A friend has asked if I can make her a Boho/peasant skirt similar to one she owns already. No problem, happy to assist… it just might cost you a few
“mike’s Hard Black Cherry Lemonade” beverages though!
C.P. (let’s call her that) has done her research and came equipped with instructions she has found on the internet and a large piece of paisley (I love paisley!) and two large pieces of denim fabric. Both fabrics had a similar feel of a medium weight denim so they would drape together well. The instructions that C.P. had found on the internet gave you a wonderful little “tier calculator” to predetermine the correct length and width of each tier. All you had to do was enter in the widest measurement on your lower body (waist, hip, whatever), press calculate and all the math was done for you. The free pattern and tier calculator is here if you are interested.
I read through the instructions very carefully and cut my three tiers out of the denim and paisley. Then I put the instructions aside and ploughed ahead.
Basically the calculator gave you 4 tiers (one 8″ long, one 7″ long, one 8″ long, and the last one 10″ long). I was not concerned about shortening these as combined they amounted to the length that C.P. desired. If she needed an inch or two shaved off the length after trying it on, I would just re-sew a seam allowance wider at the top and/or bottom of a tier to get the correct length.
Now when it came to the horizontal width of each tier, the first was 4″ wider than her “widest” measurement, the second tier was 1.6 times, the third tier was 2.2 times, and the last tier was 2.7 times.
Now you know why I mention the “wonderful little calculator”!
Below are my tiers, folded in half. The top tier wasn’t cut yet as I had to buy the stretch fabric that C.P. desired – the same as her brown skirt. She plans on wearing tunic tops over her boho skirt and wants to be comfortable. Smart lady!
I’m happy C.P. is a animal lover – as my animals loved lazying around on her fabric!
First step was to sew up the sides of each tier.
Next, I pinned each tier to the one below at the sides, centre front and centre back. I gathered between these points and then sewed the tiers together.
Sorry, C.P. – Simon still loves your boho skirt.
If you wish, I can always run it through the wash before I hand it over to you!
Now, when I went to our local fabric shop looking for a navy blue or brown stretchy fabric for the top tier, this was all I could find. A polyester spandex (20%) brown fabric and a polyester spandex (10%) blue fabric. I couldn’t decide which, so what-the-heck I bought both. When I came home and compared them to the stretchy top tier of C.P.’s brown skirt, the blue won. The brown was not at all similar. It was a 4 way stretch – it would have pulled horizontally, which would have been comfortable, but it would have also pulled vertically, stretching out of shape with the weight of the heavier denim tiers hanging below. It wouldn’t have lasted long.
Also when I measured the stretch of the top tier of C.P.’s brown skirt, it went to 1.8 times its original size, just like the blue fabric.
The brown fabric is far better used for activewear. It could withstand all that stretching, bending and gallivanting around!
I gathered the top of the top denim tier, just slightly. I needed to make each quarter of this tier 3″ shorter so that it would be equal to the blue stretchy tier at its maximum stretch.
Sewing the blue stretchy tier to the gathered denim tier wasn’t difficult. I just had to remember to stretch the blue tier as I sewed.
I finished off the insides with my serger and hemmed up C.P.’s skirt and I was done…
…and it only took two Daniel Craig “James Bond” movies! Which is not really a good judge of how much time I spent, as every time I heard Darling Daniel’s voice I had to stop sewing and look at the TV. This will always be the “Daniel Craig project” to me. Sigh!
Now it seriously took no time to whip up this skirt… C.P. if you are reading, it took me hours and hours of slaving over a noisy sewing machine to get the job done to my high exacting standards!
But seriously it took me an additional two nights to publish this post. I spent those nights trying to figure out my new photoshop program and after the two nights were up, and I wasn’t any farther ahead, I went right back to using my two IPad apps. Tell me, you readers who photoshop text and frames onto your photos, which program do you use? There has got to be something simpler than what I’ve got!