As I started researching and buying patterns that looked interesting to me, I could not for the life of me figure out why formal, work-appropriate skirts that were specified to be made in a wool or other fine fabric did not include a lining. Hello! When was the last time you saw a tailored wool or silk skirt in the store that wasn't lined. Right, I can't remember either. I quickly realized that I'd have to add my own darn lining, but since I was still learning the basics, I thought that a couple of one-on-one lessons might make the process go a bit smoother.
I chose this Vogue skirt pattern mostly because I loved the double back-vent. After reading some reviews on the pattern, it also seemed like it wasn't as fitted as it appears on the pattern, which I thought would be a good thing.
My fabric of choice was a camel and cream herringbone wool from Michael Levine. For the lining, I used a very lightweight cotton/silk blend in off-white. I have an overabundance of dark colored skirts and pants in my closet and am actively trying to add a few in lighter shades to break it up a bit. I also thought this piece could work for multiple seasons due to its light color.
I measured myself, cut the size that I thought was correct and brought the cut pieces to my lesson. I actually started this skirt at the beginning of fall, before I really knew how to determine sizing. Make a long story short, my instructor was very concerned that I cut a size too small in the skirt. After sewing the front panel together, I had similar concerns. Gah! Inbetween lessons one and two, I traipsed back out to the store, bought more fabric and recut the skirt in the next size up.
I'm so glad I opted for one-on-one instruction for this. I learned a ton of good tips for sewing skirts, including a lapped zipper, how to correctly sew a back vent, and how to line a skirt that doesn't come with lining instructions. I also built a good working relationship with this instructor - helpful as I'm taking more classes from her this year.
Once the outer fabric was sewn together, I tried it on and wouldn't you know, it was too big. [Really though, sizing has proved to be a huge issue for me.] I had to take it in a good 3/4" and still after the facing and everything was added, it's sitting lower than I prefer for my skirts and the hips feel too loose. By the time everything was complete except for the hem, I had just lost all steam for this project. I set it aside for the rest of the year, but finally, this weekend, I sat down and just finished it already.
After all of that work, I like it alright, but I don't love it. :( I'm having trouble putting my finger on it, but something about it just doesn't sit quite right with me. I think part of it is that it still feels too big for me. Because of this, I'm really limited in what I can wear with it and still look sleek. I tried on a ton of sweaters, but it really works best with a very slim-fitting turtleneck and a pair of high-heeled tall boots to offset the length, which quickly becomes dowdy with flats of any kind.
Sigh. I'm half tempted to go ahead and sew up the next size down that I've already cut, adjust the seam allowances (if necessary) and see if the smaller version isn't a better fit. My guess is that it will be better, but I'm a bit reluctant to put all that time into an exact copy of this skirt and then have it turn out poorly. We'll see.
All in all, I still think it's a good pattern and I'm bummed that I'm not more excited about the finished product. I haven't completely written off making another one, but I think there are some other skirt patterns I'd like to try first.