A Dream of a Pencil Skirt

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Pencil Skirt #120 from BurdaStyle magazine July 2012

Using up the second piece of fabric from Evie of Pendle Stitches, I love this pencil skirt pattern!  Initially Daughter No2 was thinking a 50s wiggle skirt for this plaid, but wanted something a little more wiggley than is standard in the original patterns.  Instead of drafting something, I had a quick leaf through a couple of years worth of Burdastyle magazines & hauled out a couple for approval.  This is the one that got the nod, it’s 120 from the July 2012 issue.

Technical drawing from Burdastyle
Technical drawing from Burdastyle

It has a high waist and front darts that curve at the waistline to side seam, instead of going up to the waist, and normal back darts.  The other thing that I quite liked was that the centre back seam is not straight, but shaped to the zip stop.  I was hoping this, along with the darts, would make fitting the back better.  As it turned out, there were no fitting issues for the back at all!  Usually there is a degree of “sway back” fiddling to do, but not here.

Matching the plaid
Great darts for a fabulous fit

Because Daughter No2 has a difference of 2 sizes between her waist & hip measurement, I made a toile a little bigger and then re-adjusted the pattern.  So using the 34 on the waist, the skirt had to be graded out to the 38 (or just narrower) at the hip.  There was no way she was going to accept the skirt being the width of the 38 at the hem, so I tapered the side seams back down to the 34.  This gives the skirt a much more of a pegged look.  The other thing changed from the toile was the length.  We shortened it 4cm & took in another 2cm around the hem, 5mm on each seam.

The back fitted really well
The back fits really well

The fabric is 100% polyester, which means static & sticking to tights.  I bought a gorgeous wheat-coloured cupro lining from my local store to counter that & it’s made the skirt sit so nicely too.  Not needing the facing pieces meant no interfacing either, so something needed to be done to stop the top line stretching out of shape.  The interfacing could be applied to the skirt itself, or something without stretch needs to be sewn into the seam when attaching the lining to the skirt at the waistline.  You could use the selvage edge of your lining fabric, or seam tape.  Whatever you chose it needs to be thin – you don’t need added bulk here!  I used some seam tape from my stash, about 1cm wide.  It was also understitched to the lining fabric to ensure no popping over at the top.

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I cut the plaid with the dominant stripe down the centre front & placed on the fold of the hem.  So if she wants it longer, or shorter, it’s not happening!

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I recon this skirt’s a hit, it’ll be fab for school & won’t really need ironing either!  I think it’s also safe to say there will be another made from this pattern fairly soon, I love the shape & fit just about as much as Daughter No2 does. 🙂

We have still not found a pattern for the butterfly print, but hopefully it won’t take too much longer – it’s not going into the stash!!

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Author: Anne W

I love fabric, and sewing. And I could do nothing else but sew, all day, every day, if I could!

35 thoughts on “A Dream of a Pencil Skirt”

    1. It does a bit! The only version on the Burdastyle site keeps the straight shape, I think I prefer it pegged a bit! 🙂

  1. Ooh- thanks for bringing thispattern to my attention- not that I can do it justice as your lovely does. Plaid was a great mate for it

    1. haha, no problem! I’m never sure of how much “behind the scenes” to talk about, but as it altered the pattern’s look quite a bit, I figured it needed to be said! 🙂

  2. Oh wow. Will have to dig out that issue. I love the position of the front side darts. Makes it look like a shaped yoke at the front. I made a Burda skirt using side darts that were pretty much horizontal and was pleasantly surprised how well it works.

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