This skirt was made from a king single flat sheet. It had every reason to go wrong, but somehow ended up right.
I wanted to make a Kariza style double layered skirt. I looked online and found that these type of skirts are 1/2 to 3/4 circle skirts attached to a long waistband with one or more buttonholes to pass the straps through.
The first issue was the sheet itself. It was about $10, and a dingy lemon colour.
I immediately decided to dye it, and picked up some iDye from a local craft store for about $10.
When I got home, I took a closer look at the sheet I had bought.
I had stupidly overlooked the fact the sheet I bought was poly cotton, not pure cotton. The dye I bought was suited to natural fibres. I returned to the craft store, only to find that they didn't have any of the iDye Poly.
The second problem came after I had resigned my self to dye it with the dye I had. I had already decided I wanted a gradient effect for the top panel, but I couldn't decide what I wanted for the bottom.
The original idea was to try a wheat paste resist technique, as seen here: http://eyesaflame.blogspot.com/2008/06/demo-flour-paste-batik.html
. My version didn't work as well as the one shown there, so washed all the wheat paste off before I even tried to dye it.
I then discovered shibori, a traditional Japanese technique. Shibori comes in many different forms, the one I chose is known as Mokume. There's more information on the technique found here: http://entwinements.com/blog-mt3/2007/04/mokume.html
. The stitching went okay, but using long threads caused knotting, tangling and frustration.
When I finished all the stitching, I retrieved the other half of the skirt from my craft room. I had put the scraps in one area, planning to use them as interlining for a few small projects and the skirt in the other, to prevent me confusing the two. You can probably guess which one I cut up. Which brings us to problem number three:
Can you see the weird, chunky piece that's missing? The skirt has been folded in half to get across just how much is missing. Luckily, since I hadn't cut up any of the scraps, I managed to find one large enough to cover most of the gap.
The fourth (and final) problem was encountered during the dyeing process. I dyed the fabric on the stove top so I could and have more control and achieve the gradient effect. While working with the shibori piece, I followed the instructions to agitate the fabric in the pot for 30 minutes. During this time, a few of the threads broke. After 20 minutes of stirring, I realised that constant agitation was probably not the best method for this kind of resist technique, so the effect on the final product it much more subtle than originally intended.
This is a close up of the shibori.
Weirdly enough, the gradient effect worked just as I had intended.
This was my first attempt at both of these techniques.
Finally, when it was all put together, it actually worked. I was pleasantly surprised.
The skirt is meant to be able to be tied over 100 ways. These are some of my favourites:
The addition of a belt helped things to look a bit less tent-like
(this one is my favourite)
Please ignore any mess in the background or goofy faces.
So, why did I decide to a light, convertible, summery skirt/dress/thing? If you haven't picked up from the spelling, I'm from Australia. Right now it's winter, and most nights the temperature drops below -6 degrees Celsius (about 21 degrees Fahrenheit). I needed something light, bright and summery to cheer me up during the bleak, dreary winter days. Now I just have to figure out what to wear it with. Any suggestions are welcome.
Thank you for reading my giant entry!