Project 18 – Belle Skirt and Pettiskirt

For about 5 months now, I’ve had this idea in my mind about a skirt I’d like to make for Little Miss, honouring the new Beauty and the Beast. To my total joy, she adores the new movie. Any time she is upset, she wants to watch the first big song of the movie, and she will happily sing along to all of the songs. After the strain of the monster wallets, this was the sort of pick-me-up that I needed for my sewjo. So my vision for this was a yellow skirt, that ties up on one side, to reveal a pettiskirt underneath with Mrs Potts and Chip (original movie, not 2017 version) peeping out.

I bought a plain yellow cotton ages ago when I first conceived this idea. I used the Violette Field Threads Scarlett Skirt pattern for this project. This is a beautiful little pattern with a couple of different options for outer skirt and pettiskirt. For this skirt, I made the pleated outer skirt with tie up option. I want Little Miss to be able to get a lot of wear out of it, so I made the size 3 skirt with a size 4 waistband, but I used the elastic for size 3. Little Miss has a big tummy, and I often find the VFT sizes on the small side, but this way she has plenty of room to grow. And when the skirt is too tight, I can simply replace the elastic with a longer piece! So, I assembled this and then got on with the more challenging component, the pettiskirt.


The outer skirt, untied


Little Miss couldn’t wait for her pettiskirt to be finished. It’s a bit risqué but still so cute!



For the pettiskirt, I used the width measurements for the ruffled skirt. This is not as full as the “full pettiskirt”, and since I wanted Mrs Potts and Chip to be peeping out, I didn’t want too much fabric to get in the way. Once the skirt was constructed, I layered it underneath the yellow skirt, to see where Mrs Potts needed to be positioned to let her show. Now, using a picture I found on the internet, I traced and cut interfacing and fabric for the pieces of Mrs Potts and Chip. Then, slowly, I pieced them together, first attaching each piece to the skirt with a small zigzag stitch, then, once all the pieces were in place, by using my free-motion foot to sew around the outlines and add details, such as the eyes. This whole process probably took me about 5 hours, but thankfully it was much more enjoyable than the hours spent on the monster wallets.


I had to space Mrs Potts and Chip fairly far apart but when the skirt is on, they look close together


Little Miss absolutely loves her new skirts, and so do I!


Who needs a shirt when you have 2 skirts?



Project 16 – Berry Bubble Shorts, Tween Style

So, as you learned in my last post, my step-daughter arrived without her suitcase, which drastically limited her wardrobe choices. Luckily, we only had to worry about hot weather here, so really, the biggest limitation on what I could make her was time (you know, without 5 kids hanging off me). After going through a heap of patterns, and my stash, she decided she’d like the Berry Bubble Shorts by Rebecca Page, in a navy with white swiss dot cotton. Ok, time for a confession…I may have steered her towards these so I could see how they would look on an older kid. Why? well, I’m planning to make myself a pair with the women’s pattern with the leftover fabric from my silver dress. I’ve made several pairs of these, always with the bubble hem, for Little Miss, so I wondered how the straight hem would look, and also what the length was like. As a sidenote, I always hate shopping for Miss 11 because I find the store-bought shorts are always SO short for girls. Spoiler alert: I was so happy with the length and cut of these.

I didn’t make many modifications to this pattern at all. In fact, the only modification I made was to cut the leg bindings on the grain instead of the bias. This was less of a stylistic decision and more of an economising one; I had less than a yard of this fabric and it was a real struggle to get the pieces out of it! Also, instead of making the leg binding 1/2 inch wide, I made it 3/4 inch. I did this by folding the binding piece in half, then instead of folding the edges in to meet in the middle, I only folded them halfway. I did this to make the cuff slightly longer because I was worried about the length, which I needn’t have, but as it turned out, I prefer it a little wider, especially since I also added piping to the binding (and also at the pocket binding).


I added the piping by first sewing on the bias to the back of each piece. Then I pinned the piping so the cord was just past the line of stitching from the bias, and basted in place, trimming the seam allowance. Finally, I folded the bias over, pinned and sewed it all in place. Perfectly neat piping every time!


These shorts seem a bit fiddly and a lot of effort to make. I know the first time I made them (albeit in a teeny size), they seemed to take forever. But even with the extra fiddling of the piping, these didn’t take too long to put together at all. I promise, once you’ve done it once, it gets so much quicker and easier.

These look like they pull a little in the crotch, thanks to these photos, but it’s just the result of an awkward 11 year old trying to pull “model” poses, and a clueless husband not bothering to straighten things out. We went to a kids playground right before these photos for a birthday party and she played long and hard in them, claiming they were “super comfortable”. And I, for one, love the “sailor-y” feel of these.


They fit really nicely in the back, and the length is great. Not nun long, but not skimpy short either


Miss 11 swears these are really comfy and don’t cling at all