January 1, 2015

A Christmas HotPatterns 1176 Metropolitan Rothko Faux-Wrap Skirt (phew!)

Happy New Year, Cashmerette readers! I hope you all had a lovely holiday, Christmas or otherwise. I was up with the family in Aberdeen, Scotland, indulging in a bevvy of familial Christmas traditions (one highlight being my Dad spending the day wearing every item of clothing he’s been given, which leads to some amusing gifts…)
Like the fool that I am, at 9pm the night before I left for home, I decided – without having started packing – that it would be a jolly good idea to make myself a new skirt. No, I don’t know why. And predictably it wasn’t the most serene experience. Why do we do this to ourselves, fellow sewists? I know I’m not the only one. 
Anyhoosles, lucky for me, despite the rush job, I quite like the end result! This is my first attempt at a Hot Pattern, the not-so-succinctly named 1176 Metropolitan Rothko Faux-Wrap Skirt.
HotPatterns 1176 Metropolitan Rothko Faux-wrap Skirt
Here’s a slightly overexposed closeup so you can see what’s going on in my all black outfit. It’s a faux wrap skirt,with a piece that connects the front underskirt and sideseam, so no flashing potential. It’s made for colourblocking, as there’s a stripe around the middle that swirls around your body. This time, I decided to go for all black so it’s just an interesting seaming detail, but it could be fun in multiple colours. 
HotPatterns 1176 Metropolitan Rothko Faux-wrap Skirt
For the body of the skirt I used a black boucle, ordered online from Mood Fabrics. I do find online ordering from them a bit hit or miss (and yet am frequently too lazy to order a swatch in advance), and this wasn’t quite what I expected – it’s somehow stiff and a bit thin at the same time, and not very soft. That said, it made a skirt, so it did its job. 
I was inspired by a really cool diagonal wrap pencil skirt I saw that had a leather stripe down the front, and Laney kindly gave me a perfectly sized strip of faux leather to recreate the same look. I simply overlaid it down the wrap seam, and it was all finished by machine (the outer side was sandwiched with the wrap facing). 

HotPatterns 1176 Metropolitan Rothko Faux-wrap Skirt

Most of the panels are on the bias and they definitely stretched out despite using fusible stay tape through the whole thing – the waist in particular is noticeably bagging out. I followed the size chart and made a 22, but I already took 2 inches out of the waist, and could do with taking another 2 out. I’m not sure whether this is a fabric/bias stretching issue, or whether Hot Patterns runs big – anyone know? 
In terms of the pattern itself, it did leave a bit to be desired. The way the sizes are stacked is different to usual, which resulted in a lot of solid black areas where all the size lines merged together, making it very hard to cut your correct size. The instructions were also confusing in places, but it was a fairly simple skirt so that didn’t turn out to be a problem. 

HotPatterns 1176 Metropolitan Rothko Faux-wrap Skirt
My brother took these photos of me in Old Aberdeen, the (very) small part of the city where my parents live (just past the building at the end of the photo above!). It’s mostly taken up by the University of Aberdeen, which was founded in 1495, and is the fifth oldest university in the English-speaking world. There are a bunch of pretty granite terraced houses, little cottage gardens, and King’s College chapel. 

The centre of Aberdeen isn’t quite as ancient, but it does feature Marischal College, a grand old building that now houses the city council.  
Here’s photographer Tom himself
Anyhow, my last minute sewing paid off because I really like the end result – the length and the angled front seam are flattering and fun, so expect to see more of these from me! What’s your experience with Hot Patterns, readers? How do you find the sizing and pattern layouts? They’re certainly an intriguing option given the generous size range. 
HotPatterns 1176 Metropolitan Rothko Faux-wrap Skirt

38 thoughts on “A Christmas HotPatterns 1176 Metropolitan Rothko Faux-Wrap Skirt (phew!)

  1. Bobbi says:

    Super cute! The only Hot Patterns item I’ve made is the free skirt…crap, can’t remember the name but it’s six or eight panels with an elastic waist. I should get that out and make another one – it’s rather flattering and cute.
    Aberdeen is beautiful! All I’ve know of it before is that it’s where The Doctor left Sarah Jane on Doctor Who. I need to learn more about it.
    Happy New Year!

    1. Jenny says:

      Thanks Bobbi! Happy New Year!

  2. sew rachel! says:

    That is very cool. Love the details, if feels very high end. I’ve never used hot patterns before, but been tempted to try!

    1. Jenny says:

      Yes the details are lovely and there’s a lot of great potential for colour blocking, which I may have to try some time..

  3. Laura (lap) says:

    I love all these pictures! I used to live in Aberdeen. South Dakota.

    1. Jenny says:

      Ha funny I’ll have to visit sometime! I imagine it’ll be quite different to Aberdeen, Scotland…

  4. When that pattern came out I wanted it bad so it’s nice to see it made up. I really like what you did with it! Now I guess I can go ahead and buy it!

    1. Jenny says:

      Glad to be of service Carolyn! I’m sure you’d do a great job – thinking about it, the faux-leather stripe is quite you 🙂

  5. LK says:

    Hot Patterns have always run huge for me, I once took over a foot of fabric out of one of their blouses. Love that skirt, so modern!

    1. Jenny says:

      WOAH! That’s a LOT of fabric to take out of something! Glad to know it’s not only me, and next time I’ll be measuring the flat pattern first 🙂

  6. ginny says:

    I have several (14!) Hot Patterns, though I’ve only gotten around to sewing one of them up. It was a top so HUGE that I could have fit two of me in it! I did find the tracing off to be quite tedious (and I, perhaps strangely, usually enjoy tracing off patterns) for the same reasons you mentioned. I’m attracted to many of their patterns, but do wish that the company also included photos of the actual garments in addition to the stylish illustrations.

    1. Jenny says:

      Another tale of massive sizing! Clearly they’ve adopted the ease ethos of the Big 4. Well the good thing is, once you know, you can do it right 🙂 I agree with you on the photos and I’m actually been surprised there aren’t more reviews (with photos) on PatternReview.. I wonder why?

  7. This is so stylish with the faux leather strip! Super cool! Aberdeen looks beautiful! I’ve been to Edinburgh to visit a college friend and loved it, but perhaps a trip to Aberdeen is in order! 🙂

    1. Jenny says:

      Thanks Sonja! I’m not usually that trendy but I was struck by a vision. Aberdeen is nice in parts, though don’t be fooled: I”m showing you the nicest bits here 🙂 Edinburgh is a lot nicer!

  8. helen siddon says:

    Happy new year to you! I love how your skirts turned out, especially as it’s a faux wrap which eliminates the risk if accidental flashing! It would be really helpful if pattern companies stated actual finished measurements, it’s so much more helpful in figuring out which size to cut.

    1. Jenny says:

      Happy new year to you too Helen! I agree on the finished measurements – if you’re going to have a lot of ease in your garments, then really it’s the least you can do!

  9. Oh this is so chic, love it! Can’t wait to see a colour blocked one. Also good to know they run big, I have a different skirt pattern of theirs to make. Are the instructions more or less minimal than Style Arc?! You and Old Aberdeen both look stunning. Hope you had a marvellous Christmas: here’s wishing you a super happy New Year! xx

    1. Jenny says:

      Thanks Rosie! Happy New Year to you too. Regarding instructions – oh they’re MUCH better than StyleArc, don’t worry 🙂 They’re just not as comprehensive as say a Colette or Sewaholic, and some of the diagrams are a little confusing. But As long as you’re not doing something super complicated you’ll be totes fine

  10. Jane says:

    What a gorgeous, chic skirt! You look so classy lady! I’ve never used any Hot Patterns but have often been tempted, thanks for the heads up on sizing. x

    1. Jenny says:

      Thanks Jane – I do feel classy in this outfit!

  11. Your photos certainly bring back memories. I have lived in Aberdeen twice, in Hillhead Halls and just beside Old Aberdeen, as I did all my PG uni stuff at Aberdeen Uni. What a lovely skirt. I really like the leather trim. Looks fab. Happy New Year! Xx

    1. Jenny says:

      Oh wow! Abwrdeen does have a great university. Happy new year!

  12. Michelle says:

    Great looking skirt–I love the faux leather accent. I’ve made a lot of HotPatterns, and I’ve found that for the most part, anything that says “fitted” or is meant for a woven is generally pretty true to the size chart. Anything described as “relaxed” or “easy fitting” tends run a bit large, and anything described as “loose fitting” or “very relaxed” will run very large. I do think that Trudy’s block is a bit more apple/rectangle shaped, so I’m not surprised that the waist was a little big. FWIW, there’s an active HotPattens Facebook group, and Trudy is very responsive to questions and fitting advice on there.

    1. Jenny says:

      Interesting.. I don’t have much of a waist so usually have to add a bit there so its unusual for me to be taking handfuls out!

  13. fourkid says:

    Here is the link (I hope) for the FB Hot Patterns group.https://www.facebook.com/groups/256672074520971/ Trudy says start from your RTW sizing as HP is close to that. I found that works better than going by the numbers (one of the few this works for.) Use your measurements to check the flat pattern measurements. There are also lots of tutorials (and some sew-alongs) on you tube – though I did not find one for this particular pattern.

    1. fourkid says:

      btw ~ Love your skirt and your styling!

  14. In my experience:
    Hot Patterns=HUGE
    Hot Patterns=terrible instructions, often incorrect, sometimes disastrously so
    Hot Patterns=no response to customer enquiries or complaints
    I have a lot more to say on TSF if anyone’s interested!
    Overall, great designs, very poor production and customer service values.

    1. Jenny says:

      Hmmm interesting! I shall bear it in mind if/when I buy another

  15. HA! I think we all do the “I’ll make this tonight and wear tomorrow” insanity. 😉

    Skirt is cute though. Did you try a heavier interfacing on the waistband? I do that to prevent the stretching.

    1. Jenny says:

      There actually isn’t a waistband which may have contributed – it’s faced

  16. Your last minute efforts turned out better than mine ever do! I’m a slow sewing kind of gal. I think I’ve only ever made a garment in a single day one time (and I had made the pattern before). This skirt is really an interesting design. I love the faux wrap and the bias strips. It’s particularly fancy and chic looking in the boucle and faux leather! The backdrop for your photos is gorgeous also! Happy New Year!

    1. Jenny says:

      Well I should probably do less of it for the sake of my nerves! 🙂

  17. The skirt is fabulous Jenny. How do you find the time to sew so much? You make so many beautiful garments.

  18. V says:

    No hot patterns experience, but I’ve made several bias skirts. The bias should give you a bit of ease and comfort in the waist and hips for sitting and movement, but there is no way that constitutes four inches! With a bias skirt, I can generally disregard any pattern ease and often cut true to size or a size smaller.

  19. NotPiffany says:

    I’ve made the HP Plain & Simple Pencil Skirt before. The only adjustment I needed was to take one side in about a quarter of an inch from my waist to about the hip line. I really should get around to trying the A-line skirt, too. And I should add pockets to that one, because pockets are awesome.

  20. Alexandra says:

    HA! I only just found your blog today, and I am plowing through your posts right now. Was just scrolling down and at the first pic I thought “Oh, looks like Aberdeen, near King’s College!” I spent a year at university there in 19coughetycough, back when I was a student. I loved it. LOVED it! 😀

    P.S.: Also love your clothes! 😀

    1. That it is! And welcome 🙂

  21. elizabethe says:

    I also found your blog recently (which I love, btw). I’ve made a few hot patterns and I follow their patterns a lot (those patterns are the reason I decided to start sewing). In general the patterns are hit or miss and it is very worthwhile to go on pattern review and see which ones get made up a lot. Some of them are just great and some of them not so much. What I would say is that Trudy REALLY means it when she says use a drap-y fabric. Instructions are not great, but they do have a lot of video tutorials and she often does a great job of coming up with a technique for clean finishing the inside of things. The facebook page is good and Trudy is very responsive on that page.

    I also agree that they do run arge, mostly because the sloper is TALL. I am 5 3 and I always wind up chopping about 4 – 6 inches off the length of the pattern at least, and I always use a smaller size than my ready to wear, even.

    In general hot patterns are not for beginners, and Trudy assumes that you have some basic sewing knowledge, and they are really a mom and pop company, so sometimes there are some mistakes, but again, pattern review can be a good place to find them. Always do research with a hot pattern and always make a muslin, is what i would say.

Let me know what you think!