6.18.2015

Alabama Chanin 4-panel skirt

What 2 words come to mind with the sight of a hand stitched flat fell seam on a piece of t-shirt weight jersey skirt?!  Alabama Chanin!
A skirt that doesn't look much on a hanger, but a skirt that has so much 'meaning' behind it.
I've had this book for a year and this is the first pattern I've made.  Natalie Chanin, the designer behind the name 'Alabama Chanin', provides all the patterns in this book cleverly designed to be used in all the different garments.  For instance, the 'skirt' is simply cut from the 'dress'.  From my measurements, I traced a size large from the Short Fitted Dress skirt.
As a reminder, you can request an autographed book if you order from the Alabama Chanin website.  I lucked out and she was having a sale at the time I ordered.  That usually never happens.  :)
My original plans were to embellish this skirt with embroidery using the Climbing Daisy stencil that is included in this book.  I learned how to print out the stencil to custom size for my garment and had the stencil and my fabric prepped for embroidery when the Ottobre magazine fell into my hands and the no. 10 Sculpture top was made and it needed a skirt and voila! this skirt was perfect for that new top.  I'd only machine basted the skirt together to check for fit, so it was nothing to machine stitch the seams again and in the photo below, as I was in a hurry to wear this outfit to the Lowcountry, simply quartered my elastic, zigzagged it to the top of the skirt, turned down and stitched.  After wearing the skirt on this short trip, decided the elastic waist needed adjusting, as well as the length.  Also determined to leave the skirt unembroidered.
When I got home I cut 2" off the skirt's length and unpicked the stitching at the waistline, cutting off 2" of the elastic to make a snugger fit.  Made a casing for the 3/4" elastic by turning the top down, zig-zagged stitched leaving an opening for the elastic to be run through, then stitched closed.  This is my preferred elastic-waist garment method.  I deviated from Alabama Chanin's instructions of using a foldover elastic at the waist.  This also moved the (wider) hip area of the skirt up higher on my body and gave me a better fit.  These skirts are designed slim.
Then I hand-stitched (faux) flat fell seams on all four panels using 3-strands of embroidery thread.  Oh how I love this look!  You sort of pull it tight, without puckering the seam, and it gives it such a nice look. 
And because it is an Alabama Chanin garment, I hand-stitched 2 darker gray stars to note the back.
Really like the gray on gray tones.  Can you believe I got the right side and wrong side of my fabric confused and sewed this skirt with the right side to the inside?!  Not a big deal, except at the hemline, which is left unstitched, it sort of curls a little to the inside, instead of to the outside.  Grrrrr.  
And here is the completed skirt paired with the Mrs. Style Book 2015 self-drafted top.  Not sure this is how I will wear the skirt in the future as it is almost too much gray and the knit top likes to cling unsatisfactorily to the top of this skirt, as opposed to the nice contrast with the unclinging crepe de chine Ottobre top in the photo above mid-post.
Hope everyone is staying cool in this part of the world.  We are having a heatwave of consistent above 100 degrees F heat indexes.  And in case you missed it on Instagram..... a beautiful doe came to share my blackberry patch....
...and with the click of the camera, she was gone!  Beautiful!
Happy Sewing Everyone!

12 comments:

  1. I love the thoughtful sewing of your four panel skirt. It makes surely wearing it eve more pleasant. I think the shorter length suits you better, too. What a lovely surprise, a deer in the patch! Have a nice day, SaSa

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    1. Hand-stitching still feels new to me, even though I've hand-stitched multiple knit garment necklines now.... I'm always amazed at how much I enjoy it. Like you said, the 'thoughtfulness' of the stitching. The pretty doe deer made my day! So much so, I did not mind sharing my blackberries with her! We do not see deer often anymore. Have a nice day too SaSa!

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  2. Just from looking at it, your top and skirt gave the feeling of a very cool outfit for your terribly hot temperatures. I agree that you look great with a shorter skirt length.

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    1. You are right, this is a great outfit for these horribly hot temps! Hem lengths are funny, aren't they. Where a mere 1 - 2" can make a difference between looking/feeling frumpy..... or not!

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  3. A lovely skirt - I guess if the hem bothers you enough, you could add an edge to it - choose an Alabama Chanin edge. And I agree, this is a much better way of doing waistbands - if for no other reason than you can easily alter them - replace the elastic easily if need be, or take in the elastic if need be. When elastic is stitched in, it looks great, but it is a pain to undo. A lovely little skirt - and wear it with what suits it. I often have to change my ideas about what to put with what when the garment decides instead of me !

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    1. Garments do have their own opinion on what they want to be paired with and how they want to be worn, don't they?! Good point! :)

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  4. So pretty! And you have the legs for a short skirt, so I say; go for it!

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    1. Awwww, thank you so much! Hems are funny, aren't they. Kind of like Goldilocks and the 3 Bears. You don't want them too long..... or too short.... but juuuuuust right! :)

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  5. Hi Lisa, I always enjoy looking at what you sew. So talented! Deer are so graceful and beautiful! Nancy

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  6. Lisa what a lovely skirt.. And the shorter length is just perfect.. Looks great on you.
    The deer is beautiful.

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Thank you for taking the time to leave a note.~Lisa

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