My first running skirt

This is definitely turning into The Year of Lycra for me, and it’s barely halfway finished, so I hope you’re not too bored yet (wonderfully, I’ve even inspired some of you to start running)! Running has been a part of my life for about 8 or 9 years now, but training for a marathon is now really upping my enthusiasm to sew cute clothes for the approx 5 hours every week I’m actively running (wow that’s a lot!).

I’ve had the Jalie multisports skirt (2796) pattern in my stash for several years now, but English summers are never particularly hot anyway, and I usually run in the early mornings, meaning it’s rarely too warm for running tights. But I’ve got some mid-day races coming up, and sometimes it’s warm in the evenings for Run dem Crew, so while I was ill in the latest bout of hot weather, I made up what will be the first of many running skirts!

There’s lots of mix & match options in this pattern- briefs or compression shorts on their own (with either wide or narrow waistband), or you can have the skirt with either briefs or shorts underneath (again with either a wide or narrow waistband). I do not run in shorts normally (or wear them outside the boat, to be honest) but I went for the shorts under the skirt, with the wide waistband.

I’ve loved every single Jalie pattern I’ve ever sewn, and this is no exception. They’re fantastic to sew, but what keeps me coming back is that these are equally fantastic to wear – Jalie totally “get” exercise gear.

The pattern itself is great – tons of sizes, great instructions (I love that they’re available as pdfs so you can view them on your computer or tablet, though I used Jalie’s excellent iPhone app to read them this time around). They’ve really thought about how they’ll be worn when moving, too – the constructions steps mean that seams that might chafe are concealed as much as possible.

The main fabric I used on the skirt, waistband, and compression shorts here is black supplex from Tia Knight on eBay, and for interest on the sides of the skirt, I used some leftover foil lycra from my Liberace Leggings (which I bought from Suzie Spandex in Montreal).

Besides being really flattering and comfortable to run in, my main love here are those BIG side pockets! For my long runs, I need to carry a fair amount of stuff with me (usually in various running arm bands), but when I run in this skirt, I can fit my iPhone & Oystercard on one side, and two big packs of gummy gels on the other, meaning I can head out the door with just my Camelbak and nothing on my arms!

When I posted earlier about my plans to road-test this skirt, I was warned of others’ issues with the waistband dropping down mid-run (eeek!) and the shorts’ legs riding up (thanks Scruffy badger and Cidell!) so I prepared for the worst…. and actually these were just fine on me. The shorts moved up about two inches but then settled into my inner thigh divet and stayed in place. So I won’t be making any changes at all in my next pair!

Here’s a shot of those hidden shorts:

And a back view!

In case you were wondering, these photos were taken after my longest run yet: 15.5 miles (25km) from Tower Bridge to Wandsworth Bridge and around, which took about 2.5 hours. Yes, I ran TWO AND A HALF HOURS before these photos were taken. No one can say I don’t put enough effort into road-testing my exercise gear! And if you feel the need to snark at my sweaty face, I follow the “Be pretty on rest days” school of thought, so I really don’t care.

(Oh, and you may notice my bloody knee – in all my years of running, this is only my second “road kiss”, but it was a doozy, at 7km in. Thankfully my friend Daniel bought me some plasters at a petrol station so we could carry on without too much blood running down my leg, ewww. I’ve spared you the closeup wound photo I had prepared, though. You’re welcome.)

My next piece of sewn running gear is a fancy dress running costume (fully functional and wicking, of course!) for the Bacchus half marathon on 9 Sept, but before that, I’m nearly finished with my Cynthia Rowley fuchsia party dress, and I think I may have contracted Peplum Fever, too…

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