16 April 2015

Fabric Shopping for the Arielle Sewing Pattern

Arielle skirt sewing pattern - Fabric ideas

Hello everybody, it’s Vanessa here. Thanks for all the love for our new sewing pattern, the Arielle skirt. We’re so glad that you’re excited about it as we are! Today I want to share some thoughts on designing and choosing fabric for your skirt.

First, a note about the design. When Tilly first developed the sewing pattern, she was inspired by - and I quote - "Edwardian skirts and sexy sailors". Bien sur! ;) Crazy inspiration sources aside, the side-button skirt is a classic style that looks decidedly modern - take a look at our Arielle board for some Pinspiration.

One of the beautiful things about Arielle is her versatility - you can make the skirt for any season, from a wide range of fabrics. We recommend medium-weight woven fabrics that hold the shape of the skirt, but not so thick that they risk making the darts chunky. The kinds of fabric types you might pick include denim, sateen, gabardine, brocade, suiting, pincord, lighter weight canvas or wools. Medium-weight cottons – the kinds that are often used to make quilts and other homewares – would work too, but avoid lighter weight, drapey cottons such as lawn and voile. Arielle is a close-fitting skirt so if you find a denim, cotton or sateen with a touch of stretch (but still woven, not knit fabric) then you’re onto a winner! Fortunately all these kinds of fabrics are usually a pleasure to handle. They do what they’re told, press beautifully and don’t fray like mad. Nothing daunting :)

I’ve had lots of fun window shopping on the internet for suggestions. Here are a few lovely things that I’ve found. Please bear in mind that we haven’t seen or handled these fabrics in person, so we recommend you order a sample to get a feel for the material before purchasing. Okay, on to my picks!

Arielle skirt sewing pattern - Fabric ideas

Love spots as much as we do? Indulge in your pixelated passions with either of these beautiful fabrics – a lovely medium weight stretch cotton and a delicious pincord.

Arielle skirt sewing pattern - Fabric ideas

Medium weight cotton or lighter weight cotton canvas are also great choices, particularly for those who like a bold pattern as they take dye very well. We’re swooning over the idea of wearing this print with a black turtleneck! This Kokka canvas is an interesting one too. Definitely check out Monaluna for canvas too, such as this Jacks canvas (there may also be llamas...).

Arielle skirt sewing pattern - Fabric ideas

Take our fashion tip for Summer 2015 - the 1970s denim skirt is coming back, big time! We used a plain stretch denim for our pattern photos, or how about this beautiful Japanese cross-hatch denim? Add some bright brass buttons and you’ve got this chic revival nailed (we recommend anchor buttons, naturally). This striped chambray denim also looks really lovely.

Arielle skirt sewing pattern - Fabric ideas

While prints are tempting, never underestimate solid colour fabrics! We’ve found this great variety of stretch cotton in various shades. Or channel your inner Clueless and go for this yummy lightweight tweed wool.

Here’s the full list of supplies that you need, including how much fabric to get.

If you feel like making your skirt a bit more fancy, you can add the optional lining. Choose lining fabric and buttons that compliment, contrast or highlight your main fabric and I promise you will smile every time you see your skirt, inside or out. How about placing the buttonholes and buttons in pairs to make your skirt a bit different? Or stitching ribbon to the outside of the skirt like this one? Going the extra mile with these little touches is part of what makes homemade clothes such a pleasure, both to make and to wear. Take a look at the Arielle Pinterest board for some more ideas.

We are so excited to see what you come up with and hope you enjoy making the Arielle sewing pattern as much as we have. You can order your pattern here. Don’t forget to send us a picture of your finished skirt! What fabric are you thinking of making it in?