“You can sew right?” my friend asked. The call was unexpected. Her question more so. “Well I can, but my machine is at home so I haven’t sewn in a while.” “I could really do with your help on the costumes for as you like it”. At that moment, “help” seemed to be a stretch in terms of my skills.
I had no inkling that soon sewing would become one of my favourite things to do. I made costumes for plays and musicals at university, worked in a fancy dress shop doing alterations, and sometimes made fancy dress costumes for myself and friends. I was hooked.
When university finished I was at a loss. What would I sew now that I wasn’t doing plays and musicals. Then it clicked. Didn’t some sewists…. make their own clothes? Could I do that too? I could. But what first? something simple, elegant, easier to fit than the can-can dress I made for my Textiles A-level. I settled on a ‘carrie-from-sex-and-the-city-esque’ tulle skirt as seen in Lisa Comfort’s Sew Over It book. I would make it to wear for my graduation. I had a summer to kill. Why not?
Construction was relatively simple; three layers of fine cream tulle and one layer of mint green lining (to protect my modesty), gathered and sewn to a satin waistband. After cutting (which was a pain, trust me) the construction only took me an afternoon, which was handy as I had left it until the afternoon before my graduation. So much for having a summer to kill.
Sadly I haven’t worn it since. I put this down to me being the wrong body shape to wear this kind of skirt. It was all together too poofy for me and just made me look enormous. But this is kind of a good thing. Now I know that it is not enough to simply like a style or cut of clothing and therefore buy a pattern and some fabric. It has to look good too. I know that making my own wardrobe is totally feasible but I also know which styles to favour and avoid. I was off to an okay start. All pictures at the bottom.