How to Make a Handkerchief Skirt or Dress

Written by chelsea hoffman Google
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How to Make a Handkerchief Skirt or Dress
Assorted handkerchiefs (handkerchiefs image by Maria Brzostowska from

A handkerchief skirt, or dress, is comprised of strips of handkerchiefs to create an asymmetrical and flowing effect. Making your own handkerchief dress or skirt at home proves to be a creative task that allows you to take charge of your own sense of style. From luxurious silk fabrics and feminine prints to bold striking colours and textured materials, your creativity is the only limit when it comes to making a handkerchief garment.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy

Things you need

  • Measuring tape
  • Prethreaded sewing machine
  • 30 handkerchiefs, large size
  • Elastic, 32" length
  • Strip of silk material, 32" long by 12" wide

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  1. 1

    Spread the silk strip of material in front of you, making sure it is spread out lengthwise.

  2. 2

    Fold the top of the fabric down about one inch. Sew the fold directly over the edge of the top lying fabric, creating a hollow tube.

  3. 3

    Insert one end of the elastic strip into the sewn tube at the top of the silk strip. Bunch the fabric around the elastic as you slide it through the other end. Keep the silk fabric bunched up around the elastic.

  4. 4

    Grasp each end of the elastic, with the bunched up silk material between them, and overlap one end of the elastic over the other for approximately 3 inches. Sew the overlapped part of the elastic together.

  5. 5

    Sew a seam directly beneath the sewn elastic. Make the seam straight.

  6. 6

    Add a row of handkerchiefs to the bottom of the silk material. Make sure the handkerchiefs are sewn at the bottom (the side without the elastic band). Sew the handkerchiefs diagonally at the bottom in a flowing design.

  7. 7

    Add another row of handkerchiefs to the structure by adhering them behind the already attached handkerchiefs. This creates a tiered effect.

  8. 8

    Create a third and final row of handkerchiefs, layering them beneath the second row.

Tips and warnings

  • Wear the garment as either a long skirt or a mid-thigh level dress, when pulled up around your bust area.

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