Colette Meringue (kinda): The Pretty Places Skirt

Wow, I’m absolutely flabbergasted – 14 people looked at my blog today! Good times! No, I’m serious, that’s awesome.

And can I just admit something? Keeping up with this blog has been a major pain in the petunia. Geez Louise! How do people do this every single day? I’m seriously impressed. Every now and then I think about giving up the blog and just posting to my Burdastyle page. Well, we’ll see…

Anyway, on with the show:

How I prefer to wear this skirt – with a white top and heels! Maybe I should add a belt in the future? This skirt looks better in person, I promise! It’s all wrinkly after a day at the office…

I’m going to stop apologizing for the Stinky Pete quality of these photos…one day. I feel like I always need to let you know that I realize they’re not so great, but it’s either I get a photo of my creation so I can actually share it with you or wait weeks on end for me to find the time and energy to go somewhere interesting for my photos. Sheesh, I sound like such a stinker. I’m in bloomin’ New York City for crying out loud! So many opportunities abound…

Tangent aside, I actually finished this skirt just before Memorial Day weekend (that’s the end of May for folks outside the U.S.). You will probably not recognize it all – it’s the Meringue Skirt from the Colette Sewing Handbook! Yes, you’re correct, a heavily modified version at that.

I bought the Colette Sewing Handbook for the other patterns in it and figured I wouldn’t make the Meringue. To be honest, I’m not a fan of scallops for myself. I think because they make me feel very young, but I guess they’re also not my style. Anyway, I had seen Debi’s lengthened Meringue and really loved that alteration; I definitely credit her version with giving me the idea to give this pattern a try!

I lengthened the skirt 8″ for a hem that falls just below the knee. I’d like to make this skirt again, but in the future I’d like to go with an above-the-knee look. The thing with this longer hem is I feel it only looks good on me with heels, and sometimes when walking the streets of New York it’s nice to wear flats!

Not so much a fan of the dark top with the flip flops, but this was an unplanned photo session at my aunt’s house so I had to wear what I had on hand, ahem!

I also added a waistband with this handy tutorial from the Coletterie blog. Usually I sew the inner waistband to the skirt by hand sewing, but I stitched in the ditch this time. I have to say – it kinda worked! You know how when you stitch in the ditch sometimes the stitch looks all wonky on the inside? Well, instead of turning the waistband in 3/8″ or whatever as the tutorial suggests, I just made sure there was an even amount of overlap over the thread from the other front side of the waistband (does that make sense?). The inner waistband still looked even in the fabric department, so that’s good. Phew.

Oh, and have I ever mentioned that I love invisible zippers? There seems to be a love/hate relationship with them in blogland – put me on the love side! I have an invisible zipper foot, which helps things, at least for me.

Drats, I really wish I had more photos with the white top and heels!!

The skirt is perfect for work. It makes me feel oh so happy wearing it. 🙂 I bought the cotton fabric in the sale section at Sew L.A. $2.50 a yard, baby! – and ended up using really no more than a yard or so. What a rarity for me, an uber inexpensive sewing creation! On the selvage were the words “Pretty Places” so that’s what I’ve named the skirt. Hey, no need to reinvent the wheel, ya know?!

I bought the fabric online and it wasn’t exactly what I was expecting when it arrived, but now I really like it. Reminds me of a retro print you might find at Anthropologie (except it’s actually affordable, man oh man). My only regret is that I didn’t line the skirt; I was so determined to actually finish a project that I opted to just wear a slip with it instead. Hey, it works.

Should I have catch stitched instead? I just don’t know these days!

And, finally, I finished off the hem with a pretty coral seam binding, which I found in a thrift store in Virginia. It dates to 1970! Kind of amazing how it had to wait 42 years to emerge from its plastic covering, so much has happened in the world since it last saw air. And the address on the package said New York, so it made its way back home. 🙂 Or at least I’m assuming the package address means that’s where it came from…

The seam binding is attached to the skirt with a whip stitch for a blind hem finish (should I have used a catch stitch instead? I was taught both ways…). I love hand stitching the hems no matter how casual the garment – it’s just so pleasing after sitting at your sewing machine to be able to relax on the couch watching some TV as you hand sew! Plus, when you’re enjoying a particular sewing project, it’s sad to leave it. Kind of like saying goodbye to characters in a book you’ve come to love. Except in this case, I get to wear the skirt whenever I fancy. 😉

Wow, I’ve said a mouthful. ‘Til next time!

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10 thoughts on “Colette Meringue (kinda): The Pretty Places Skirt

  1. Well, I like reading your blog, but if it’s more stressful than fun, that’s no good. I think I’m kinda addicted to mine, which isn’t always good…

    The skirt looks great! I go back and forth on scallops, but I saw a scalloped skirt on Burdastyle in a very officey and grown-up plaid fabric that I actually fell for. Hmm. Now you’ve got me thinking about Meringues…

    And that hem stitch is exactly what I always use. I find the invisible version of the catch-stitch kinda annoying to stitch, so I don’t use it on hems…

    • Aw, thanks. 🙂 I think with the blog it’s more the thought that I post so infrequently – it makes me feel like I’m a blogger failure! But it’s nice to see that people still comment.

      And good to know about the hem stitch! I had seen a few bloggers use the catch-stitch so I was second guessing myself.

  2. Love the skirt–really cute and versatile, and you did a beautiful job sewing it. Sometimes, simple and clean is best. After decades of avoiding slips, I have recently fallen back in love with them. PS: I’m sure blogging is hard to fit into life, but I love visiting your blog–fresh ideas abound! So Zo . . . has a guest blog you might like to read regarding blogging (and the creative life in general). Here: http://sozowhatdoyouknow.blogspot.com/2012/06/guest-post-part-of-process.html

    • Thank you so much for your wonderful comment, Shelley! I have to say, it’s nice to get encouragement every now and then, particularly when you think you’re not such a great blogger. You start thinking that maybe you’re being a little too hard on yourself. I will read the post on So Zo, thanks for sharing it. 🙂

  3. This is the first time I’ve read your blog, but I had to tell you that I love the skirt! You did a really nice job on it. I’ve played with the idea of starting a blog, but I have wondered if it would be more of a nuisance than anything else.

    • Thanks so much for commenting, Angela! I’m slowly learning to be okay with the fact that I won’t be able to blog that often (maybe one day?!), and that makes having a blog a little easier. 🙂

Hey, thanks for commenting! I truly appreciate it and always try to respond back. :)

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