Saturday, 15 December 2012


While slogging through the Chanel jacket, my sewing machine was whinging that she wasn't being used.

What's the point in buying me if you are intending to hand sew everything?
Don't leave me lying on the floor getting covered in bits of thread and frayed boucle tweed! 
That iron is more important to you than I am!
Please use me. I need to feel needed and loved.
If you don't start using me for sewing instead of a foot rest I'm going to blow my bulb!

You know the sort of thing: first they start with the guilt thing, progressing swiftly on to the helpless/ pity scenario and when all else fails, the threats!

I'm a sucker for psychological torment and gave in.

Tweenies - BBC
Inbetweeners - C4
Leaving school
I'm gearing up for SWAP 13 to start just after Christmas; the fabrics are mostly in and the patterns mostly chosen and at least the Chanel is started but weeks away from completion. I've yet more surgery scheduled for the 18th Dec and the doctor told me to have EVERYTHING done for Christmas before this date. I need to sort out a menu, cooking schedule, think about and then buy presents, write cards etc etc etc. and I've left myself one week in which to complete it all! So what does a sewist under pressure do? Why, she goes sewing! And she sews something quick, easy and classifies it as an "Inbetween Project" - not really planned sewing, not intentional - sort of just happens sewing, and it's not a major catastrophe if it doesn't work out.

Bring out the favourite pattern of the year (quite possibly, of any year), Vogue 1247 dig out those little 0.8 and 0.9m of leftovers and put them to good use.

Machine is happy 'cause she's being used and loved and needed and wanted etc. Stash box is happy 'cause those bits that have been hanging around for 2 years or more are finally being sewn. I'm happy 'cause I can do a quick sew and get a new skirt to wear!

This is a real departure from the norm for me - above the knee skirts! 

I was inspired by Art Attack and bought some fancy coloured tights. Burnt orange with navy is slightly strange, but add a colour coordinated scarf, a bangle and all of a sudden it works.

Skirt - navy cotton twill, lengthened 3"
Raw edges inside just zigzagged, not bias bound as per instructions and fits like a glove.

And it doesn't stop there -  While sorting through the stash box I came across some other little bits that I'm now glad I kept because I got two more skirts. 

This fabric was left over from a wrap skirt and top I made about 2 years ago. That skirt never got a lot of wear but I reckon this one will - and I've the added bonus of having a top to match already made.

It is a fairly substanial cotton check in a soft grey paired with teal tights this time. The problem with wearing tights and unlined skirts is the bunching up when you walk. So also uncovered from the stash box were even tinier scraps of lining - kept ostensibly for making pockets. Cut one piece for the lower front and two for the lower back and sew these as you would an underlining - as one. The pockets hang over the top as you can see but it certainly stops the skirt from clinging to your legs and adds an extra layer for cold winter days.

And just to be finished this weekend is an olive green wool with fine orange stripe lined in bright red. this is fabric left over from a pair of Clovers made about this time last year.

I just love sewing stuff.


  1. All the best with the surgery - you will be glad to get it out of the way ! Let your family cosset you throughout the Christmas season - and try to enjoy the recuperation - a perfect opportunity to do hand sewing - don't listen to that machine !
    Love the skirts btw. Navy with orange seems like a good combination to me ( I would even throw in a teeny bit of jade green to the mix !) It is such a great pattern - I must get round to buying it.


  2. Oh, Girl! You are Rockin' those skirts! Now I'm inner-giggling because "rock" is a German word for skirt...

    (please delete my deletes)

  3. Sometimes we just need to do something fun that makes us smile and gives us a boost! You're smiling and I'm smiling too as you look too cute for words!
    My thoughts will be with you as you go through the surgery. Please keep us posted on how you are doing. The sewing is wonderful, but I care more about how you are doing. Be well.

  4. They look great and it sounds like you had fun. Perfect for December. Sending you good wishes for the surgery.

  5. Great skirts, they look good with winter tights. Navy and orange is a lovely combination. good luck for tuesday.

  6. What a great use of fabric scraps...three pretty new skirts! I love this skirt pattern too! And I'm not going to wish you well about the surgery because I KNOW everything is going to go well. You will be in my thoughts and prayers next week for a very successful surgery!

  7. Great skirts! Love the navy and burnt orange! Smashing combo. I have V1247 and don't know why I haven't ever opened are tipping the scale there. And I love the whole combo with the teal sweater...great look!

  8. Those skirts look great on you, even better since you used scraps. I just purchased that pattern and am looking forward to trying it out.

  9. YOWZA, look at those LEGS!! You look fabulous! And good luck with the surgery and recovery!

  10. Ruth, I'm going to have to stop reading your blog: it's too stressfull!

    Actually I'm kidding and it's nice to see you doing something quick, easy and rewarding.

    All the skirts are great, especially the pinstripe. Very smart and sexy. Might have to copy that pattern fabric combination :-) (I'm making the v1247 the top at the mo for the first time).

    Good luck on the 18th: wishing you a super-quick and speedy recovery. Will be thinking of you.

  11. Those skirts are so cute on you! (Take that, whoever said one shouldn't wear miniskirts past a certain age. They are just envious of some lovely legs!) I'd cross my fingers for your surgery but that makes it rather hard to sew. All the best to you, Ruth!

  12. The thought of my sewing stuff is opposite to yours. They are telling me they want more breaks!
    Anyway, your short skirts are so pretty and you look much younger! So cute :)

  13. Both are cute skirts, but I particularly like the grey one! You certainly have the legs for short skirts. So cute with tights in the winter!

  14. I think that you have adorable knees- good to see them in your lovely new makes! I wish you a steady and uneventful recovery- please keep us posted!!

  15. Boy these look great and you can certainly wear the short skirt. I have bestowed the Very Inspiring Blog Award to you - I love your blog.

  16. Your skirts are tooooo cute. Glad I have that pattern stashed.

  17. I love this look for you! Super pretty, girl! Will be thinking of you on the 18th and after. If we don't hear from you, have a blessed Christmas and smooth recovery.

  18. This is a great pattern and you wear it so well. All the best for your surgery.

  19. Keep making those short skirts! I love this one :)

  20. wow!! great skirts, Ruth!!!