Tuesday, February 26, 2008

The Circle Skirt

Thanks for the comments on Doritos. One comment in particular from a lurker (hi there!) made me realize that I had been meaning to write about circle skirts in general. She suggested that I rotate the skirt on Doritos and place the black section at the center front and back. A very good idea, that. At some point I plan to try it out.

Below you can see a page from Helen Joseph-Armstrong, Patternmaking for Fashion Design, which is probably one of the best books I have ever bought. If you are the least bit interested in design and pattern drafting, buy it. It's fascinating to read and makes it all look so easy. One day I'm gonna chuck the J-O-B and devote six months to this book. Seriously.

Anyway, back to the suggestion about rotating the skirt. The grainline of the skirt determines where the fullness falls into folds. I think of this as puddling. If you study the drawing below, you will see what I'm trying to describe:

This is pretty much one of those things that has to be decided before you cut out your skirt. In my case I wanted the straight grain at the center front and back and cut my pattern accordingly. But, since it is a circle, I could rotate it.

If you study the grainlines in the drawing you can also see that Number 2 is a fabric pig, and Number 3 is such a hog it would probably require piecing to cut out the complete circle. Number 1 (the one I did) uses the least amount of fabric, which is dandy, since I wanted my skirt to fall into the folds as diagrammed.

Now on to Pivot. Here in the South everyone has a pivot. The rest of the country probably calls them Licensed Ground Water Dispensing and Pumping Devices, but we call them pivots. Because that's what they do--go around and around in circles.

See the circles? Pivot. Yes, my mind is weird. But obviously so are the minds of my children. Number One son actually designed this dress. I guess he thought if he came up with something so complicated, and mind-boggling, and totally bias, that I would go away.

Instead, I decided to try it. And I made him help, since it was his idea. We started out with 20 circles of fabric from one of the quilt totes. After drawing circle after circle, it occured to us to use the mouse pad as a pattern.

Then we laid the circles out and pinned them to a base foundation (yes, another circle skirt) and used one gazillion pins to pin it together:

You have no idea how much fun all this pinning was. Nor how aggravating.

Now to sew the thing together. Whew.


Rebecca said...

I can hear another "oooo-weeeee" coming!

Anonymous said...

Yah, it's the lurker again ;)

Cute, cute, cute, cute, cute!!! :)

Dianna said...

What edition of Patternmaking for Fashion Design are you using? There are 4 editions so far...

Juliane said...

Hi, Dianna!

I have the fourth edition. Love it!

crumpfarm said...

4 Hours? How do you do that? I am sooooooo slow, each outfit takes me days to complete. Can you come to my house and give me lessons? 4 hours about once a week should do it. Oh well, I love your designs - so inspirational! Thanks.