Sewing: the Mabel skirt by Colette Patterns

The Mabel skirt was one of a trio of knitwear designs released by Colette Patterns, designed by Alyson Clair, back in 2014. Alyson had been on my radar for a couple of years because of her knitwear design Clair Vintage Inspired, a Portland based line of lovely dresses with vintage shaping and design details, so I was really excited to hear about their collaboration.

I sewed this skirt as a tester for CP, back in the day when that was my jam and they were interested in my testing-- and while I love the design of the skirt itself, I knew it wasn't going to flatter my body shape. I believe in body positivity as a concept/practice and try to get behind it, but I've long loathed my big thighs and the fact that I carry so much weight in my upper/outer thighs specifically. You know the phrase "saddlebags," right? Well I learned that phrase as a descriptor for my body shape when I was mere 14 year old, and have had it whispering in my mind since then. As much as I want to rock a skirt like this, I just don't feel rad when I wear super fitted clothing. I feel rad in lots of other clothes, so I'll just wear those.

The skirt itself is *super* straightforward to cut and assemble. Pieces are minimal, and even when sewing a version with more detail, it's still simple. This is a quick, easy, beginner level project that has potential to look cute/professional/awesome/sexy/cozy all depending on your choice or style or interpretation. I really love it, and hope that my step-daughter will wear the skirt, as I've kept it around thinking eventually I'll have someone in my life that wants it. I sewed this skirt using version 2, but opted to go without buttons as I liked it better that way.

After assembling the skirt, using a lovely medium weight (on the heavier end of medium) wool blend knit in my favorite mustard yellow color. I picked up this fabric at the thrift store, like nearly all fabrics in my stash, but used a lightweight brown Ponte to line the waistband.

My only issue with the pattern was loose at the waist, after using a pattern that matched my waist size, then grading at the hips as I needed. I was under the impression that this was a personal issue with size selection and grading, rather than pattern troubles, but I think a few other people have had this issue now that the skirt has been out a few years. I guess it's just something to consider if you're planning to sew this skirt.

Happy sewing!


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