Today, I have a tale of two skirts. They’re great summer skirts but each had a problem that made it unwearable. Using two very simple sewing techniques, I was able, in short order, to fix them. Now, I’m enjoying wearing both of these beauties.
Because both skirts have strong personalities, I’m using simple white tops to complement them.
Skirt #1-The Bright Floral from India
Skirt #1, Last summer, this beautiful bright print from India just out shown the other skirts at Goodwill. However, it was very obvious why it was there. Attached to its hem was a dangley bead trim with a good amount of dangles missing.
That was an easy fix; get the seam ripper and remove the bead tape from the hem. But the hem was a pretty sloppy job because, well, they had the beaded trim to cover it up!
I just turned the width of the hem up and using a blind hem stitch, made a new hem and now I get to wear my “new to me” skirt.
I Love YouTube!
Anymore, when I’m having trouble with some technique, I turn to YouTube. Just this summer I finally mastered two knitting techniques that I had been struggling with for a while. Being a left handed knitter, sometimes things get a bit of a challenge.
YouTube is also great for learning sewing techniques too.
I’ve included a tutorial from YouTube on how to do this really handy stitch. All you need is needle and thread.
The Classic hem stitch-which is the one my Mom taught me and I always use. Each stitch is locked so if one stitch is broken, the rest stay in place.
Skirt #2-The 5-Tier Indigo Ikat Print
Sometime during the fall of 2011, I picked up my five tiered ikat inspired skirt from a Macy’s clearance rack. At the time, I also picked up a sleeveless white top to go with it. But truthfully, I never liked how the whole thing looked together. The end result was that I just didn’t wear the two pieces that much.
I did pull the skirt (not the top) out for a post back in 2016. Included in that post was the history of tiered skirts in American fashion and what makes the ikat weaving technique so special. You know me, always trying to pull my history and art in. A link to that original post is HERE.
My skirt got put back in the closet and forgotten until last November. That’s when Reni of Reni’s Odds and Sods published a story about her trip to the south of France. Towards the middle of her article was a photo of her in a blue and white tiered skirt, white top and a straw hat. It could have been me!
I soon pulled my skirt out to try it on. It turned out that in the ensuing years, the elastic in the waist had completely disintegrated. That was a problem and I had a decision to make; donate it or fix it. I procrastinated and put it in the indecisive pile.
Then came “Covid Time” and it was time to catch up on those lost projects and repairing my skirt was one of them. I decided to put in a wider elastic so I completely removed the stitching for the casing, pressed a new casing with my iron, ran a quick seam, inserted good elastic and I was done!
If I had the exact width of elastic, I’ve could have just taken out the old elastic and put in the new. However, I wanted to use what I had, even if it meant a little extra work.
Using a sewing machine did make my work quicker, but I could have used the blind stitch from above and everything would have been just fine.
Here’s another YouTube video to explain what I did.
Here’s Reni’s and my blog photos side by side. See what I mean?
That’s the tale of my two newly mended skirts. Rather than being folded up in the useless pile they are now on hangers. Ironically, outside one short white summer skirt, these are the only two that I have. It’s nice to have skirts again! I’ve been wearing them out for our isolated afternoon luncheons.
It always feels good to me to make something useless work again. Have you done anything like this lately in your time at home? Or have you learned something new that you wanted to learn for a while? For me it was those two knitting techniques I mentioned early on.
I think that’s all I have to talk about for today. I’ve been mainly sewing, knitting, dying Alpaca fiber and working in my flower garden. I’ve really been exploring independent pattern companies and have expanded my list on my People to Read + Places to Go. I now have links to over sixty two independent pattern companies! I had no idea there were so many. Some have been having July sales and I’ve picked up some that I’m pretty anxious to make.
Take care and stay safe everyone-and stay creative.