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How to Add In Seam Pockets to the Conifer Skirt

As part of Sewing Indie Month, I’m delighted to share a tutorial from Mari of Seamster Sewing Patterns. What’s better than a pocket? Moar pockets! In this tutorial, Mari will teach you how to add in seam pockets to the Conifer Skirt to compliment the pocket already hidden in the waistband. Hello SeamstressErin readers! My name is Mari from Seamster Sewing Patterns and Sew Independent. I’m excited to bring you a tutorial on sewing stable inseam pockets for Sewing Indie Month. Like many sewers, I love me some pockets. I also love wearing knits. You know what this can lead to, saggy pockets that gape open in an incredibly unattractive way as they bulge out on the sides of your hips. But there is hope! And the secret may very well lie in your stash. For today’s tutorial I’m using Erin’s Conifer Skirt, although you can use the same techniques …

Sewing the Conifer Skirt Waistband & Pocket

This is the standard construction method for the Conifer Skirt waistband and will walk you through what you need to do with or without a pocket. If you are a beginning sewist, check out the simplified waistband construction instead. Before reaching this point, you should have selected your fabric, selected your size, selected the stitch you will sew with, and sewn the layers and sides. With or without pocket: [28-29] The photos used in this sewalong show the wide yoga-style waistband, but the process is exactly the same for the narrow waistband. Sew the two Waistband pieces right sides together along the sides. For the yoga-style waistband, make a notch in the seam allowance at the center point (this allows the waistband to fold down without creating a bulge at the center. [30] Press the side seams of the waistband open. With pocket: [31] Sew one side of the pocket …

Layers and Side Seams on the Conifer Skirt

We’re ready to start sewing the Conifer Skirt! Before this point you should have already cut and marked your fabric as well as tested and chosen the stitch you will use to sew. Most of this portion of the sewalong is dealing with the shingles, so skip down to the bottom if you aren’t putting layers on your skirt. HEMMING: Before we attach any of the shingles, you will want to hem them (if you have chosen to do so. Remember, that choice was made when you cut the fabric. Hemming isn’t necessary and the skirt used for the majority of these photos does not have hemmed shingles). Fold the bottom of each layer to the wrong side 5/8″ and run a line of stitching just below the raw edge of the fabric. On many knit fabrics the right and wrong side look similar, so make sure that you are hemming a shingle …

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Stitches for Sewing Knits

If you’re already a confident sewer-of-knits then you can probably just skip over this post and jump right into sewing your Conifer Skirt. If you want a refresher or haven’t done a lot of sewing with knits, then this should bring you up to speed and help you feel conifdent enough to get started! There are several different options for stitches you can use when sewing knits. The first option is to use a standard straight stitch and stretch your fabric as you sew. This is also the option I recommend the least – your stitches often end up looking stretched out and uneven and there isn’t much stretch in the seam so it’s prone to breaking. You may have okay luck with this technique with a stable knit that has very little stretch like a ponte, but I do not recommend it for any knit that you would use …

Cutting & Marking the Conifer Skirt

Almost any pattern that you sew will have various marks that you will want to transfer to your cut fabric before you start the actual sewing. The Conifer Skirt is no exception. The Conifer Skirt has notches that we use to align the top of the skirt with the waistband and optional pocket. As with any pattern, you can mark the notches in several ways. When you are cutting out the fabric pieces, you can make notches of fabric pointing out. If you find that laborious (or forget before it’s too late), you can make little snips into the fabric piece. Remember that you have a 5/8″ seam allowance and make sure that your snip is significantly less than that. Any fabric that you would use on the Conifer Skirt is likely to handle a snip well, but remember that you don’t want to snip into any very delicate fabrics …

Size Selection and Grading the Conifer Skirt

Size Selection: If your body measurements don’t put you in a single size for SeamstressErin Designs, most women should select the size of your Conifer Skirt based on your hip measurements. The exception to this rule is if your waist size is more than one size larger than your hip size. Then you should select the pattern based on your waist size. Bust size has no effect on the sizing or fit of this pattern. Wearing: The Conifer Skirt is sized to fit on the low waist with the hips 6″ below the waistline of the skirt. However, because the skirt has a soft A-line shape, you don’t need to change anything about the shape of the skirt to wear it higher or lower on the body. If you want to wear the skirt higher, you may want to go down a size although you can also simply adjust the …

Knit Fabric Selection for the Conifer Skirt

When choosing fabric for the Conifer Skirt, there are several aspects to the fabric that you want to know and consider. In fact, these considerations are important for selecting knit fabrics for any garment! For the Conifer Skirt, you will particularly want to consider roll, recovery, stretch percentage, stretch of a print, and weight. I talk through all of these aspects in this video, for those of you that like watching instructional videos. Fabric type: A jersey is the most obvious choice for the Conifer Skirt. However, there are many types of knits and if you find one that has the necessary characteristics discussed below, go for it! ITY knits and four-way stretch knits are also obvious choices. You might even find a stretch woven that will work. Roll: Do the edges of your fabric roll? Don’t fret, this isn’t necessarily a deal-breaker. The edges of some knits will roll …

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Conifer Skirt Pattern Testers

Any time a new pattern is published from an indie designer, my favorite part is seeing the assortment of garments from pattern testers. It is so fun to see a collection of different women using different fabric and making different design decisions, all from the same pattern. I was fortunate to have an amazing, inspiring, creative assortment of women that tested my Conifer Skirt and I’m honored to share some of their gorgeous creations. Woolbothy wins my unofficial award for most romantic photos. Isn’t the setting of her daily life simply gorgeous! She made and started wearing the skirts while it was still quite chilly in her part of the world (Scotland), showing that these really can be year round skirts. She made them a bit shorter than maxi – “more ankle skimmer than mud trailer” – and remarks that, at 5’3″, she’s proof that you don’t have to be …

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Introducing the Conifer Skirt!

I initially developed this skirt after getting a little too excited about a purple and green striped jersey that I found on an outrageous sale and bought kind of a ridiculous amount of it. I wanted to sew a maxi skirt since I love wearing skirts, I especially love wearing maxi skirts, and the idea of a maxi skirt from a comfy knit sounded like a dream. I wanted to play with the stripes, so I put giant shingles of fabric on the maxi skirt. The initial drafts of the skirt in the purple and green stripes have since gone the way of the thrift store (that’s why it’s pattern development – there have been definite improvements since that first draft!) but I found that I loved wearing the shingled maxi and that the base skirt that the shingles are layered on makes a great, simple skirt on its own. Since the …