Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Fabric of the Cosmos Skirt

Images from

We've been watching the Brian Greene, Fabric of the Cosmos, series on NOVA lately and have been completely fascinated. It's mind-blowing in the best way, and I want to watch episodes over and over again just to soak it all in. If you haven't watched it yet, I highly recommend checking out the PBS web site to watch online.

Fabric of the Cosmos Skirt - front

Of course, as he talks about the "Fabric" of the Cosmos, my brain instantly goes to textiles. I have some ideas for bigger, more complex projects on this subject, but was in need of some instant-ish gratification this week and decided to do a simple skirt to scratch the itch.

Fabric of the Cosmos Skirt - Back

This was one of those projects that comes together so seamlessly (pun intended) that you know it was meant to be. As soon as the idea popped in to my head, I could instantly put my hands on just about every material I'd need for the project and it came together very quickly.

Fabric of the Cosmos Skirt - Planets

For the base of the skirt, I wanted a fabric that resembles the weave used in the graphics in the Fabric of the Cosmos show. I happened to have this awesome Alexander Henry fabric that I got at the Stitch Lab ages ago that was perfect. It's a yummy, heavy fabric with a great cross-hatch print. From there, I pulled out my stash of hand-dyed fat quarters that I made in my surface design class with Kat. I was able to find pieces that resembled each planet (ok, ok, Jupiter is a tad ... psychedelic, but it works!) and did a quick applique. I embroidered the rings of Saturn, but getting the needle through the heavy fabric and the fusible webbing proved much tougher than I'd anticipated. Instead of stitching many rings, my fingers could only stand to stitch one.

Fabric of the Cosmos Skirt - with hand-dyed fabrics

I've lost count of how many of these simple, elastic-waist skirts from my Beginning I sewing class at the Stitch Lab I've made. My pattern from the class is starting to show its age, and needs to be re-drawn before I lose it completely. I love how easy it is to create a fun piece of clothing to wear. I may not have the sexiest wardrobe on the planet, but it is fun and personalized. I wear one of these skirts almost every single day, and I'm glad to have this latest geeky one to add to the rotation.


  1. love this! i need to mater the art of a good basic skirt. your planets are so pretty!

  2. That is soooo cool!!! And I should totally take that class because I never find cute skirts :\

  3. Holy Moly, Girl - this is pretty much the awesomest thing of all time. The only thing awesomer is the idea of you wearing it. *head explodes a little*

  4. Have I told you lately that I love you? (I'm singing the song to the screen as I type, obviously.)

  5. Awesome Rachel! I bought a make-your-own-pattern- skirt book and my first go was WAY too big. Frustrated, I haven't picked up to try to make it work, but I want to make skirts!!! I love skirts, so I have been inspired to try-try again! Love you, friend!

  6. Oh Rachel, I am loving the Fabric of the Cosmos series too. My favorite episode so far is "Multi Universes. Seriously, I I only had a smarter brain, I would be quite happy as a theoretical physicist trying to unravel the mysteries of space!

    Love the skirt! The "planet" fabrics are so perfect I can't believe it! Have you thought of using them to create a solar system mobile?

    I love having a friend that geeks out on space as much if not more than me!

  7. Wow, love the idea and that you based it on a show and just DID it! LOVE the colours of the plantes, but will they stay in place with no sewing when you wash it again and again? Time will tell. It's SO pretty!

  8. i just stumbled on your blog thru craftzine, signed up for emails, & started checking out the latest listings. imagine my delight at finding this post while "fabric of the Cosmos" plays in the background!! my husband sleeps in his recliner because of back problems, & he can't sleep without some kind of science-y shows going. he sleeps, i surf & geek out ;)


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