Caramel A-line skirt: in progress

Caramel a-line skirt - in progress - pattern envelope

I’ve been working on a simple A-line skirt with patch pockets, Simplicity 1717, View C (the shortest version).  Despite the simplicity of the pattern, it’s been a bit of a bumpy ride so far.  As in, this stupid thing just won’t fit properly.  Blargh!!  You’d think such a simple design would fit without any issues!  But you would be wrong.  Oh, so wrong.

Caramel a-line skirt - in progress - muslin

I made a muslin last weekend out of leftover fabric from my blue blazer and Mad Men dress.  I cut the “slim” version of the back pieces (the pattern comes with options for “slim,” “average,” and “curvy”), and It actually fit perfectly right out of the envelope.  Finally a pattern that fits my no-hips!  Or so I thought.  I was a little dubious about how the fit would translate to my caramel twill, since the muslin fabrics had a little more stretch than the twill, especially once it was interfaced.  Hmm…

Caramel a-line skirt - in progress - front waistline

Apparently my suspicions were right because look at that weird pooling at the waistline!  UGH.  I had a similar issue with my Butterick 5613 pleated skirts, and I’m starting to wonder if this will be a common issue for me with Big 4 patterns with this type of contoured waistband.  When I tried the skirt on, the pooling looked really unflattering and made my stomach look a lot bigger than it actually is… which I don’t think any woman would actually want.  Am I right??

The other issue was that the waistband wound up being a little too tight, especially at the very top.  I feel like even this “slim” pattern is too curvy for my body, ha!  I guess I have genetics to thank for my boxiness.  : )  I let out the side seams of the waistband as much as I could considering I had already trimmed the seam allowances (bummer), and it did help a little.

Next I want to take out this extra fabric at the waistline, which will hopefully be an easy fix and make the skirt look more flat and flattering around my stomach.

Caramel a-line skirt - in progress - back waistlineSadly, the same pooling is happening along the back waistline.  Boooooo.  😦  Why is this happening?  I feel like the waistband pattern piece is just too small to fit into the skirt pieces.  Whatever shape my body may be, the pieces should at least fit together properly.  I’m going to try to pinch out the excess fabric, and hopefully this skirt will be salvageable.

I was getting so annoyed with this stupid project that I had to just give up for the night… before I made things any worse!  Late night sewing is never good.

On a happier note, the invisible zipper went in like a DREAM with my invisible zipper foot.  I’m amazed every single time I use it.  : )

Has anyone else had this weird waistband problem with Big 4 patterns?

6 thoughts on “Caramel A-line skirt: in progress

    • Yeah, I think it is stretching out a bit, despite the fact that I did staystitch it beforehand. It really seems like the waistband piece is too small or something. I’m going to try to fix it, but my patience for fixing things is notoriously low!


  1. Did you check the pattern to make sure everything lines up properly? I’m sure it’s fine being a Big4. I’ve had the issue too where I’ve stay stitched using a 4mm stitch and the fabric has eased up on me – no visible gathers, but the stay stitching actually shrunk the fabric a bit – now I gently pull the fabric as I sew to make sure that doesn’t happen.


    • Everything lines up, so I guess the pattern pieces are ok after all. I suspect the skirt pieces just stretched out a bit. I also think that the pattern naturally bumps out a bit right at the waistline, which is weird. Who knows! I fixed it though – new post coming soon. 🙂


  2. I’ve also had that happen when one piece (waistband) is interfaced while the other (skirt body) is not – I guess one is rigid and one is stretchy – so not too surprising when they don’t behave the same! Sorry, just thought of that 🙂


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