Two posts in two days?! Wow, I’m really jumping aboard this blogging thing 😉 In all seriousness, I’m planning on starting a NEW CHALLENGE for myself, which I am dubbing “Me Made Mondays.” A week is generally plenty of time to sew one garment, and since I work better under pressure, what better motivation than a weekly blog post?
I also adored seeing everyone’s “Me Made May” posts last month, and I want to invite ALL OF YOU lovelies to participate in my challenge. Whether that means sewing a new garment each week or simply wearing something you’ve made in the past on Mondays is completely up to you. Please use the hashtag #memademonday on Instagram – and though I’ll be checking the tag, feel free to tag me (@thehomemadepinup) as well so I’m sure to see it! I’d like to feature other Me Made Monday projects on the blog each week, if y’all are okay with that. If you blog, drop a comment below with the link to your post about your own amazing Me Made Monday project and I’ll stop on by! I am SO looking forward to seeing what you come up with.
So what’s my first contribution to this exciting weekly celebration of sewists, seamstresses, and creators? MY FIRST (yes, unbelievably) CIRCLE SKIRT. Somehow, though I’ve included them in dresses in the past, I just never got around to making a real circle skirt. Skirts are so much more versatile than dresses, aren’t they? There are an amazing amount of outfit options when you fill your closet with thoughtful separates.
I’m big on blue, and bigger on nautical, so when I saw navy cotton fabric with white embroidered anchors, it was a NO BRAINER. If I’m not careful, my whole wardrobe is going to be US Navy themed very quickly… and I’m kind of okay with that. (My boyfriend is working his way towards joining the Navy, so it’s really not surprising how blue-and-white, anchor-ships-and-sails crazed I am. Go Navy!)
This skirt is a self-drafted double layered skirt, with a full, separate lining. It has a hand picked lapped zipper at the left hip and a pocket (LOVE POCKETS) at the right. Look at me below, using my pocket. Look how happy I am! Pockets for all the things!
I’ve been working on expanding my sewing skills with each new project, which is part of why I’m so excited for Me Made Mondays. It will be a chance for me to try out new techniques every single week! With practice comes professional results, and that’s what I’m all about. For this piece, sewing two circle skirts that are connected at the zipper, the pocket, and the waistband was challenge enough, and I figured it out… eventually. It isn’t perfect, but it looks lovely from the outside and really not bad on the inside. I’m big on beautiful interiors – I think it brings the professional quality up a huge amount, as well as adding loads of strength to your garment. Finished seams are a necessity to me, and I don’t serge; this skirt is finished with french seams.
Other new things to me include drafting and sewing pockets and blind hemming by machine. My first try sewing a pocket ended up too shallow (the project that one is in will appear on the blog later), and this one was deep enough but is barely big enough to allow my hand through. Thankfully, it’s the perfect size to drop my phone in and it’s easy to grab it out, so I didn’t bother picking it out and starting over.
For those who don’t know, a blind hem is when you catch a tiny amount of fabric every few stitches, with the other stitches falling in the seam allowance, so all you see from the right side of your garment are very small prick marks every half inch or so. When you spot a dress in the stores with a blind hem, it’s a mark of high quality craftsmanship – the vast majority of ready-made garments these days just do a simple, bulky, obvious straight stitch at the hem. Blind hems are also often used for things like curtains and pant leg hems. It’s a great skill to have under your belt, and though my first attempt isn’t flawless, I’m very proud of it – especially because it’s on a curved hem. If you want to try out a blind hem for yourself, I highly suggest you do so on a straight hem, perhaps for a simple gathered dirndl-style skirt! The curved circle hem just made it so much more complicated and anxiety-inducing than it needed to be. My hem for this skirt is a bit obvious, and perhaps needs another good press to make the stitches more invisible, but I’m pleased with my progress.
One last thing – this thing has a HUUUGE sweep at the hem! It’s really incredible how little fabric circle skirts require, but how expansive they look when worn. This only took about 2 yards for me, and the skirt is so full (helped out by the addition of the full circle skirt lining) that it looks really nice even without a petticoat. I decided to line this because the anchor fabric was quite thin and I hate a wimpy looking skirt, particularly when worn over a petticoat when it slumps in around the low hip, and the lining certainly resolved that!
Other outfit details:
Top: Pinup Girl Clothing’s Bella Donna dress in Italian Landscape, worn as a top, from the annual Yard Sale.
Petticoat: vintage, Etsy.
Shoes: B.A.I.T. footwear’s Blanca heel, from their sample sale this weekend!
Oh, and while zoomed out editing these photos, I looked like I was wearing a skirted version of Wonder Woman’s famous ensemble. And I am totally okay with that.
Wonder Woman Lauren signing out.
P.S. Remember to hashtag #memademonday and tag me @thehomemadepinup on Instagram if you participate, so I can feature your lovely additions to this celebration of our homemade hobby. If you blog, link me in the comments below and I’ll come on by and check it out! That’s it for now, lovelies. Seeing your beautiful creations each Monday is going to make the start of a new work week so much brighter ❤