With the tops done for my Fall 2020 Back to School Module (and #WFHModuleSewalong entry), I’m moving on to the bottoms. The first is the Ellis Skirt by Cashmerette in a sky blue denim.
Cashmerette is a pattern company I’ve been dying to try out. I’ve heard so many great things about them. The owner, Jenny Rushmore, recently announced she would be expanding their size range to a range of 0-32. The Ellis Skirt is currently offered at 12-28. I’m glad to hear that more sewists will be able to make this pattern in future with the new sizes. I made the size 12 and added 3″ in length to accommodate my 5’8″ height.
For the fabric, I’ve been sitting on a one-yard piece of fancy denim I bought at Threadbare Fabrics in January for $18.
At the time, I was looking for denim to make the Sew Over It Mia Jeans out of, not realizing that that pattern requires a stretch denim. With just a yard, I didn’t have enough for jeans or a denim jacket. Luckily, I found the Ellis Skirt pattern and the fabric requirements called for just 1 yard. Of course, I didn’t notice until I had bought the pattern that the Ellis also suggests stretch denim. Too late to turn back now!
The fit on my Ellis skirt is currently quite tight. I’m hoping that with wear, this denim is going to stretch out and be more comfortable. That’s the reputation of this denim anyway. In retrospect, sizing up would not have been a bad idea knowing my denim had zero stretch.
The Cashmerette instructions were really fantastic and there was very little I stumbled on. One was the zipper size. In the notions section, the instructions only mention needing a 7″ zipper. For the 12, I found this was going to be too long and went with a 5″ zipper.
Only one pocket size was also given. When I went to sew the front pocket to the pocket lining I found it didn’t match the drawing. I ran the curved edge through the serger a second time and cut it down smaller.
The back pockets also seemed too big and I ended up omitting them rather than playing around with smaller form factors made up on my own.
The most difficult part of construction for me was the waistband. I watched several episodes of Woolen Forest’s Vlogmas 2019 (wonderful!) on YouTube while pinning and re-pinning the waistband to the skirt. It took a very long time to get it sitting correctly. Then sewing all that heavy fabric was a workout!
I sprung for a few things to help with this make. 1) Three spools of blue serger thread. I had been following some money-saving advice to use three spools of gray thread for everything and then just put a coordinating color in the lower looper. I was never happy with how this looked, so I just ponied up some coin for the extra spools that match my denim. The three new spools are the tiniest bit darker unfortunately.
2) Leonis marking pens from Japan. I’m sure I’ve ranted in this blog how unhappy I’ve been with every marking tool. The only one I could stand was a blue water-erasable pen — labeled only with “Japan” — that my mom gave me. I used it until it ran dry and was getting pretty worried, but I saw these mentioned on Instagram and decided to try them. They have a fine line and bright blue color — I’m loving them. Note, though, that they are VERY small. I was a little shocked when they arrived that each pen is about three times the length of my thumb.
These pens came a day after a bottle of wool wash I ordered had arrived. It was also a fraction of the size I was expecting, at just 3 ounces.
I was like, “Is Amazon having fun with me or what??” I thought maybe everything I order is going under some prototype shrink ray to reduce Amazon’s shipping costs. It’s weird in any case. -rp