I love wearing skirts in the summer, so this simple gathered cotton skirt seemed perfect for visiting the bluebells for an evening picnic. The skirt is another from Tilly and the Buttons’ first book, Love at first Stitch and is a very beginner friendly gathered rectangle skirt called Clemence. The book guides you though drafting this basic pattern for yourself, which is a good place to start with pattern drafting and alterations, because Tilly’s instructions are as always excellent.
This is actually the second of these skirts that I made, and is actually another early make. For this second skirt I got a little more ambitious and drafted an un-gathered lining, made from an old sheet because the main fabric is a little transparent!
As always, I also needed pockets. The book talks you through making changes to the all the patterns, like including pockets in the or restyling the patterns to get a couple of different looks.
I also decided to experiment with some of the decorative stitches on my machine to create an attractive pattern at the hem.
It even has an concealed zip. I keep returning to Tilly’s instructions for reassurance when I need to insert one still! This one is actually pretty invisible and well matched.
While this skirt has been in my wardrobe for over two years now, and my skills have undoubtedly improved, I still enjoy wearing these earlier makes. I enjoy seeing how much I have learned and developed, but also it is satisfying to know that I am contributing to a clothing ethic that doesn’t view an item of clothing as something to wear once and discard. For every year that I keep wearing these simple early makes I can sit happy knowing that I am reducing my impact on the planet and the disposable fast fashion culture.
As a little bonus, I did also manage to find a picture of my first Clemence skirt from Me Made May Last year! It is made in a mint green chambray from Calico Laine I think. This one did have a couple of issues including being a bit big at the waist. Fortunately/unfortunately the zip broke pretty quickly, so when I replaced it, I also sorted out the waist sizing, so this one is also in spring/summer wardrobe rotation.