Several years ago I came across this skirt pattern on the internet and did a small tweak to make it they way I wanted. Since then I’ve made numerous skirts using this pattern for my girls. I taught it to my sister who has probably made more skirts than me. She also taught it to her friend who was just learning to sew. Honestly, if you can sew a straight line, you can make a skirt. It is that easy.
The first thing I do is measure my girls. You are going to need two pieces of fabric – one for the main part of the skirt and one for the trim around the bottom. I generally like the finished trim to be three inches which means I need to cut it seven inches long because the fabric gets folded in half and I use half-inch seam allowances. So figure out how much trim you want, double it and add one more inch for a seam allowance. Measure how long you want the skirt to be subtract the trim from the length. Then add another two to three inches to accommodate the casing at the top and the bottom seam allowance. I hope that doesn’t sound complicated because it really isn’t.
On to the cutting. First, I even up the edge. Then cutting selvedge to selvedge I cut the length I need twice – one for the front and one for the back. Then I do the same for the trim. Again I cut selvedge to selvedge. When I’m finished I trim the same amount off of all four selvedge sides since you don’t want to sew the selvedge.
I like to make sure my fabric is going the same way. This is especially important if you have a pattern with a definite direction. I put a pin in the top of each skirt piece so I’ll know which way is up.
Now it’s time to sew. On your main fabric do a seam in each side. I generally sew top to bottom on both sides. That way if I cut anything a little crooked it’s at the bottom and I can straighten it out. Do the same with the trim. Sew the side seams. If you want to serge them do that now too.
Now with the seam inside fold your trim in half and press it flat. Then take your trim and pin it to the right side of the bottom of the skirt.
Sew that seam (and serge if desired) and celebrate the fact that you are nearly finished this skirt already.
Now it’s time to make the casing for the elastic waist. Fold the top of the skirt over about one-fourth of an inch. Sometimes I go as deep as half an inch. Press this fold down. Then fold it down again the same amount and press it.
Now you are ready to make the final fold which needs to be a little bigger than the elastic. To do this I usually lay the elastic on my fabric as a means of measuring how much I need to fold over the fabric.
Leaving an opening about two inches wide sew along the bottom edge of this casing. The opening is for inserting the elastic and you will sew it closed later.
Measure your daughter’s waist for the elastic. I start with a piece that sits loosely around their waist. There are special tools you can buy for threading elastic through a casing, but generally just use a safety pin. Make sure you anchor one end so it doesn’t get lost in the casing, and you have to start over. Once it’s all the way through pin it and have your daughter try it on. I really make them confirm with me that it’s comfortable because if it needs to be adjusted it’s so much easier to do it now than later when everything is sewed. When the fit is right overlap the ends of the elastic and sew them together. Then stretch the fabric at the opening and sew the opening closed. That’s it. You’re finished! It probably took me more time to write this post than it does to sew one of these skirts especially once you’ve done the first which always takes longer. ☺
These skirts are full and easy to move and play in. My daughters love them.
Do you have a favourite go-to skirt pattern?