How to make a gypsy skirt

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How to make a gypsy skirt
The gypsy skirt is very wide at the bottom hem. (Arman Zhenikeyev/iStock/Getty Images)

If you like a versatile skirt that makes you feel free when wearing it, the gypsy skirt may be your cup of tea. The gypsy skirt fabric is cut in a full circle to allow it to flow freely during movement. This four-tier, ankle-length skirt is also a great addition to a belly dance costume or can make for a romantic look.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Tape measure
  • Friend to help measure you
  • Skirt fabric
  • Drawstring that is 50 cm (20 inches) longer than your waist measurement
  • Iron-on interfacing
  • Sewing machine
  • Seam ripper

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  1. 1

    Measure your waist or hips, as well as your desired length. Gypsy skirts usually fall to at least the ankles, but some are even longer, just barely grazing the floor.

  2. 2

    Add 5 cm (2 inches) to your waist measurement so that your skirt will fit comfortably.

  3. 3

    Decide how wide you want each of your tiers. You can make them the same length or have them increase in width as you move down the skirt.

    Cutting and sewing

  1. 1

    Cut a fabric strip for the waistband. This strip should be twice as wide as you want the waistband to be. To this measurement, add 3.1 cm (1 1/4 inches) for the seams.

  2. 2

    Cut a piece of interfacing slightly shorter that half the width of the waistband. Iron the interfacing on to one half of the waistband. Fold the waistband in half and press the right sides together with the iron.

  3. 3

    Fold the waistband in half once more and sew a 1.5 cm (5/8 inch) seam along each end. The idea is to flip the waistband outside-in so the right sides are showing.

  4. 4

    Cut rectangle shapes for each tier. Cut your top tier so that it is three times the length of the waist. The second tier should be three-and-a-half times the waist length, and the third tier is four times that length.

  5. 5

    Attach your first tier by sewing a 1.5 cm (5/8 inch) seam with the right sides together. Gather the top of the tier before sewing it on.

  6. 6

    Attach each additional tier one at a time, making sure you gather only the top of each tier. Do not gather the bottom of the tier onto which you are sewing the additional tier.

  7. 7

    Add a hem to the bottom of the skirt. A typical hem is about 2.5 cm (1 inch) deep.

  8. 8

    Fold your waistband in half with the outside facing out. Use hand stitching on the inner edge to cover the first tier's edges.

  9. 9

    Open the seams on each end of the waistband to add the drawstring. A seam ripper will do the the job quickly.

Tips and warnings

  • You may have to adjust the skirt length of this pattern if you want your gypsy skirt to sit at your hips -- for example, for belly dancing.
  • As you attach additional tiers, the rectangle shapes may not be long enough. You can just piece the tiers together with the same length of cloth.

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