With more sewing time currently available to me, I’ve continued to work on separates sewing. Today’s post features an ensemble created with two patterns by DP Studio: the 402 knot skirt and the 5001 twist blouse. DP studio is a relatively new French indie pattern company that is now making its mark with unique, high end designs.
This project began with the skirt pattern. In collaboration with a recent contest we hosted together, Club Tissus kindly sent me the pattern and fabric to create the skirt. A big thanks to them!
The style of this skirt pattern–classic and bold–intrigued me. I chose to pair it with a multicolored pink poly blend tweed. The skirt is a fully lined pencil skirt with a double knot feature on one side of the skirt, and an invisible zipper.
I knew this project would be a challenge for me and, ultimately, I was not wrong. On one hand, the construction of the skirt looked like it would take some time to figure out. On the other, tweed is a new-to-me fabric. The path to the finished skirt was a bumpy one.
For starters, DP studio, in addition to being known for their high-end designs, is also known for their elusive instructions. When paired with the complicated sewing involved in creating their patterns, the instructions can be difficult for many home sewers to navigate. While I know the company has listened to criticism and has since improved pattern instructions (I’ll return to this point when I get to the top), this skirt model is one of DP’s earliest patterns.
Forming the bows was a tricky, tricky task. Despite testing the bows prior to making the actual skirt, I only really understood how I should have constructed them a day after I finished the skirt! Another tricky point was sewing the lined back vent. I ended up watching a few videos to figure this out. In the end, I made the vent work with my own way, but it’s far from the “real” way of doing it.
Because of how I constructed the vent, I needed to change the lined hem. Instead of sewing the bottom of the lining to the bottom of the front fabric, as would traditionally be done, I overlapped the hems, and finished by handsewing a bias finding. I’ve seen vintage skirts finished with a bias biding at the inner hem. I like the extra touch this detail brings to the skirt.
If the pattern was a challenge of its own, so was the fabric. It is *beautiful* and I was definitely intimidated to work with it. As I learned, there is nothing difficult about cutting and sewing tweed–but dealing with the fabric unraveling is a struggle. Before I began sewing the skirt, I contemplated interfacing each piece. I was committed to this method because I thought it would bring more strength to the fabric. Then, I didn’t have quite enough interfacing to do so, so I only reinforced the hems, zipper area, and the area around where the bow pieces are added to the front skirt piece. This was the wrong choice!
By the time I was ready to finish the skirt and add the zipper, the middle back seam allowance had disappeared from unraveling. This meant that the skirt (a fitted model) no longer fit. I had to undo the side pieces (a real pain) and add rectangle panels to get the skirt to fit. I took that same moment as an opportunity to do what I should have done all along–reinforce the seams of the skirt with interfacing.
The skirt finally fits, and looks quite nice, but it was tough to get there.
In comparison to the skirt, the top was smooth sailing. It is one of DP studio’s newest releases in the line “DP’s” and comes with long sleeve and sleeveless options.
“DP’s” patterns are more beginner friendly, with less complicated (but still interesting!) designs and instructions. The are also more budget friendly than the main line of patterns.
I was pleased to see the launch of DP’s. This blouse pattern immediately jumped out to me. I chose to make the sleeveless version in a navy linen rayon blend from Blackbird Fabrics. It has great drape for the twist detail. I was able to sew the top in a few hours. Working on the twist part of the top made me pause for a minute. I ended up just following the instructions step by step and it worked! There is a noticeable difference between the clarity of DP Studio’s older and newer patterns–great for them and us!
My only fuss with the sleeveless version of the top is large arm opening. From the side, my bra is more visible than I’d like, so I might go back to the top and adjust.
Over all, this homemade outfit is a sewing dream realized! I learned a lot while making both pieces. I know each will be easy enough to mix and match with other garments. I also plan to make second versions of both the top and skirt. I’m very pleased!