Hot! The Heart of a UFO skirt | Veronica Darling

P1070362 The Facts

Fabric: #1 skirt: Vintage Tablecloth, ~$1 & #2 skirt: IKEA upholstery material, ~$2
Pattern: Butterick 3922
Year: approx 1970s?
Notions: vintage zippers for both ~$1
Time to complete: .5 hours in 2009 & 4 hours in 2011
First worn: heart skirt: June 2011
Wear again? Yes! I love it!

Total Cost: $5


Friends, I am not a UFO (AKA Unfinished Object) seamstress in reality. I start and finish my projects most of the time, but I dream and dream and dream about dresses and skirts and tops and jackets and blouses and trousers (even though I don't wear trousers) and all things. I feel like I have a zillion UFOs in my dreams. In reality I searched my cupboards this week and found the same UFO fabric from the last UFO theme this year. Big fruit bowls of a tablecloth! Instead of the dress, I had a UFO skirt.

P1070354 Along with that gorgeous dress, I recall a phase of using up all the material in the first cut. In 2009 I chose the dress pattern, cut it, then worked out I had enough fabric left for the skirt pattern. I felt I was saving time and putting the fabric to good use by using all of it at once. Ha ha on me, as I took over a year to finish the dress, and now almost 2 years to finish the skirt. Obviously it was only a 'short phase'.

So this week, I finished the UFO skirt and it was pretty straightforward, but thought you should see something a bit extra, and it would be good to wear something season appropriate! As it's cold in Melbourne lately, I need to make the most of layers and would prefer a thicker fabric for the skirt. So here's the UFO fruit bowl skirt all complete, AND another skirt with this darling IKEA fabric using the same pattern!

And, I LOVE it! 

YES, it's upholstery fabric from IKEA. YES, I bought it originally to make a dog bed for my darling pup. YES, it has big old hearts and it's too stiff to gather properly. BUT, it's warm and cute and matches my new (but old) blue jacket.

Last week, a friend who finds loads of vintage clothes gave me a little cardi and this blue wool vintage jacket, and seeing as it's midwinter here in Melbs, I just had to incorporate it into my Sew Weekly colour schemes!

It's a darling quick skirt pattern, really basic and no tricks at all! The fruit bowl fabric was finished in no time, but with the heavier fabric from IKEA and those mad red love hearts, I wanted to spend a bit more time matching the fabric, and as you can see above, sewing a zipper on the OUTSIDE. I read this Burda tutorial and then kinda made it suit my fabric (I didn't fold the fabric to the outside) and waistband.

The fabric is rather stiff for a simple skirt, but considering the pattern says "Special construction techniques for sewing all the synthetic suede fabrics!" I thought it could deal with tougher materials and in the end, I actually didn't look at the special construction techniques. After I attached the pockets, I ditched the pattern altogether! YES, it also has pockets!

The hem is a blind stitch one, and I think I'm officially in love with my blind hem foot on my machine now, because considering how thick and stiff this material is, it didn't get caught at all. This week, I had to 'cheat' a little on the waistband (on the inside) facing, by using fusible interfacing/tape (that has the glue on both sides?) because for some reason I have so many pin holes in my fingers, you could call me a pin cushion. Do you ever have one of those weeks where you become totally klutzy and every time you handle the fabric, or sew a seam, a pin attacks? So, I just couldn't handstitch the waistband on the inside (I couldn't look at another pointy thing!), and topstitching with the machine would have looked awkward and crafty.


Brrr! Here's a quick shot of the blouse, as it's the one I made during the Ascot Race Week theme! Hope you get a lot of projects finished this week! Happy UFO Week!



Veronica Darling

Veronica Darling has been sewing well for about 4 years, blogging for 5 years and smiling for over 33 years. In 2011, she joined Mena's Sew Weekly in sewing through the year, and in 2012 will keep challenges slightly smaller in scale.


Comments are closed.

  1. SO stinkin cute!!! You can’t even tell that the skirt is made from upholstery fabric at all. I love the outfit all put together too!

  2. I LOVE LOVE LOVE the hearts!!! So adorable! I love the exposed zip and how you matched up those pretty heart, too! Smashing skirt, doll! :)

  3. Three cheers for creating an ensemble, and not just making a piece that you have nothing to go with it. The zip looks fab and the blues and reds are great.

  4. i love love this skirt (n the fruit bowl). too cute! :)

  5. The heart fabric is adorable! Is the fabric comfortable, even if it is stiff? And I love the exposed zipper! I’ve been wondering how to do that, so thanks for sharing the link to the tutorial!

  6. Love that print and what you did with it – might have to knock it off!

  7. You look fantastic! I love the zipper attachment. Thanks for the outfit inspiration-I’m in Melbourne too and feeling fashionably challenged by the cold.

  8. That’s it! that’s the perfect skirt!! you’ve done it, and the outside zip is one of my favourites, you look so gorgeous in those colours, AMAZING and when you say you dream of skirts and dresses and blouses etc you are not alone, great minds think a like he he.

  9. Oooh I just love this outfit. The skirt is adorabel on its own but with the jacket I think its like perfection…you look really great.

  10. Upholstery fabric can work amazingly well…I’ve my eye on a peacock print intended for sofas, armchairs, etc. but I know will make a far cuter coat! But it’s expensive and my stash is calling me in an annoying way.
    That said, you look darling in your bright (shall I say 4th of July?) skirt and your hair is retro fantastic.

  11. Such a cute outfit!

  12. Love the jacket and cardigan! They go so well with your skirt :)

  13. Love it! You look amazing and the exposed zipper is a great touch!

  14. I conclude you just can’t have to many skirts! And skirts made with bold graphic repeat hearts and an exposed zipper really is perfect and so darn cute! Thank you for the Burda tutorial for exposed zippers, insightful!

  15. The ikea fabric skirt is fantastic and perfect in every way! Love it!

  16. Adorable!

  17. egads i love this skirt. i want to run to the nearest store and buy this skirt.

  18. What a stunning skirt! I love the exposed zip detail – each week a new sewing surprise! I still love that blouse too – yay for separates! (and RIP Doggy Darling’s special pillow…. made with love and destroyed with enthusiasm. She used to be so tiny and fit on a tiny pillow!!). I hope your skirt has brought much bright patterned happiness to your work week xx

  19. Thanks Katie! IKEA have so many wearable upholstery fabrics!

  20. Thank you Sarah! Luckily the fabric was so stiff, it didn’t move around much when I sewed the seams!

  21. Thank you Jen! I’ve totally got ensembles on the brain, because of the winter coats you have to match up dresses and skirts with!

  22. Thanks Fiona! The fruit bowl skirt has somehow become the wrong size for me! I’ll have to find a home for it!

  23. It’s kind of like wearing a denim skirt, so yeah, it’s kinda comfy!
    I’ve thought about exposed zippers a lot because I have some gorgeous vintage zippers (like this one) that would be a waste without making them ‘features’.

  24. Layers, layers, layers for Melbs, that’s all people talk about. But it’s much harder to pull off than it sounds, I reckon!

  25. Thank you Kazz! It’s a cute little outfit, and I’m SO glad you approve! xoxo

  26. Thank you Cecilia! I’m going to wear it out again tonight to a friend’s concert!

  27. I named the post on my blog: Red White & Blue! So I guess it’s 4th of July for all you living Stateside!

  28. Thank you! Hope you’re spending your weekend sewing! xoxo

  29. Thanks Meg! All part of the plan!

  30. Thank you Sarah! And the zipper wasn’t as tricky as I’d thought it would be!

  31. No probs Cathe, I’ve looked at it a couple of times before to ‘prepare’ for the exposed zipper experience! Thanks for your lovely comments as usual!

  32. Thanks Adey! I’m so pleased I could make something wearable out of it!

  33. I’m glad I’m keeping you on your toes! Who knows what to expect! Thanks again for your warm comments Amanda xoxo

  34. This is a cute skirt. I love the color and the hearts.