Very Cute and Very Easy Skirt Tutorial
I have two little girls who love to wear skirts. They ask everyday if they can wear a skirt so for me, making skirts fast and easy is a great thing. I’ve made them tiered skirts following an easy pattern from Ottobre spring 2011 edition. And while that was really easy I thought a one layer skirt must be even faster and easier,and just as cute. There are TONS of blogs online with cute skirt tutorials nearly identical to this one so I’m certainly not original or unique, but I thought I’d share my version of how to make a cotton skirt look very nice without the use of a serger/overlock.
Cute, isn’t it?
I like to make my skirts from 100% cotton, that is just my preference. They could easily be made from jersey or interlock as well. The above fabric is a light weight cotton which I got from Alfatex in Cologne. This store has turned out to be a favorite destination of mine after I discovered that they sell designer fabric like Chanel, Escada, and Strenesse at the most amazing rock bottom prices. Considering many items in Germany seem to be so expensive in comparison to many things in the States, I’m happy to find a bargain. While this fabric is not, to my knowledge, from a famous designer, its great quality cotton which cost 5,90€ per meter.
- 1/2 to 1 meter fabric depending on size. Ok, I measure in both inches and centimeters. A meter is a little bigger than a yard so we can easily say 1/2-1 yard of fabric. I had the measuring band flipped to inches when I measured my girls, but I buy my material by the meter.
- coordinating thread.
- elastic band 3/4 – 1″ inch width and a safety pin
- if you’re adding the monogram ( a tip I got from MADE) then you’ll need some interfacing. I don’t know what its called in the US, but here its called Vlieso- Fix. It’s double sided interfacing. Maybe that’s what its called?? I am American, right? Shouldn’t I know this??
Start by measuring the waist of the person who will be wearing the skirt. My daughter has a 21″ waist.
Then you need to figure out the length needed by measuring from the waist to just above the knee. My daughter measures 13″
I find that 1.5 times the waist measurement is perfect for me to get the type of gathering I personally like, but many people will double the waist. Play around with it and see what works easiest for you. It could very well be that with some materials you prefer 1.5 and with others the 1:2 ratio. As for the length, use your measurement as a guide and add 1.5 -2 inches for seaming allowance.
Using my daughter’s measurements I cut out a big rectangle 32″w by 15″ legnth.
Width ( using waist measurements) is 32″ ( 21 ” waist circumference times 1.5= 31.5″ plus 1/2 inch for seam allowance.)
Legnth ( measuring waist to desired legnth) 15″ ( 13 ” plus 2 inches for seam allowance)
Before I did anything…I washed and dried my material. You did too, right????? I had to cut off this edge before measuring and cutting to size. I prefer to cut using a rotary cutter as to scissors.
When all was measured, here is my rectangle folded in half.
You don’t necessarily need one big rectangle if your fabric doesn’t allow that. You can also use two pieces and sew two side seams. I’m a bit lazy and happy to have only one seam to sew!!
Speaking of seams…..As I don’t ** yet** own an overlock ( serger) , I make my skirts using a french seam. This assures that I won’t have any unraveling inside my skirt. Click the link for a great tutorial. Below is a picture of my french seam.
You have your iron preheated, right? Now you will need to use it. You need to iron your hem and waist. You’ll use a 1/4 ” seam allowance for the hem, but folded twice so that you fold the cut edges under and have a neat hem. Iron your hem please!! For the waistband, iron 1/4″ inch ( on the wrong side) then fold over 1 1/4″ for the elastic band. Mine looks like this:
Now we’ll leave the rest of the waist band for later and move onto the letter application. If you don’t want to do the monogram, skip down to the part where I finish the waist and add the elastic.
As per Dana’s tip, I printed off and ” L” from the computer for my daughter. I knew I didn’t want a Laverne & Shirley “L”.
So I ended up with this one which I printed off my computer using Goudy Old Style font in size 410. Cut it out, please.
I decided this red and white check skirt needed something blue on it. Maybe my daughter can wear it for 4th of July ( yes, we go to a 4th of July party in Germany and no Germans don’t celebrate 4th of July – I’ve been asked that TONS of times) I found a pair of jeans that don’t fit either of my girls and used those.
I flipped my “L” over and traced it backwards onto my double sided interfacing ( Vlieso-Fix) and ironed it on.
Then cut it out
Peel off the backing
Flip your letter over and iron onto skirt
Then just stitch around the letter. The thread matches so well you can see it on the denim, but here is a picture of it inside the skirt.
Now its time to finish the waistband.
Sew all around the waistband leaving a two inch opening for inserting the elastic. As I said, my daughter’s waist is 21″ so I cut my elastic 21″ knowing that I have to double the elastic about 1″ to sew it together. Add a safety pin to one end of the elastic to help you feed it through.
Sew your elastic together using a zig zag stitch and go over it several times so that you are sure it will stay.
Sew the opening closed and you’re all done!!
For fun, I decided to add some ribbon to my skirt around the hem. I did this actually before adding the elastic to the waist which is why there was pink thread in my machine!!
Now it’s really done! I know, it seems like a lot of steps but it SOOOOO EASY! Give it a try. This is such a great skirt you will find yourself making TONS and maybe even for yourself!
Thanks for stopping by and happy sewing.