Thursday, June 19, 2014

chardon (m. thistle)

PATTERN THROWBACK. To ye olden days of 2013, when it seemed like we were in the midst of an indie pattern boom but were in fact only on the cusp.

Last week I was feeling nostalgic for simpler times, so I bypassed my PDF pattern collection and turned to my paper pattern stash. Remember thems? They arrive in your mailbox like a pretty little present amongst the health insurance invoices and jury duty summons. Then you unfold a large sheet of paper and all the pattern pieces are just laying there looking up at you, and you actually hold the physical instruction pages and flip them left to right like you're some kinda scholar. The last paper pattern I bought was Deer & Doe's Jupe Chardon, or Chardon Skirt, or Thistle Skirt, or however this French-to-English sewing pattern language thing works. It seemed like a fun basic garment to sew so I cracked her open.

Yuck photos.

Chardon is a simple unlined A-line skirt with in-seam pockets and stitched box pleats for shaping at the waist. I liked the no-waistband look and forgiving fit. You can add belt loops or a tie or a contrasting band but I skipped that noise this time. The skirt is finished with a waist facing and a regular zipper in the center back. 

It's a quick sew as long as you choose your waist size properly. I dunno what was wrong with me but I had the completely WRONG waist measurement in my head when I picked the size to cut, so the skirt was basically two sizes too small when I went to try it on after stitching down all those pleats. Luckily with this style, you can adjust all the pleats to size the waist up or down. Just make sure you do your math correctly when altering each pleat so you don't over- or under-compensate. And remember to cut a new facing to fit your fattened skirt. Yeah, this skirt took me far longer than it should have because I have a pea brain.

I made this in a gray striped home decor linen because I apparently enjoy dressing up like a sofa. It was easy fabric to work with and it holds the shape of the pleats nicely. It is pretty poofy, so I tapered the skirt slightly from its original A shape so I wouldn't be mistaken by Philly tourists as the Liberty Bell. Wow, stellar joke, right? If you want to see TRUE POOF, check out what swallowed me whole at work yesterday.

I serged all seams before pressing them open. The bottom of the waist facing is also serged. I'd recommend understitching the facing and tacking it down at the side seams as well so it stays put.

The navy top I'm wearing is a new Archer Shirt, another homage to 2013. Though let's be real; I'm still addicted to this pattern. I modified it by making it sleeveless, curving the front placket into a V-shape at the neck so it lays flat, and omitting the collar but leaving the stand. You can see another version of this variation on my Instagram here. I may blog about that one day because I wear it like twice a week and the fabric was a gift from Internet pen pal and fellow Grainline addict, Ash M. Higgs

I like my new outfit but this photoshoot just made me realize the dire situation of my bangs. In half my photos, my bangs are either in my eyes all Grudge girl style, or I'm in the middle of swinging them out of my eyes, which does not at all look sexy beach bombshell like I imagine in my head:

So, are any of you still trying to catch up with 2013's (or earlier) patterns or are you always ready for the next great thing?


P.S. Reminder! I'm leading a three-week workshop on Sewing Knits at Butcher's Sew Shop in south Philly on Monday nights starting June 30th. If you wanna join up, you can use coupon code 4SQUAREWALLS at checkout to get 20% off the registration fee ! ! ! ! There are a few spots left, so sign up here. Scroll down to Special Workshops.