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As soon as I saw Sewaholic release the Gabriola skirt I knew it was a pattern I had to have and make immediately.

The figure hugging yoke and floaty panelled skirt make this nothing less than “dramatic”.  Such a simple piece of clothing but designed to be put together so beautifully. The skirt fits through the hips but flares away from the body to the ground without being clingy or limp.

I bought the pattern from Stitch 56.  This first version wasn’t the one I wanted to enter in their sew dramatic gabriola competition.  I have ordered some beautiful Amy Butler Voile (Tapestry Rose) for my truly dramatic version, but it wont arrive in time.

I chose two fabrics for this skirt to match shirts I made over a year ago.  I am extremely taken by Alabama chanins design and style and wanted to create one of her patterns. Both of these singlets were trials for fit before committing to a larger hand embellished project.  Sewn entirely by hand I am very proud of them. Though they are wearable, they are extremely fitted which should pair nicely with a high waist maxi skirt.

This is the Alabama Chanin corset.  The pattern and instructions are in her first book – Alabama Stitch book.  Did I mention that this entire shirt is stitched by hand!  I overexposed the photo on the right so you can see the stitching detail and fitted princess seams.  BTW It is supposed to have exposed thread ends.

Back to Gabriola – this skirt is made from a semi sheer poly cotton that I got from East Coast fabrics at Burleigh.  In this picture, the skirt is straight from the line – no ironing!  I bought 4m initially thinking I would try and pattern match. But after I started laying out the pieces I found the task too difficult and went for random placement instead.

I cut a size 12 based on the finished measurements.   I wanted to add a curved waistband.  I could tell from a few of the pictures I have seen around that the straight cut waistband (as per pattern) doesn’t sit snug against the body.  As luck would have it I am making a pair of jeans by Angela Wolf at the moment for the March wardrobe challenge.  The jeans waistband pattern piece was perfect, however the closure is at the front, so the pattern piece needed to be modified. Basically I cut it at the centre back and then re-joined it at the centre front.  I then extended the curve to match the measurements of the waist seam.

Also after reading Busy Lizzy’s post about her sunshine maxi, I decided to omit the button closure and extend the zip to the top of the waistband.

As you can see from the above photos this skirt is also fully lined. I didn’t cut the lining as per the pattern, instead used the completed front and back panels as templates for the lining.  

I used the main fabric for the waistband facing.  The zip was inserted on the main fabric and then when sewing the top waistband seam, I sewed the lining in place along the zipper tape.

The lining is about 4 inches shorter than the main skirt and I also reduced the length of the skirt by about 2 inches before hemming so I could wear it with flats.

I thought I would feel too dressed up wearing this skirt, but with a simple black shirt and a pair of ballet flats I felt very smart and comfortable.  I also got lots of compliments!

Very dramatic, yet very lovely.  I can’t wait for my fabric to arrive to make the next one.

Pattern –Sewaholic Gabriola maxi skirt
Purchased from – Stitch 56.
Fabric  – 4m lightweight poly cotton in uneven plaid
Lining – 3m Snow White lawn