I haven’t been around the blog or social media much over the last month, but I have still been busy doing projects. One of those projects was making up this adorable Midi- skirt for Izzy. I love this fabric and used it last year in the shop, making the most adorable ‘Indian Summer’ Kimonos (A tutorial for these will be put up at some point.)
Now that I no longer make up things to sell, I’m able to use my little bursts of creative-ness to make pretty things for my girls. First up is skirts, mainly because these are just so easy!
So heres what you’ll need.
-Fabric of your choice (we’ll work out how much in the next step)
– Pins & a safety pin
-1 inch wide elastic. (again we’ll work out how much in a moment)
I’m giving this a difficulty rating of.. Easy. And wether you’ve just started to sew or have been sewing for years, I guarantee you’ll always come back to this super easy way of making pretty summer skirts.
Heres what we’ll do.
First, we need measurements. wether this is for an adult or a tiny baby, the method is exactly the same, the only thing that will change is the measurements. For this pattern you’ll need two measurements.
1- The waist – simply wrap your tape measure around the waist, not to tight, not too loose. I’m making this one up for Izzy so i’m using her waist measurement of 21″
2- The length – this depends completely on how long you want your skirt, I’m choosing a midi- length, I wanted full length but not in this fabric.. and I really wanted to use this fabric. Izzy’s is 13″
So now we have our measurements we can work out how much fabric we’ll need.
And this is the trick. The more fabric the fuller the skirt. If I was to use her waist measurement of 21″ the skirt would have no give, it would be straight up, straight down. So I like to double the measurement, It seems like a lot, well it is a lot of fabric, but I promise it is more than worth it when you’ve got a fluffy full skirt.
Here’s what I cut out,
Width – 42″ across – this is double the waist measurement, it doesn’t have to be exact. for example if double your waist is 50″ but you’re fabric is only 45″ just use 45″. it won’t make that much difference in the scheme of things, as long as you remember the less fabric the less fullness.
Length – 15″. the length I want is 13″ but I have to remember this is an elastic waisted skirt & I am using a 1″ elastic. I need just over 1″ excess on the top and just under 1″ at the bottom for the hem. bringing it to 15″
You’ll need to cut this pattern out twice, so work out your fabric needed before you go shopping.
So we have our fabric cut, we’re now ready to sew.
First we’ll place both pieces of fabric together, pattern on the inside. Line up the edges and pin together.
Sew down the pinned edge, fixing both pieces of fabric together. Switch sides and do the exact same to the other side. Use your shortest stitch for this and remember to secure your stitch when starting and finishing with a simple back stitch, See Here if you’re unsure how to do that. You can use an overlocker to finish your seam – if you have one!- or you can follow the steps Here to finish using just your sewing machine.
By this point you should have a large hoop of fabric. Now we need to hem. Again if you have an overlocker, use it before top stitching (using your largest stitch length) or you can simply double fold and top stitch like you would if you was securing your seam.
Next we need to make the ‘pocket’ for the elastic to slip into. So using your tape measure, mark just over an inch at the top of your skirt, fold over and pin – you can overlock first OR remember to fold a little extra fabric under before pinning.
Now you can sew along your pin line (going back to your shortest stitch length), this bit will take a while, especially if your making an adult skirt. But your patience will pay off. keep going!
You need to finish just over an inch away from where you started. If you don’t leave this little gap open you’ll have no way to thread your elastic.
Next, turn your fabric the right way round, and sew a top stitch along the top. This isn’t a must, but I think it gives a better finish to your waistband. The top of your skirt should now look like this.
Now its time to cut your elastic. I don’t have a set way to measure this,I probably should but I usually just wrap it around and see what fits the best, I cut it at 16″ for Izzys 21″ waist. If I was to cut it at 21″ it would have no hold, nothing to grip the body and keep it up, just the same as if I cut it too small it would be too tight to wear. have a play around, see what is most comfortable to you. Once you’ve cut it, you’ll need to attach you’re safety clip to the end.
Now you can push the safety pinned end through the gap in your waist.
Push your elastic through the entire waist, making the fabric gather as you go. This is definitely the most time consuming part. But it will easily pass.
Keep a tight hold of the other end of your elastic! Do not let it go or you’ll have to pull your elastic out and start again.
Once you’ve pulled the pinned end of your least out the other end, you can pin both ends together.
And sew them together. Using a combination of your back stitch lever and forward stitch on the shortest stitch length, go back and forth a few times. This part of the elastic will take the most strain, so its important to have it properly secured.
Now, give your waistband a little stretch, pulling all of the elastic inside the skirt. Finally you can sew the little gap shut.
Elasticated waistband. Done!
And for the very last step, simply pop your iron over your skirt, giving a nice crisp hem and smooth seams. Super easy, elasticated full skirt. Finished.
I did try to get a picture of Izzy wearing her new skirt, but she hates the camera. I chased her round the garden for a good fifteen minutes, in the end I realised this would be as good as it gets!
Thanks for reading, I hope this tutorial can be of use to lots of you, as always you can message me on any of my social media sites with any questions regarding this or any other of my tutorials OR email me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
And please do send me pictures of your skirts, I love seeing your hard work!
The little woman pretends.