So I done goofed. This year was not my first Valentine’s Day in 3 years. It was actually my first in 4 years! And what a day it was: I went to the winter wonderland up in the countryside, where the Mad Hatter and the white rabbit were waiting. We decided to stay in, dress up, and have a home cooked dinner.
The Mad Hatter’s trademark colours are red and black, and I wanted to match his outfit. Since red is a nice Valentine’s Day colour, I chose to make a red outfit. Unfortunately, I didn’t own any red dresses, and there was no way I was going to drop $40 on a new dress I’d only wear once. I did, however, find a red t-shirt that fit fairly snug, and thought it would make a cute cutout top. How about, I thought, we cut the top, and make a detatchable skirt, like the one April made.
And then I started looking through videos, and found this video about a convertible skirt. These skirts are similar to the infinity dress, which can be worn in many different ways. So I thought about making a similar one; it’s basically a wrap skirt that goes around twice, with a keyhole in the center of the band to accound for the extra wrap.
But then, a whole bunch of things went wrong…
- I bought sheer ribbon, thinking it would work. It did not.
- I found the perfect red fabric, but not the perfect complementary fabric.
- Logo removal methods didn’t work on the shirt.
So here is the final decision on the outfit. First, we will make the skirt. Note: this is not a formal pattern. If anything, it’s an experimental blog. Now let’s dive in!
Fabric of your choice
Step 1: Measure the fabric around your waist. It should be enough to wrap around twice. When in doubt, round up. Remember, it’s easier to take in a garment, than to let it out.
My measurement is about 30 inches (76 cm) around. So the minimum amount of fabric I need is 76 x 2 = 152 cm, or 1.52 m. To be on the safe side, I bought 2 meters of fabric.
This is where I started to fail… I bought satin. ($4/m) Satin is delicate, frays easily, and shows mistakes. You can try ripping out seams, but the holes where the needle pierced it will show through. In the future, I will use jersey, or a soft knit fabric that doesn’t fray and show holes. It’s a good thing I bought extra, because a lot of the selvage ends had to be sheared to remove stray fibers.
Step 2: Make the band.
Decide how wide you want your band. I want mine to be about 2.5 inches (5 cm) plus half an inch for seam allowance. So the width of the fabric I cut was (2.5 + 0.5) x 2 = (3) x 2 = 6 inches. Hooray for BEDMAS!
As for the length, I just used the length of the remaining fabric. Each cutout strap was 6″ (15.24 cm) x 2 m. You can adjust the length of the straps later.
*Looking back on this project, step 4 was unnecessary. I think I meant to sandwich the top of the skirt between the two pieces, and cut it open so I could roll the hems? I don’t remember.
Step 3: Attach the skirt to the band.
Yeah. I got lazy and just sewed it on flat, as thought it were a ribbon. To ensure the skirt fit me properly, and to give it a bit more body, I made rough pleats with my fingers to gather any excess fabric. Below, I’ve pinned a ribbon, to give you an idea of where the strap was sewn. (I forgot to take a picture of this step. >_< )
Step 4: make a keyhole in the center of the belt. Glue the edges of the keyhole so it doesn’t fray.
To determine where the keyhole should go, I held one end of the skirt, wrapped it around my waist once, and marked the position where the belt crossed.
Instead of hemming the skirt, I treated the raw edges with FrayCheck, to keep them from unraveling. This helps maintain the flowiness of the fabric, and saves on thread.
Finished! Sigh… Perhaps in the future I’ll revamp this skirt, into an easier-to-follow pattern. More like Fail-entine’s Day, amirite? ^_^….’_’… T_T
Here is the final product, side by side with my Mad Hatter’s dashing suit. He said it looked good, but I know I can make something better. I paired this outfit with the heart earrings from last week’s blog, and black stockings.
Date not included. Perhaps one day, I’ll make another skirt like this.
Hm… I should’ve made this much shorter. I think I’ll refashion it into a wrap dress.
For the top, I took a fitted red T-shirt I no longer cared about, and cut a square neckline. Unfortunately, I couldn’t remove the logo on the front, so I ended up cutting a low back. Yikes! This low back, plus the square neckline, meant the top couldn’t stay up on its own. So instead, I opted for a technique I used in a Pikachu costume way back when, and wove a ribbon in the back. This created a cute lace-up back. I hope I’ll get more chances to wear this style in the future.
I tried to curl my pigtails, but they failed miserably. Do you ever get that? Like, you’ll be putting on eyeliner and one eye will be Beyonce, and the other side will be Jay-Z? Or one side of you is original, and the other side rips off jokes from iiSuperwomanii?
After getting dressed, the Mad Hatter took me by the hand, and opened the door. We sat beside each other and ate spaghetti with bacon alfredo sauce. Yes, we tried the Lady and the Tramp thing. We decided it’s best left to doggies, who can make anything look cute.
We made the fondue after we finished eating, so it would be fresh. In the past, Shoonie and I have made chocolate cups by melting chocolate, painting containers with the melted chocolate, and letting them harden. The chocolate fondue stayed nice and liquid for a long time by comparison. We dipped strawberries, marshmallows, bananas, and even bacon! The bacon was sweet and salty, aka delicious. But the bananas were still my favourite.
Whipping Cream: $3.69
Parmesan cheese: $3.00
Chocolate Chips: $3.69
Bananas: $0.59/lb x 2 = $1.18
Fabric: $4/m x 2 = $8.00
Megabus tickets: $70
Time spent with the Mad Hatter: Priceless
The moral of the story is, you don’t need lots of money to have fun. All you need is good friends, good food, and good times. Here is my belated present to you, dear readers: an entry from this month’s 30 Day Challenge.
How was your week? Did you celebrate Valentine’s Day? Friends’ Day? Cousins’ Day? Write midterms? How do you like to celebrate? Comment below!
Pika, so happy~