Remember when I said I was obsessed with maxi skirts? Well, there’s a bit of a fancier version of the 15 min Con-going skirt. Same benefits as the other maxi skirt. They’re as comfy as sweats but look ten times better! It sounds harder than it is and I find it more comfortable than a skirt with an elastic waistband.
Alright let’s get started.
Here’s what you’ll need
- Matching thread
- Measuring tools
- Scissors or rotary cutter
- Knit with some stretch to it. I used about a yard and a half.
- Ballpoint needle- (Not pictured) Not required but makes things easier.
- Sewing machine- (Not pictured) again optional but makes things go much much faster.
Alright, the first thing you’re going to want to do is measure how long you want your skirt to be. Since the type of knit I’m using won’t fray or run I don’t plan on hemming. If that’s something you want to do you’ll want to be sure to add an inch or two to the length. I want my skirt to be 37 in long so I added an inch for seam allowance and wiggle room. Find the length you want and cut. I just use the width of the fabric. You may need to add more or take away some depending on your awesome body and the fit you want.
Next you’re going to have to decide how high you want your waistband to be when it’s NOT folded over. I wanted mine to be 6 in. Then you’re going to need to double it. Why you ask? Well you need you’re band to be the same on both sides so when you fold it over it will look nice. (Think yoga top.) So since I doubled it I’m at 12 in. Then I want to add an inch for seam allowance again and that brings us up to 13 in high. You’ll want your height to be parallel to the selvage of the fabric. This is super important because you’ll need the fabric to stretch the right way to get the top to say up.
Now we’ve come to the waistband part which can be tricky bc it all depends on the type of fabric you have. Let’s start by folding it in half. Next you’ll want to take a measurement on where you want the skirt to sit on you. For me, I want it to be higher than where I wear my pants but lower than my natural waist. When I measured it was about 36 in. Now here ‘s where they type of fabric matters. You’re going to want to subtract anywhere from 3 to 10 in depending on the fabric and how it stretches. I made two skirts that I subtracted 5 inches from the width (31 in total) and one fit great while the other was too big. The one that was too big was a much looser woven fabric then the one that fit. Meaning it had a lot more stretch than the other so I should have made it smaller to get the same amount of stretch. Make sense? When in doubt cut less and try it on. You can always take it in but adding more isn’t so easy.
Once you get the band all figured out take it and the skirt piece and sew each separately, right sides together length wise.
When you have the waist band sewn you’re going to want to fold it over itself, like you would a sock. You’re going to want to be able to have the seams facing inwards and it still be a tube you can pull over your hips.
Now take the skirt body you’ve sew and figure out what end you want to be the top. Once you do that you’re going to sew a zig zag stitch along the top set to the widest setting and longest length. You’ll be using this to gather your fabric. You can also baste along the top as well.
It should look something like this.
To gather you’ll want to pull ONE of the strings while holding the other steady. I find the bobbin thread works best for my machine. Don’t pull too hard. You don’t want to break the thread.
It should look something like this. Remember, you want the gather to be the same width as the waistband.
To attach, you’ll take the waistband with the folded top pointing down (towards the bottom of the skirt) and put the top of the skirt inside the waistband. Pull through until the top of the skirt reaches the end of the band.
Be sure to match the seams.
This is the time to make sure you gathered the right amount and everything is where it needs to be. It’s better to spend a few extra seconds shifting things than to find out after you’ve sewn and have to rip everything out and do it over.
Now to attach the skirt to the top, sewing so the gathering stitch won’t be seen. If it is, no biggy. You can just use a seam ripper and take it out.
You’ll want to use a stretch stitch that looks like this or set your machine to a slight zig zag.
Or you can use a straight stitch and stretch the skirt slightly as you go. You’ll need your stitching to have a little give so it doesn’t break the first time you wear it.
Once you’re done sewing you’ll want to trim off the excess fabric at the seams (Don’t cut too close to your stitching). You can either finish the seams off with a serger or zig zag stitch and TA DA! You now have an awesome comfortable ~stylish skirt to rock at the latest Con.
Now go make some!