African high waisted pencil skirt

I’ve started a new collection of Simple Sew patterns. It wasn’t an intentional collection but they keep producing nice, simple, staple pieces that are attractive. Unlike the big 5 they seem to focus on keeping the frills and silly frou frou shit down to a minimum. They also seem to be well suited for my shape.

Some of the other indie pattern designers seem to only use tiny petite models for their photos which makes it hard for me to work out if it will suit. I tend to wait until I’ve seen blogs and reviews of patterns to see if it would suit me. Somehow i think the cartoon pictures on the front of Simple Sews patterns makes it easier to work out if it will suit. Although sometimes the cartoon can be a little misleading – like the skater dress that appears to be much longer in the skirt and lower in the bodice on the front picture than it is in practice.


Anyhoo – this is a review of their high waisted pencil skirt.


I’ve had a few high waisted skirts in the past and generally they look lovely standing up but can sometimes be restrictive when sitting down. Plus all that fabric has to go somewhere – sometimes it can looked a bit bumfy all puddled up around my lap. Not exactly the aesthetic I go for in my garments!

The other aspect I like about this pattern is the pleated kick at the back. I like my pencil skirts below the knee but to be able to walk in them (or lets face it go to the loo without undoing it) it often requires a high slit up the back. Whilst this is sexy its not always appropriate at work – it can definitely make putting more paper into the photocopier a lesson in bending and twisting so the room doesn’t see your gusset! This kick pleat means I can stride with my usual gusto to and from work, bend to fill the photocopier and do all my usual things (sometimes I even do work) without showing the world what I had for breakfast.

The double pleats at the front and back are a nice feature which I think makes the fabric less bumfy (not sure if this is a world that will be recognised outside of Scotland) when I sit down. It also means the darts because they are thinner muck up the pattern less at the top.

In terms of construction next time I’m going to ignore their suggested order of putting this together. They seem to want you to work from the bottom up – i.e. attach pleat, then sew up half-way up the center back, then attach waist facing, then attach zip. For me this runs the risk for the zip not going in exactly flat and getting puckering at the bottom of the zip. Personally I’d prefer to fit the zip into the centre back first then add all the other elements in.

And so here it is – my lovely new skirt. Its in an African wax I got from the recent Edinburgh sewists meet up which Edinburgh Fabrics is now stocking. I ummed and aahed about lining this since African wax can often be quite a loose weave but decided I didn’t want all that extra fabric around the hips. In hindsight I probably should have lined it since it tends to ride up a bit in front when I walk. I’ll probably wear a slip with this in future to avoid that issue.


I will definitely be making more versions of this skirt in future. In fact I may even find a way to make it into a dress -its got real potential for a wiggle dress.



13 thoughts on “African high waisted pencil skirt

  1. Super skirt, I love a pencil skirt and the kick pleat is lovely on this, your fabric is gorgeous. I’ve just cut out a muslin (aka bed sheet) for a simple sew pencil skirt that was free with a mag but it has a standard vent.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Cor, what a lovely skirt. I has a lot of va va-voom and is a lovely shape. I love the back pleat. You are right about back slits though, I was pissing myself laughing at the “gusset” comment at the photocopier. 😀
    I have bought quite a few of the Simple Sew patterns now from eBay. Do you think that they run quite true to size, or do they have tons of ease like the Big4? That is brilliant wax fabric, it looks very summery. Do Edinburgh fabrics have a lot in at the moment. They only had about half a dozen different patterns when I was there in Dec. Xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think Simple Sews varies. The gilet I made was mahoosive but this skirt I only had to take in 1cm on each side so not terrible.
      Last time I went to Edinburgh fabrics was in January and they had about half a rack of African wax down the front window. Considering they had none before I was chuffed with the selection 🙂


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