I've had this red leather in my stash for a little over 2 years. There were three skins to start off with, then I made this dress last year and used up a whole hide. (It was suppose to have sleeves but they ended up pulling the dress oddly so were discarded.) For the remaining two skins I knew I wanted a skirt. There wasn't enough leather for anything with fullness so it had to be some sort of pencil skirt. But, being me, I didn't want plain and simple. I'll do simple if my fabric is busy but with solid colors I really like complicated designs.
This is skirt 116 from the September 2010 Burda. I love this design so much. There are no darts, and the shaped pieces fit together and mold around the body. It's totally unique. (I also love the dress version included in the same magazine - don't know when I'll get around to it, though.) Leather is totally unforgivable to sew with. Once it gets a hold punched through it with a needle there is no getting that hole to go away. I made a muslin to perfect the fit and found I only had to let the waist out a bit at the top side fronts. I let out a total of 3/4", which is a typical alteration for my somewhat square shape.
The fit of this skirt turned out really nice. It is figure hugging but not too tight. I shortened the pattern to hit right above the knees and had to remove the vent because of material shortage. As long as I don't try to climb any super tall steps it's not at all restrictive to movement.
I have no dressform pictures to show you the details because I could not get it over my dressform's hips. The reason for this is that the bottom is slightly pegged. Arg! Here are the front and back seaming details with the skirt flat on my bed:
Everything was going smoothly until I tried to put that zipper in. The first time I pulled the leather too much and ended up with a dimple below the bottom of the zipper. The second time looked better but I could see some of the holes from the first attempt and it no longer felt very sturdy. I took a day off to calm my nerves and ponder what to do next. Next day I ripped out the entire vertical seam, applied some iron on interfacing to the edge where the zipper was going, and re-stitched the seam taking a slightly bigger seam allowance. And would you believe I stretched it too much again and had yet another dimple at the bottom?!!! Out that came and I tried it once more, gritting my teeth and praying for mercy. It is still not perfect but oh well, I am not attempting another go.
I lined it with red Ambiance from voguefabricsstore.com. The directions did not call for any but I added interfacing to the top edges of the skirt. I really appreciated the separate lining pattern included with this design that didn't force me to reuse all the pieces that make up the front. Leather glue was used to affix the bottom hem in place.
I love my skirt! The leather is incredibly soft and buttery feeling. Hopefully I won't have any trouble creating outfits around this bright statement piece.
Here is the line drawing from the Russian Burda archives:
Sadly I did not get around to making an Easter dress this year for me or my daughter. I couldn't decide if I should make something warm or summery because the weather here tends to be unpredictable this time of year. Oh well, I've lots of pretty dresses to choose from. I'll check the temperature tomorrow morning and go from there. I hope you all have a wonderful Easter Sunday! I'll be cooking Easter lunch for my dad and immediate family and thanking God for the resurrection of his son Jesus!