Sewing Sunday – Red Lady Skater

  • Pattern: The Lady Skater Dress by KitschyCoo
  • Size: 5 (37″ high bust)
  • Fabric: Fiesta Fabrics Solid Knits in Red (purchased from Craftsy), 3 yards (a lot of mistakes were made)
  • Modifications:
    • I originally lengthened the skirt by 7.5″, to eventually cut 4.5″ off (plus additional trimming sacrifices).
    • Tried to put pockets in but it was a huge, HUGE failure.
    • Hacked off 2″ of the bodice, and omitted the elastic on the second go around.
    • Basted all the large seams and then left it in for the final seaming. The fabric is super clingy and yet moves so much, I was having problems with it staying put where I wanted it. This kept it together in a way that I knew it fit, and came out very easily after I was done.
neckband

I had the hardest time figure out the neckband instructions.

The instructions for the neckband were so difficult to me. I couldn’t figure out where the center of the band went, and spent ~15 minutes getting frustrated and angry, to figure out that I had been reading it wrong all along. The center of the band is to go on whatever the center-most “neckband mark” is from your printed pattern. I knew there was no way it was going to go on the center of the front bodice because 50% of the band can’t go on 25% of the neckline… But the instructions said to put it on the “mark you made” while cutting. CEPT it says to mark the center of the front and back bodices…but at the bottom for the skirt placement. It’s not really the pattern’s fault, I was just derpin’ around real hard.

Crop top FTW.

Crop top FTW.

That being said, I am SO happy with how the neckband turned out. On all of my previous (lol, like 3?) sewing projects, the neckline was the hardest part for me. Since this was put on before it was joined in the round, if I had a little too much left at the end I could just trim it off. It worked much better, and I hope to do more projects this way.

My mom got me a very large (3’x5′) cutting mat a while ago and this was my first opportunity to use it. Thing is, it was stored all curled up still and when I went to go actually use it, I couldn’t get it to unroll. I ended up laying it on the ground, stepping on the open edge, and slowly sliding out to the splits. Now there’s something I wish I had gotten on film for you ;). It worked though, and I grabbed six 5lb weights from our dumbbell set to weigh it down.

hueg-mat

Thanks for the help, 5lb weights!

The pattern says it comes to around knee length on a 5’5″ person, and being 5’8″ and a bit boobalicious, I knew I would want some extra length. I went big and added 7.5″ to the skirt. This was the max length it could be and still fit on my remaining fabric. Once I had it all together, it was falling solidly mid-ankle and I knew it was far too long. I laid it down on the huge mat and marked 4.5″ up from the hem on both sides. Took the pattern piece and lined it up with those marks, and then eyeballed the new hemline. It was around 8am, I’d been thinking about it all night, and I just hacked away. Worked out this time, but I was super close to throwing in the towel there for a few minutes.

Most of the reason I was ready to call it a failed project (soooooo dramatic) was because I had originally attempted to put pockets in. This did not go well. I was trying to mimic a dress I already own, since it is very similar in style. I had no idea what I was doing, and I did it so wrong there was literally no way I could salvage it. Someone way better might have been able to, but I could not. I figured this out after I had done all the seaming on one pocket, tried it on, and was horrified at the result. No pic because I honestly was so disappointed I forgot. This was pre-hacking, and it finalized my decision to just cut the thing out and practically start again. I left the whole bodice intact, just cut 2″ up from the existing waist. Ripped the seam on the unfinished pocket side, and cut as close to the waistband as I could manage, trying to preserve the curve. Then I cut as close as I could to the pocket side of the skirt on both the front and back. Ta-da. Shortened bodice, two skirt pieces, ready to go.

I erred on the side of too long. It was...too long.

I erred on the side of too long. It was…too long.

I had needed to shorten the bodice anyways because the weight of the skirt pulled it way, way down. The elastic on the waistline did not sit well and ruffled in a very unfortunate manner. I basted the front skirt to the front bodice and tried it on to see if it really needed to be reinforced. Nope, it absolutely did not. Woo! Something is going right! After that, I just basted it all together and then seamed it right up. All in all, it took practically no time once I had those pieces to it being done (minus bottom hem, ofc). I hung it up a bit to let the skirt weight figure itself out and watched a football game.

Once the game was over I went down and ironed the whole hem 1″ up. I didn’t baste this time (gasp!) and just followed the curve to try to get the nicest, straightest line I could. It’s not great, but it’s better than previous attempts. Next time will be even better :). I sewed a second seam to mimic double needle, since I was afraid of running out of thread. I cut it pretty close but I made it!

Front View

Front View

Side View

Side View

The Pose

The Pose

😘

😘