Sunday, June 3, 2012

Crafterhours Skirt Week - Simple Maxi Skirt

Jess and I are so excited that lovely ladies of Crafterhours invited us to participate in Skirt Week again this year.  We really appreciate all the hard work that goes into hosting an event like this. They are amazing women with apparently boundless energy. We find them very inspiring, like, all the time.
If you’ve been following along and catching all of the fantastic tutorials so far, you may have noticed that there seems to be a similar mind set this time around…. fun, wearable & easy.  Here at Created Blissfully we are feeling the same.
The hardest part about making this skirt will be picking out your fabric. You’ll want a fabric that is lighter weight and falls close to the body; this is the time to try something like a rayon challis, voile or crepe de chine. Don’t use quilting weight cotton, the gathers will have too much volume, it won’t have a light, flowing look. Go to your local shop and touch the fabrics before you buy. If there are no fabric shops with apparel fabric in your area, go to a ready made clothing store and check out the types of fabrics they use and how they look and feel, then when you search on-line, you have a better idea of how certain fabrics will drape. Though there are times when these fabrics are more expensive, the plus side is, a lot of apparel fabrics come in wider widths. I shop for a lot of my fabrics herehere and here.

Before you read my instructions, please remember I do not claim to be an expert. I am constantly learning new things from people, so if you have a better way, do it and share it with me!

Supplies you will need – fabric
                                     2 inch wide elastic
                                     polyester thread (this has more stretch to it)

1.      To calculate how much fabric you’ll need measure where you want your waistband to sit and what you want the length of your skirt to be, plus 1 ¼ inches for your hem and waist seam. Cut two rectangles to those measurements. Set aside.
2.       Fit elastic to your waist; make it snug enough to stay put where you want it to sit. Overlap the edges by a half inch.
 Using your stretch zig zag stitch, (see number 13) sew two rows of stitching to secure the elastic.

I used contrasting thread so you could see the stitching. Use the same color thread and you won't see what looks like a mess.
3.          Take your two rectangles of fabric and sew together at the sides.
4.       Sew a gathering stitch a ¼ inch from the top edge of the skirt, starting and stopping at the side seams. Leave long tails so it is easier to pull the threads.

5.      Gather your waist up until it is approximately 5 inches larger than the circumference of the elastic waist band, this will allow your waist band to stretch after sewing. Distribute gathers evenly and sew again at a ¼ inch to set the gathers.
6.       Divide your elastic waist band and skirt waist evenly and mark with pins.
7.       Matching pins, lay skirt on top of the elastic waistband overlapping a ¼ inch and pin together.
8.       Sew with your stretch zig zag stitch. You will want to stretch your elastic out to the ease of the skirt as you sew.  Sew carefully to keep the overlap at about a ¼ inch. I used a white thread so you can see it better, please use a matching thread for your skirt. This leaves a raw edge on the outside of the elastic. It's not up against my skin, that's the way I like it.

9.      Hem skirt.
10.   Wear!
Little Folks and Square Dance by Anna Maria Horner.  I simply cut enough of the smaller motifs to go around the bottom of the skirt and sewed them on. I'd been hoarding this fabric....                                   
Does anyone else wonder what to do with their hands with being photographed? I've decided holding my coffee cup is good.. 

                                        Rayon Challis print from Fabric dot com, no longer available.
Not sure why the only "sort of" decent pictures are the ones where I'm looking at my feet. 
The back edge of the tropical storm made it interesting trying to take pictures.

Of course you can make this skirt any length you want to, personally, I'm just loving the maxi length right now!
Now, if you haven't already, go look at all of the amazing skirts in the Flickr pools!


  1. I really like how you used the Anna maria!! I'm liking drapey fabrics this year a lot! My only tip to ad is that when I got frustrated sewing the rayon I heavy starched the crap out of it to make it easier to handle. The maxi length is very nice on you!!

  2. Thank you so much once again C & J! I see this skirt going viral on pinterest like your bias skirt has. People just like stuff that is simple but gorgeous and seems do-able to even the beginner sewist. You nailed it!
    ps: totally holding my coffee in my pics from now on! I'll look less awkward and I won't have to find a child-proof place to set it, since it's probably in my hand already anyway.

  3. Great job! It's fun to see the 'maxi' lengths back. Maybe I should have kept the ones I had years ago? I like the coffee cup in hand pose.

  4. Nice job on the tutorial! The skirts look very nice on you and super comfy. I love it when you can combine the two. :)

  5. I love the skirts, they look great and super on you.
    Great idea to sew on the small pieces around the bottom of the skirt.

  6. Love the skirts! And I can never figure out where to look when being photographed for blog stuff. Your hands look very natural :)


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