A Mave Skirt

This is my first time making this pattern but I can tell you with full confidence that I will be making it again and again. It is a gem of a pattern! I’ve taken to asking, “Will it Mave?” to any fabric I come across and I’d say most of the time the answer is, “Why, yes. Yes, I believe it will.”

The Mave skirt isn’t a new pattern so I hardly need to talk it up but in case you haven’t come across it yet, it is an elastic waist skirt pattern with pockets and with 9 official views. Yes, nine, and truthfully that number could be larger because how I accidentally made mine isn’t even one of the views. It can be a short skirt, midi or maxi with no tiers, two tiers or three tiers. If you wear skirts even occasionally I’d think this pattern would be well worth the money.

Incidentally, I kept putting off buying the pattern precisely because of how basic it it. A tiered skirt? I can figure that out! And I even did use my Hudson pattern to create something fairly similar but as is often the case when I mishmash something together, it’s lacking the finesse of a professionally drafted pattern. Sometimes when we pay money for a pattern, we’re paying for all the unique and difficult-to-carry out features but sometimes what we’re paying for is just straight up good drafting and that’s the case here. The Mave skirt is drafted well, the instructions are clear and easy to follow and the pattern has endless possibilities. It’s also definitely beginner friendly.

I’m trying to show the movement of the skirt here and not doing a very good job of it haha!

Unfortunately, I often hesitate to buy those patterns of wardrobe basics but hands down they are the patterns that serve me the most so I need to be a little less wary! After trying a ton of free tee shirt patterns, I finally bought the Union St. Tee and I’ve made it or hacked it at least a dozen times since then. My Hudson pants are another example of a well-loved, often-made basic pattern that has absolutely been worth the money spent on it. I guess you don’t always know if the silhouette will suit you but that’s a gamble with every pattern unless you know the company. I’ve made the Hudson pants and the Marlo sweater from True Bias and have hardly paused to recognize that they’re doing something right over there!

As I was having reservations about buying the pattern I did what any sane person would do and asked for it for my birthday ha! That way if it wasn’t all I hoped it to be, at least I didn’t have to shoulder all the blame. Knowing I would most likely be getting it for my birthday, I did start looking around for a suitable fabric. The pattern is for woven fabric and I think pretty much anything would do. The pattern includes an optional lining so you don’t even have to worry too much about a fabric being too sheer. The most important thing to note-and it is important-is that you’ll need fabric that’s 54 inches in width or more and that does narrow down possibilities. I looked all my normal places online and wasn’t finding anything I had to have so I ended up heading to Joann.

I picked this green floral which is labeled as a stretch chiffon but I’d say calling it stretch is being pretty generous because I think it’s less than 10%. However, I do think the spandex in it helped the fabric to not fray which is great! In any case, it’s silky and light weight and feels really nice. This is the second time I’ve been pleasantly surprised by the quality of a silky fabric from Joann so I’m glad for that (the other time was with this dress). I didn’t put a lining on in because I’d say it’s pretty much opaque, but I did wear the skirt with a slip because I worried about cling but it wasn’t clingy at all.

I didn’t come across any new techniques or anything in the process of sewing the skirt. The most difficult and time consuming part for me was all those ruffles! I don’t dislike doing ruffles but they do take a lot of time and attention to make sure they’re even. I’ve made many a uneven ruffles in my day but I think this skirt was actually pretty fairly balanced in the ruffle department. Or maybe there are too many ruffles (is that a thing??) to really notice? Luckily, there are notches to help with all the ruffling! The waistband insertion is the same method as on the Hudson pants which is (in my opinion) the easiest method (aside from grown on). But it does involved four rows of topstitching as well as making and inserting a drawstring. It’s a lot of work for a waistband but I think it looks really nice in the end. And the drawstring is purely cosmetic so leave it out if you want!

I didn’t make any sort of muslin for this skirt because the only fitted part is the waist and that’s pretty easy to just make fit. And the fit-surprise, surprise-is great! But I definitely learned some things about proportions! As mentioned above, I accidentally made a non-view of the skirt, which was to fold the bottom tier of the skirt in half width-wise. According to the pattern, if you’re doing a three tiered skirt the shortest tier ought to be the middle one and now I can see how that’s more eye-pleasing. I’ll definitely make that change next time! I also think I’d need to shorten the middle tier about two inches. The pattern is drafted for someone who’s 5’5″ and I’m a bit above 5’3″. I think the middle tier is the right one for me to alter for length in the future.

And let’s talk for just a second about how nice it is that I-someone who’s been called short on countless occasions-can wear a maxi skirt! Not kidding, I’ve seen some maxi skirts at the store that would fit me if I situated the skirt at my armpits haha! It was so nice making this the exact length for me and learning that I can wear them! They don’t drown me when I’m able to choose where the hemline is! Yay!

So yes, I’m very happy with my skirt! The proportions might be a little wonky on this version but I’ve learned for next time. And there will be a next time, many times over, I suspect!

Pattern: True Bias Mave Skirt (Sizes 0-18) (Sizes 14-30)
Size: 12
Alterations: halving bottom tier
Fabric: Olive Floral Stretch Chiffon from Joann
Cost: 2.5 yards fabric $30; 2 inch wide elastic $5; pattern gifted
Will I make this pattern again?: Definitely! It’s very versatile!

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