From sultry snakeskin to low-key leopard prints, the world of fashion has been embracing its animal instinct on the runway – and for us dressmakers, it’s the perfect reason to practise our pattern matching, too! Here our dressmaker Amanda Walker has merged soft ruffles with a practical waist tie to create a look that’s bound to turn heads, while boosting your skill set.
- Fabric, 1.4m (150cm)
- Lightweight interfacing
- FRONT: cut one pair
- BACK: cut one on the fold
- WAISTBAND: cut one in fabric and one in fusible interfacing
- TIE: cut two
- FRONT RUFFLE: cut one pair, then cut away the top section of the ruffle on the left-hand side
- BACK RUFFLE: cut one on the fold
- 1.5cm seam allowance used throughout, except for the lower edge of the frills where 5mm is used.
1 Download the pattern, then follow the cutting guide. Stitch the darts into the back and front skirt, and press towards the centre back and front of each piece. Neaten the back and front side seams. Match the front and back skirt together, then pin, stitch and press the seams allowances open.
2 Lay the front ruffles together, right sides facing, then match the side seams and stitch in place. Neaten the seam edges together and press towards the back ruffle. Make a roll hem across the top of each front ruffle and around the base ruffle. Position onto the skirt base, matching the side seams and the left side to the notch marked on the pattern.
3 Position the right-hand side of the ruffle, 1.5cm down from the waist edge. Stitch in place and neaten the seam edges together, continuing to neaten up to the waistline on the left-hand side. Press the seam allowance into the skirt and the area above the left ruffle, then stitch this section to create a small hem.
4 Fuse interfacing to the waistband using an iron. Stitch one of the ties to the right-hand end of the waistband. Fold the waistband in half lengthways, right sides inside, and sew across the left-hand end. Trim the bulk from the corner, then turn the waistband to the right side and press flat. Match the left-hand end of the waistband to the left side of the skirt, and the right-hand end with the tie attached to the right-hand side. Pin and stitch the waistband to the skirt.
5 Fold the attached tie in half lengthways, right sides facing. Match the edges together and sew from the pointed end to the place where it joins the waistband. Trim the bulk from the corners and turn to the right side. Tease out the seam and press flat. Fold in the seam allowance along the inside edge of the waistband, sandwiching the waist seam inside. Stitch in the ditch or hand-sew the folded edge in place.
6 Make up the remaining tie as before, turning it to the right side and pressing flat. Neaten the open edge, then position it on the left-hand side of the waistband in line with the side seam, and stitch in place. Attach a hook to the left-hand end of the waistband and the bar to the corresponding place on the inside of the waistband.