Friday, August 28, 2009

Easy stretch skirt with large decoration - AKA my "Birthday Skirt"

Hip-Hip-Hooray for me - it's my birthday! It's also my uncle's 70th birthday today too. He's having a party on the weekend so I decided that I needed a new skirt to wear. Speed was important so I used some double stretch knit fabric I had in the cupboard. I have also had this idea in my head for a while for a large florally kind of decoration. So to start with here is the finished product:

To make the skirt:
Take your measurement around your hip - the largest part of your bum. Mine was 40". I added 3" to this for ease & seams - if you want a tighter fit you will may want to add less. Now also decide how long you want your skirt - mine was 23" long. The fabric I had happened to be wider than 43", so I just cut a strip 43" wide & 23" long.

Remember I said this was a speedy skirt?... Well fold the fabric in half and sew up the side to make a tube. Now fold over the top to make a casing and sew - leave a gap for some elastic. Thread the elastic, stitch the ends of the elastic together and close the gap.
Your done....told you it was speedy!

Now for the fun part...
Start with your fabric selection. I went for similar tones, and tried to add some texture by using different types of fabric.

Get your fabrics ready:

  1. Decided how wide you want your strips - I used 2" just because it's an easy number!
  2. Cut your fabrics - I cut some on the bias & some straight. The satin fabric I knew would fray too much, so I cut that one 4" wide, on the bias (it would be folded with no raw edges).
  3. Prepare the strips - some of the fabric strips I ran a gathering stitch down the length.

Mark the centre of your circle. And start with the outside of your spiral. Pin in place. Take it to your sewing machine and start sewing! When you get to the end of what have prepared you can follow either of the following methods:

  1. just keep sewing, randomly adding your fabrics as you go
  2. take it back to your table and prepare another round of the spiral (or you can do concentric circles)

You can keep going until you have filled in the whole circle. Make sure that each strip covers the stitching of the fabric underneath. I thought that this would be a bit heavy for the skirt fabric so I filled the centre with a doily. Here is a detail photo:

When I tried on my skirt I found that the top 'frills' were a bit 'floppy' and showed a bit of the sewing underneath. I added a few hand stitches to hold them back at a few strategic spots. Later tonight I may even run an extra row of stitching near the outside.
I think this might also look good on a cushion, or maybe in blacks for a 'going out' skirt...the possibilities are endless!

Hope you enjoy!

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