The Sewing Place

Self-drafting a skirt from my block

Francesca

Self-drafting a skirt from my block
« on: July 10, 2018, 12:01:12 PM »
I'm about to get started on a self-drafted skirt (sort of) based on my sloper block. Something I've not done before and I really want to get it right!

My current skirt block has a curved waist seam, two darts on either side (so 8 total) and is pencil straight. I want to make it a more flared/flippy skirt and I also want to have a small flat pleat at the front. I think I will keep at least one dart in each side at the back.

I'm not really sure how to do all this so I'm going to have to do a few toiles.

My basic plan is to close the outer darts on both the front and back, swinging out to get the A-line shape I'm after rather than straight. This is what I've seen done lots on tutorials.

My only concern is that my darts might be wider than others are because my waist to hip ratio is much grander than most, so I'm worried a nice neat A-line might end up becoming a pyramid...

Also, my sloper side seams are lightly curved on the sides because that's how my body is. I'm guessing this just stays as-is and doesn't get evened out?

As for the pleats I was wondering if I can just put the dart top notches together as though I'm sewing a dart but then just not sew down the dart? I guess I'll try a few different things.
« Last Edit: July 12, 2018, 09:51:43 AM by Francesca »

b15erk

Re: Self-drating a skirt from my block
« Reply #1 on: July 10, 2018, 12:22:13 PM »
Fran, what about splitting the large dart, and putting two either side.  I've done that before, and it looks good.  It spreads the shaping element too.

Jessie
Jessie, who is very happy to be here!!  :),  but who has far too many sewing machines to be healthy, and a fabric stash which is becoming embarrassing.

Francesca

Re: Self-drating a skirt from my block
« Reply #2 on: July 10, 2018, 12:24:20 PM »
It's already two darts. Eight total. Two each side.

Morgan

Re: Self-drating a skirt from my block
« Reply #3 on: July 10, 2018, 13:07:06 PM »
. . . I think I will keep at least one dart in each side at the back. . . .
It's a good way to control the amount of fullness in the back on a flared skirt when the body has a significant hip-waist ratio.

. . . My only concern is that my darts might be wider than others are because my waist to hip ratio is much grander than most, so I'm worried a nice neat A-line might end up becoming a pyramid . . .
It's more about where and how evenly you prefer the fluting to happen as it drapes from the fullness.  If you keep the side seams as they are without adding additional flare to them, you're less likely to get the pyramid effect.

. . . Also, my sloper side seams are lightly curved on the sides because that's how my body is. I'm guessing this just stays as-is and doesn't get evened out?

Yes, keeping the side curve is in effect keeping the (cut out) darts there.  So you keep a couple of darts for shaping the back and also the shaping darts at the side.  It gives a softer silhouette.

Francesca

Re: Self-drating a skirt from my block
« Reply #4 on: July 10, 2018, 13:43:35 PM »
Thanks for this @Morgan , spot on as always.

I'll be doing buttonholes tonight but I might get around to drafting the pattern up so I will share pictures!

Francesca

Re: Self-drating a skirt from my block
« Reply #5 on: July 11, 2018, 22:36:41 PM »
Not exactly much done... but...

I've just slashed and spread the outer dart on both pieces. One issue I notice is that due to the back dart being much longer than the front dart, the back piece has turned out less flared. So there is an uneven front and back now.

Should I have made the darts be the same length before I started?

Back on the left, front on the right.

Stitchalot

Re: Self-drating a skirt from my block
« Reply #6 on: July 12, 2018, 07:30:57 AM »
My approach would be to only open the back dart as much as will give a back panel which is a similar width to the front. Then, the small amount of bulk in the dart which remains could be added to the other dart.

There is a great little book on making skirt patterns which I found helpful called ‘Forty Skirts to Cut and Sew’ by Brenda Redmile. It is out of print but there are a few copies floating around on Amazon and other sellers. Good luck - I find pattern manipulation great fun and very addictive!

Lizzy777

Re: Self-drating a skirt from my block
« Reply #7 on: July 12, 2018, 09:25:30 AM »

If you are making it into an A line skirt pattern using the slash method then you are eliminating the darts on the finished pattern. Just wondered why your picture shows a second dart on there? I'm a bit confused by your sloper? Is it a basic block you have made up or something else?

You can just shorten the existing back dart,  that will give you the extra width. The lower your dart the narrower the slash etc. The shorter the dart the wider the slash etc. The back dart doesn't have to match the front dart for this exercise.

If you want to draft an A line pattern from a straight skirt with darts and retain the darts then you will need to redraw your side seams to get the extra width you require and not using the slash method.




Francesca

Re: Self-drating a skirt from my block
« Reply #8 on: July 12, 2018, 09:44:27 AM »
If you are making it into an A line skirt pattern using the slash method then you are eliminating the darts on the finished pattern. Just wondered why your picture shows a second dart on there? I'm a bit confused by your sloper? Is it a basic block you have made up or something else?

The sloper skirt has two darts front and back. I plan to convert the second dart at the front into a pleat, and retain the other dart in the back (as Morgan said, a good way to retain shaping around the waist without adding fullness). As you can see, even just spreading one dart has made the skirt far more than I would consider A-line on the front piece, so I don't want to combine both and spread (I have done that, it makes a very very full skirt).

Francesca

Re: Self-drating a skirt from my block
« Reply #9 on: July 12, 2018, 09:47:26 AM »
My approach would be to only open the back dart as much as will give a back panel which is a similar width to the front. Then, the small amount of bulk in the dart which remains could be added to the other dart.

Do you mean the opposite way round? My back piece is probably better, as it definitely looks A-line not Pyramid-line as I'm calling it. So I should just spread the front dart enough to make them match, then the leftover can go into my pleat (I'll convert the other front dart into a pleat).

There is a great little book on making skirt patterns which I found helpful called ‘Forty Skirts to Cut and Sew’ by Brenda Redmile. It is out of print but there are a few copies floating around on Amazon and other sellers. Good luck - I find pattern manipulation great fun and very addictive!

Thanks, I ordered the book secondhand for a tenner. Looks good. I'm finding flat pattern manipulation really difficult. It seems that what makes sense in my head, in execution doesn't work out (like in this example) but I really want to get going with it. The sloper is the best fit I've ever had so I want to be able to continue with that. I'm hoping if this skirt works well I can take the bodice and make a little button-up dress.

Francesca

Re: Self-drafting a skirt from my block
« Reply #10 on: July 12, 2018, 09:52:27 AM »
Just to add, this is the sort of thing I'm hoping for (though I think it has some sort of extra pleat in there):

b15erk

Re: Self-drafting a skirt from my block
« Reply #11 on: July 12, 2018, 10:06:24 AM »
Fran, have you thought of going straight to fabric, and draping your skirt?  I'm hopeless on paper, but fabric I can work with.

I would start with your basic shape for the skirt, put the pleat in - that should perhaps replace the darts.  Then fold the darts in at the back.  Use an old sheet - or an old toile even, there doesn't look much fabric in there.  If nothing else, it will give you an idea of how the pattern should look.

I reckon you can do this easy, toile and try, toile and try....

Jessie
Jessie, who is very happy to be here!!  :),  but who has far too many sewing machines to be healthy, and a fabric stash which is becoming embarrassing.

Lizzy777

Re: Self-drating a skirt from my block
« Reply #12 on: July 12, 2018, 10:18:36 AM »
The sloper skirt has two darts front and back. I plan to convert the second dart at the front into a pleat, and retain the other dart in the back (as Morgan said, a good way to retain shaping around the waist without adding fullness). As you can see, even just spreading one dart has made the skirt far more than I would consider A-line on the front piece, so I don't want to combine both and spread (I have done that, it makes a very very full skirt).

I'll reply more a bit later as I have to make a few urgent calls just now. But I wouldn't work in that way tbh.
If you think that will work for you and give you the desired effect then who am I to say any different :)

But I just don't want to see you having to make lots of toilet to get the desired effect as I just don't think you need to do lots of toiles especially not for this sort of skirt (the skirt in the picture).

I'll be back lol......Having fun and games with some builders at the moment so need to sort that out quickly this morning.

Lizzy777

Re: Self-drafting a skirt from my block
« Reply #13 on: July 12, 2018, 10:22:03 AM »
Just to add, this is the sort of thing I'm hoping for (though I think it has some sort of extra pleat in there):

Yes, I thought this was the design you were going for? But just wanted to check you hadn't changed your plans and I had missed the post.

It's more an A line skirt (slight flared ) rather than a flared skirt? 


Francesca

Re: Self-drafting a skirt from my block
« Reply #14 on: July 12, 2018, 10:28:33 AM »
I'm not really sure, it's hard to know what you're going for if you've never done it before.

As for draping, not a chance. It's next to impossible for me to drape on myself and has never ever worked. I've tried many times. I much prefer flat-pattern adjustments (I'm OK with doing basic adjustments and changes and they come out OK, but skirts is really proving a mystery to me).