red skirt

23 June 2007

red skirt 1

I really miss the two corduroy skirts I grew out of* and gave away a few winters ago. The pattern is from a Japanese book called Skirt a la carte, by Machiko Kayaki (ISBN 4-579-11000-5).

a la carte

No, I can’t read any Japanese, but I managed to muddle my way through the diagrams. I’m not sure if the pattern included seam allowances or not – when I measured the pattern pieces they seems a bit small so I added seam allowances, and the skirt turned out a bit big. But some pieces like the pockets would have been ridiculously small if I hadn’t added the allowances. Any wisdom from frequent users of Japanese patterns?

And yes, I probably could have saved myself a lot of trouble by buying an english pattern. But English patterns don’t come in beautifully presented books with lovely photos that make the skirts look like something I’d aspire to own, do they?

red skirt 2

Here are some detail shots, including some B&W because I love how the texture of the corduroy shows up.


red skirt detail

red skirt detail 2

*As in the definition of attaining adulthood: you stop growing upwards and start growing sideways.

5 Responses to “red skirt”

  1. I posted a couple weeks ago about the Japanese sewing books and how to use them.

    The patterns do not include seam allowances. By following the cutting layout diagram, you know how much to add, and where. Seam allowances to add to your paper pattern before cutting it vary from 1 cm to 3 or 4 cm. If the seam allowance is not stated on the cutting diagram, it is usually the default, which is 1 cm.

    Your red skirt is awesome. Machiko Kayaki is my sewing idol. I bought her “Sewing Lessons” book last month and it is brilliant. Her commentary on each pattern makes me feel like she would be a real taskmaster of a sewing teacher. Probably just what I need! ha ha

  2. Ali said

    Hey thanks! I thought that may have been the case because I did notice them on the little diagrams. So maybe I chose the wrong size – I have that problem with western patterns, they include more ease than I like.

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  5. Dominique said

    I really love and *need* this perfectly red corduroy skirt you’ve made. I’ve never sewn anything (not for lack of interest), and I was wondering if you could make one for me to buy.

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