Sewing skulls n' roses: P4P Pirate Pencil Skirt


Many say a pencil skirt is the most feminine clothing item. All those fashion magazines out there tell us it's a staple in a woman's wardrobe, a must-have, perfect for work, dates and more. Do you agree?
I never owned one (for real!) and it was time for me to find out, so I quickly made one myself.

Patterns 4 Pirates Sewing Pattern Pirate Pencil Skirt Skulls'n'Roses by Minn's Things

Yes, I agree: Pencil skirts do look very feminine, at least in my eyes. But I don't want to call it - or anything at all - to be a staple, a 'must-have' for everybody, or even just a specific range of people. I am a woman and I lived perfectly for the last 27 years without owning most of those so-called basic must-haves. I never had a white tee, or ballet flats, not even a blazer. And I know many others didn't either!

I'm sure you know what I'm about to say. It's kind of like my personal basic rule #1 for fashion:
Just wear what YOU want.

Patterns 4 Pirates Sewing Pattern Pirate Pencil Skirt Skulls'n'Roses by Minn's Things flatlay

Thankfully I was able to wear what I want for almost every moment since I started to choose my own clothes. Yes, there have been embarrassing moments. No, others didn't always respect my sense of fashion. But I look back to these situations, and I still see a human growing to simply not give a sh*t. And overall, it seems to me exactly this attitude makes me - at least a bit - happier than many others around me.

Now, back to pencil skirts. I recently discovered a lot of people actually wear pencil skirts in a more casual and comfy style, with sneakers, even hoodies.
Like these inspiration photos I found on Pinterest:




They look so comfortable, yet still stylish (in my sense of fashion). I love it! As soon as I read about this style in one of the many sewing FB groups, I immediately fell in love. But I didn't know, if I would love to wear it and because of that I didn't want to commit a lot. An easy pattern was needed to do a quick check.
This is what I found:

Patterns 4 Pirates Sewing Pattern Pirate Pencil Skirt Skulls'n'Roses by Minn's Things

Patterns 4 Pirates Sewing Pattern Pirate Pencil Skirt Skulls'n'Roses by Minn's Things


The pattern: Patterns for Pirates Pirate Pencil Skirt

Important stuff first: This is a free pattern! It's not even required to join the FB group, very nice for everyone who doesn't like groups, FB or both.

The pattern includes options for high and mid rise, as well as above knee, below knee and midi length. There are optional instructions for installing a walking vent.
It's for knit fabrics and therefore has negative ease at the waist and hip. Measurements include waist to hip length as well as thighs, which I think is great - not only for those with so-called 'thunder thighs'. You'll also find the finished measurements in the instructions.

Patterns 4 Pirates Sewing Pattern Pirate Pencil Skirt Skulls'n'Roses by Minn's Things

As this pencil skirt has just two side seams and the waistband, it's quite easy to sew - a total beginner friendly pattern! If you want to make the vent, of course it gets a bit more diffcult. Just a liiittle bit though (I guess, 'cause I haven't made the vent. The instructions make it look easy though).
All the instructions are very detailled and easy to understand. Photos of the steps are included, which is always nice to have.


My make - my thoughts

For my pirate pencil skirt I used this cotton/lycra jersey. I usually don't wear such bright colours, especially pink, but that fabric just made me scream:

Meme @Know Your Meme

I made a straight size L, below knee length, high rise (sitting at my actual waist) and no walking vent. When it came to hemming, I went a bit adventurous and tried something new. I just didn't want to break up the beautiful pattern with a seam. So I overlocked the edge, then I used hem tape and ironed the fold. After a few wears and washes, it still holds up. I like that!

Patterns 4 Pirates Sewing Pattern Pirate Pencil Skirt Skulls'n'Roses by Minn's Things hem tape no seam
No seam breaking up the fabric's pattern!

I love the fabric and I do love the skirt - as much as I can - but sadly the skirt has its flaws. In other words, I made the pattern as it is and until now, no pattern fit me as I wanted it to on the first try.
It's just the thing with body types: There are so many different ones, a tight fitting pattern will never be perfect for all bodies without alterations. I am either an hourglass with "small" boobs, or a pear/triangle with broad shoulders - depending on the calculation used. My waist is currently ~30 cm / ~12 inches smaller than my hips are, which makes it a bit difficult to work with patterns without a zipper or similar closure. But here I am, not caring about that and making it anyways *giggle*!

Patterns 4 Pirates Sewing Pattern Pirate Pencil Skirt Skulls'n'Roses by Minn's Things

Sooo, my fitting problems:
Most importantly, it rides up when I walk. I haven't quite figured out yet, why this happens. Is it because it sits much tighter on the hips than on the waist? Is the fabric too slippery for a pencil skirt? Not slippery enough? Better for another garment? Does it just need a vent? Any ideas are very welcome!

But, as I've started to get fit a few months ago, there's another problem now: It's too big. All over too big. I think it's still ok for now, but if my circumferences get smaller even more, I'll have to adjust it.

Patterns 4 Pirates Sewing Pattern Pirate Pencil Skirt Skulls'n'Roses by Minn's Things too big
A few months ago this was almost too tight - now there's so much excess fabric! 

I'll just take that as a compliment ;) Still, I love the skirt and just don't use it when a lot of walking is involved and I can't hide the riding up without looking ridiculous.

Patterns 4 Pirates Sewing Pattern Pirate Pencil Skirt Skulls'n'Roses by Minn's Things

Patterns 4 Pirates Sewing Pattern Pirate Pencil Skirt Skulls'n'Roses by Minn's Things


One last note, while writing the post I realized my photos do not actually represent my idea of the comfy pencil skirt style. I can assure you though, I wore it with sneakers in the summer ;-)

Now, over to you...

How do you wear pencil skirts - business or casual? Or not at all? 

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