October 16, 2012

Poodle Skirt!

Here's a really-truly poodle skirt, the iconic fashion item of the 1950s.  I did some repair work on it for the Basya Berkman Etsy shop.

It's a traditional felt circle skirt with appliquéd poodle.  Super simple construction - a big circle of felt plus waistband and side zipper - no hem needed since the felt doesn't ravel a bit.  No wonder they were such a popular style!  The thread attaching the waistband was wearing out, so my job was to restitch that and now it's ready to rock'n'roll again.  

Here and here is an informative 2-part blog post about the history of the skirt style.  There is actually a documented story of the maker and her rise to fame with her design.  I love that she is quoted as saying, "I cut it out of felt, because I didn't know how to sew..."  Grin.

I think circle skirts are the most flattering way to make a full skirt.  At the hem, it's super full, but there is relatively little bulk at the waist and hips compared to a gathered skirt.  And the fullness falls in very graceful ripples.  They were sometimes worn with a really full petticoat for added swoosh and swing while dancing.

Just add roller skates (and not roller blades, of course), and the 1950s are happening all over again!  

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