I bought a sewing machine!  And although it took me a while, I eventually realised I could make clothes with it.  First a gathered skirt, which was basically two rectangles sewn together, and then a top, which was two different rectangles sewn together.

Then I decided to take the plunge and try a pattern.

I did home ec in high school, but never quite got the hang of patterns.  Everything I made always ended up too small.  So I selected for this first-attempt-in-a-decade the Mabel skirt by Colette Patterns.  It’s simple, cute, designed for generously-proportioned women, and it seemed pretty easy.

And … it was.

Not perfect — turns out that, while my little sewing machine can do heavy knits, it doesn’t really like it, and will demonstrate its displeasure with a series of passive-aggressive mechanical problems.  And I’ve yet to master the straight line.  But I’ve produced a skirt which is cute, has a bit more structure than the two black mini-skirts I already own, and is (just) long enough for work.

The squinty face is just an added bonus.

The squinty face is just an added bonus.  The sun was in my eyes!

Also, it’s 1996 again in my heart and in my house.

I didn’t hem Mabel, because it was perilously close to being Too Short For Work, and I didn’t think I was capable of working with that small a margin.  And I like it as it is.

There are three variations of Mabel, and this is the first, and the simplest.  I fully intend to have another go, but with thinner fabric next time.  That patterned knit is gorgeous, and I love wearing it, but it’s just too much for my sewing machine to handle.  I have heaps left, though, so maybe I can use it in smaller quantities as a trim in the future.

(Oh, and that’s the two-rectangles shirt I made.  Don’t laugh; I’ve paid a lot of money for factory-made shirts with that design.)


The cat was unimpressed, but he disapproves of any hobby that doesn’t directly involve himself.