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Thursday, 4 September 2014

Clemence Skirt

When I received my copy of Tilly's Love at First Stitch, I decided I liked all the patterns in it and wanted to make them all right now.

In a bid to stop myself neglecting my family life because of too much time spent sewing (although, let's face it, there is a fat chance of little people letting you get away with that for long!), and, dare I say it, ignoring all boring jobs around the house, I set myself a limit of one make a month. I also thought this would encourage me to savour the making process a bit more than I am sometimes inclined to do.

Regular readers will have spotted it has been a couple of months since I made anything from the book. I made my first Megan dress in June, and then followed it up soon after with a second, nautical themed one. I have so enjoyed wearing these two beauties all summer long. In fact, I like the Megan so much, I have just ordered fabric for a warmer more wintery version. But more about that another time.

A bit like buses, you wait around for ages, and then three come along at once. 

Enter the Clemence skirt. 

I babysat for my friend Clare last Saturday night. As usual, I went armed with my sewing machine, and this time, a bag full of cut out skirt pieces for three skirts, with pockets too, and waistbands already interfaced. Once the children were all quiet, and I'd helped myself to a tea and a KitKat, I sat down to sew.

You will recognise the bottom skirt from my Megan. I bought a pre cut piece of fabric for £25 on Goldhawk Road, and ended up with enough leftover for two Clemence skirts - one for me, and one for my best friend, Sang. She likes the fabric too, and, as she lives in Nottingham, there's very little chance of us unexpectedly bumping into each other in the street and having a hilarious skirt twins moment.

The fabric for the other skirt was given to me by my friend Stacie as a birthday present. It was exactly a metre, and so I decided to widen the gathered pattern so that I used all the fabric up (I basically just cut a waistband down the length of the fabric, and then cut the remainder into two half metre lengths for the front and back), and ended up with an even fuller skirt.

I did most of the sewing on all three at Clare's. Until I reached the point where I really needed an iron. Oops. I had forgotten to ask her to point it out to me before she left, and I felt too embarrassed/cheeky to interrupt her night out with a `Where do you keep your iron, please?' text. 

So, the unfinished skirts were bundled into the bag. I got two of them finished the following night, while Mark sat beavering away on final preparations for work the next day.

With the older two girls back at school, Charlotte in bed having a morning nap (don't babies have the best existence?!) and the almost school girl sat happily at the table painting, I sneaked out my sewing and finished the last skirt. My artist companion then had the fun of using my camera to take a few shots of the twirlability of the skirt.

I'll be honest and say that initially, I felt slightly underwhelmed by Clemence, and unsure of how flattering I thought it was on me when I finished the first on Sunday night. 

But. Wearing it for a quick little cycle on the school run has changed my opinion. This is the perfect skirt for cycling in. The gathers drape beautifully over the frame, making me feel all graceful and lady like with my pretty mint Pendleton bicycle. I should point out this is a welcome contrast to my almost flashing my knickers not quite decent but cycling with my Megan on anyway look.

And finally, this Saturday sees the start of OWOP. It's my first time taking part - I think it promises to be a fun week of peering at other people's lovely makes being worn in day to day life. I am going to be on the look out for some inspiration of a new pattern to try.

But you're wondering what I have chosen as my pattern to wear, aren't you?

One Week One Pattern 6th - 12th September
The Coco of course. With five of them already made, and another two of the top versions in the pipeline to boost my nice things to wear with jeans autumn wardrobe, the choice was obvious. Can't wait!


  1. I thought I could resist this book... now I am not so sure! Lovely makes

    1. I can definitely recommend it - lots of inspiring patterns and excellent instructions. Go on...

  2. I am sincerely hoping that someone in my family has noticed my hints about this book!!! And that I might just get it for my birthday!

    1. Ooo, happy birthday for the big day. Hope you get thoroughly spoilt (and, that someone buys you the book!).

  3. I just caved and bought this book! Lovely makes, i think the skirt looks rather good. I baby sat for my friend last night and took sewing too. Just like you I forgot to ask where the iron was!

    1. I hope you enjoy the book too. Yes, I toyed with rummaging for the iron, and then decided not to. Must remember to ask next time. I like sewing and babysitting - feels like I am on a win win, as my friends always reciprocate, and I do my sewing.