I am still looking for the perfect crocheted skirt. I want a good, strong, lace crochet skirt that I can wear confidently. It should also be easy to wash and dry.
4-ply cotton yarns from Chumpling.com.
Luckily, these hand-dyed 4-ply cotton yarns came from Chumpling Crafts. And these, I thought, were the perfect material for a lace skirt. It’s strong, easy to wash and will work up quickly because of the thicker weight. I’ve always worked only with crochet cotton thread size 8 which take a long time, much too long, to make into garments. These hand-dyed cotton yarns are also remarkably soft. So I am quite optimistic about making a new crocheted skirt.
Duplet Issue No. 66.
The design, I think, will be a simple one – a short skirt, just a half-inch above the knee, with a slight flare. The most difficult part of making crocheted skirts – at least for me – is that part at the hips and the waist. First is what shaping do I need to make to prevent the fabric from clinging so much to the hips turning out a bulging belly and a bulging backside. Second, is what construction is best for a crocheted waistband so that it fastens securely, won’t feel like the skirt would fall off, yet will not gather and distort the skirt.
Skirts and tops from Duplet Issue No. 66.
For the general shape and waistband construction, I referred to Duplet, my favourite crochet fashion magazine. This is Duplet 66, a rather unassuming issue of the magazine but full of wonderful construction ideas and patterns.
Closer view of skirt from Duplet Issue No. 66.
Here are some of the skirts from Duplet 66. Remember that there are no patterns for these specific skirts and tops in the magazine but only these colourful photographs. There are patterns in crochet symbol charts and schematics of various types but not these particular skirts.
While I don’t particularly like the colours and styling of these skirts, I do quite appreciate their construction and combination of stitches. For sure, I will be making a lace skirt which means using a lining or perhaps wearing a slip underneath. Cotton 4-ply can be quite heavy if I made a skirt of many solid stitches.
The hip of the skirt will be composed of a strip of motifs, like this white skirt from Duplet. Then the waistband will be a lace mesh, with ties. The mesh waistband is very interesting and I think it will work fine. I’ve always only made waistbands of solid stitches with holes of drawstrings. But a mesh like this would make it more flexible and thus easier for the skirt to fit around the waist or just at the hip bone.
Using two colours of cotton yarn for the motif band.
Here’s the motif that I selected for my skirt. And here is the work in progress. You can use any suitable motif and see how it goes. Make a strip long enough to fit around the hips, not tight.
When I finished the motif band, I started looking for a nice lace pattern for the skirt. I found this lovely pattern from MOD Zhurnal 524. It only takes a bit of modification (i.e. using 5-ch loops instead of 10-ch loops) to use this pattern for the skirt.
Starting the body of the skirt along the motif band. Reference is MOD Zhurnal 524.
Here’s a closer look at the source of the pattern – it is from the sleeve of a beautiful crocheted dress in MOD Zhurnal 524 (the magazine is no longer in stock but there are other issues of MOD Zhurnal in the Duplet website, in case you are interested in them).
Lace pattern of the sleeve.
Crocheted dress from MOD Zhurnal 524.
What I intend to do is to continue working this pattern down mid-thigh and then start a simpler mesh from there, perhaps a mesh of 6-ch loops. Afterwards, the hem will be worked in such a way that the skirt would flare and ripple a bit. The hem should also be worked such that there would be sufficient weight to keep the skirt from flying up in the wind (although that might be unlikely with 4-ply cotton) but not too much that the skirt would sag too much and cling to the body.
So there – I hope that in a couple of weeks, I would have a new crocheted skirt that I would wear a lot. I have made a few crocheted skirts before but have never really been happy with them.
Why not give this skirt design experiment a try too?