Piped Pencil Skirt Vogue 1082 Review

I'm still dreaming up ways to use my daughter's torn burgundy leather jacket.  You see, the leather is so soft and worn, and it would be just a shame not to use it!  So, I'm looking at all patterns with the thought "where could I sneak in a little of that leather" in the back of my mind.

I've had this skirt pattern (Vogue 1082) for a number of years, and I thought- "Hmmm... maybe the yoke in leather?"  This pattern is gorgeous, but WAYY more detailed than I usually sew. But, I had a piece of wool gabardine that was the right amount of yardage for this pattern, so I thought, "Let's give it a try!

You might think that after sewing for 40 years, that everything is easy.  You would be so wrong!  This skirt took me two full days.  So, why did it take two days?  Well, one word:  PIPING.  In all my sewing, I cannot recall using piping.  It's clear to me now why.  I'll show you why later.

First, let me show you the leather jacket salvage operation.

When I took apart the jacket, I was left with three fairly large pieces- the sleeves, and the back.  The front had too much going on with the pockets, facings, etc.  The back had it's problems too- it was princess seamed, so It had lots of seams.

I decided to cut the front skirt yoke out of the back piece of the jacket, placing the center front at the center back seam.  The back skirt yoke was in two pieces, so I used the sleeves for it.  Cutting was a breeze.  Now it was time for the piping

Let me take you through the steps.

I still had leftover raw silk from my last dress, and I decided to make my own.  To do this, first you have to cut out 1-1/2" strips on the bias.

  The pattern called for 8 yards of piping, so I cut 8 strips and pressed them in half.  I decided not to insert the cording.  I thought that might feel a little weird when sitting, so my piping is flat.

Now comes the tricky part.  How to sew the piping in, so that it looks even.  The one thing that I had going for me was Wonder Tape.  I placed a strip of Wonder Tape 1/4"  from the raw edges.  Here is what it looks like before you peel off the paper layer.  Just peel off the paper, and you have a nice sticky tape to press your fabric to.  Sounds easy, right?  My first try-too much piping showing.  Out comes the ripper.  My second try- not enough piping showing.  Ripper is getting lots of use.

My third try- just right-in MOST places.  With selected surgical ripping, I kept at it, until it looked fairly even.  The problem was the curves.  Even with the wonder tape and the ruler, the curves have a mind of their own.

The next hurdle was the invisible zipper.  I don't think that invisible zippers and leather go together at all.  The leather is just too thick.  The first insertion- zipper wouldn't zip!  Ripper again.
The second time I sewed it in a good distance away from the coil, and it worked okay. 

This skirt would be sooo long on most people!  I am 5 feet 9", and I ended up taking off 3 inches, making a 2 inch hem, and it still is below my knee!  I think it might have actually been more attractive shorter, but after how much work I put in that piping, I couldn't bring myself to cut off anymore!

  I had a pretty orchid satin that I used for thelining. 

Even though this was hard, I'm glad that I challenged myself. 

Happy Sewing!



  1. It is stunning! You should wear it to enjoy it and possibly the compliments. It is a very special garment that has meaning and lots of memories.

  2. Thank you, Dorothy! You are right- I think it's like childbirth- I will soon forget the long hours struggling with it, and enjoy it!

  3. But the end result is gorgeous! So inspiring, and worth all the work.

  4. This is gorgeous! I haven't sewn piping in years (well home decor pillows don't count do they? LOL) mainly because it's so time consuming. The end result on your skirt made your extra effort worthwhile. And thanks for the tip on the length of the skirt.

    1. Thank you, Sharon! I think pillows count! Going around corners would be just as hard!


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