A Ladylike Skirt in stretch cotton polka dot twill

I had an urge to make a ‘ladylike’ skirt nothing too fancy, just a feminine everyday skirt. I’m typically a jeans & tee person – or long, long maxi skirts and dresses. However they don’t always suit the event, company, location or weather.

Mood Fabrics, Stretch denim twill. Vogue 9090, sewn by Sew Busy Lizzy

The front features an inverted centre pleat with two pleats either side.

I fell in love with the denim tones of this cotton stretch twill from Mood Fabrics NY. I thought if I can’t wear jeans I might as well embraced the colour scheme!

Unfortunately this shade of fabric has sold out however the beauty of Mood Fabrics is that there is a seemingly endless array of fabrics and still plenty left in this stretch cotton twill range, including Navy, Green, Yellow, Red, Blue, Black, White and Orange.

I adore fancy fabrics as much as the next stitcher. However I don’t think all our sewing projects to be ‘fancy’, made from silks and high-end fabrics. So I decided to set about discovering the joys of some practical cotton and have some fun. Don’t get me wrong – silks and the like are utterly delightful and I’ve sewn quite a few and loved it. However, I do value clothes that I can toss in the washing machine along with the rest of the family’s laundry. As a full-time working mum, sometimes practicality wins out!

This fabric is completely opaque, making it perfect for a wide range of garments. I think because of its one directional stretch, the flattering fit-and-flare dresses or a classic 1950 silhouette dresses are a great option.

Mood Fabrics, Stretch denim twill. Vogue 9090, sewn by Sew Busy Lizzy

yes, pockets

I had planned initially to make a shirtdress. However once I had it in my sewing room, I decided a full dress of polka dots might overwhelm me. So I finally settled on a skirt.

I love the midi skirt trend but my first attempt some time ago was not a huge success. When I happened upon Vogue 9090 with its fitted yoke, pleats and pockets, it seemed like a match made in heaven. The design provides plenty of feminine shape without ballooning from a waistband. I love a smooth, well-fitted yoke on a skirt.

Yes, there are side pockets. Nice deep pockets – which are also sewn into the waistband. I prefer these types of pockets as they don’t flap about and make the line of the garment untidy.

The beauty of this fabric is there isn’t too many secrets to sewing with it! It’s a lovely cotton with a crisp drape and a lovely smooth surface and a subtle sheen. It presses beautifully and holds its shape well.

Due to the nature of the weave, it barely frays and I had no issue with stretching as I sewed, everything matched up and it was a trouble-free experience. I did serge all the raw edges as I like neatly finished garments.

Mood Fabrics, Stretch denim twill. Vogue 9090, sewn by Sew Busy Lizzy

I confess I actually quite love the silhouette this pattern creates. It feels timeless and ageless.

I decided to line the skirt with some cotton voile, you could use something lovely like this silk-voile. Living a garment often means it wears better and creases less. Plus in this instance it also provided some addition ‘oomph’ which was fun. To line the skirt, I simply used the skirt pieces, cut slightly shorter. I attached the lining to the skirt along the waistband, then attached the yoke lining and skirt lining to the zip using the Sewaholic Cambie method. I hand stitched the lower yoke edges together as even though I know I could machine this seam… if it doesn’t sink perfectly into the seam, the visible stitching drives me crazy… even if it’s only me that sees it!

Vogue 9090 - cotton voile lining

Vogue 9090 – cotton voile lining

I would advise that the 7 inch invisible zipper recommended in the pattern is a little too short. I used an 8 inch invisible zipper and it seemed to be barely enough!

This pattern is not a fabric monster – it uses just 1 3/4 yards (1.6m) or 60 inch (150cm) wide fabric.

What can I say – lovely timeless fabric that is easy to work with and fun to sew, what more can you ask for?

Got forth and sew yourself a fun midi polka dot skirt!


Fabric: 1.6m Denim Blue/White Polka Dot Stretch Cotton Twill
Pattern: Vogue 9090, View B



  • Kathleen
    November 23, 2015

    Beautiful skirt! It’s slightly stiff which gives it lots of body. Even though you’ve made it to be “casual” it has a hint of dressy and could be quite dressy depending on the top and accessories. It just suits you to a T.

    • Sew Busy Lizzy
      December 7, 2015

      It’s nice to have things in the wadrobe that can be worn multiple ways… in fact that’s one of the most fun things about making clothes – figuring out all the ways to wear them!

  • Lori
    November 24, 2015

    I love this skirt, it looks amazing on you. It will be a great garment in your wardrobe for many years to come.

    • Sew Busy Lizzy
      December 7, 2015

      Ladylike is always timeless isn’t it.

  • Liza Jane
    November 24, 2015

    Love the silhouette! And your green shoes are pretty awesome with it, too.

    • Sew Busy Lizzy
      December 7, 2015

      Yes, the shoes were a ‘must buy’!

  • Kimberly
    November 26, 2015

    Your skirt is beautiful, well thought out and made as all of your posts show. It looks wownderful.

    Okay now the real issue: Where’d you get those shoes??!!!!

    • Sew Busy Lizzy
      December 7, 2015

      The shoes are fabulous. They go with lots of ‘stuff’ because they are so unique an so strong. They are called Yellow Lizard Roxette by Jo Mercer from memory – and they were on special last time I checked!

  • Fiona
    November 28, 2015

    Gorgeous! You can really pull off a midi skirt Lizzy. I love how the body of the fabric shows off that centre front pleat. Amazing shoes too 🙂

    • Sew Busy Lizzy
      December 7, 2015

      I’ve always gone mini or maxi – so it’s nice to find something ‘in between’ that works.

  • Cennetta
    November 30, 2015

    Lovely outfit, Lizzy. You are so right about every project not being high end. I love this look. Carefree, simply, but polished.

    • Sew Busy Lizzy
      December 7, 2015

      I love fabulous fabrics… but some days I get exhausted by all the laundry! This one is easy care and easy wear – always a winner

  • Sarah Gunn
    December 2, 2015

    Such a lovely, feminine skirt, Lizzy! You look lovely 🙂

    • Sew Busy Lizzy
      December 7, 2015

      I feel very girly – which is a nice change from my casual wardrobe!

  • Corinne
    December 5, 2015

    Now that is one lovely skirt. I never met a dot I didn’t like and this fabrication is dressy and can be played down as well with a simple little cotton t. Beautiful! I am thinking this would also play nicely in a gauzy cotton for Summer.

    • Sew Busy Lizzy
      December 7, 2015

      I’ve been thinking about swopping the pleats out for a lightly gathered skirt in the maxi length, the yoke is such a nice fit it is screaming for Make 2.

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