Tuesday, 28 June 2011

Three Sweet Skirts and a Tutorial

I made the first of these skirts last night...the medium sized one is for a 3 month old. The teeny tiny one is for a preemie twin (her twin is a boy so I have to figure out what to make for him next) and it will literally just be to cover her nappy (diaper) when she is in a baby grow (onesie?). The largest is for a friend's 5 year old and I hope to have some photos of her in it tomorrow to put up here.

I made a tutorial as I was going along (mostly for myself because in between skirt 1 and 2 I managed to forget a vital step and ended up unpicking an entire line of stitches!) but here are the easy steps if you are interested:

Measure the intended skirt-wearer or beg plead and cajole their very busy and exhausted parents to do it and email them to you!
My 5 year old has a waist of 54cm (just over 21 inches). So I cut a rectangle out of my main fabric that was approximately twice as wide as this measurement (110cm/43inches) by 26cm/10inches (skirt length depends on your preference). Then for the ruffle I cut a long narrow rectangle of 7cm/3inches x 140cm/55inches (again you can vary this depending on how large you want your ruffles to be).
So I ended up with this:

Next, to seal the edges and because I don't have a serger, I ironed all my long edges over twice and pinned them:

Then I sewed a straight line down them using a green thread in the bobbin that matches the ruffle fabric.

Once that was done, I attached the ruffle to the bottom of the main skirt piece with pins. I pinned the two extreme edges first and then pinned the middle and then just tucked in the ruffles as I went along - I had to unpin it once to get it more or less right...I am not too fussy about them being even or at regular intervals but they came out relatively uniformly...

Next I pinned the two short ends of the skirt together with the right sides of the fabric facing each other and sewed to create the skirt tube. I did not finish off the short ends as it was the selvage end of the fabric but did press the seams open.

I created a casing for my elastic waistband by turning the top down (twice the width of my elastic so that I could create a ruffle top as inspired by the super creative Jess of Craftiness Is Not Optional in her gorgeous Ice cream social dress tutorial). I sewed a continuous line around the top mark for the elastic and then almost all the way around for the bottom (the middle line of stitching in the picture is from where I turned over my edge) - leaving a space to feed the elastic through:

Which I did by attaching a safety pin to the elastic and feeding it through, bunching up the fabric as I went along:

Next I sewed the ends of the elastic together using 2 lines of zigzag stitching.

Then sealed up the opening, making sure to hold the fabric taut against the elastic so that it doesn't pucker:

Trim all the loose ends and press the ruffles down and press down the seam...and then...drumroll please...

...take ages deliberating over choose the perfect Incomparable buttons to sew on your new creations to make them entirely unique...
I chose an ice cream & cupcake for my medium size skirt:

a teeny green bird for the small skirt:

and have yet to sew on the buttons for my big girl skirt - I'm deliberating between a gathering of ladybirds and a collection of Incomparable hearts and flowers:

What would you choose? I think I'm more inclined towards the softer pastel shades on this lovely material.


  1. Both skirs are just lovely.....and the buttons are just the right touch!! Wonderful tutorial!

  2. Those are so sweet! The buttons really make them too! And for the skirt in question, I agree, I would totally go with the flowers/hearts, love the way they look on that fabric! I think the idea to scatter them over the skirt is lovely too!

  3. I love those skirts and the buttons were a great personal touch.

  4. Loved the buttons as that little something extra on the darling skirts. I love the softer pastel color and I'm a little partial to birds. But I think either would be fine for a five year old. I've got to make a few for my granddaughters for school this fall. I think leggings would be just the ticket for cooler weather. Thanks for the tutorial and such clear directions.

  5. I'm leaning toward the pop of color provided by the ladybugs (as we call them here in the states). One of my favorite little critters. I was lucky enough to get one to pose for me recently.


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