First things first, the winner of the Sewaholic Thurlow Pattern giveaway is annanic. Hoorah, please email me your address and I'll get the pattern out to you ASAP.
Now, when she's not scaling the dizzy heights of TV superstardom in The Great British Sewing Bee (oh my god, it starts TOMORROW!!!!!), Tilly Walnes has somehow found time to release a second pattern - the Miette skirt. I was lucky enough to be a pattern tester, which couldn't have come at a better time as I was actually contemplating making a very similar skirt this summer.
This was my first time working with a Tilly-made pattern and I was particularly impressed by the instructions. Two different kinds of instructions are provided: simplified and detailed. I used the simplified instructions most of the time, apart from when it came to attaching the waistband and I decided I needed a bit of extra direction. No fear on that front - Tilly has provided detailed photo tutorials of ALL the sewing stages. Having done a couple of my own tutorials for readers in the past, I know first hand how time consuming this is and take my hat off to Tilly for going the extra mile. If you're the sort of person who needs to see things visually for them to click into place, then the detailed photo instructions are a godsend.
The pattern is classed as suitable for beginners and I would say that this is an accurate description. When I was first learning to sew, I scoured patterns and books in vain, looking for a simple skirt that didn't include zips or buttons. If you've been sewing for a while, then you get used to one or other of these closures in your dressmaking, but it's easy to forget just how intimidating these things are when you're a beginner. Even the simple wrap skirt I eventually found in a book included a machined buttonhole for the tie belt, which put me right off as I was terrified of using a buttonhole foot at the time! That's why I think the Miette skirt is a perfect project for a beginner. The photo instructions also provide a great safety net, which is really important if you're new to sewing. And if you're not a beginner, then you can whip one of these beauties up in an afternoon, which is how long it took me to make mine. Very satisfying.
All seams, apart from the front and side seams are enclosed, either within the waistband piece or finished with a double hem at the skirt edges. I liked this approach so much, I decided to finish the remaining edges with French seams, which makes the whole skirt my most satisfyingly neat make to date! I made a size 3, and the fit around the waist seems fine. I shortened it by three inches, which looks perfect with flat shoes or sandals, but on reflection may be a tad too short for wearing with wedges. I always under estimate just how high some wedges are. It won't stop me wearing it for a minute though. There's also ample coverage at the back cross over section, which is reassuring if, like me, you have a morbid fear of flashing your knickers…
And now we come to the elephant in the room - the colour. After holding forth on my tentative liking for yellow in this post, I've finally been brave enough to venture into yellow territory. Taking the advice of my readers, I've started off with a garment that's not too close to my face, to ensure the yellow doesn't clash with my hair! I used a linen from A1 Fabric on the Goldhawk Road, which creases a bit too much for my liking, but that's linen for you. I also have to wear a slip underneath as it's a bit transparent - if I make a linen skirt again, I'll make sure I underline it!
I've now decided I need to make a couple of white tops, as I think yellow and white look wonderfully fresh together. I'll also have to spend weeks applying fake tan to my legs to rid them of their winter bluey-white hue (I'm wearing tights in the photos to spare you the horror). But for a first stab at something yellow, I'm pretty delighted with my Miette skirt. All I have left to say is congratulations Tilly, I think you've got another winner here. Go forth and buy the pattern please everybody. Immediately! x
The Miette pattern was given to me free of charge for pattern testing. All views my own.