SEWN: Meowy Kitschmas Pencil Skirt (self-drafted pattern)

meowy christmas gwenstella made sewing

meowy kitschmas gwenstellamade Happy holidays everyone! We only have less than a week to go before 2018 hits the town!

I hope everyone is having a great time this holiday season with your loved ones.ย My partner and I spent Christmas day together in Singapore for the first time this year.ย We had a low-key lunch date together at P.S. Cafe at One Fullerton, and I finally had the chance to wear my “Meowy Kitschmas” pencil skirt. Yes, you heard me right. Meowy Kitschmas.

meowy kitschmas gwenstellamade

meowy kitschmas gwenstellamade This project has been brewing at the back of my mind for at least a year. I bought the fabric in 2016 and didn’t get to start on a project in time for Christmas then.ย Naturally, I had to wait a year for Christmas season to come around again before I could start working on a project with it.

I originally intended to make a simple gathered skirt with a fitted waist, but by the time it was November, I had made so many flared skirts and dresses that I was pretty much sick of making flared skirts. I wanted a project that I could learn something from, and a project that is different from all the other sewing projects I have embarked on and completed this year. And so, it was obvious that I had to make a pencil skirt with a self-drafted pattern (with the help of my Bunka Fashion Series book). Of course, it was also helpful to know that many of you who checked out my Instagram story voted for a pencil skirt. ๐Ÿ˜‰

meowy kitschmas gwenstellamade

meowy kitschmas gwenstellamade Being the person that I am, I couldn’t settle for REALLY just a BASIC pencil skirt. I wanted something different with a bit of retro 1950’s inspired rockabilly vibe.

These are the key design points to this basic pencil skirt:

  • Wide waistband with a higher front than back
  • Exposed metallic zipper
  • Organic cotton lining
  • Slightly exaggerated tapered bottom

meowy kitschmas gwenstellamade

meowy kitschmas gwenstellamade

To be honest, the use of an exposed metallic zipper kind of happened out of necessity. Somehow I made some wrong measurements when drafting the skirt and ended up with a smaller waistline than I intended. I had to reduce the width of the seam allowance where I was going to insert the zipper to make sure that I could still insert a zipper. The zipper insertion was successful, but upon trying the skirt on for the first time, I realised that the zipper was faulty and I had to force myself out of the skirt with a stuck zipper. It was not a pretty sight.

When I finally tore myself out of the skirt, I decided to use an exposed zipper so that:

a) I could add some bling to the skirt
b) I could have a wider seam allowance for inserting the zipper
c) I could learn something new

meowy kitschmas gwenstellamade It was one of my best decisions ever! The exposed metallic zipper worked perfectly… and feels way stronger than a regular invisible zipper too.

I love the way the skirt looks and feels on me. The organic cotton lining is soft on the skin and the tapered design gives me the rockabilly wiggle when I walk – it’s everything that I have dreamed of and more!

You know what else makes this skirt special?

Proudly “Gwenstella Made”

This pencil skirt, is the very *first* item in my sewing history to bear the bold label of “Gwenstella Made”. Can you believe it!?

I am so glad that the Dutch Label Shopย came forward to offer me some labels to use for my sewing projects. I created my labels easily and quickly on their site itself – no fancy designer software or knowledge needed! You can choose from a wide range of colours and generic symbols. I chose black, grey, and pink with a sewing machine, ball of yarn, and heart respectively. Aren’t they lovely? I am soooo looking forward to using them for my personal sewing, knitting/crochet projects and other handmade gifts in 2018! I will be sharing a discount code for anyone who is interested in getting some labels made too. Keep your eyes peeled!

One Fullerton PS Cafe Singapore Christmas

With my partner Steven, taken in PS Cafe at One Fullerton

What do you think about my first Christmas sewing project? Do you have the tradition of making a new thing for Christmas or any other holiday(s) like Hanukkah or Kwanzaa that you celebrate each year?

UPDATE (10 Jan 2018): Get 15% off your purchase from the Dutch Label Shop when you enter the code “gwenstellamade15” before you check out! xxx

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STYLE: One Harlequin cropped top, two rockabilly looks

These last 2 months have just FLEW by. I have been really busy with my vintage shop and everything else that is happening in my personal life.

One thing that has been keeping me busy is a new phone app called Carousell where I am trying to sell my pre-loved items and keep the size of my wardrobe in check. But of course, I get distracted and end up buying pre-loved from others instead. I like pre-loved. Honestly, I can’t remember the last time I bought a new dress or skirt or shirt from a shop. Singapore is a small country and the chances of you wearing the same H&M skirt as another girl on Orchard Road is probably 70%. Yeah, I just pulled that out of my head. But I’m probably right. ๐Ÿ˜‰

More importantly, buying pre-loved is GREEN. It’s reusing something that is still in good condition, and reducing the waste that is created.ย I could talk about the environment for the entire post… but let’s do that another time.

So here’s a Harlequin cropped top that I bought from Carousell a few weeks ago. It actually came with a pair of matching shorts in the same red and white Harlequin print. I love the rockabilly vibe it gives and it works out as such a great staple as I continue to build my rockabilly wardrobe.

Rockabilly Style #1 – wearing: handmade cherry brooch, thrifted retro mid-century style bag, navy circle skirt from Qoo10.com, shoes from Qoo10.com

Rockabilly Style #2 – wearing: retro beaded bag (handmade by a friend of a friend), Uniqlo jeans, $2 paper fan, shoes from Qoo10.com

Hopefully , I’ll continue to sell my pre-loved items on Carousell and streamline my wardrobe further. Wardrobe overhaul is a long and arduous process.

Review: Hell Bunny Chantal 50’s Dress

Another Hell Bunny purchase! This is the Hell Bunny Chantal 50’s dress that I bought at the start of this year with my first paycheck. I wore it for the second time a couple of weeks ago and finally got the chance to take some photos for the blog!

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I got the smallest size they had (i.e. XS) but it was still slightly big for my Asian frame and I had to make some alterations to it. I took in the sides of the bodice and shortened the straps – it was easy! I also removed the 2 little bows on the bodice because I thought the bow would look better on my hair than on my chest. I’m an absolute sucker for bows – on hair. ๐Ÿ™‚


This dress fits me so well after I have made the alterations and I LOVE IT SO MUCH. The full circle skirt has a nice drape and it swings nicely when I dance! I bet it would look a lot better with a petticoat. Perhaps it’s time to get a black petticoat… hmmm…

Anyhoo, I hope everyone is having a good time during this holiday period. 2014… here I come!!!