Westwood skirt knockoff finished

25Aug10




I finished it at last! If you’ve not been reading along, this is my attempt to make a version of Vivienne Westwood Anglomania’s Philosophy skirt.

I’m really pleased with it. The camera has done something a bit strange to the stripy fabric in the long shots so there’s a sort of moiré effect going on in some of the pictures. It’s better in the closeups. The fabric came from the remnant bin at Remnant Kings in Glasgow. I’m pretty sure it’s wool. It’s certainly warm to wear.



Here’s the back view:



The fit isn’t perfect because the waistband came out a bit tight. This is because I drafted the skirt to end at my natural waist, and checked the fit at the waist, and then added a waistband of the same width on top of that. Oops. Next time I’ll know better. I used hooks and eyes for the closure of the waistband so I just sewed them on a bit further out to give me some breathing room.

I tried adding an inseam pocket to the design but it really didn’t work. It had to go on the side with the pleats because the other side has the zip. The side seam went all wonky with the pocket in place so I ripped it out. It’s quite hard to unpick seams in this fabric because stitches just vanish into it, but once you’ve managed to remove them it doesn’t leave a mark.

I like it with the plain black T-shirt (Marks and Spencer‘s finest). I’m not sure about shoes. The blue ones are nice but I couldn’t resist trying it out with my Vivienne Westwood platforms.



Unfortunately they aren’t very practical. In fact I can only just walk in them, but they’re good for posing!

I made a lining by cutting it out from my original tailored skirt draft. This is a regular skirt block with darts for shaping. I made the draped pattern by cutting up a copy of the block, so in theory the lining ought to be the same shape as the skirt once I’d sewn the pleats and darts. I could have used the same pattern pieces for the lining as the fashion fabric but I had visions of catching a toe in the pleats while putting it on. Amazingly this did work.

I wasn’t sure what the correct way to finish the lining hem would be. I definitely didn’t want it hanging free at the hem as it would be bound to show at some point given that the skirt hem isn’t straight. I originally considered using my lining fabric as underlining, but couldn’t bear the thought of itchy woolly seam allowances so the skirt had to have a proper lining.

In the end I attached the lining in the usual way and stitched in the ditch at the side seams to fix the lining to the fashion fabric near the hem. That allowed me to treat it like an underlining when hemming and sew the fashion fabric to it.

This project has been a really educational experience. I’d like to try drafting some more things now, although I’ve got a couple of projects from patterns ready to go now. Next up is a BurdaStyle skirt, if my fabric survives the bin-liner-and-wet-sheet preshrinking method. I’ll let you know on Sunday!



6 Responses to “Westwood skirt knockoff finished”

  1. This is a fabulous skirt! And it looks great on you (gorgeous shoes too). Thanks for giving all the details on drafting and construction

  2. Oh, it looks brilliant. And the plain black t-shirt really shows it off, and keeps it nicely balanced. I’ll be looking forward to your next experiment.

    What on earth is that shrinking method you mention? I’m looking for a way to pre-shrink some boucle at the moment. I’m all ears!

  3. I have some very similar shoes to yours (the high ones). Mine are Carvela. I LOVE them and they’re actually really comfy. But the leather laces keep coming undone. Anyway…I like your skirt with those shoes. Cool!

  4. 4 Emily H.

    It’s beautiful! Have you seen the August Burda Magazine? There is a skirt pattern in there with huge pleats that is a similar style that might be fun to try.
    I’d also like to hear your pre-shrinking story when it happens…I’ve got a backlog of wool fabric that I’m too in love with and too chicken to deal with.

  5. Oh it’s very cool! It looks super in pinstripe. Well done giving patternmaking a go – it’s a lot of fun!

  6. 6 Amanda

    thats lovely! im currently trying to figure out the
    philosophy dress which i am entirely in love with but im so new at
    patern making that its a giant struggle!



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