I have a big thing for sewing pleated skirts that hit just above the knees. Currently, I have about eight me-made versions of this style in my wardrobe and I it’s a combination of them aligning with my prefered aesthetic (i.e. classic and vaguely retro) and that I feel they really work well with my body type, being short and all that.
Plus pleats are fun to sew as they can be constructed in so many ways, and each has its own very distinct look. So when I saw this pattern in the Burdastyle August 2017 issue I knew it would end up in my wardrobe. It checks all the boxes, pleats, short, nice detailing (straps and topstitching) and a flat yoke around the bum, I really like pleats that start a bit lower on the body.
Also since pleats in the back often can end up being a wrinkly non-flat mess, I was happy to see that Burdastyle chose to only have pleats in the front.
The yoke ends around mid-bum and then the seam allowance is pressed upwards and topstitched. It’s a very nice feature but it does create a bulky finish so the silhouette is not entirely flat when you look at the skirt from the sides. This is elevated by the fact that I used a thicker wool.
The fabric is a navy wool/lycra flannel type of fabric. Its an Italian designer fabric, I think it was from Gucci, but I have actually forgotten, which is a bummer, since I’m usually obsessed with designer brands, lol! The fabric is also a total lint magnet, but you have to take the bad with the good.
The straps are one of my favourite detail of this skirt. They are supposed to have buttonholes, but I’ve been around the sewing block long enough to know that sewing machine buttonholes on a thick wool fabric, very close to bulky seam allowances, well that is a recipe for disappointment. So I decided to “cheat”, or as I prefer to say, to use a popular vintage detail, as in sewing on metal snaps instead and just use the buttons for decoration.
The zipper is invisible and the skirt is unlined. I’ve found that these kinds of pleated skirts never ride up and when you look at proper Scottish kilts, they don’t tend to be lined either.
The hem is done using my favourite blind machine hemming technique for A-line skirts (tutorial). A hand sewn hem would have been even nicer, but I would venture to say that the machine hem technique I’m using yields good enough results, even for a discerning sewist as myself.
All in all, I’m super happy about how the skirt and have been wearing it a tonne lately since we have had quite a snowy and cold winter recently, so wool skirts have been perfect (of course I also use several wool layers of wool underwear to keep the legs warm). My review of the pattern over at Pattern Review.