An Almost Vintage Skirt of Recycled Fabric
This could also be titled as “The World’s Easiest Skirt Pattern”. 🙂 When I sewed up my dutch wax print skirt, and refashioned my black floral, I realized just how much I love pleated skirts. After completing Me Made May, I decided that I needed more of these skirts in my life as they are so easy to wear, and are comfortable and practical for everyday. When I was deciding what fabric to use, I remembered this vintage sheet I picked up a a flea market a couple of months ago, so I decided to recycle the fabric into a skirt. I absolutely love the pattern on the fabric- is it just me or were vintage linens so much nicer than today’s?
I used the same easy method as the other skirts, which pretty much involves creating a curved waistband to fit your waist measurement, plus seam allowances. I have found that a slightly curved band is better than a straight rectangle, as bodies are typically not straight, so if it is curved in, the waistband will not gape on you. I didn’t use a pattern for this, I seriously just “eyeballed” the curve for this band and traced to create a mirror image for both sides. To this, I cut a front and back rectangle, and pleated it into the waist circumference (no real math at play, just pleating and fiddling until it fit!) To create something different, so all of the garments in my wardrobe are not exactly the same, I decided to add ties to the waistband this time. I think they give a bit of a fun twist. I sewed the two ties separately, and then inserted them between the zipper (which I had saved off another garment, hence the title of this post) and the waistband when sewing them together. Thus, the raw edges were encased, and the ties wrap around to the front. The skirt took me only about 4 hours start to finish. Well, not including the time that it took to cut the material, I guess. When I went to lay out the fabric, I discovered that somewhere along the way someone had used this sheet as a dropcloth or something, and there was orange paint splattered across it! I had to do some strategic measuring and cutting to avoid all the splatters- but it was successful, as none of the paint shows on the final garment! The joys of vintage material I guess. 😉 I actually love projects like this as they recycle something that would otherwise be discarded. The skirt turned out nicely and qualifies as a Make do and Mend garment, I think, as well as almost being vintage, as the materials to make it were. . .
So, onto the outfit! The skirts debut, the very next day, was for an afternoon of shopping on Edmonton’s Whyte Ave. My best friend came for a visit (as I already mentioned before), so we took the opportunity to go shopping, and Whyte Ave is a pretty fun place filled with lots of lovely little shops and restaurants. (I also found the best little store called Rowena, which carries a whole host of vintage reproduction brands I’ve never been able to find in a brick-and-mortar store! I was like a kid in a candy shop- and I have an outfit post with the dress I bought, next week!)
We had a lovely time shopping, but I didn’t get any outfit photos while we were there, which is too bad as there are so many historical brick buildings that would’ve served as a nice backdrop. I was too busy catching up with my friend, though, to stop for pictures, so we got these pictures later. I paired the skirt with a modern ruffled blouse, and my lovely vintage straw boater I got at an antique sale a few years ago. The lining in this hat is so shredded I can barely pick out any of the label, the only words left read “Knox New York”. I did a google search and came up with this article about the Knox hat company, but as it appears they made men’s hats, I’m not sure of the history of this piece. It is lovely though, and in very good shape too, despite the label being in disrepair. I would’ve liked to have paired this outfit with my cognac kiltie loafers, but as they are not broken in yet, I thought an afternoon spent walking would be better suited to my tried and true brown flats. Sometimes style must be sacrificed for comfort, as much as I hate to admit it 🙁
Anyways, I’ve already worn this skirt several times since I made it, and it is quickly becoming a favourite in my wardrobe. Do you ever find yourself gravitating towards sewing or wearing the same things over and over again?
Hat- vintage from an antique sale
Skirt- made by me out of a sheet from a flea market
Earrings- Joe Fresh from a year ago
Shoes- Josef Seibel
Purse- bought in England
June 28, 2016 @ 7:34 pm
I love the ties! So cute. It is a lovely print and I am really discovering the value of prints to hide all kinds of spills and splatters that occur while wearing the clothes, so I don’t see why they can’t hide paint too 🙂
July 4, 2016 @ 6:31 pm
Thanks 🙂 I love the ties too as they add a bit of interest (and so the skirt doesn’t look exactly like every other one I have in my wardrobe!) Fortunately I was able to do some creative cutting so there is only one spot of paint that made it into the final project and it is in the hem. And busy prints are definitely better at stain hiding than solids! (I have learned this as a messy person who is constantly spilling stuff on myself!
June 29, 2016 @ 6:44 pm
You look beautiful! I love the pattern on the skirt, which is so lovely and classic, and the boater hat is just perfect with it. You look like an absolute doll.
July 4, 2016 @ 6:27 pm
Aww thanks Jessica- you are too kind 🙂
June 30, 2016 @ 11:20 am
Lovely skirt! Thanks for the instructions. I will add this to my projects list. 🙂 Versatile vintage
July 4, 2016 @ 6:27 pm
Thanks, and you’re welcome for the instructions! I hope they are clear enough to follow. It is definitely a very versatile skirt- I’ve already worn it so many times. 🙂
July 1, 2016 @ 2:06 am
What a great use for a sheet! Lovely skirt, I like the ties.
July 4, 2016 @ 6:25 pm
Thanks 🙂 I love the floral pattern, but as it was useless as a sheet, I am glad I was able to find a way to use it still!
July 5, 2016 @ 1:49 am
Such a lovely, cheerful warm weather ensemble. Your classic straw boater hat is the perfect way to, quite literally, cap this great outfit off. Awesome job on that skirt. It’s so sweet and pretty!
How exciting that you got to visit Rowena. I’ve been buying from their website for years now, but haven’t been to their bricks and mortar yet, as I’ve never been to Edmonton. Seriously hoping to change that in the near future.
Many hugs & the happiest of summertime wishes,
July 5, 2016 @ 12:35 pm
Thanks 🙂 There’s just something about a boater that is perfect for summer!
Rowena/RetroGlam is so great, I’m glad you know about them too! It is definitely worth checking out if you are ever in Edmonton, but I believe all of their stock is online, so at least you can take advantage of their great selection that way. 🙂