Sunday, 19 February 2012

Thinking in Shapes Skirt




I've named this the Thinking in Shapes Skirt, but there wasn't really too much thinking involved - or at least not the type of thinking I usually do. And that's the point. My research project is taking up all my mental energy at the moment, so I wanted a sewing project that would prove super simple, one I could dabble with during short breaks between writing to let the right side of my brain come out to play while I allowed the left side of my brain go duuuuuuuurrrrrrrrrhhhhhhh... Have you ever turned to sewing at times like that?


It's made from some upholstery fabric that I bought in Ikea a couple of years ago with the intention of making cushions but never did (quelle surprise!). The project was originally intended to be a gathered skirt following Gertie's great tutorial. The fabric is perfect for this skirt in one way, as it's nice and stiff, producing a wonderfully full silhouette. It is so thick, however, that when I started gathering it the thread snapped - so I decided to pleat it instead. One of the benefits of working with geometric print fabric is that you can use the lines and spacing of the shapes as guidelines for cutting and folding, which is really useful when it comes to pleating and hemming, for instance. The hem is finished with a fancy topstitch because I couldn't be bothered to hand slip stitch it because I decided to add a decorative feature.



Ooh I'm really pleased with this skirt! What sewing project are you working on at the moment?

[Soundtrack: 'Day Dreaming' by Aretha Franklin]

84 comments:

  1. This is just too cute! I love that print, I've been working in a lot of block colours for my clothes recently, but this makes me want to go shopping for prints! Where did you get the fabric?

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  2. Oh my!! I absolutely love this. Great use of the fabric. You look terrific. And I love the red tights and the turquoise necklace. Perfection!

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    1. wow what an adorable skirt, the fabric is superfabulous and red tigths are always a great choice to pair with!!
      i would love to make a floral fifties dress with bows and flowers, but at the moment i´m without my sewing machine :(
      love and kiss,mary
      http://maryloucinnamon.blogspot.com

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    2. Aw thank you! I made the necklace too - it's folded ribbon.

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  4. Oh, it's so cute! I love the colors and especially the decorative hem! The whole outfit is fab!! I'm sewing today too. I'm starting my muslins for the Ooh la la pin up sew along on A Few Threads Loose. I've always wanted to make lingerie but never had the courage to jump in and do it :)

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    1. That sewalong looks great! I can't see myself wearing a corset though so will just enjoy seeing what everyone else makes.

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  5. Fabulous dress. For the gathering you could have used the zig zag over string/dental floss method Gertie posted at the same time. Great for thick fabrics and mega quick.

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    1. Aha! I didn't see that, thanks for the tip.

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  6. Wow, it's so cute! I love the print so much. The outfit really looks nice on you.

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  7. That is one truly gorgeous skirt, and I love the way you've styled it as well!

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  8. Awesome and really funky. It looks super cute on you!

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  9. Super fun! Love those Ikea upholstery fabrics.

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  10. What a neat skirt, this will really brighten up a grey day! I love the geometric print, and the way you've done the pleating arrangement at the top!

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  11. I love the squiggle top stitching, I feel like it pulls the theme of the skirt together really well!

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  12. What a terrific skirt, Tilly! Well done!

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  13. Fabulous skirt! Just love how the pleats bring out the design!!

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  14. Sweet! That simple skirt pattern is so effective- and the fabric suits it. Lovely! I've had a busy 6 weeks at work and fell almost possessed to my sewing machine once it calmed down! I think I've made 4 things in a fortnight with a fifth in limbo awaiting a final fitting decision.... It's my release, clearly!

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    1. Crikey! I'm looking forward to some sewing weekends once I've got this project out the way. Just pressed send on my draft - nearly there!

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  15. Very pretty but dramatic at the same time. Love it with the red tights!

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  16. Wonderful, Tilly! The fabric goes so well with the pleats & as usual you've accessorized it just right. Well done.

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  17. That's such a cute skirt. Too funny, that I actually own this fabric, too. I bought it with the intention of upholstering a chair, but never did. You just made me remembe it :)

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  18. Fun skirt fabric!

    Is your top a Butterick pattern?

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    1. I wish I could say I made the top myself but it's just a little knit from H&M. Which Butterick pattern are you referring to? Wouldn't mind some more of these!

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    2. Hi Tilly, I couldn't see a matching style pattern on the Butterick site (I checked the OOP section too). But, McCalls OOP M6164 View A looks very, very similar to your H&M top.

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  19. Very cute! When I saw thinking in shapes, I just got excited.

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  20. nice skirt, it's a very funny one! I saw the fabric in ikea too and didn't buy it, I'm wondering now : why not?

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  21. Hey, Tilly, I was just wondering if that skirt sits at your natural waist. I made a skirt that sits there and it looks far worse on me than you :) Different body shapes and all!

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    1. It does - I like fairly high-waisted clothing so made the waistline quite small so it wouldn't slip down to my hips.

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  22. Oh it's so pretty Tilly and I love the red tights with it! I'm working on another Ginger skirt at the moment - that skirt is seriously easy peasy to sew! x

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  23. Tilly, you look like a cute little dolly!!! Your skirt is seriously cool, what amazing fabric!!!

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  24. That shape is awesome, straight away I was like, is that upholstery fabric? I've used some Ikea fabric in the same way, and just love the stiffness. It's also really great for windy cold days, as a windbreaker!

    I don't have a lot of time at the moment, so I'm slowly plodding through making a no brainer baby patchwork quilt for a friend. It should really be a 'brainer' though, because I've never made a quilt before! xoxo

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    1. Its windbreaking qualities will be a bonus!

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  25. Fantastic skirt and I love it with the pleats instead of the gather. It makes for such a clean look which is perfect for such a fantastic sharp print. Love it!

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  26. It's so awesome. Love that fabric.

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  27. That is such a gorgeous skirt Tilly!! Perfectly poufy :)

    I also just wanted to let you know that I am going to be in London for a week in July - if you have time, I'd love to meet up! Or, if you have any ideas of places to visit do tell. Of course we'll be doing the touristy things - as it's my first time there the London eye, Buckingham Palace, Tower of London etc need to be done, but if there are any great vintage/fabric shops I need to visit I'd love to know about them!!

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    1. Great! Let me know a bit nearer the time and we can arrange something. The fashion galleries at the V&A will have reopened by then so you must visit that. Liberty and The Cloth House in Soho are a must for fabric shopping... or window fabric shopping in any case - they are really expensive but lots of fun just to look! x

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    2. Hi Tilly - awesome! Yes, I'll let you know a little closer to the time, we should have more of an idea of what we'll be doing and when :)

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  28. So adorable!
    I love the print on the fabric and adore full skirts.

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  29. So cute! I'm addicted to Ikea fabric too. I buy their geometric prints every now and then. I've used it in skirts but it's also good for bags.

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  30. That skirt has a lovely shape. Your photos and styling are great.

    I am currently working on Ikea fabric projects, as well. I'm making dresses for my 2 daughters. I hear you on the difficulty of gathering this fabric. One of the dresses has gathers, but they are in tiers, and the tiers are arced, so the gather ratio is only around 1.4 to 1. Not too difficult.

    Claudine (couturearts.wordpress.com)

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  31. Ikea fabric is just great to create clothes from and you've done a brilliant job with this skirt. It's super cute.

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  32. That this so cute! I love the fabric, and I love the shape! Well done, Tilly!

    strugglesewsastraightseam.wordpress.com

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  33. Fantastic skirt - my addiction to ikea fabric has borne out three skirts and a dress! I can't say there won't be more..

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  34. Cool fabric, esp w the red tights!! The main reason I see is to periodically check if there is any function in the right side of my brain :)

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  35. I love it !!! It's really nice and suit you very well. And I like the geometric print fabric. Look forward making one like yours one day (will be perfect for spring!). Thanks for the nice picture.

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  36. I love the poofy-ness of this skirt! So fun! In answer to your question, I'm making a new dress for my doll, a medieval bliaut. Someday I hope to make one for me!

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    1. I had to google that... now I know what a bliaut is!

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  37. Ooh that is SO lovely! I love the pattern and the shape is perfect for your petite frame. Divine! I'm off to Ikea today - I shall be perusing the fabric for sure. I als0 love the obvious fun you're having in the photos - tres cute!

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    1. Hahaha yes I decided to put some cheery music on so my poses wouldn't look as miserable as they sometimes do!

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  38. I'm making skirts but deliberately basic - a black ponte Beignet and a faux leather pencil.

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  39. gorgeous skirt! love the red tights!!! x

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  40. Super cute skirt. I think your gathering thread breaking was a blessing in disguise as I recon gathers in that heavy fabric would have been too poofy around your waits - while the pleats are smooth and streamline! Gorgeous!

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  41. Such a gorgeous skirt, I love the material!

    ma-bicyclette.blogspot.com

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  42. Love your skirt! My first thought when I saw it was--wow a queen of hearts skirt! With the tights it made me think Alice in Wonderland for some reason.

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  43. Lovely skirt, the print is special - plus for Ikea :)
    That necklace is just folded ribbon? Is somewhere a tutorial, how to make it? Because it looks great!

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    1. My friend found the necklace tutorial - I'll ask her if she's got the link. Although the tutorial missed a step so she spent 4 hours (seriously - I was there) working out the missing step so we could make them!

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  44. Really fun! It's great having a few pieces like this to pop on at a moments notice. I liking the design of the fabric, as well. Time for a party!

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  45. So much fun! I love how much it stands out - it looks like you're wearing a crinoline under it!

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  46. This is such a great skirt and the pattern suits it wonderfully. I might just have to give this one a go :)

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  47. Very lovely! The fabric is delightful!

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  48. Such a great fabric, and love the skirt! Love your necklace too... Where did you get it from? Sorry not sewing related...

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    1. I made the necklace from folded ribbon. My friend found the tutorial - I'll ask her if she's got the link...

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  49. lovely.. i adore upholstery fabrics, they come in such lovely prints, and i love turning them into skirts too.. this type of skirts in particular, is my favorite.. and so easy and fast to make

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  50. Tilly, I'm absolutely in love with this skirt. If I lived nearby I would totally steal it from you. Like you, I also turn to sewing when I need a break from other projects, which right now, is a dress I'm making for a friends wedding.

    Again, bravo on the skirt!

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  51. You should model for Kate Spade! Love the skirt and photos - so very cheerful!

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  52. Oh my, honey-pie!!!! What a delight! This is incredible. Actually, I wouldn't be surprised if, in a few months time, Anthropologie features an exact rip-off of your skirt in its catalogue! A total stunner. I'm just blogging about you, BTW

    xxxx

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  53. You look awesome! I love the skirt fabric of choice.

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  54. I'm kind of obsessed with this skirt now. The print, waistline, colors, colors, pleats, decorative hem...it's perfect! I just happen to be making an old Simplicity skirt that looks a lot like this. Off to find some cute upholstery fabric right now!

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  55. Oh you do look so cute in this skirt! I love how the weight of the fabric makes this shape. I'm going to look at my stash of furnishing fabric in a new light now. Thanks Tilly!

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  56. Pretty! And those are some seriously cute photos, I love your posing. :) I'm working on some odds and ends, the tail-end of winter sewing. A couple of refashions, mostly. :) Sooo looking forward to spring sewing!

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  57. I received my sweet package from you. Thank you so much. Also you look adorable in your new skirt.

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  58. I love the fabric, I never would have thought it was from Ikea. And the hemming is superb. Very nice job :-)

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  59. Super duper cute!! Love the print! I have definitely wanted to buy IKEA fabrics for clothes before! ;)

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  60. Gorgeous Tilly!!!

    I would love it if you took a look at my blog....

    www.bluebellelovely.blogspot.com

    Becky xx

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  61. Pati from London8 March 2012 at 15:03

    It's just fab!! Love it! I still haven't bought a sewing machine but may get my granny's old one (finger's crossed!). What an inspiring blog this is! Pati x

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  62. I love this! It's great how the upholstery fabric works so well for a purpose which it wasn't originally intended. mx

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  63. You are adorable. I absolutely love this look!
    http://www.always-a-project.com

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  64. but the pleats look so nice. it's great you chose to do it that way. I love the print and colours.

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  65. Love this, do you have a step by step guide or a pattern? Im new to sewing but love your version of tge skirt compare to tge gathered waist from Gertie :-)

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