Wow – it seems a little time since I wrote about a test garment. I haven’t made millions, but I went through a spate of tests last year at some point and then… not so many. I do like testing, but I think I’ve got to the point now where I really only volunteer if it’s something I genuinely think I will wear. I realise that sounds a little obvious, but I love the challenge of new techniques and shapes as well, so I’m trying to be more practical about taking on such things if the final garment isn’t remotely in my style wheelhouse. I can’t believe I just wrote “style wheelhouse”. Who have I become? Lol.
Alright, anyway, this here skirt was definitely in my wheelhouse. I’m always keeping my eyes open for patterns that are quite basic in some ways, but with a few little details that make me want to make them in every colour. I’d seen the Lela Skirt in its original version – the Baseball Skirt – but it was the new midi version that Beth has added to the original pattern that really clicked with me as a shape I lacked in my wardrobe. I also immediately envisioned a knit version, even though the pattern is intended for wovens, and have started sewing one up. Stay tuned for that update!
But first things first. The Lela skirt is a two piece skirt with an elasticated waistband, plus drawstring. It comes in the two lengths – short and midi – and has three different hem and pocket options. I made View A in the midi length, which has a moderately curved hem and in-seam pockets.
Beth’s Lela pattern is, like all her patterns now, drafted for sewists of a height of 5’10”. And why not? It’s easy as pie to remove 4 inches from the two pieces (I’m 5.6″) and that’s exactly what I did. Aside from that, Beth has also increased her size range and it now spans 17 sizes, from a 22″ waist to a 48″ waist and 32″ hips to 58″ hips.
I made the size 20 and would say it’s pretty spot on. There’s 6 inches of ease at the hips for all sizes, so you have some leeway to adapt the closeness of the fit as you prefer. The skirt itself is straight and the waist is elasticated, so again, you can cut the elastic to the size you like in terms of looseness. There is also a little drawstring to pull through the waist channel and I thought this was a nice detail. Beth is really great at this kind of laid-back chic.
I made my skirt in this delicious Menagerie Monstera rayon cotton lawn from Cotton + Steel and it’s as delightful to wear as it is to look at. Slightly off-topic, but I’m sure you get the link: have you seen the soon-to-be-released collections from the Ruby Star Society ladies? I’m actually a little bit scared, because there are so many GORGEOUS fabrics coming and I’m really not doing amazingly in my stashbusting efforts this year. Oh well. Check the link at your peril. But, you know, check it. The rayons are…g#$%Fneudf!!
Anyway, back to the lovely Lela and the construction is really nice and simple. The instructions are thorough and the diagrams are good. I like the way Beth has saved some paper by producing one skirt piece (each front and back) with the three different hems as separate pieces, so you can mix n match. One of the standout features is the curved and split hem, depending on which version you’re making. I believe Beth is planning a wee video to help with hemming the curves, but my own hem turned quite easily actually and there was no need for further manipulation.
The instructions for all three versions are contained within just a few pages of instructions, so you can see how quick a sew it is. As far as I know the final version is pretty much unchanged from my version, so you can see how it will be. The pattern’s on sale now for its introductory period and I’d say that if you’re looking for a breezy summer style with cute detailing, you need look no further! 🙂