A happy skirt, plus coat making plans

I don’t often visit mudflats, and if I did, I probably wouldn’t wear this outfit! But on a grey and dreary day it seemed like as good a place as any to photograph the most colourful thing in my wardrobe.

Bellbird skirt

I bought this eye-poppingly bright Nani Iro double gauze from Miss Matatabi. On the selvedge it says ‘Freedom Gerden’, which must be a typo for ‘Garden’. It makes me chuckle and in essence this is just a very happy skirt!

Bellbird skirt

Bellbird skirt

To make it, I cut two rectangles of fabric roughly twice the length of the finished waistband, and I cut the front one in half and added a button placket to each side. For reduced see-through factor I lined it in cotton voile, and gathered the whole lot up and sewed it to the waistband. I wanted the waistband to sit a bit lower than the narrowest part of my waist, to allow for eating and breathing, so I made it about three inches bigger than my actual waist measurement. It’s perfect and very comfy!

Bellbird petersham waistbandI interfaced the waistband but in the end it wasn’t enough to stop it folding over on itself, so I added my new favourite sewing thing: petersham ribbon. It’s great! It stabilises without adding bulk, looks nice, and feels soft. I hand sewed it in after attaching the waistband but before I did the buttonholes. I’ve also used it in the waistband of some culottes, which are yet to be revealed, but will be soon!

In other sewing news, I’ve decided to make a coat. Lindsay and I are starting coat projects at the same time and have decided to do a coat-along! Feel free to join in if you’d like, we’ve set ourselves a deadline of December 4th (in bold to remind me I should get started!). Lindsay will be making a Gerard coat, and I have plans to embark on this Burda Style bubble coat, sans ruffle. I’ve got a rust coloured wool coating in my stash and a silk twill lining to match. So far my toile is cut out and ready to sew. You can read a bit more about our #coatalong on Lindsay’s blog, along with some links to helpful coat making tips. It’s very low key and just a fun way to keep each other company through a big project. Let me know if you want to join us!




  1. That IS a happy skirt! What a fantastic fabric. One of these days, I will get myself some of that double gauze.

    I made that Burda coat last year! Had a ton of fun making it, and love wearing it. Someday I’d like to make it again, with the ruffle. Have fun with it!

  2. So gorgeous, I love it with the grey top (and backdrop!). Nice to see the waistband detail too, I must try petersham sometime. I’m in for coatalong!

    1. Oooh great! I’ve never made a proper coat before so I’m a bit stumped when it comes to special techniques. Hopefully we’ll be able to help each other out along the way.

  3. Bella, what a beautiful skirt you’ve made! I love that you’ve drafted it yourself and it’s a longer length too. I have made a Scout tee out of this same fabric and now I am really tempted to make a skirt like this to go with it.

    I love that you did the photos against the mudflats, it’s perfect to show off the fabric!

    Well done indeed!

  4. Wow, that fabric is amazing! I’ve never sewn with double gauze, but it looks lovely and floaty and soft. Petersham is great, especially how you can steam it into a curve. It makes waistbands so nice!

    1. Double gauze is really nice. Its softness implies that it might not wear well, but I made some PJs out of it and they’ve been going strong for over a year!

  5. It IS so happy, I love it! Those Nani Iro prints are really amazing and artful- perfect for a simple skirt. I’ll need to stock up on some petersham for when I decide to stop being lazy and making everything with an elastic waistband. 😉

  6. Stunning! Love the skirt, the colors are SO pretty and I love your waistband, such a clever trick! I’d really appreciate you sending your wardrobe, Mr. Cat Carson and your pretty pretty hair over all the oceans between us right to me! Agreed? 🙂
    (Alternatively we could exchange stuff for a Sew Bossy Challenge?)

      1. Yeah, me too. (After all, my sewing machine is still in the repair shop and I don’t know when I’ll get her back.) Maybe we could start planning/thinking for a swap around spring for me/autumn for you so we can both figure out something transitional instead of the summer/winter configuration now? 😀

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s