It’s another Wacky Wednesday post! In the past, I’ve had the pleasure of showing you guys some cool dress patterns from Ellie and Mac, but today I’m so excited to show off this Wrap Skirt!
I purchased an order of really beautiful solid colored knits from IndieSew last year. I’m always impressed with the quality of the fabric that Allie chooses to stock in her shop, so I knew I’d be happy to have these fabrics on hand, despite not having any plan for them at the time. I snagged 2.5 yards of this beautiful, deep navy colored rayon jersey, and it has just been sitting on my shelf ever since. I’d played around with some different pattern ideas here and there, but nothing ever stuck enough for me to actually go through with it. I’m glad I saved it – I love what I’ve finally turned it into!
The Ellie & Mac Wrap Skirt pattern comes in two different lengths, and can be made using woven or knit fabrics. For a woven fabric, the ties are directed to be cut on the bias. However, since I chose to make my skirt in a stretchy knit, I did not cut my pieces on the bias, which ultimately saved a lot of real estate on my fabric. It also saved me some grief – these ties are stretchy enough (and fiddly enough to work with!) even without being bias cut. I’ve made the longer length version here – as always, I was going for maximum statement.
Something to keep in mind when you’re going to be making this pattern… It certainly is not for the sewist who hates gathering! The amount of fabric that you will cut, join together, and gather for your ruffle piece will vary depending on the size that you are sewing up, but for me I ended up gathering 10.8’ of jersey for this ruffle!! Luckily, this rayon jersey is a bit thinner and slinkier than other fabrics, which made what could’ve been a gathering nightmare at least a tolerable experience. However, I know this would’ve been a different situation with something a bit thicker, or any woven fabric.
My main tips for gathering your fabric would be:
1 – sew two (or even three!) lines of gathering stitches for more uniform, even gathers
2 – gather by manipulating your bobbin thread, not your top thread
3 – gather from either side toward the middle, and then spread evenly throughout
I’m of two minds when it comes to my feeling about the pattern itself. My first thought is that knits are absolutely the way to go here, for comfort, drape, and ease of gathering. However, after sewing it up in a knit, I was left feeling like maybe a light woven would’ve been the way to go – probably mostly due to my knit being a bit of a pickle to topstitch in all of the places topstitching is called for at the waist band and tie. Gathers in mind, though, I think I’d still recommend knits (because hey, why the heck would I want to hem 11 feet of gathered ruffle??).
Aside from the fun ruffle, I also really enjoy the construction of the wrap at the waist here. There is a button that holds the waistband of the skirt together where at the left side, and an additional tie piece is sewn to the right side of the waist to allow for the feel of a wrapped tie, without the hassle. Both are left completely up to your discretion when it comes to placement, and I do wish I’d sewn both of mine a little further back…
After working with Ellie & Mac patterns in the past, I know that their XS size fits me best, though I have to add length from time to time. I did not add any length here, but I do find that there is too much ease in the skirt and it feels a little large around the waist. Even with the tie tied as tight as possible, and the button placed on the behind the inner side seam, I’ve got a lot of extra room and it doesn’t sit up on my waist where I would like it to. I worry that the weight of the ruffle will exacerbate this over time, by adding weight to the skirt and pulling down and ultimately stretching out the waistband fabric.
I’ll consider all of this information before I make another one, but I don’t regret having made this one in knit. It is a beautiful, high quality fabric in a nice, rich color, which means it easily floats back and forth between super casual, as seen here, and dressier outfit options. It’s super pretty, and super versatile. Go check out the Wacky Wednesday sale at Ellie and Mac today to grab this pattern for $1!
Though the pattern used in this post was generously provided to me by the awesome team at Ellie & Mac, all words and opinions expressed are my own, as always! Links provided throughout this post may be affiliate links – if you choose to purchase any products through these links, I may receive a small commission, at no cost to you. This simply helps me justify the costs of my sewing habit and the time it takes to share it with you!! Happy Sewing!
- XX Elizabeth