Monday, May 12, 2014

Tested: Alder Skirt by Imagine Gnats

Today marks the release of the Alder Skirt from Imagine Gnats!

This skirt! It's so cool. Here's the description of the pattern from her site:

the alder is a retro inspired a-line skirt with generous pockets and an easy-going style. the pleated front and back darts make for a flattering silhouette, while the elastic back means no finicky closures and a comfortable fit. for a less pronounced a-line shape, flat front and pocket options are also included. the alder skirt is perfect for everyday wear, and includes options that are simple enough for a beginner sewist. 

I chose to sew up version A with the bowed-out pockets and front pleat. 

The skirt is designed to sit pretty low, which is clear from looking at the tester photos. I tried to wear mine on my natural waist -- that's why the elastic looks especially bunched up below. If I wear it lower the elastic stretches out enough to see the two back darts. If I drop it, it also hits closer to my knees.

The side seams wrap around the back a little, which allows for the bowed-out pockets. Pockets = Awesome.

I added piping to the top pocket seam and to the front seams. If I'd had enough, I considered adding it to the bottom of the waistband seam.

Pattern: Alder Skirt (for women) from Imagine Gnats
Fabric: Cotton twill bought at Textile Fabrics in Nashville during our Girls' Day Out. I bought this fabric to make the Jedediah Shorts for Ryan, but. Well.
Size: 4
Modifications: Added piping.
  • I like the pockets and unique design.
  • It's the perfect length for my preferences.
  • The medium weight twill I used was the heaviest fabric I'd recommend for this project. I'd like to use a very lightweight denim or quilting cotton for my next version. 
  • There are lots of opportunities for variation: cutting different fabrics for the pockets and lining, cutting side panels on the bias, adding piping or other seam embellishments, eliminating pleat and elastic back, making pockets flat, etc.
  • Next time I'd like to eliminate the elastic altogether and add a side zipper instead. Rachael is planning a tutorial for that variation.
  • Next time I'll also sew a size smaller and fit it to my natural waist. Because I want it to ride on my natural waist, I'll eliminate the pleat and perhaps make the pockets flat (variation B).
I was grateful for the opportunity to test this skirt. (I may have stalked her IG account a *tiny* bit and JUMPED when she recruited size 4s.) Rachael's enthusiasm and kindness made it fun, which I think is reflected in the pattern. 


  1. I love your piped version! I saw it right away in Rachael's post today and was like, oooooh, PIPING.

    I'm like you. I like skirts to sit at my natural waist. I think a wider waistband and two rows of elastic might help this skirt sit a little better higher up. I also like my skirts to hit at my knee, so my next version will be quite a bit longer. But I just love those bowed out pockets - no way I'm letting go of those!

    1. Thank you so much! I think you're right -- the bowed out pockets need to stay.

  2. This skirt is sooo chic! I love the colors and piping you chose. Awesome!

    1. Thanks, Meg! It's neutral, which I'm lacking in skirts in my closet.

  3. HA!! Looks like you need to come back to Nashville for some more fabric for Ryan :)!! Your skirt is too, too cute....and {OF COURSE} the contrasting piping completely sets it off!!

    1. Yessssss! I have every intention of coming back to Nashville this summer. I was channeling my inner Frances Suzanne with the piping. ;)

  4. your skirt is killer cute, and that list of mods sounds fab to me :) need to start working on the zipper!!

  5. You look great! Awesome pleat, pockets & piping!

  6. I just clicked on that "Girls' Day Out" post, and I have that same 31 purse skirt! :) love you!


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