More Gray Linen!

Who knew when I found that pearl gray tablecloth at TJMaxx that I would end up with an entire wardrobe of gray linen...I promise this is the last one...for now (I still have plenty of tablecloth to work with!  It was a monster!)

You have to look closely, but the 'skirt' on my dress form in this picture is the piece that was leftover when I cut the front of my Ashland jacket.

Here it is lying flat on my table...

I had wrapped it around my dress form just to have the color of the dress, instead of the funky color of my dress form, against the jacket as I worked.  I guess it grew on me!
The negative armhole shape started looking more and more like a pocket flap, the hem was already there from the tablecloth that it was cut from, just a couple of darts and a closure and BAM, I'd have a skirt!

...but I couldn't have just a plain, one fabric skirt, where's the fun in that!?  What to put with it?  I decided to try another Diane tip and make a 'design board.'

Diane uses foam core board and collects a grouping of fabrics, different techniques, inspirational pictures, little drawings of details, sample stitching, trims, buttons,...and at some point it might even lead to a garment or other project!  I thought it would be fun to try my hand at a design board starting with the idea of a basic wrap skirt.  (It was kind of my 'apron')

My design board!  It's not nearly as elaborate as some of the examples that I saw at DOL, but hey, it's my first go at it.  I picked some fabrics that I liked with the gray linen, some of the yarn from a sweater that I knitted that would go with the linen, maybe some rayon tape for ties, some cool clay buttons, a drapey skirt picture....I wasn't sure exactly what to do with it, but I found myself looking over at it as I worked on the skirt, it did seem to keep me on track somehow.


I started with the pocket.  The loose drapey profile made it challenging to know what to sew to what to get it to work.  I ended up with a big pleat on the inside to get the affect that I wanted.
 I added a yoke and facings instead of darts to shape the hips and waist of the skirt. 

 I decided that ties would make it feel more 'apron-esque' than hooks or buttons.  I tried light colored ties but liked the dark jersey strips better.

Like my jacket, the process seemed more like sculpting than sewing.  I really am enjoying the design-as-you-go approach.  Finishing the hem first, making a pocket without knowing what the waist will look like, serendipity is a huge part of working this way.  Being open to the details that present themselves along the way.

Here's the finished skirt with the knitted tank top.  And it all started with the 'leftovers' from my jacket.  I'm lovin' it.


  1. They look so great together. Brava!

  2. Thank you. I think I will enjoy wearing them this summer.

  3. PS – what is that gorgeous gold metallic ribbon pinned to your board?

  4. You got me! It's a linen weave with some metallic and probably some cotton....best guess, I got it at Soutache in Chicago.