Barely There Python ruched panel skirt (Burda 2011-08-121)

This should have been an easy make. But my fabrics conspired against me. So this snake missed the  Jungle January 2015 party.

The Pattern

Again this pattern wasn’t my first choice. When I thought I’d go ruching & front panel I had in mind the skirt portion of Burdastyle 2014-05/115 asymmetric dress. But I wasn’t sure the one-sided ruching would look as nice in a plain pencil skirt. It might have appealed to me initially because one shoulder bodice drive home the asymmetry point. Without that it might lack conviction and look like a mistake. Plus it would eat up my precious print. So I went with this simpler symmetrical rusching skirt.

Style Shots & Mug Shots

WORN WITH: 1 Self-drafted Alexander Wang S/S 2010 Wannabe sweater, tote v2; 2 Burda 2013-11-111 shrug, Burda 2012-05-109 top ; 3 Burda 2013-11-117 jacket ; 4 Self-drafted Martin Margiela SS 1997 Wannabe top / jacket ; 5 Self-drafted Vivienne Westwood – Comme des Garcons Love Child top ; 6 Burda 2013-12-119 top ; 7 Self-drafted Dolce & Gabanna Wannabe cardi

Size Used

34 as it was closest to Psychedelic Leopard 2: Burdastyle 2012-05-113 draped skirt I made previously which fitted well.

Changes Made


Fitting changes
  1. Tweaks in widths which probably weren’t necessary.
  2. Sway-Back Alteration: Lowered waistline at CB tapering to nothing at Side Seam.
Design changes
  1. Extended the length to below knee, which is almost the same length as #122. I checked the ruching length. It was about 1.5 times longer than the corresponding front panel length. So I increased the ruching panel length accordingly.
  2. Pegged the side seam for a more shapely skirt. Hem is 2″ smaller.
  3. Omitted the vent. My fabric had enough stretch to accommodate walking.
  4. Added a facing to the lining instead of edge to edge lining. Wasn’t necessary, but since I didn’t manage to squeeze a snake into the front ruching panel I had to sneak the snake back in this way!
  5. I also ended up removing the extended waist. The high waist wasn’t doing anything for my short-waisted torso. More importantly I screwed up on the ruching so it started too low and looks really weird. Plus I stretched the skirt through over-handling. Lowing the waist hid these mistakes.

Fabric & Notions Used

Construction Notes

  • Pencil skirts are so easy so I didn’t really follow the instruction, especially as I made some design changes like extra top-stitching along the princess seams & omitting the vent.
  • 2-sew-details-2But I did follow the instruction for facing the upper skirt edge. I’ve had trouble getting a clean finish to the zipper opening at the waist before. This instruction gave me a tidy finish there. So thumbs up – I will be using it again.
  • I kept the zipper even though it might not be necessary in a knit skirt, especially with my narrow hip. I like my waist snug. So I didn’t want it stretched out of shape with fabrics of questionable stretch recovery rate.
  • 2-sew-details-1My New World Snake might not have been the ideal fabric for the ruched panel. Despite the narrower pattern (presumably the horizontal stretch would keep the ruching under tension & help it fight gravity) my snake sagged. While some might like the sweep the floor drape look, it’s not my cup of tea. I don’t like my drapes too low. So I had to tack the ruching in place along the CF at multiple points.
  • 2-sew-details-3My lining gave me hell. I originally chose a lighter weight tricot. But it doesn’t seem to have much stretch, but when sewn up the stitching lines all seem too tight. The fabric would sag between the vertical seams with draglines pointing to the seams. I could have tried my serger. But I was too crossed with the fabric to give it a second chance. I went with the same lining fabric I used for the Turquoise Leopard skirt and this time overlocked the seams. But no luck overlocking the hem. Twin needle stitch was NG as well. I resorted to hand blind catch stitch.

The Verdict

Despite the hassle this snake gave me I’m chaffed with the result. Not sure I can wear it over tights or anything bulky or bumpy. But nothing like a knit skirt to give a straight up & down girl some shape right?

3 comments on “Barely There Python ruched panel skirt (Burda 2011-08-121)

  1. You are seriously chic in all these pieces. I cannot believe how perfect the fit of this skirt is, Pia. I love all your mug shots – everything is so well-fitted and looks so good. All that work in developing your slopers and working with them has certainly paid off in spades.

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