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Early Tailoring: A Couture Skirt For a Fine Jacket

Here are the details about the couture skirt I made to wear with my first tailored jacket. During my junior year in college, our assignment was to make a classic hand-tailored jacket and another garment to wear with it. While shopping for my jacket fabric at The Gallery of Fabrics in Atlanta, Georgia, I found a coordinating wool plaid. It was a muted fabric, with the same color as the jacket running through the plaid. I was in love.

Two wool fabrics: tailored jacket fabric at left and plaid couture skirt fabric at right

 

Right Fabric to Start

I grew up in a small town in Virginia, so it was exciting to be able to visit my brother in Atlanta during the summers, and to have access to some of the best fabric stores. It was also a huge bonus to find fabrics that my fellow classmates would not have access to. There’s never any fear of duplicating garments when you’re creating them yourself.

Full Plaid Wool Skirt

I had given the outfit a lot of thought and planning, and was off to a good start with the chosen fabrics.

I remember walking into the suite of classrooms at school and claiming a large table to lay the plaid fabric out to see how I wanted to cut it. The pattern was a four-gored bias skirt with a back zipper, waistband, and side seam pockets. Besides making sure the skirt was well-made, I wanted to be sure that plaid matched.

Closeup of matching seams of wool plaid skirt

Couture Skirt Construction

Zipper

I installed a hand-picked zipper in the skirt back and pockets in the side seams. The waistband, which I cut on the straight grain, was later applied to the skirt.

Zipper installed in center back of plaid skirt

Here are closer looks at the right side and wrong side of the hand-picked zipper. A waistband hook and bar serve as the final closure.

Closeup of hand-picked zipper in couture skirtZipper open and showing waistband closure on couture skirt

 

Seams

Our professor, Mrs. Ida Scott,…

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