Sewing Project: The Butterfly Skirt | Mint Green Sewing Machine: Sewing Project: The Butterfly Skirt

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Sewing Project: The Butterfly Skirt

Hi friends! At long last I'm sharing my project for Tanya's "Dress Like Your Grandma" sewing challenge, where you find an outfit that your grandmother (or other relative) wore and re-create it. Like I mentioned in my last post, I wasn't able to track down any good family pictures, so I took the opportunity to re-create one of my favorite vintage fashion photos.

My first task was creating the fabric design to order on Spoonflower. I wasn't able to find any other photos of this skirt while I was working on re-creating the design, so I sketched it out as best I could and then brought my sketches into Adobe Illustrator, traced them, added color, and made it into a repeating pattern. Later, I came across this blog post by Dividing Vintage Moments where she also re-created this skirt with some of the original 1940s fabric. You can see by her version that the colors were actually a bit lighter than the way they look in the photo.

I had the design printed on the organic cotton sateen, which is turning into my go-to fabric for skirts. It is 56 inches wide so I am able to make the design on both borders and then cut it in half lengthwise. It did end up a teensy bit shorter than I would have liked by the time I took off some for the waistband. I ordered 2 yards which I cut in half so this skirt has a total of 4 yards in sweep.

I didn't use a pattern for the skirt- it's just a simple dirndl skirt with a side zipper and hooks at the waistband. I did add pockets, which was a bit tricky to figure out with the side zipper. I used this tutorial to help me figure it out.

For the shirt, I used vintage Simplicity 2127, which I had in my stash, and some of this rayon voile from Unfortunately mine is missing the envelope, so I had no idea what size I was working with (it isn't marked on the pieces either). I was in a bit of a time crunch so I just went ahead and made it without any grading and luckily it fit just fine. I love how forgiving peasant blouses are! The only thing is that it's a but sheer so I'll probably wear a cami under it.

Well, thanks for stopping by! You can check out all of the other entries for this challenge on Tanya's blog. I hope she does this challenge again so I can find a real family photo to re-create!


  1. I love it! The skirt is fabulous. Congratulations!

  2. Wow, I get why it's one of your favourite vintage pictures, that skirt is to die for! And so is your version! It's awesome that you recreated the print!