The Autumn Leaves Skirt

Autumn Leaves Skirt

Autumn Leaves Skirt

I made this skirt last winter, and originally needlefelted the leaves onto the fabric. However, after a winter’s wear, and after looking at a good few blogs over the summer, I thought I could do better.

I took some  ideas from some of SharonB’s Pintangle posts on seam treatments, fished some additional inspiration from a host of other blogs (wish I’d taken notes, now – I want to find some of them again!) and then proceeded to some adventures  in embellishment.

It occurred to me that there was no need to keep within the leaf shapes, or even to add embellishment that resembled leaf characteristics in any way, so paisley shapes, spiders web wheels and trailing lines of feather stitch showed up all over the place.

I started off by sewing around the edges of all the leaf shapes in ordinary running stitch, and originally I had intended to stop there. However, when I did, it looked a little half-hearted, and I’m never that, so Something Had To Be Done!

First Skirt Detail

First Skirt Detail

There’s a trail of French knots across the largest leaf, which has a circle of Rosette Chain on it, surrounding a disc of  an interlaced filling stitch in three different colours.

I also realised (about halfway through!) that I didn’t have to keep the embellishment only on the applied fabric, so the skirt fabric acquired stem stitch lines with French knot finials, a spiders web wheel, and more French knots.

Second Skirt Detail

Second Skirt Detail

It is all worked in six strands of stranded cotton, un-separated to maintain a sort of cohesion. I chose colours that were fairly close to the colours of the felt leaf shapes, but working in the opposite direction, as it were, so dark felt was running-stitched in light stranded cotton.

All this on a skirt I originally made purely because I wanted a long winter skirt to cut the draughts in the office!


  1. karen says:

    Hi Rachel! Thanks so much for the comment. This skirt looks really warm, such glorious warm colours.

  2. Lady Fi says:

    Wow – such intricacy! Love the colours – very autumnal!

  3. Hi Rachel,

    I’m trying to imagine it without the stitching… I’m so glad that you added the stitching! It looks great. 🙂

  4. Action Ma'am says:

    It looked good before, now it looks great. Stitching on to the skirt fabric has really integrated the design.

  5. Janice says:

    It’s fantastic! Well done!