Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Project Sewn Pink Challenge: Ruched Pencil Skirt

Have you checked out the amazing talent over on Project Sewn? The designers are creating wonderful looks and in my dream world I play along with them (which is really just participating in the sew-a-long :)...but a girl can dream, right? Speaking of dreaming, I did have an amazing thing happen during week one. I won the sew-a-long challenge. A huge thank you to all of you who voted, I am so grateful for your support. (You made me feel extra special---thank you, thank you)

Here is a link to my week one look:
Fashion Icon Challenge

This week was a call to create something pink. I wanted to use fabric I already owned which limited it to a small supply of neon pink, a thrifted pink jersey sheet, or some thrifted sheer stretch rose colored fabric that I had. I originally set out to design a maxi dress from the bed sheet but needed more fabric for what I wanted, so plan b (as usual).

 I created a gathered or ruched pencil skirt using the sheer fabric and a tricot lining. (My rosy pink fabric looks a little more red online than in person). I have wanted to add more pencil skirts to my wardrobe and am always inspired by how fabulous Mimi G looks in them. So, I gave it a whirl. She has a wonderful tutorial for creating a pencil skirt here. I drafted my own pattern using a pencil skirt block I made and adding 10 inches in length. 

My skirt has side seams instead of one center back seam like Mimi's tutorial. One thing you want to do when creating this skirt is make sure it is tight...like real tight. I feel a little like a sausage in this skirt, but if it isn't tight, the gathers will look weird. So, roll with it and flaunt it! The gathers hide a lot and help create a flattering look (and some spanx probably could go a long way for me...haha, should have worn them for the photos).

After completing the skirt and inserting the elastic on the waist band, I took 2 pieces of 1/4 inch elastic (one for each side seam) and measured from my waist to where I wanted the skirt to end. I cut the elastic this length and attached it to the side seam by stretching it as I sewed. I pulled the elastic so it covered the entire length of the skirt. When it gathered, the skirt was the length I desired and I left the hem raw. 

Right side of skirt/lining

wrong side of fabric
I then cut the lining out of the same pattern in tricot (but left off the additional length). Attach your lining to the other side of the elastic and you're done! I tacked down my elastic on the side seams to help make sure it will not roll when I wear it. 

And, that's it! It is pretty simple to put together and I do hope to wear it soon...just need to go somewhere more interesting than the grocery store or preschool drop off :) 



  1. That is sooo lovely! I agree on Mimi G. I love her style! Think I have to try this tutorial out :D

  2. This is extremely flattering! great job.

  3. Looks amazing! and you make it sound so simple- perhaps even a novice like me could do it!

  4. This is so cute and flattering! And your look from week 1 is fabulous as well!

    1. Thank you Lisa- I almost missed your comment, for some reason it went to my spam folder :( I appreciate your comments!

  5. Wow -- this looks great. I'll bet you'll get a lot of use out of it! I wonder if you are going to win two weeks in a row? Good luck!

    1. Thank you :) I hope to get a lot of use out of it, just wish I had nicer places to go to more often :)

  6. Hi Shannon! This skirt looks great! And it has given me an idea on how to fix a dress pattern I've been struggling to make work for a while. I was a bit confused about how you attached your elastic, and was hoping you might be able to help clarify: when you sewed the elastic to your dress, does the stitching show through on the right side of the fabric? Or did you sew the elastic within the seam allowance on the inside of the side seams? Any further clarification greatly appreciated. Hoping to see more projectsewn entries.. That's how I found your blog, and thought both your entries so far were great!
    Best wishes,

    1. Hi Myra, hope you check back as I was unable to email you directly back from your comment. I stitched the elastic to the seam allowance on the side seams so it does not show on the right side of the fabric. Sorry I have no pictures to show of this step. I hope this helps to clarify a little. Hopefully I can participate in the last week, I was out sick all weekend so I have no look prepared for this one :) Good luck with your dress-


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