Thursday, February 4, 2021

Classic Red

Ah yes, the Stanwyck Skirt from Charm Patterns.  You are probably familiar with this design.  There are a few options, including a straight skirt version; but this time around I went with the gored circle skirt.

And I added a whole lot of extra length.  I think in the end, it was close to six inches in total from where my size should have been cut.

This meant that I did not have enough wool to cut out the oversized pockets that come with this pattern.  This was a disappointment for a day or so, even though I was not sure I was going to like the massively oversized pocket in this drapey wool.  But once I knew that my yardage wouldn't let me have my pockets, I suddenly wanted them.  That is, until I realized that this classic silhouette will get a lot more wear as it is, and I got over the loss of the pockets.

The zipper was hand-stitched in place.  I absolutely prefer this method to using a machine since it gives so much more control, and the stitches disappear into a fabric like this.  Since discovering years ago, I purchase 24" zippers to have on hand.  This sometimes requires me to shorten them for things like skirts, but that is easy enough, and a small piece of fabric covering the cut end keeps everything nice and tidy.

I also decided to take the extra time to add a few boning channels to the waistband.

I am always sorry when I don't, especially with a wider waistband like this one which tends to collapse while being worn if it doesn't have a little extra stability built in.

And since I couldn't find a matching red cotton in my stash, I had to dig around to find a print that would work with the red wool.  It does add a bit of character, although I don't usually go for such a contrast.

And then we get to the part of the program where the hem drops obnoxiously on the bias.  I was not expecting this much drop in such a heavy weight fabric, but there you go.

The wool does have a lovely drape, so that was probably one of the reasons.  I was thinking that a melton wool, which has a felted texture, would behave like a felt, but I guess not!  Or would felt stretch?  It doesn't have a grainline, though, right?!  If it's just matted fibers, it doesn't have a grain?

But anyway, I had to cut over an inch off of the bias portions of this skirt.

One of the unnecessary things that I did was to bind the raw edges of my fabric.  If you pick at the raw edges of this wool, it will fray slightly, but not very much.  But I decided that the look of the rayon binding was a much more finished choice, so I went with it.

And the final thing to do was add some loops for storing this garment on a hanger.

I found a package of vintage cotton binding in the stash, and decided that it would work quite nicely.  I stitch the folded open edge closed, and applied it to the waist seam before stitching the waistband lining closed.

In certain lights, the waistband boning is somewhat visible.  I could go back and underline that waistband with some cotton flannel, but I don't think many people would notice, and I don't know that the issue will bother me enough to go back and open up the waistband and add some.

I am quite pleased with the way this turned out.  I have a few longer length wool skirts that get a lot of wear in winter weather, and this one is bound to get in on the rotation.

It's a very classic silhouette that dresses up or down very easily.

And now I think I need more melton wool in my life.  This stuff is very pleasant to work with, and I love the heavier weight of the wool.  But most of all, I love my new skirt!


  1. Laura Mae,

    This is SO you! Elegant, accentuating your every move, and punctuating blouse or sweater alike.

    Billowy sleeves and a fitted bodice (lengthened 2 inches), is sounding very "J. Peterman meets Laura Mae".

  2. Beautiful! I always thought felted wool was woven, but simply "felted" which I understood to mean heavily washed and preshrunk. Felt, like the kind you might use for craft projects, is pressed fiber. But I'm not sure...

  3. I like everything about your skirt. It will go with so many blokes and hand knit sweaters you make.

  4. I too like everything about this skirt. The colour is gorgeous and it will coordinate with many different tops. Well done. I enjoy reading your posts.

  5. I so would love to make a skirt similar to this, it would pair so beautifully with my Dale of Norway sweater. I do have a couple of things in Melton wool and just adore wearing them. Lovely work.

  6. The richness of the color is fabulous! The drape of the fabric just flows with the way it hangs. Although the boning does show through slightly the way it maintains the shape of the waistband is very effective. I always have a problem of waistbands rolling especially after sitting. This skirt as a whole is fit for a royal. Truly gorgeous and well done!

  7. At some point, if the boning bothers you, you'll sit down for an afternoon and deal with it. I only notice things when they are pointed out to me, and if I ever have the opportunity to meet you in person while you are wearing this skirt, I really doubt I'd notice anything but YOU.

  8. Elegant and classic--just like you! It's a seriously beautiful skirt.