Skip to content

Sew over it: Ultimate Pencil Skirt

Here’s to finishing my first make of 2016! I believe it’s possible to sew up a pencil skirt in a few hours but I’ve been working on this one since Boxing Day! Mainly because, between Toddler Boy and Baby Boy, I don’t have the use of my hands for most of my waking hours – it took a couple of 2a.m. sewing sessions to get this done, but it was well worth it. I’m in love.




Pattern: Sew Over It’s Ultimate Pencil Skirt


Fabric: this wool/polyester mix, also from Sew Over It.


Cost: I went for the printed pattern (£14), to save myself some time, but there’s also a digital pattern at £8.50. I’m already planning to make more (and my aunt has asked me to make her one) so this was a good addition to my fledgling pattern library. The fabric was £13/metre and I ordered 2m but seem to have loads left over. I’m tempted to try a cropped cardigan/Chanel-inspired jacket as a practice run before I try to make one in tweed – but I’ll need a bit more experience first!

Alterations: I shortened the pattern by the full length of the “shorten/lengthen here” lines. From memory I think it was about 2-3 inches in total, as I wanted it to hit immediately below my knee and the pattern seemed rather long. I graded from a size 12 waist to size 10 from the hips down, as I’m still carrying a few post-baby inches around my waist. Perhaps I should have been optimistic and just cut a size 10 as there’s plenty of room in the waist. I found that the hips fit perfectly but I seemed to have a lot of excess fabric from the hips down. (Do I have abnormally skinny thighs and a big bum?) I pinned it to fit a bit better from the hips down, drew a new side seam along my pins using a hip curve, traced it back to my pattern for next time, and sewed the new narrower seam. My first bit of pattern alteration/drafting went surprisingly well and the fit was much better! Next time I will widen the back darts to take out about an inch in the back and it should be perfect!

Fit: I got a good fit, with the alterations above, but I do wonder how much of that is because of the nice chunky, forgiving, wool covering up any cutting/sewing errors. Good thing I like tweeds and boucles!

Difficulty: I found the instructions nice and clear, for the most part. I accidentally attached the waistband facing upside down, but that didn’t seem to cause a significant problem so I left it. 

The fabric was actually rather chunky but has a nice drape. It was a bit difficult to cut through, I had to use shears instead of my rotary cutter, but sewing it up was surprisingly easy. It does feel a bit bulky at the side seams of the waistband though – when I make up my tweed versions I might try and cut the waistband in one piece instead to avoid the additional side seam.

For my first time fitting a concealed zip, which I did with a regular zipper foot as I couldn’t find my invisible one (sod’s law!), I think it turned out well enough! Practice will make perfect..

I followed this Colette Patterns blog post on matching patterns, to try to cut all my pieces such that the horizontal lines in my tartan could be matched up. I wasn’t 100% in the end but it was a good enough job for me! 

I really love how the kick pleat turned out, I think it’s a nice professional touch they’ve included in the pattern, and the instructions made it nice and easy to sew.   
While I was looking for my invisible zipper foot, I found some labels I had ordered years ago when I first decided to learn to sew, and never used because I never actually sewed anything. So I resolved to use them in all my makes now. Here’s to the very first one!:


Update with some real life pictures:


 – Michelle –

5 replies »

    • Hehe thanks! I think this was while I was shy about showing my face in blog pictures but the sewing community is so lovely that I soon got over that! Good luck if you do decide to have another go, I’m sure it’ll be great!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


My first make of 2020 was actually an unfinished project from 2019. The @schnittchenpatterns #schnittchencoco #cocojacket is quick and easy to make and works really well as a collarless suit jacket. I’m planning to make a matching skirt from this Linton Tweed fabric, and write up a blog post with full details when the suit is complete. Linton Tweed has a long standing relationship with Chanel, so although this isn’t a French cardigan jacket, it feels like an appropriate use of this fabric I’ve had in my stash for at least a couple of years. I’m so pleased to finally be making that wardrobe staple of a great black suit (perfect for my day job so it’ll get a lot of wear)! 🙌🏾 #handmadeworkwardrobe #youcanmakeittoo #sewtheprecious #sewcialists #sewing
Still wearing my #ddopium coat and it still puts a smile on my face every time I do! #sewing #memadeeveryday #handmadewardrobe
On the home stretch now - some tidying up on the inside and then it’ll be time to turn her out and give her a good press! #sewingwip #baggingout #diyjacket #sewcialists #isewmyownclothes
Trying to ease back into sewing by tackling some of my pre-Christmas UFOs... looking forward to finishing this quick project and a couple of other hopefully quick wins, before I move on to my 2020 plans! #slowsewing #slowfashion #isew #sewcialists
I haven’t gotten much sewing done over the Christmas period - but I did make a batch of reusable cotton pads, which was surprisingly easy, quick and rewarding. I used cotton flannel and terry towelling fabric (both from @minervadotcom). I made some with flannel on both sides and some with flannel on one and towelling on the other, and use one set for creamy make up remover and another for my cleanser/toner. Swipe through for steps if you’re interested! #smallchangesaddup #reusablepads #sewingforthewin
Remember my Saraste dress posts a couple of weeks ago? Managed to get a blog post up, if you’d like to read all about it ☺️ ... I’m still very much in love with it! #sarasteshirtdress #sewistsofinstagram #imakemyownclothes
%d bloggers like this: