Skirting Around the Issue

I have major Ostrich Syndrome (OS). When faced with unpleasantness, I simply bury my head in the sand and drift off to my happy place.

It’s a coping mechanism of sorts, that explains how I still managed to dance to ♫Ijo Shina”  in my car (thank you 90.9 FM), wiggling with enthusiasm beneath the seat belt on my way to work, while relentless Lagos Traffic was (with a smirk, no less) gleefully wasting scarce petrol that I grudgingly purchased at the black market, “chai!”- inducing premium price.

IMG_3338

Why the daughter of the village goldsmith still goes about without earrings, is the riddle that is Nigerian crude oil.

Now, imagine if I got all ‘Job in the Bible‘-like and patiently sorted through all the unpleasantness, perhaps I’ll find the allegedly missing $20 billion dollars under my bed (I’m certain that the finder’s fee would be worth the creak in my waist) or I’d have even eureka-rized and found a way to miraculously turn tap water into petrol!

Stay with me, still crouched underneath my bed, I might have also found the limited edition Titanium Remote Motion Control- “The iClick” (@Apple Inc. hint, hint)- that’d allow me to magically freeze all the Senators during their free-for-all fights, simply by pressing the pause button.

*CLICK*  Clenched fists suspended in motion, Flung chairs mid-air (à la The Matrix), Mace floating in the air like a deity, even the ones engaged in a scuffle, grabbing the front of each others agbadas, would seem as though locked in a tight embrace, in that frozen state. 😀

Duchesse fabric

Gold and Off- white Duchesse fabric

Anyway, personally, I think that skirts are very flattering to all female shapes. I made this two-tone inverted box pleats midi skirt using duchesse fabric in 2 colours.  I purchased one yard of each (36 by 60- inch yardage).

I pre-washed the gold fabric before sewing to test how the badly or not the colour would run, and I was pleased that it didn’t run at all.

Source: byhandlondon.com

Source: byhandlondon.com

Multi-colour pleating, which is basically inverted pleating with a separate underlay, requires precise measurement, knowing when one colour should start and end.  Most importantly, the width/ number of pleats must be planned with the dimension of one’s waist (plus wearing ease) in mind.

Bobbin lovin'

Cut strips | Matching thread colors |Bobbin lovin’

My sewing machine was threaded with both gold and off-white threads, so that the stitch colours matched the respective fabrics.

Sew strips

Sew time | Joined strips

I enjoy the logic of algebra and will use simple equations to describe the sewing dynamics of inverted box pleats:

  • If the desired number of box pleats is 20
  • And waist dimension is W
  • Then, width per tucked-in box pleat= W/20
  • Structure of spread-out box pleat= Inner pleat(2/3) + Outer pleat (1/3)
  • Inner pleat = 2 x W/20
  • Outer pleat= 1 x W/20
  • So, total width per spread-out box pleat= 1/2 outer pleat+ inner pleat + 1/2 outer pleat.

In this case, the outer pleats were off-white and the inner (underlay) pleats gold.

Baste Hem

Hand basted before pressing pleats |Hemmed with satin tape

The skirt was hemmed before giving the pleats a firm pressing.  I used a narrow satin ribbon to tape the hem edge, folded once and sewed.  I’d considered using the double-turned hemming technique but decided not to, it would have been rather bulky as the fabric has some volume.  An invisible zipper was attached at the centre back seam, which happened to be the only actual seam, not taking into account the bi-colour panels.

Fit and flare

I included a tiny ‘fit and flare’ detail, by cinching 1.75 inches deep, below the waist band. I added soft fusible interfacing to the waist band to give it some structure.IMG_3327

I enjoyed making this skirt, sewing was a breeze, the real task was cutting 41 (yes, forty-one) precisely measured strips and pressing 82 seams open.

No pain, no gain, abi? 😉

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70 comments

    1. I sincerely appreciate your kind words.

      It’s one thing to write, it’s another thing for others to read, it’s even more remarkable when the readers understand the message 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

  1. i like your wittiness and I want your sewing skills. It would be nice for water to turn to petrol wouldn’t it? I’m wishing Banana would turn to plantain and potatoes to yam here in Oz.

    How are you doing with our series of sewing lessons? lol..

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hey SEG,

      I can only imagine how not having home-food ingredients must feel for a Kitchen Goddess like yourself.

      Well, I can assure you that the Wizard of Oz is still in the business of granting wishes, with only three clicks of your ruby slippers, lettuce would also turn to okazi leaves. 😄

      Ah! I’ve taken a short cut, I am compiling a list of tutorials in the “How to sew” page, you might find them helpful.

      Thank you for reading.

      Have a lovely day.

      Like

  2. Tell me, do you sew for people? Because I’d gladly let you handle my unsewn fabrics lying around the house. Say yes please *puppy eyes* (of course I’ll pay).

    Been thinking I’d like to learn this sewing thing, but I also want to learn photography ugh! I love the latter better though. But the former could be handy.

    Nice skirt. Funny story too… Tap water to crude oil lol. I often imagine the govt discovering oil on our land. Then they’ll pay us royalty everytime they mine. Bliss.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Uju,

      Thank you for your kind words. Your comment made me feel warm and fuzzy, I have a big smile on my face right now. 😀

      No, I don’t sew commercially, my 9-5 day job keeps me very busy during the weekdays. It’s something that I’m definitely going to do in the nearest future, as it’s financially intelligent to have a Side Hustle a.k.a Plan B.

      Photography is also on my bucket list of skills to improve, I always appreciate vivid images captured at well-calculated angles.

      Oh, the many blissful things we imagine about a perfect Nigeria…

      Have a lovely week.

      Like

  3. I fell in love with this skirt after reading your Reader’s Section Interview on cassiedaves.com
    Lol I can’t keep up with the algebra but this is pretty, I haven’t seen it anywhere, so unique.
    I like the blend of colours too, this will look good too with mixed prints, well when you have energy to cut lol.

    Bookie Kunlere

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey Bookie,

      Thank you so much for reading and sharing this 🙂 I really like this skirt too.

      Oh, that’s a great idea! Mixed prints will be so lovely.

      Lol, the cutting sapped all of my energy.

      Like

  4. You are wearing that skirt! Chai! See posing! 😁

    Turning tap water to petrol is a genius idea. Please extend it to well water too to cover the “tap-less” regions. 😉

    I had no idea algebra was involved in sewing. Na wa! Love the way you combined those colors.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hello Sharon,

      Lol, you always leave the nicest comments, I am actually laughing heartily and typing 😄

      Thank you so much dear. Yes o! sewing is quite mathematical.

      Have a lovely rest-of-the-week! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Hello Sandra,

      Thank you so much for visiting, your comment really cracked me up 😄

      Yes, you are correct, it took a lot of patience. I was very pleased that it turned out nice in the end.

      I sincerely appreciate your kind words!

      Like

      1. I almost died at the thought of loosing my bag which had my ruby woo lipstick to a supposed thief one time…*sighs* Little wonder

        Like

    1. Hello Alexis,

      Thank you so much! I love midi skirts a little too much 😀

      I agree, the look can be dressed up or down.

      I’ll check out your post.

      Like

    1. Hello Uju dear,

      Lol @ “hate algebra”, no, not terrible. I am so pleased to hear that you are learning to sew. It’s a useful skill.

      I am fine, thank you for asking. These days, I find that I am choosing to DO rather than procrastinate, and it feels great 🙂

      Have a lovely day.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Ah! I thought I was the only one chilling. I won’t however be making away with Sisi Clara, its the shoes and all the gorgeous skirts and dresses you’ve refused to neither sew for me nor teach me to.

    P.s: well done with all that vivid imagery you created there. Clap for yourself o. Not only are the scenes hilarious, they remind me of fairy tales. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hello Lady Lizzie,

      Glad you came by. Sisi Clara says thank you for being so considerate. 😀

      Thank you dear, I’ve starting building a list of sewing tutorials in the “How To” page.

      Ah! I just gave myself a standing ovation, you know I’ll share the finder’s fee from the missing billions with you. Yes, the image of the frozen Senators is hilarious. Timi is right, for our own good and theirs. Lol

      Have a lovely day.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I will probably never get sewing, but i appreciate the finished product. Nice!

    This made me laugh: . . . grabbing the front of each others agbadas, would seem as though locked in a tight embrace, in that frozen state. 😄 I think freezing would do them and us good.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hello Timi,

      Thank you so much, your visits are always appreciated 🙂

      Lol, indeed it would! The mental picture of them frozen made me laugh really hard.

      Have a nice day.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Hallo luv,

      Ah! my sewing machine a.k.a. Sisi Clara will never follow you, she will scream 😀

      Thank you so much, block heels are super comfy.

      Have a lovely rest-of-the day!

      Like

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