Denim Never Dies : Delia Creates Pleated Pencil Skirt Pattern Review

20150204-IMG_7188_Fotor

20150204-IMG_7213

20150204-IMG_7204

Two makes posted in a week! This must be some kind of new record… I had originally planned to post this earlier, as it was made for the January Challenge over on The Monthly Stitch (my first monthly stitch challenge, hurray!) but it took me ages to get round to photographing it, oh well.

I bought the Delia Creates Pleated Pencil Skirt pattern during IndieSew‘s Black Friday sale last year, as part of my quest to find THE perfect pencil skirt pattern. I hadn’t seen too many reviews of this pattern online, but those who had tried it seemed to love it, so I figured it would give it a shot. It also definitely helped that I couldn’t get Delia’s rose-print version out of my mind (watch out for my own Lunar New Year-appropriate version of it coming up really soon!).

20150204-IMG_7189

20150204-IMG_7196

So I bought the pattern on discount, and I used some of the leftover denim from an earlier A-line skirt to make up a wearable muslin… and you guys, I really liked it. I hesitate to claim I LOVE it just yet because I feel like I haven’t perfected the fit, but I must say this is a pretty darned good pattern. The pdf version also happens to be only 8 pages long, which is a major plus. EIGHT. My taping-paper-hating soul was singing the hallelujah chorus as I printed this out. The only thing that is’t too convenient is that the pattern lines are drawn in colour, which is kind of a hassle if you only have a black and white printer at home, like I do.

20150204-IMG_7200

20150204-IMG_7199

This pattern didn’t fit me right out of the envelope, but that’s mostly my own fault. I overestimated the enormity of my hips and graded out a size 4 at the waist to a size 6 at the hips when I really should just have stuck with a  straight size 4. I ended up using a 0.5″ seam allowance instead of the recommended 0.3″ AND taking a good 0.75″ or so off the sides.

Given my height (or lack thereof), I shortened the pattern by 2″ before tracing it out, but later had to take another 2.5″ off in order for it to hit right above my knees. This made the shape of the skirt kind of weird, so I tapered in the bottom sides to preserve the curve. I still think the sides don’t quite curve right (if you can tell from the sides of the skirt), which is probably due to the extensive fit adjustments I made. I’m not really sure how to fix it though – any suggestions? The pattern actually includes instructions for removing length from the middle of the pattern instead of from the hemline, so I will definitely try that on my next attempt.

This also happened to be my first time lining a garment – it was a lot easier than I thought it would be, though I did end up sewing the lining around the zipper the first time due to a moment of daftness. I used a cheap black polyester that I had bought ages ago and followed the instructions to insert the lining. My only deviation was to hem the bottom edge of lining first, and then hem the skirt over the edge of the lining, enclosing it. I thought it would give it a more professional finish, and it did! Of course, all this professionalism was ruined by my completely insensible fuchsia coloured zip that I was forced to use because I was too lazy to go out and buy a navy one I decided it would make my skirt extra special.

All in all, I think this is a really good pencil skirt pattern, though I haven’t tried very many so do take my words with a pinch of salt! It seems to be drafted more for pear-shaped ladies, so if you’re a member of the pear-gang definitely consider this. And as for working with denim, it was a lot easier and turned out a lot more wearable than I thought it would be. Thank you The Monthly Stitch for being the inspiration for my fabric choice – I probably wouldn’t have picked it otherwise!

P.S. Do you think this skirt could qualify as business casual? My office is fairly formal so I haven’t tried wearing it to work just yet… Oh if you have any suggestions on how to make the fit a little better, please do share them below!

P.P.S. If you’re here from The Monthly Stitch, HELLO and welcome! Please feel free to say hi in the comments (:

Sew Many Sales, Sew Little Time // Black Friday Pattern Sales 2014 Part II

Following on from the my post earlier this week, here’s a quick update on some NEW Black Friday / Cyber Monday sales that have just popped up yesterday and today!

Colette Patterns 

30% off ALL patterns, ending TONIGHT, Friday Midnight PST!

Colette Patterns needs no introduction in the indie sewing sphere; from the Myrtle to the Laurel and their new Dahlia pattern, they’ve had sewists across the blogosphere raving about their easy-to-follow, beginner-friendly patterns and instructions.

Despite the great reviews, I only own one Colette pattern, the Dahlia, which I bought on impulse during their 15% off introductory sale. The thing is… Colette patterns are really quite expensive (U.P. US$14 or $12 for a PDF pattern), and that’s put me off buying any more of their patterns so far. If you’re budget-conscious like me (it sounds so much better than “cheapskate” doesn’t it), THIS IS YOUR MOMENT! CARPE DIEM!

As for me, I’ll be taking this chance to snap up copies of the Laurel and Iris (pictured above) patterns, both of which have been on my wishlist for a long, long time.

Megan Nielsen

20% off all PDF Patterns throughout this weekend!

 

Now to my knowledge Megan doesn’t celebrate Thanksgiving (her being in Australia and all that) so I was thrilled to find out she was throwing a Black Friday sale anyway! Megan’s patterns were the very first few patterns I bought when I was just starting out, and I would highly recommend them to anyone who likes her style. (She’s also incredibly responsive on instagram, which is so encouraging for anyone who is just starting to discover the wonder that is the online sewing community! Thanks Megan!)

I currently own her Breakwater Collection pattern pack (pictured directly above) which is a set of 4 patterns sold for the price of 3. A great bargain, if you ask me! I’ve sewed up the Eucalypt Tank and Dress and found them incredibly easy to grade between sizes and a quick make (instant gratification ftw). I also have plans to sew up the popular Tania Culottes (two circle skirts that make up a single pair of shorts how ingenious is that?!) and the Cascade skirt before Christmas, so be sure to pop back by this space if you’d like to see how those turn out! I also happen to think her Darling Ranges dress (first picture above) is adorable and have seen many cute versions on instagram so be sure to check that out too.

True Bias

20% off patterns from Friday through to Monday midnight (EST) using the code THANKS20!

Now strangely enough, this offer hasn’t been advertised on True Bias’ official blog / website (as far as I can tell), but it was posted on Kelli’s instagram page, which is official enough for me!

I haven’t made up either the Hudson pants or Sutton blouse as they don’t really fit into my style profile, but I’ve seen numerous makes across the blogosphere and they look awesome! For one, I’m really loving Heather Lou of Closet Case File‘s rendition of the Hudson pants (below) – how on earth these bloggers manage to make a pair of lounge pants look like acceptable daywear, I will never know.

If you’ve been looking for a comfy pyjama pants pattern, or if you want to get into the track pants trend, then you might want to check the Hudson pants out.

Sew Caroline

Sew Caroline has sales from Black Friday through to Cyber Monday, with a different sale category on offer for each day!

Friday: 50% off PDF patterns
Saturday: 30% off apparel and accessories
Sunday: 40% off printed patterns
Monday: 25% off EVERYTHING!

I’ve been eyeing the Out and About Dress for a while now, simply because I have a RTW dress that looks almost identical to the pattern and is a dream to wear! I may or may not be adding this to my shopping cart today…

If you follow Sew Caroline on instagram, you would have seen this gorgeous tote (below) posted earlier this week. You guys, if shipping from US / Canada was not insane I would be snapping this baby up in a heartbeat. If you like sewing and a good pun, THIS TOTE IS FOR YOU. (Bonus points if you like Iggy Azalea!)

See Kate Sew

All kids patterns $5, all women’s patterns $10, all paper patterns $15 and all tees and totes going for $15 each!

 

They’ve also got special bundles / packages going for a real steal, so if you’ve been eyeing anything from their store be sure to get over there and check it out!

I personally won’t be picking up anything from the store (student budget woes), but if I had the spare cash, or a kid, I would definitely be grabbing a hold of the children’s patterns or a tote (or two!)

Indie Sew

20% off ALL patterns on Monday, 1 December 2014 from 6am to 10pm MST!

I’ve never shopped from Indie Sew before but have spent many an afternoon poking around their site admiring the collection of pretty patterns for sale. In case you’re not familiar with the site, Indie Sew is a platform that aims to bring together the sewing community and promote the work of independent designers. So if your favourite indie designer isn’t hosting a Black Friday sale this year, fret not! Pop by Indie Sew and fingers crossed, they may have your desired pattern in stock.

I’ve been wanting to pick up Delia CreatesPleated Pencil Skirt pattern for a long time now, so I was really excited to find it available in the Indie Sew shop at a really good price. Time to get cracking on that work-appropriate wardrobe for next year!

McCall’s, Vogue, Butterick & Kwik Sew

And last but certainly not least, the McCall’s company is having a sale on ALL lines through Monday, 1 December 2014! Butterick & McCall’s patterns are going for $3.99 apiece, Vogue patterns are selling at $5.99 each and all Kwik Sew patterns are priced at $6.99 each.

I know shops in the US run sales on Big 4 patterns all the time, but as an international customer it simply isn’t worth the money to ship patterns from a single line (eg. Butterick) as and when these sales come out. Having all these lines on sale at once means that I can bulk purchase and ship them back at a lower cost!

I may or may not have already put in an order for 7 patterns this morning… which may or may not be the following:

Vogue V8784 – a wrap dress for woven fabric

Butterick 6129 – an off-shoulder dress

Butterick 6090 (above) – a pleated button-down dress

McCall’s 6696 – a shirt dress that EVERYBODY seems to be making at the moment

McCall’s 6505 – a lace shift dress

McCall’s 6028 – a sheath dress with raglan sleeves and contrast panel

Kwik Sew 3614 – a structure shorts pattern with fly front (I opted for this instead of B6061 as I heard Kwik Sew has a better crotch curve than Butterick. I’m not too sure how accurate this information is as I’ve never sewed pants… EVER, but I sure am excited to find out!)

And that’s all I have for now! I may update if new sales pop up over the weekend, but in the meantime, GO FORTH AND SPEND YOUR MONEY! MAY THE BLACK FRIDAY SHOPPING LUCK BE WITH YOU.