Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Whip It Up Wednesday: Adventures in Skirt Making

Today is more "sharing time" than "tutorial time" - I'm really not advocating my method of skirt making!! 

But this is the first time I got to use my new baby! Well, new to me ^_^

Isn't she preeeetty? A lovely oldish Elna overlocker.

OK, so here's how I made my double layered skirt!

I used two layers of fabric, one see through and one opaque, and pretty ruffle edged wide elastic for the waist band.

I took my sheer fabric (I have a confession to make - I don't know fabric types! I need to learn!) and folded it over a few times to a manageable width. It's about two metres wide. Then I measured myself from waist to under my knee, measured the fabric and CHOPPED IT OFF at that line. I didn't mark it or anything.

I like to wing it. That's not so terrible is it? 

OK, next I used my overlocker to do a rolled hem at the top and bottom of my sheer fabric strip.

Then I folded it in half, right sides facing in, and did a rolled hem up the open edge as well.

To make the opaque layer, I took my fabric, folded it in half and half again, and then laid one of my existing (and favourite!) skirts over the top. I traced the outside and cut it out.

This gave me two opaque panels, a front and a back, to go with my sheer layer.

Unfortunately I forgot to take into account the fact that my favourite skirt is zip up, and the one I'm making has an elastic waist and needs more fabric around the waist area so it can be stretched! To combat this, I ended up cutting the top third off the opaque panels so the waist area is wider.

Next I overlocked the top and bottom of each opaque panel. I then pinned the two pieces together, right sides facing, and sewed them together up the sides.

I measured my waist and then decided I wanted to wear the skirt on my hips, so I measured there instead. I cut out a piece of elastic that was a bit smaller than the measured distance, and then folded it in half and sewed up the edge.

Now there are three pieces ready to be sewn together, an under-skirt, over-skirt and waist band.

First, I pinned my sheer top layer to the inside of my elastic, pinning the pleats into place.

Next I pinned the under-skirt on top of that, moving the pins from the sheer layer to include both layers. 

Finally, I used my trusty sewing machine. Alas, the overlocker couldn't be used for this step ;) I set my sewing machine to a wide zig zag stitch and sewed all around the waist band using matching cotton thread. Make sure you pull the elastic taut while you do this.

I tried it on, and realised my waist band was too wide - whoops!! So I folded an edge in and sewed it up. It now looks like this:

Aaaand we're done. I'll probably make some kind of flower pin to attach to my weird folded up elastic patch.

Not too shabby for a first (and patternless!) attempt at skirt making, right?


Anonymous said...

Great job! It looks lovely :)

Janlynn said...

Looks like you are enjoying your new machine. Your skirt looks great.

Anonymous said...

I think winging it is sometimes the best way to go! Just let the creativity take over..and amazing things happen!

I love my serger'll really enjoy it more and more as you go...except when you have to rethread the thing...that's the part I can live without! lol

i'm now following you...stop by and visit with me too sometime...from one sewer to another..



Anonymous said...

beautiful job,, so crafty you are,, looks really nice on,, so cool and comfy.

SewHappyGeek said...

Lol, I love it! Somewhere there's a professional seamstress rolling over in her grave and yelling at all of us lazy sewists to obey the rules!
rules? Scmules I say.

Ricki Jill Treleaven said...

Rissa, it is totally cute. You can do anything!

Screaming Sardine said...

Rissa, you make sewing looks simple. I still don't think I'll ever attempt something like this, but with such easy tutorials, maybe I will one day.

Featured you at the Screaming Sardine.


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