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Forum > Creative Sewing > Need to add width to fabric panels for pencil skirt ( Moderated by Lynnelle)

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Need to add width to fabric panels for pencil skirt
Creative way to do that?
purplebouquet
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purplebouquet
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Date: 5/27/13 1:51 PM

I am refashioning an old shift dress into a pencil skirt for the office. Very simple pattern: back zipper with back vent (can leave the RTW as is), facing, tapered side seams, a couple of waist darts. After I undid all seams, I discovered that the panels are not quite wide enough for my pattern pieces. I need about 1/2 inch on all 4 side seams at the hip width.

Is there a creative, stylish way to add something (what?) to the side seams so the result looks like a design element and not a make-shift solution?

The fabric is tangerine-orange linen, and I'd like to pair the finished skirt with a short white linen blazer that is embroidered in a bold print in apple green and orange. In other words, my "insert" into the skirt can't be too conspicuous.

Thanks for your input.
Claudia
-- Edited on 5/27/13 1:52 PM --

beauturbo
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In reply to purplebouquet <<
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Date: 5/27/13 5:36 PM

Maybe you could just make a long narrow rectangular orange linen, insert strip for the side seams of the same orange linen, stolen from the top part of the dress you have not "used up" yet. It's not going to be long enough, but you could piece it in a few places, done the same on both sides of the skirt, and just with some matching orange top stitching on it, (plain or fancy) I think it would look good still and like it belongs there.

I tend to be rather decorative, and normally might stick something very different looking into there on the sides, or embellish it a lot more, but since you are going to be wearing it with that contrast white jacket you already got all that other embroidery on, maybe you just want the skirt part not to be in competition with that?

Or if you already made the jacket and all the embroidery on it yourself, and got left overs, then maybe go to town on it, add the same white into the side seam inserts, and continue some matching green and orange embroidery over that even, it could even go onto and past the inserts onto the main skirt fabric even? That could be a whole matching embellished suit that way, if you think it would not be "too much".

LauraTS
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LauraTS  Friend of PR
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Date: 5/28/13 7:51 PM

Decorative slot seam? Add a faced seam and piping? A contrast panel somewhere?

I think one of Barbara Deckert's books - I believe it's Sewing 911 - has a section about how to rescue clothes that are too small. She's got some great suggestions.

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tigergirl
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Date: 5/28/13 9:17 PM

I actually own a black pencil skirt that has 1/2" pvc (or something like that) stripes on it - two down each side on the front and one on the back. It looks as though they're seam lines but they're not, so if you did something like that, you could actually make them seamlines. Whenever I wear it, it gets a lot of compliments and people seem to think it's unusual.

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purplebouquet
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purplebouquet
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Date: 5/30/13 10:19 AM

Thank you all for your responses. I am intrigued.

Beauturbo, I like your suggestion of embroidered panels to hide the piecing seams. I had thought of puffing, but I don't have enough fabric. Embroidery would be a good alternative.

Laura, what's a slot seam? In the meantime, thanks for the book recommendation. Amazon has some used copies for about $4--I think I might order one. My 14-year-old daughter who has no cleavage yet needs to have the neckline of many clothes taken in, and I have been altering some high-quality clothes from MIL for me, only to always find myself a couple of inches short of fabric. The 911 suggestions might become very handy.

Tigergirl, pvc to me is the stuff pipes are made of. You can't mean that?

Because the fabric is tangerine orange, I don't want to add a true contrast panel--it might simply be too much, plus it would draw even more attention to my hipline--it isn't bad, but still. Some grosgrain ribbon maybe if I can find a close color match. Does anybody have a source where to buy some?

Thanks again.

Claudia


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