This is the skirt I never thought would be made, not in a million years, or the 36 hours I had left in Canberra before departing for Bendigo for the Christmas holidays.
I had the fabric, and I had the pattern. But I had no time. Nor did I have much inclination.
But it so happened that I found an unexpected hour-long "window of no obligation" on the 21st in between getting the car cleaned, delivering the second last boiled fruit cake to a sick friend and heading to a medical appointment. So I pulled out the fabric, pattern, my cutting board, pins and scissors, and got to work.
In 15 minutes I had a cut-out skirt. Most of that time was spent positioning some cute birds on the skirt - in the end I had to settle for them sitting at the top of the skirt, not the bottom of the skirt as I'd hoped.
After 30 minutes I had a half-sewn skirt.
I had a perfect fit without the waistband on it, and I knew that thanks to my weird lopsided stomach (thanks gallbladder surgery!) the waistband would only destroy a great fit, especially if I wore a t-shirt over the top of it (the waistband would just poke through). So later on that night when I should have been sleeping, I used some 100% cotton grosgrain ribbon as a facing instead. I added a hook and eye, sewed a hem, and chucked it in the wash to dry the next day.
Except I'd forgotten that although I'd prewashed my fabric, I hadn't washed the grosgrain ribbon, and the skirt waist puckered. It ironed out OK, but the result was actually better than expected - that sucker came in at my waist like nobody's business, and I had myself the perfect skirt! FINALLY!
On Christmas morning it went perfectly with my orange Salts so I happily trotted off to church wearing this year's Christmas Day skirt. I also made a salad in it, ate lunch in it, took a long nap in it, and then drove to Melbourne and sat up all afternoon and night having dinner and talking to my friend. Still wearing it. So comfy. Perfect fit. Loved it.
And the best thing? Besides having the perfect skirt? I managed to avoid a Jesus Arms Butt Incident. It was a Christmas Miracle.
Pattern: McCalls 3507 (out of print)
Fabric: Medium-weigh cotton print from IKEA
Modifications: Lots. Hip seams out, darts increased, grosgrain ribbon (1 inch) facing instead of waistband, back seam split sewn up. Longer zip used than usual (it was in my sizable zip stash)
Started and finished: 21 December 2012, possibly less than two hour's work in total.