Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Between projects...

I found myself in a very unusual situation yesterday. There was nothing to sew! I usually have several projects cut out ahead of time, since I find it much easier to cut something out (on the dining room table) while the kids are awake. It is almost impossible to sit down to my sewing machine when they are both up. Yesterday, they both napped for a marathon amount of time and I finished a project but didn't have the next one cut out!! What's a sewist to do?? So, I decided to make a skirt for Myra and a tutorial for you.How cute is that!? The idea came from my friend Hayley. She had a yard sale a few weeks ago and I bought her out of cute stuff to repurpose. She had this sweet little boys button up that I hadn't seen and she suggested that I turn it into a skirt for Myra. Sweet idea!
Here is the shirt. It is a boys size small. Here is how it becomes a skirt!!

1. Measure your kid and decide how long you want the skirt to end up. Be sure to add an allowance for the elastic casing at the top. I like to use the width of my elastic, plus 1/2 inch to turn under and sew. So, for my 3/4 inch elastic, I added 1 1/2 inches to my measurement. Since I am using the existing hem at the bottom of the shirt, I didn't add an allowance for the hem, but if you need to, do so.

2. Using the measurement in step one, measure up from the bottom edge. Since this shirt had a curved hem, I measured from the highest point to make sure that the skirt was long enough at the end. Cut off the top of the shirt at your measurement.
3. Stitch down the placket so that the skirt doesn't gap. I thought it would be cute to leave a few inches below the lowest button open, sort of as a slit, but you can stitch it all the way down if you choose.
4. Make a casing at the top edge by folding under your total hem allowance, then tucking under 1/4 inch to clean finish the edge. You may have to remove a button from the area of your casing. Just snip it off. Edgestitch the casing down, leaving an inch open at one of the seamlines to insert your elastic. 5. Cut a piece of elastic about 1 inch less than the waist measurement of your girlie. Insert your elastic into the casing. I use a safety pin on the end I am pushing through and a straight pin on the other end to keep it from pulling all the way in.6. Stitch your elastic together with a wide zigzag and edgestitch closed your casing. Add girlie trim and wear!
This method can be used to make a skirt out of pretty much anything and for pretty much anyone. I generally prefer a more shaped skirt for a grown up, since the elastic waist tends to add bulk at the waist, hip and butt - not places I want added bulk - but it can be done. Here is a skirt I made out of two pillowcases for me. I only put elastic in the back half to reduce waist bulk. It worked out OK, since the fabric was quite thin.

This skirt was also made this way, but with the fabric cut along the selvage edge on the crossgrain. Since the selvage became the bottom edge, I didn't have to hem. For the width I measured Myra's hips (with diaper on!) and roughly double it, so that there would be plenty of room for movement. For a slimmer skirt, you could use less width, but be sure that it measures at least 3 inches greater than your widest part, or you won't be able to get it on!

This is a fun and easy way to make a quick skirt in less than an hour. Go ahead! Give it a try!


  1. looks great!! I may have to try it

  2. Great Tutorial, i learn a lot whit this blog !