Beginner’s First Ginger Sewalong Kickoff

Friends, its here! Are you so excited or what? I’m way excited to be sewing along with you. I’ve received so many comments, emails and love about this sewalong and I can honestly say that I’m more excited about this sewalong than any of the others I’ve led so far. It’s nice to know that the community of sewing is expanding everyday with new people wanting in on the action – which is why I think many of you are here. This will truly be geared towards the beginning sewer with helpful hints – just like in your ginger pattern – and ideas to make your first garment making experience a success. Ready? On your mark. Get Set. Sew!

To hit things off, and for those of you who might still be sitting on the fence about this sewalong, I’ve made one up just in honor of today – the beginning of the sewalong. It was an easy fit, an easy sew and to be really honest took me only a few hours to put together. A quick win, if you will. And when you’re first starting out, that’s what you need – a little ego booster!

I made my first Ginger out of a rather fun vintage fabric that I picked up at my local thrift. I think the fabric cost me around $2 and is a cotton/polyester blend – which you may know, for me, is not usually something I go for. I loved the print though. Has a bit of a 70s vibe, doesn’t it? I added a store bought piping to the waistband, which is actually a tip in the pattern booklet, and finished it off with some fun retro pockets that I drafted myself, another tip from the pattern. To view more pics of this cutie, head on over to the flickr group pool (and while your at it, Join!). It’s so easy and fun to wear and gives a bit of pow to my image. See? You totally have to make one now!

OK, you’re probably foaming at the mouth to start getting your Ginger on! This first week we’ll be talking about what your going to need, fabric selection, a bit of a history lesson and giving you some great inspiration. Why? Well, you are going to need time to get your supplies and some of you might be stumped as to what fabric and look you want to go for. Here’s what I suggest:

Tomorrow Tasia, the Sewaholic is going to be giving us a great fabric selection lesson. I’ll be doing a sister post on the supplies and notions you’ll need to make your own version of the Ginger. Jot down some notes on what you’ll need and take your search to your local fabric store and start looking at fabrics. Or even better – shop your own fabric stash! Take your time. Maybe you need to think about it and come back tomorrow. This week it’s about prepping your authentic seamstress with inspiration, tips and ideas to create a skirt that’s uniquely you and something you’ll treasure and wear for years to come. OK? Ok.

Still want to join in the fun? Of course you can! There’s still time to purchase your pattern and have it coming while you tempt yourself with fabric and notions too. Actual skirt construction starts next week and later on June 2, we’ll be having a Ginger Tea Party, where we’ll be sharing our final Gingers with each other.

To get caught up, here’s a link to the Ginger Sewalong postings so far:

Off to be inspired! Ta for now!



44 thoughts on “Beginner’s First Ginger Sewalong Kickoff

  1. Argh, argh! I know I am not a complete rank beginner but I am still so tempted by this. But for some reason I can’t get the idea out of my head of sewing this skirt but adding straps to make it a jumper, not that I really have much of a clue how to do that. The shape of the skirt just seems to perfect for it!

    That’s it, I’m going off to buy the pattern whether I join in right now or not.

    I adore the one pictured here that you whipped up, that fabric is fab. And the pockets with that folded bit and button? So completely awesome!

    1. Tasha! This is a fabulous idea! So retro and so inspired. That would be so easy to incorporate too. I didn’t know if anyone would want to see a tutorial for the pockets or the piping, but I’ll write them in! No problem. Easy too!

  2. Imagine my horror when I found that Sewtropolis was sold out of Ginger yesterday! I am going to have to wait for restock to whip up my skirt, but it should be long before the sew-a-long ends. I hope!

    1. OH NO! This is terrible! However, we aren’t having the Ginger Tea Party until June 2. I think there should be plenty of time. Seriously – this baby whips up in a matter of hours. You’ll have all 3 versions out in time for the Tea Party!

  3. I was holding off, as it seems like I ought to be able to make a nice A line by myself. I have in any case. But the waistbands are never tat nice, and they are always a little basic. So I am joining in. Yay!

  4. I bought my pattern as soon as you mentioned the sewalong. My little one was under the weather last week, so I couln’t resist making one up on Saturday. I’ll take pics tomorrow and post them to the Flickr group. It is a FABULOUS pattern for sure. I bought more material to make up another version during the sewalong, and I’m also hoping to find some striped fabric to allow me to try version C. I have been sewing for 4 years now, but have never matched stripes. This will be a great skirt to try that on.

    1. Oh good! I can’t wait to see your version in the flickr group! I’ll be doing a striped one as well so that we can have a chat about sewing on the bias. Not hard, but there are a few things we all need to know to proceed with confidence.

  5. I love the little details you’ve added to make your skirt unique. It’s really cute!

    I already found a green stripped fabric, almost identical to the one on the Colette Pattern’s site, that I want to make my first one in. I thought it would be the perfect chance to try out matching stripes for the first time.

    1. Lucky! I’m doing a striped version as well, but its boring white with grey stripes. Still it can go with tons of things I think. I’m very excited for the striped versions, almost giddy in fact.

  6. What a beautiful skirt! Will you explain how you did the piping, the pockets??? I suppose all this is not in the pattern. I’ve been sewing for 2.5 years now, but I still am very much a beginner.

  7. I just ordered so I can sew along! I have a BUNCH of Colette patterns, but I have yet to sew them up. So I figured that may get me off my butt to try them. Waiting on the pattern to come in. Looking forward to the sew along!

  8. Hi Sunni,
    your lovely first post has put me at ease, the thought of joining in and sticking to a time scale was a little scary but now I know it will all be fine. The hardest part for me will be choosing fabric, but I really like the look of the piping! Bring on tomorrow. x x x

    1. I didn’t want to go too fast – but seriously, I think even for a beginner you’ll be able to whip this pattern out in one day! It’s really so simple. Sooooo simple! You’ll have 10 done by the Tea Party on June 2nd.

    1. Ahhhh! I’m such a fabric lover and feel its the most important part! I mean you have to want to wear it when its finished, right? Picking the right fabric will help you do that too. Tasia’s got great tips for tomorrow.

  9. I’m just loving that piping detail!!! What a great skirt–and I love the addition of the pockets! Beautiful job, Sunni. My copy of the Ginger pattern just came the other day, and although I’m not following the sew-along (because I have *so* many projects on my list right now ;), I’m eager to see what all the guest bloggers post about as well as the lovely finished skirts from everyone who is joining in!

    1. I thought it was pretty fantastic that you recently used piping as well! Mine was just the – dare I say it – cruddy kind you buy at the store. But gosh! It makes the whole difference! Totally understand about your not joining in – though sad. My shift dress just hit the back burner in a bad way.

    1. I’m so glad you’re sewing along! You’ll have such fun! Just think – you’ll get bragging rights when its all finished! You get to tell everyone you know that you “made it!”

  10. ok- I’m really looking forward to tomorrow’s fabric discussion. I WANT to use a gorgeous poly blend in a paisley,but I don’t think it has enough body for the pattern. Oh, the trauma…

    1. Ha ha ha! Well, this was a poly/cotton blend. I was going for more of a straight laced A-line though. Tasia’s got some excellent fabric picking tips coming up tomorrow! Just excellent!

    1. Thank you! You would not believe how easy they are to make! I’ll do a little tutorial next week and then everyone can have their own! Yay!

  11. I’m so excited that you’re going to show how to match stripes (on the bias?). I’ve been sewing for 2 years and don’t know how to do that! I have a lovely pinstripe wool that would be perfect for this.

  12. Can you please send me this skirt? I promise I’ll be your best friend! I love everything about it – the fabric – the piping – THE POCKETS!!! What’s that you say? No, you won’t send it to me because you love it? Ok, ok. I will have to make one similar then. So excited you’re doing a piping/pockets tutorial! Those pockets are fab!

  13. Only found your blog yesterday after seeing you on at

    Really excited about what you are planning to do as I am a beginner who doesn’t know quite where to start and could do with ‘hand holding’. However, initially very disappointed as the Colette website doesn’t mention any stockists in the UK and I’m always a bit wary of ordering from the USA; both the time and the (unknown) extra import taxes that might get slapped on.

    However …… Deep Joy …… found an Internet outlet in the UK at

    so can take part! Having ordered from them before, I know they process orders really quickly so I just might be able to keep in step with you. Hooray πŸ™‚

  14. Woop woop !! I am tres excited !! Sunni, your skirt looks absolutely gorgeous, I LOVE the fabric ! If mine looks as good as yours I will be so so so happy πŸ™‚ Thanks again for the sew along and all the quality seamstresses that are helping out. Hurrah for blogland !! xxx

  15. Hi Sunni,

    I started working on the Ginger skirt after being inspired by your sewalong. It’s the first project that I’ve done on my own without a sewing teacher nearby! It’s been going ok so far until I got to attaching the waistband. The waistband piece doesn’t seem to line up very well with the skirt part… Could I send you a picture and you tell me if I made the waistband wrong?


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