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Pattern Fundamentals - Drape Skirt II

Friday, September 25, 2015
There have been a few of this variety of skirt gracing the catwalk for the past couple of years.  I have also cut similar for local clients and the beauty of this design is it's simplicity for a first attempt at cutting drape patterns. The drape shape is in fact separate to the front and back patterns and acts as a decorative overlay for the front skirt.  Start with my Skirt Block and follow the pattern making instructions in this post.  Suggested fabrics:  Crepe weaves with a transparent overlay for the front drape or a satin backed crepe where you are able to reveal the satin back in the cowl of the drape.  If you are interested in Drape Skirt Patterns you can click through to our dedicated workshop and check out the detail.Drape Skirt II
Start with my skirt block or a simple pencil skirt pattern that you know fits:
  1. Copy out a full front pattern and a half back pattern (as below) to develop this design.
  2. Lower the waistline slightly as you see in the diagram.  i.e. 3cm at centre front, 2cm at both side seams and 1cm at the centre back seam.
  3. Mark in the 5-6cm wide waistband directly below the new waistline.
  4. Drop the skirt length below the knee to suit your own style.
  5. Taper the side seams, front and back: from 3cm at the hem to 0cm at the hip level.
  6. Add a vent to the centre back seam of the skirt: approximately 12-15cm long and 4-5cm wide to match your hem depth.
  7. On the front skirt mark in the location of the drape with dashed lines to show where you will add the extra fabric for the drape.  
  8. Also mark the notches you will need on the seam between the skirt and the waistband.
  9. Note there is the addition of a small pleat/turnback on the left side of the drape used to reveal the reverse side of the fabric.

Start with a Skirt Block.
To make the front drape pattern:
  1. Make a copy of the full front skirt block with the drape cut lines clearly marked.
  2. Cut along the three drape lines and open up the top of the pattern to include the extra length for the cowl drape.
  3. Also add extra fabric (4-5cm) for the turnback/pleat on the left side of the pattern.
  4. Be sure to mark all the relevant notches so this piece can go back into the waist with the right drape and turnback.
For the contour waistband you can trace the waistband directly from the pattern plan (not including darts) or draft a clean symmetrical contour waistband pattern.  To draft the pattern:
  1. Measure the finished length of the seam between the waistband and skirt to draft your contour waistband.
  2. Using half that measurement, draft a rectangle that is depth of waistband (5-6cm) by half waist seam circumference.
  3. Now measure the finished length of the top of the waistband (not including darts) and halve the measurement.  The difference between the two is the amount to be subtracted from the top line of the rectangle.
  4. Note the inverted rectangles spread evenly along the half waistband pattern.  Divide the difference in the two measurements by 3 or 4 to distribute the reduction in the top of the waistband evenly.
  5. Now fold out each of these tiny darts and you will have a contoured shape that fits the top of the skirt and is shaped to your waistline.
  6. Clean up the curves and add seam allowances.
Sewing Pattern Development
The remainder of the pattern pieces are a front and back skirt pattern.  The front skirt to be cut on the fold and the back to be cut 1 pair.  I suggest that the cowl edge of the front overlay be hemmed first before including int he waistband.  And you may have to consider a front hem facing so you can deal with the extreme curve in the hemline of the overlay and match through to the deep back skirt hem (4-5cm).

Drape Skirt II
I hope you enjoy the ideas and information in this post.  Please ask away if you have any questions.  Always happy to help.  :)

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mad14kt commented on 25-Sep-2015 10:36 PM
Such a UNIQUE skirt :) Thanks for sharing!!!
Anita - studiofaro commented on 03-Dec-2015 03:52 PM
Hi mad14kt, so sorry for missing your comment. Thx so much for the compliment. :)

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All images, designs, photos and layouts on this blog are created and owned by Anita McAdam© of Studio Faro. They are available for HOME AND PERSONAL USE ONLY.  If you would like to use my content for teaching or commercial purposes please ask.  I have some amazing resources for teachers and manufacturers. ;) enquiries@studiofaro.com

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The challenging patterns, the exciting new design trends and the impossible drapes; that's what I live for.  Disclaimer: These new ideas are offered here for testing and are offered without guarantee.  Allow yourself time and space to truly test and perfect the patterns for all your new ideas.  And please don't give yourself a hard time if the first toile is less than perfect.  It's simply part of a process. Enjoy :)

Using my content

All images, designs, photos and layouts on this blog are created and owned by Anita McAdam© of Studio Faro. They are available FOR HOME AND PERSONAL USE ONLY.  If you would like to use our content for teaching or commercial purposes please ask.  I have some amazing resources for teachers and manufacturers. ;) enquiries@studiofaro.com

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