quite a lot around the house and in crafting projects!), bulldog clips and some brown paper from my stash.

I used the detailed instructions in the book and since I’m not an expert I’ll just summarise here.
I cut the paper to the length of the foam board and secured it with the bulldog clips so it was taut. You start by drawing an L shape to line up the skirt on. I folded the skirt front in half and lined up the centre front and bottom of the skirt on the lines. I then pinned it out taut and used pins to mark out the side, waist and dart positions. I then used a pencil to sketch these onto the paper using the pin marks and a Curve Ruler tool where appropriate to make sure I got the right line.

I did the same with the skirt back but added the position of the pleat at the back and of the zip opening etc.

The next stage is to adjust for the darts by measuring and marking the depth and length of the darts. I then added the additional fabric needed to the side and used my curve tool to redraw the top of the side.

I used my go to sewing guide- The Sewing Book


together with a thorough examination of the skirt I was copying to figure out how I would create the pleat.

Then I added fabric for the seam allowances.

In the book the skirt has a waistband but I wanted to copy my skirt that doesn’t. Mine has facings instead. I used my pattern pieces to trace patterns for the facings (I also made a pattern for linings since I plan on making winter versions of the skirt). The final stage is to mark up the pattern pieces and add notches etc.

Then the moment of truth was to make the skirt…..and it fit really well. The best fitting garment I’ve made! I didn’t do the best job of putting it on the mannequin and taking a photo but you get the idea!!

This is the pleat at the back of the skirt…..wonky photo day…it is straight!

Having put in a few zips using various instructions and You Tube videos I think I’ve finally come up with a way that works for me.

So a pattern for a wiggle skirt I can reuse for a great fit and a new summer skirt for my capsule wardrobe.

Other posts in my sewing for project 333 series

Skirt 4