I did sewing at high school through all the years. This is where I found I loved sewing and that there were so many possibilities ! I found so much inspiration going to class and seeing what everyone else was making, Have to say, made me enjoy school! I spent my lunch times and free periods in there and even stayed after school longer just so I could go hang out in the sewing room.
When I was there I fell in love with pleats. Not sure why, maybe it was seeing all the kilts around school…? So naturally I made some skirts with pleats, the first skirt I don’t have anymore, but it was maroon with 5 pleats on the left side and a yoke waist. I remember it clearly !
One of the first things I made was a fully lined box pleated skirt (2 pleats on the front and 2 on the back). This was actually one of my favourite skirts. It was made of black Drill and had a bright pink tartan fabric inserted in the pleats. Since I made this in 7th form it has been well worn and through a couple of zip changes. It is well faded now though, sigh *sad face*.
In my second year of university I really wanted to make this pattern again, absolutely loved that skirt! However, I couldn’t follow the first pattern I made as I didn’t clearly label it and it was made of really thick paper. So I just remade the whole pattern, which was easier since I wasn’t putting a different fabric insert into the pleats.
The pattern (if I remember this correctly since I did make it 4 years ago) started as a block pattern to my personal measurements. I then measured sellotaped the darts together and cut from the hem to the bottom of the dart in a straight line – creating an A-line pattern.
I measured 10cm from the top and cut this out all the way around which became my yoke.
From here I measured the same distance from the centre front (CF) top to bottom and the same for the centre back (CB).
On these new lines I then measured 20cm away from the CF and CB which were the fabric for my box pleats.
For those who don’t know what a box pleat is, it’s when both sides of the pleat are folded in together. Box pleats can come as both inward and outward. However, I don’t really like box pleats that go the opposite way to this, probably because it reminds me of a really ugly school uniform I was made to wear.
I like lined skirts.
I like invisible zips.
I made the pink floral skirt first (see below) as soon as I made this pattern, and stayed up ’til about 5 in the morning finishing it, ah, the student life !
The blue one I starting making 2 years ago and came back to it midyear last year to complete.
I had made the pattern with an extra flare of about 5cm at each side. This would have been fine if it wasn’t for the stiffer 100% cotton quilting fabric I used. However, this gave it too much bulk and the pleats don’t sit quite right.
I also think that when I was adjusting the fit of the pink floral one I only took it in on one side, hehehe oops! At least I know better now. Or maybe cause that point is was about 3am or something..
My sewing teacher taught me how to finish things “nicely” so I edge-stitched my pleats (hoping that would help them keep their shape and maybe less ironing time) and box seams of the yoke as well.
I love edge-stitching/top-stitching!
All up this was quite cheap for me as while I worked at Spotlight I picked up the best bargains and got both fabrics for around $2 a metre. Lining I bought when it was on special for maybe..$7.99 a metre?
I really like box pleats still and I continue to wear these skirts ! Maybe in the future I’ll think of some more fun ways to spice this up !