Thursday, 23 July 2015

Neon firsts

A few months ago I was commissioned to make a neon yellow, midi-length, box pleated skirt for a client. I was excited about this project as my client is a really lovely person, and it sounded like a nice relief from all the complicated millinery I was in the middle of. I was initially a little apprehensive about being able to source neon yellow fabric, but in the end was able to find it easily on Goldhawk Road, well within budget. I got this great neon fabric with a woven paisley pattern, as well as neon polycotton lining and neon net for the underskirt.

The fabric was very drapey so I made a net frill attached to the underskirt to give it volume. The skirt had inseam pockets and an invisible zip. Inserting an invisible zip was a first for me, and I was pleasantly surprised at how easy it was! It gives such a good, clean finish; I don't know why I was so scared of them before.

Sewing was a big part of my undergrad degree, and I specialised in historical costume making. But in my 3 years on the costume degree, I did not insert a single zip! Sometimes I find myself feeling snobby towards this or that, or with the whiff of a superiority complex; all because I did pattern cutting and sewing at degree level. It's silly really: there is always more to learn, and we can never know it all. It took a simple zip to remind me of that, and bring me down to earth.

Here are two snaps pinched from my client's FB page (hope that's OK, Akua!) to show you how big (left) and how neon (right) the skirt really was!

Have you learnt a new technique recently? Or have you been taken by surprise by discovering something whilst sewing?

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