Introducing Wiggle skirt!

Introducing the newest addition to the Modern Vintage collection – the Wiggle skirt.


Now, ladies, I’ll be honest, this skirt is not for everyone. This is the next level up stuff.

This skirt separates women from girls, the grownup kind of skirt. This is the the type of skirt you sew when you’re so over elasticated waist pillow case projects and ready to make some serious clothes.
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On skirts and phobias

I can’t say I am crazy about skirts, they used to make me feel vulnerable and my rear unprotected. The slightest air movement makes me hold on to my hem nervously hoping it would stay put. This nervosis has began in Wellington, New Zealand, where wind gusts are legendary. You might end up with a mouthful of your own hair, face covered by your own skirt if you are not careful.

365 day 67 | Windy Wellington
— Wellington hair

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Too easy!

Last year I published a post about calculating your perfect skirt length based on your height. The principle behind it is Golden ratio, and skirt lengths calculated using this principle will be most flattering for you.

This blog post is still one of the most popular blog posts I have written to date, so to make it even easier to find your perfect skirt length I made you a handy little calculator.


Just type in your height in cm and it will calculate all skirt lengths just for you.

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Imogen answers part one

Today I am proud to present a first part of several blog posts on style. Stylist Imogen Lamport is answering your questions on style, colour, trends, wardrobe and more.

Is little black dress a really necessary item?
Absolutely not!  In fact for many people a colour other than black is much preferable.  It’s good to create an ‘evening’ capsule in a colour that suits you so you have something to wear out when the occasion calls.  It doesn’t have to be a dress, and definitely doesn’t need to be black.  My post here has a black dress because black suits me, but substitute another colour – aubergine, deep green, chocolate, navy instead.
How to build an evening wear wardrobe
Which prints are the most flattering for larger figures?
Depends on your personality – but prints that are dense not sparse, with low negative space and go for a medium sized print, neither too tiny or too large. High contrast makes prints appear larger, low contrast makes prints appear smaller.  Here is more information
How to choose a print garment
What is the bigger sin:
to overdress or under-dress?
Under-dress – my philosophy has always
been that it’s better to raise the tone than lower it.
How to wear colours that I like but are not “mine”?
Wear them away from your face.
Don’t put them on body parts you’d rather attention wasn’t drawn.
Ensure the rest of your outfit is in fabulous colours that really suit you.
How to add trend colours that don’t suit you to your wardrobe
Which trends would you like to see disappear?
I don’t get the open toed boot.  Really.

 Dresses and Skirts – Why Don’t I wear Them?
I don’t feel comfortable in skirts and dresses. Is there a skirt or dress for me?

If you don’t like them, don’t wear them!   Without knowing why you don’t find them comfortable it’s hard for me to judge.  Comfort can relate to the fit, the fabric, the style, your personality.

I love dresses because I find them easier to fit (no rise seam that runs through your crotch), I buy them in fabrics that drape (so they move with my body) in fabrics that stretch (so I don’t feel constricted by them) and in styles that don’t draw attention to my flat butt (the way trousers do), and that suit the feminine part of my personality.  They make me happy, but not everyone has to wear them!
So ask yourself in your quest for the skirt or dress to make you happy:

  • What is my body shape?  Which shapes and styles will flatter me?
  • What are my body proportions?  How long should my skirt or dress be?
  • What is my personality?  Do I like prints or patterns or not?  Do I like stretch fabrics or wovens?  Do I like close or loose fitting garments?  Do I like lace or do I like unusual construction?

All these questions will help you find the right kind of skirt or dress for you.

Useful reading:
Body shapes explained, How to measure your body proportions,What is your style recipe

Skirt balance adjustment for forward tilted pelvis and/or round bottom

Here it is, the last part of balance adjustment post. I made this video without any captions, because in this case it is easier to write separate instructions.

Front part of the skirt

  • Lower the front part ( closest to CF ) by amount calculated in this blog post.
  • Restore the front waist length by adjusting front dart width.


Back part of the skirt

  • Cut out the back dart and cut though the marked line. Raise the part closest to the centre back by amount calculated here.
  • Middle part is tilted to the left by 0.5 cm.
  • Left part is raised as shown.
  • Take the side seam in at the waist by up to 1 cm.
  • Move the side seam towards the front by 0.5-1 cm
  • Side seam length remains the same.
  • Desired width of the second ( left ) dart is no more than 3 cm, first ( right ) back dart is no more than 4 cm.
  • To reduce the second ( left ) back dart width, take in the CB seam. Adjust the second ( left )  back dart to restore waistline length.

The final block depending on the amount of adjustment may or may not have a dart in front;
may have one or two darts at the back.



More on that balance thing


So lately I have been sewing some simple things for myself to have something to wear in cooler weather. Simple sewing is good not only for filling small annoying gaps in my wardrobe, but also for pondering some complex sewing matters ( because simple sewing does not engage my brain ).

This time my thoughts were with the balance. How many garments – I thought – can fit so much better if this simple thing is observed from the start. Maybe, half of all people doing flat seat adjustments don’t actually have flat seats? All the ladies complaining about their skirts riding up to their armpits are blaming the lack of waistline, when the problem is in the balance. Why is such a fundamental issue not getting the attention it deserves?

So I decided to write another post on the subject of balance.

Let’s figure out our balance, shall we?

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Skirt adjustment tutorial

Finally, the promised skirt block adjustment video. It is silent, no narration, so don’t start playing with your computer speakers.
In this video: How to increase / decrease waistline correctly, including calculation and draft of additional darts. Also how to adjust pattern for flat / prominent buttocks.
I hope you find it useful.

How to calculate correct skirt length

One of the most important aspects of the skirt is its length .

Skirt lengths vary vastly from micros ( just covering the bum ) to floor sweeping maxis. You can choose any skirt design you like, but it is the length of it that will determine its appropriateness.
And so, you must discuss the skirt length with the client while you are taking her measurements. It is especially important for very short skirts, when 5 cm can be crucial.
If you forget to take client’s skirt length measurement and all information you have is “make it shorter” or “make it longer” you can use the rules for approximate skirt length calculations below.
These calculations are correct for the majority of female figures and use only one measurement – the height. The same rule can be used for sewing trousers and shorts and if you are working with standard industry measurements.

Micro mini

This is the length that reveals the whole leg, just covering the underwear. Measure from the waist line over the buttock to the highest point of the leg. This is the minimal length of the skirt, and making it shorter is not recommended. This length can be calculated as L (length) = 0.18xH (height)


You can wear the mini in public without a fear of “sending the wrong message”. This group has a bigger variation of lengths, the average one can be calculated as L= 0.26xH but can also vary from 0.22xH to 0.3xH

Knee length skirts

The knee level (KL) can be measured from the waist to the knee. The only problem is if you cut the skirt exactly to the knee point, the edge of the skirt will crinkle. To avoid this problem you can make the skirt L=KL-3 cm for  younger girls and L=KL+3 cm for the elegant ladies. The knee level can be calculated as KL=0.35xH

Midi skirts

This type of skirts edge falls between the ankle and the knee. The length formula is L=0.5xH . But you can also choose from the range of 0.4xH to 0.55xH

Maxi skirts

These skirts almost sweep the floor. The length formula is L=0.62xH. When you calculate the maxi length, allow a few extra centimetres for the height of the heel, or take a few centimetres off if you plan to wear it with flats.

All formulas listed above are based on Golden Ratio and allow you to create the garments ideally suited for your height and proportions.

And one more thing. You must consider your leg shape when choosing the skirt length. The horizontal line of the skirt “cuts” the legs and draws attention to the part of the leg it falls to. If you like to create the effect of slender legs, choose the skirt that ends at the slimmest part of the leg – whether it is above or below the knee. This rule can also be reversed – if the skirt ends at the fullest part of the leg, the legs will look fuller.