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PatternReview Blog > In Stitches: Unhooked! or Ooops!
In Stitches: Unhooked! or Ooops! By DianeSev on 6/25/12 3:44 PM

by lareine

I have only really been sewing clothes for myself for the last two years, and I’m self-taught, so I don’t always understand why certain things are done in a particular way. My attitude was this: if I could take a shortcut or omit a step with no obvious repercussions, then why not do so?

Well, I learned my lesson about shortcuts with my first zippered skirt. I inserted the zip according to the instructions, but I was in a hurry and wanted to wear the skirt straight away, so I didn’t bother with the hook and eye at the top. How important could a hook and eye be? With great fanfare, I put on my new skirt and went out for dinner with my husband and a couple of friends to a local Mexican restaurant, which just happened to be up a set of stairs from the street. We enjoyed a delicious meal, I angled for and got some compliments on my newly-acquired sewing skills, and everybody was in good form when we paid up and left. I was the last of our group to exit and, as I was making my way down the stairs, I got the distinct feeling that something was not quite how it should be with regards to my waist area. As I stepped down from the bottom step to street level, there was a rustle of fabric and my skirt dropped straight off my hips and landed around my ankles.

I didn’t have any chance to grab at any part of the skirt before it reached the ground, and there was no graceful way to put it back on once it had made its descent, so all I could do was step out of it. Thankfully, this happened during a cold snap of winter weather and I had a knee-length coat on. Otherwise, my dignity would not have survived. As it was, I was laughing so hard that I drew attention to myself anyway, but at least I wasn’t standing on the street in my knickers! With head held high, I walked bare-legged to the car, and most people were none the wiser, but I was certainly very careful to hold my coat closed.

Needless to say, that was the last time I took a shortcut and didn’t use a proper fastener at a waistband. Zips are great, but sometimes they need a little enhancement to keep them from purring open at inopportune moments. No matter how tempting it may seem to leave out one little step – don’t!

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20 Comments      Login to Add a Comment    
Vonnevo said... (7/14/12 9:51 AM) Reply
Lareine, I always enjoy reading your posts, specially as you manage to sew and lend help to many around you during and after the CCH earthquakes. Best Wishes :)
marec said... (7/10/12 3:33 PM) Reply
This is so funny! Lucky that you had a coat, and a sense of humor.
Sewing Gal said... (7/7/12 11:17 AM) Reply
I just made a skirt without a waistband and have the zipper almost all the way to the top so doubt I could add a hook and eye. I'll be careful, though! Thanks for a humorous story!
Miss Fairchild said... (6/29/12 7:52 AM) Reply
How funny! You described it so well, I felt like I was there. But to let you in on a secret...just press on the zipper slider when it's up and it will lock in place. (I never sew a hook and eye on the top of my skirts that don't have a waistband--I'm too lazy)
blue mooney said... (6/29/12 7:26 AM) Reply
The moral of this story is to always wear a coat!
sanntech9 said... (6/29/12 3:14 AM) Reply
Oh your story had me cracking up and in tears, thanks for the tip, because the skirt I just made is missing the hook and eye, I will be sure to add it before I step out.
QuiltSewSewSue said... (6/27/12 10:51 PM) Reply
Great story Lareine!
sings2high said... (6/27/12 2:56 PM) Reply
So did you snatch up the skirt and stuff it into your purse? My great-aunt told how during WW2 she made herself a pair of drawstring underpants (tap pants) out of slippery rayon because silk was impossible to find. She went to a department store to shop and the matching rayon ribbon around her waist untied itself. Her panties hit the floor in front of the jewelry counter and she was too embarrassed to pick them up. Once she had ascertained that no one had noticed, she kicked them under the counter and left the store. Always wondered what kind of reaction they provoked when found by the cleaning crew!
Elliptic Coin said... (6/27/12 11:11 AM) Reply
Great story and reminder not to cut corners which is the first thing that comes to my mind when I look at a pattern!
SJE said... (6/27/12 9:36 AM) Reply
:-) Love it :-)
Leslie Bonner said... (6/26/12 8:15 PM) Reply
So funny - I'm glad you learned about this during the winter when you had a coat on!
FeedDog said... (6/26/12 3:32 PM) Reply
I LOVE that you started laughing!
MissLadyAudrey said... (6/26/12 10:04 AM) Reply
Love your story! I'll keep that reminder in mind...
KathySews said... (6/26/12 9:54 AM) Reply
Very funny. I live in fear that my zipper will fail
ShanniLoves said... (6/26/12 9:45 AM) Reply
Great story!! I've omitted the hook and eye in a couple of my garments. Maybe I should revisit those items.
mmuellner said... (6/26/12 9:18 AM) Reply
What a visual! Thanks for sharing.
JEF said... (6/26/12 8:43 AM) Reply
You poor thing. Love this story!
Sharonspils said... (6/25/12 9:55 PM) Reply
Wonderful story and so glad you had your long coat on.
Sew4Fun said... (6/25/12 6:08 PM) Reply
Great story! How lucky you had a long coat.
wenznz said... (6/25/12 5:12 PM) Reply
Excellent example of why following instructions can sometimes be a good idea ;-)

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