Updated: Jun 7
After completing the Dressmaking Weekend course, I was itching to make another piece of garment for myself, and this Ultimate Pencil Skirt workshop looked like a perfect fit!
This was a next level class (categorized as Advanced Beginner), and also offered the chance for me to make a pencil skirt tailored just for me – how amazing was that! (I find it really difficult to buy pencil skirts that fit me off the racks because of my weird waist/hip proportion).
For this piece, it was quite easy for me to select the fabric – I chose a dark colour with a bit of a stretch (to accommodate little food babies after meals ha), but not too stretchy because I wasn’t ready to sew stretchy fabrics yet.
Dark gray denim for my pencil skirt
We did three new things in this class that I hadn’t tried before:
1. Using an overlocking machine to sew overlock on the edges of the fabric to make sure they don’t fray. For the last few classes, we were taught a “cheat” method of using a zig-zag stitch that can somewhat do the trick (if one does not have access to an overlocking machine). This was super fun as the machine also trims fabric when we run the fabric through it. If I recall correctly, there are 4 threads being used to sew simultaneously – so intense!
2. Sewing a hidden zip onto the skirt – these are the types of zips we see on dresses / skirts these days, and require a different zip & technique to sew compared to the basic ones. THey were a little trickier to sew, but made the skirt so much sleeker given the fit required.
3. Fitting my skirt properly and sewing darts to give it a tailored look. This was super tricky, as the teacher had to help me pin the parts of the fabric after I tried a basic version of it on, to identify where I needed to make adjustments (the standard pattern size really does not work for me). I have no idea how one can make a tailored skirt on their own (must be really flexible to be able to stick pins at odd angles e.g. around the butt?!).
This was a more challenging class as almost everyone needed some customization support for the teacher (I think there was just one lady who fit the pattern size perfectly). Nevertheless, thanks to the helpful guidance, the final output was super amazing:
My favourite fitted pencil skirt – really truly fits me and works for my body shape
Details of the workshop
Duration: I took a one day 7-hour class, including a 1 hour lunch break Price: GBP99 (~SGD175)
Level of “fun”: 4/5
I learnt a lot of new techniques and how to use an overlocking machine (as mentioned above), and that made the lesson really interesting in spite being the fifth (non-consecutive) full day of sewing class I was doing with them.
Level of difficulty: 4/5
The tailoring / adjusting of the skirt to fit my body was challenging, and I wouldn’t have been able to do it without the teacher. After her adjustments, I had to transfer these modifications on the sewing pattern so that I can cut the “tailored” pattern without adjustments required if/when I decide to make another of these skirts – this is conceptually super helpful, but I am also not sure if I translated those adjustments and drew them on my sewing pattern correctly :p