Posts Tagged colette zinnia skirt

Floaty Stuff (or a Zinnia chiffon skirt)

Wrath of the Tartans (1)

I bought the Colette Zinnia skirt pattern when it very first came out – so early, in fact, that I was able to point out an error which they quickly remedied.  Like a fool, I decided to make the skirt in plaid and proceeded to make a complete pig’s breakfast of it with my pleats going all over the place (you can visit the final resting place above).

 At the same time, I had bought some fabric to make the chiffon version but, after my failure with the first one, left it lying pale and limp in a corner waiting for me to get my confidence back.

I read several tutorials about working with silk, chiffon and all things floaty and slippy and decided to go for it.

Colette Zinnia Chiffon Version

(This mannequin had obviously had a glass of wine or two.  Or was that me?)

The pleats were easier to do than I expected as I had the lining in place and that made the chiffon easier to handle.

Zinnia Chiffon SkirtI used tailors chalk to mark the pleats and you can still see it! I am hoping it will come out with the first wash.

I did a rolled hem on my overlocker – which was a first for me.

So, overall, I was quite chuffed

Colette Zinnia Chiffon Skirt

 I’m still not sure how I managed to ‘make it work’ in chiffon and not in plaid but there you go.  Sometimes you have those sorts of days where nothing goes right.


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Excuse Not To Do The Housework No. 832(ish)

Just to let you know why my Colette Zinnia skirt is still a work in progress and why I haven’t started another Skater Dress even though I’ve got the fabric.  We’ve got the builders in.  Well, I say ‘the builders’ it’s actually just one builder and I was very pleased with him until today when he disappeared a bit early and isn’t coming tomorrow at all, leaving me in a miasma of dust and uncertainty. Our old insert fire was showing its age and the faux chimney breast above was cracking badly so we decided to have that knocked out and get a free standing wood burner as we have in another room.

FireplaceRenovSep13 (1)Vintage French red marble fireplace anybody?  Buyer collects

FireplaceRenovSep13 (2)Yes, that’s the sort of thing, now just take out the old insert and make the wall good.  What’s that you say?  The wall to the right hand side has a void behind it so you could take it right back and take out the cupboard in the corner – it would make a bigger room.    Oh, go on then.

FireplaceRenovSept13(1)Aha! there is a wall in front of the other wall and the first wall is crumbly and unstable, shall I knock that out too?  Oh, go on then.

fireplacerenovsept13Back to the original, original wall now, well mostly.  I suppose these things happen when you have an ancient house and we know this and usually don’t tackle anything needing more than a screwdriver or, occasionally, a bit of light drilling.  I’ve always fancied an exposed stone wall so that’s one redecorating decision made.  There was an old doorway behind the cupboard and we plan on keeping the frame and infilling with stone – of which we have plenty – see small sample on left.  At least the flue is now hanging straight down instead of draped across a crumbly wall.  Stan is looking for rodent skeletons.


Ready to start backfilling and pointing up now but the builder has gone and won’t be coming back until the day after tomorrow.  Something about not having the right sand.

Might as well go and finish putting the pleats in my skirt then.

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Lady Skater Dress No.2 for Autumn plus Zinnia Skirt Muslin

Well,  I think I’ve found my favourite dress pattern, for now anyway, so here’s another version of the Lady Skater Dress.  This time, I made it for ME, and I used some lovely Liberty of London jersey – yes, jersey, who knew?  Well, they knew at Sewbox ‘cos that’s where I bought it but I only ever really thought of tana lawn when thinking of Liberty fabric before.  Anyway, the first pic is a silly, take it yourself in your daughter’s bedroom because everybody else is out and you can’t wait, type of photograph but, also, the autumn colours came out really well here and in the next photos, in the garden, they don’t look quite as bright.  As a bonus, my physog is hidden by the camera so even more reason to like this one best!

SkaterDressNo2 LibertyJersey1

Oh, here I am. having changed grungy boots for cream patent court shoes – don’t ask me why because even I don’t know – and gazing at the hem as if I have done something magic with a twin needle which, indeed, I have.  Interestingly, I had to revert to my trusty old(ish) Singer for that as my Janome doesn’t seem to have the capability or, if it does, I haven’t found out about it.Skater Dress No.2 Liberty Jersey (2)Who knows what is happening here.  I look as if I am calling all the creatures of the woodland to come and gaze at my creation but, really, I just wanted to show you the back of the dress which isn’t crinkly when I’m not performing.

Skater Dress No.2 Liberty Jersey (1)That’s better, a good shot of the frock and not so much of me.  I have to say that, at the time I was buying this Liberty fabric, I didn’t realise they do both cotton and viscose jersey and this is the latter.  It is four way stretch and very drapey so time will tell if the dress will pull out of shape.  I will have to wear it for a whole day to see what happens.  However, the clear elastic which the pattern tells you to put around the bottom of the bodice pieces should ensure nothing too hideous occurs.  By the way, it’s quite hard to find that elastic – I had to spend even longer trawling the internet than usual – but it really does seem to do the job

Skater Dress No.2 Liberty Jersey (4)I have learnt that the sizing seems to be dependent on the fabric you use.  The last one, made in not such stretchy jersey, was a little tight but, as I had made it primarily as a muslin but in some sale price fabric I knew my daughter would like I could still put it to use.   This time, even though I made the same size, it fits perfectly.   Also, I notice that the waistline on this version appears to have dropped a little which might be to do with the stretchier fabric or I might have added a little on when I cut it out .  I don’t actually mind the slightly dropped waist and, anyway, I couldn’t adjust it because it would have made the skirt too short – as it was I only took up 0.5 inches for a hem.  I know you can leave knit fabrics unhemmed as they don’t fray but it doesn’t seem quite right somehow.

My last make of the summer was the Jasmine blouse from Colette patterns.  I bought the pattern when I was in the U.K. in July so I at least saved the cost of the postage.  I made the version with the notched cuffs rather than the gathered  sleeves which I thought might be a bit ‘puffy’ for me.  Although I think these ties were meant to be the ones you tie them in a bow, I haven’t because it would make a very underwhelming one and, next time, I would make these quite a bit longer.

ColettePatternJasmineAlso, next time, I might make it in something a little less extravagant – this one is Liberty (again!) – and because it is cut on the bias, it eats up the fabric.  I would also go down a size because there seemed to be quite a bit of ease and I ended up adjusting the neckline and seams after I’d sewn them.  Also – another also – I wouldn’t use interfacing on the cuffs and maybe not on the collar unless it was a very fine one.  With tana lawn, the effect was to make the cuffs a little too stiff for the rest of the blouse and to make the fabric design more prominent where the interfacing is.  Having said all that, I like it and especially like not having to faff with zips or buttons so I will make it again for next year.

Tempted by an introductory discount off the new Colette pattern, the Zinnia skirt, I went for the PDF version so I didn’t have to pay international postage and also so I could get it quickly and, yet again, as with the skater dress, had a fun time cutting and taping the pattern together.

ColettePatternZinniaI decided I would definitely make a muslin and had a roll of fabric I was given as a freebie which I hadn’t known what to do with.  I was considering making it a wearable muslin until I realised that I had used the wrong side of the fabric but no matter.  I slavishly followed the instructions and was very pleased with myself until I realised that they had missed the zip insertion step out of  the instructions for Version 2 so I had a fully completed skirt, waistband and all, without any sort of back closure going on! Perfect for a hospital visit!  I should have realised before I got to that stage really but my mind was full of side pockets and topstitched pleats.  Never mind, I pinned myself into it to check the fit and all was well.   I contacted Colette Patterns to let them know there was an omission and they have now put it right.  Now I’ve got the waistband size right, this will be a versatile pattern for all year round as there are three versions and you can mix and match and it is suitable for lots of different fabrics.  Now I’ve completed the muslin, I think I will make version 3 which hasn’t got side pockets or belt loops and is a little longer.

Zinnia MuslinBy the way, what looks like a giant metal hand holding on to the skirt, is actually a light fitting  on our conservatory wall.  It is one of many pieces of ‘fashion victim’ lighting that Mr. Tialys and I have bought which seem like a good idea at the time but subsequently appear incapable of throwing  out any decent light at all.

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