As you know I love hacking patterns and winging it a little when I sew for myself but every now and again I like to make up a pattern as it is, so when Lisa at White Tree Fabrics asked me to make up the Arielle skirt by Tilly & The Buttons in denim, I was intrigued to have a go and jumped at the chance!


I’ve never made up one of a Tilly’s patterns before and I must say I was pleasantly surprised at the quality of the pattern and the instruction booklet which accompanied it. I’m a visual learner and prefer to look at pictures rather than reading through reams of instructions.

What I really liked about the Arielle pattern was that both the written and illustrated instructions were equally good. Whilst the pattern can seem quite daunting to make up (especially if you’re sewing the lined version of the skirt), I think it’s quite easy to follow. In particular I like the way the pattern explains why you’re carrying out a certain step or why a pattern piece has been cut in a certain way. In addition to this, there is extra help in the form of a great online tutorial to help you if you get stuck sewing Arielle on Tilly’s blog.

I decided that the dark blue denim was the perfect fabric to make up the skirt. Lisa also sent me a selection of prints for the lining to choose from, so I opted for a navy rose print polycotton.

Arielle 2

The navy background with the red and pink roses adds a nice contrast to the denim. I wanted to stamp my mark on the skirt so I decided to cover some self-cover buttons in the rose polycotton.

Arielle buttons

The mini version of the skirt was too short and the longer version was too long so I decided to make an in-between version. The main alteration I made was to reduce the length of the main denim fabric and the lining by the same amount on all skirt pieces, facings and linings on the longer skirt length so that the skirt would sit just above my knees and with six buttons running down the side.

Arielle skirt

Arielle 4

The only other alteration I made was a very slight quarter inch reduction to the waist width on each of the 4 skirt pieces and the top side of the facings so the skirt fit nice and snug around my high waist. Don’t forget to mark the notches on your pattern pieces, these are just lines and can get easily missed!

Arielle 3

The skirt is a great fit and with the higher waist styling it’s quite flattering!

Arielle skirt 2

I liked the lining so much that I even made myself a gathered top to co-ordinate with the skirt (this is a hack with lots of dart manipulation – I’ll cover this is a later post!).


So overall I’m really pleased with the Arielle pattern, well written, clear instructions and a very good overall fit! So why not have a go? This is one skirt pattern I’ll definitely be sewing up again.

Oh and thanks to the lovely Lisa at White Tree Fabrics for sending me the Arielle pattern, fabrics and notions to make up!

Have you made an Arielle skirt? What fabrics did you use and how did you customise yours?

Nee Bee x

shopping list

Choose from 6 differrent denim fabrics, available here

Denim threads available here and here

That lovely rose cotton fabric can be found here

Fancy having a go at the matching buttons? Find our cover button tools by clicking here

Lastly, that all important sewing pattern! Find Tilly and the Button's Arielle right here

Happy Sewing!