I was going to wait to get better photos of this, but I need to write down what I did before I forget.
This is Kasia, a free pattern from Burdastyle. I’ve been eyeing it off for a while, but was a bit intimidated by it because the construction is a bit complex, burdastyle’s instructions aren’t super great, and also it didn’t go up to my size. I ended up grading it up three sizes, and was very nervous about the fit but the grading worked really well. On the other hand, it actually was too big – I think I probably could have gotten away with making the original size, with a smaller seam allowance – you get 1.5cm on this and I finished it by overlocking so I didn’t really need that much. I would grade the hips out one size though, because my waist:hip ratio is no longer exactly what pattern companies say it should be. There goes my hourglass privilege…
The front bit is actually a flap which unbuttons, with a fly zip behind it. You can see the effect in this person’s project here. A LOT of people on the burdastyle site say they skipped that bit or would next time. I followed the pattern because I wanted to figure it out as a puzzle, and because I do like following the instructions the first time, to see what the result is. For science! However. It’s a pain in the arse – it’s clever in theory, but not very neat in execution. My slightly dodgy zip insertion didn’t help, but the inside yoke and the outside flap are designed to be the same height, so the inside peeks out the top sometimes. I also had to put press studs right at the edges, because my stomach is round and so the edges stuck out. So to get in or out of it, I have to unpress the studs, unbutton one or two buttons, and unzip it. It’s a pain in the arse – and this fabric is slightly stretchy, so if I made it in something with no stretch, it would be worse. There’s a back seam anyway, to allow for a slit, and another time I would just whack in an invisible zipper and sew the front closed – it would sit neater, and make the pockets more functional.
I was quite pleased that I managed to match every seam up – especially the side pocket bits, which were a bit fiddly. Except that then I ended up taking it in – about a 1/4inch on the waistband and 5/8″ on the rest. Using old money numbers because that’s what the marks on my overlocker are measured in, and I just brutally serged down the side. Not as neat as it could have been, and it did make one of the pockets not match up slightly, but I wasn’t investing any more time in what was essentially a wearable muslin/practice run. This one involved my first even buttonholes (there was some swearing, and then some confusion when I vented on facebook and a family member thought I was referencing buttholes. We’re a refined lot.) and my first really successful blind hem. Blind hems are great! I think I might invest in a proper blind hem foot – I just treated myself to a proper invisible zipper foot because I just could not make my brain understand the generic plastic one I bought.
Overall I’m very pleased with it, and I’ve worn it to work twice. A valuable addition to my wardrobe.
(I’m going to steal the Sew Weekly run down points, because I personally find them interesting and useful to read)
Fabric: Stretch drill, and cotton. I’m pretty sure the drill was a remnant, although I can’t remember buying it – I’ve had it mentally earmarked for this specific project for about a year, and I bought the stripes specifically for it.
Pattern: Kasia from burda.
Notions: 6 cheap buttons ($1 each), short zip.
Time to complete: Probably about 9 hours all up, including unpicking, and scratching of head. Took about a fortnight, real time.
First worn: To work.
Wear again? Yep, I’m wearing it right now.
Make again? Yes, with the zip in the back, etc, as outlined above. There’re a couple of neutral coloured versions on the burdastyle site that I like a lot – I think there’s enough going on in the skirt to make it not boring in a simple colour, and I could use some simple bottom separates.
Total Cost: Who knows, since I can’t remember buying the fabric. $20 ish?