How to make chiffon skirts for ballet

Written by fabianna dardati
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How to make chiffon skirts for ballet
In the world of ballet academies, strict dress codes are often used. (ballet image by huaxiadragon from

A ballet skirt is a one-layer skirt required by the dress code of most ballet academies as a cover up to use when entering and leaving class. Although it is made from a "floaty" and transparent fabric, such as chiffon made from polyester, rayon or silk, some dance instructors prefer that the student not wear a skirt in class so that she can properly view the student's technique. When several ballet skirts are layered one on top of the other it is called a tutu, which is used in performances.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Tape measure
  • Chiffon fabric
  • Matching bias cut ribbon
  • Serger or sewing machine with zigzag application

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  1. 1

    Measure your waist circumference.

    How to make chiffon skirts for ballet
    Layering various chiffon skirts over each other begins to transform the skirt into a tutu. (dancing girl image by DebbieO from
  2. 2

    Fold your chiffon fabric in half and then in half again, lining up the edges.

    How to make chiffon skirts for ballet
    Texturising and raising the hemlines horizontally converts a layered skirt into a tutu. (ballerina image by chinatiger from
  3. 3

    Take your waist circumference, divide it by pi (3.14), and then divide that result by 2.

    How to make chiffon skirts for ballet
    By using basic geometry, you can make a simple ballet skirt. (pi image by Ewe Degiampietro from
  4. 4

    Place the fabric on a flat surface so that the folds are on the left and on the top. Place the end of the tape measure on the top-left corner and cross it in a perfect diagonal to the opposite corner. Mark at the point of your calculation.

    How to make chiffon skirts for ballet
    Geometry is a very big part of clothesmaking. (calculator, measuring tape and pens isolated on white image by Elnur from
  5. 5

    Mark the same measurement along the left vertical and the top horizontal folds. Connect the dots in an arc. Cut along this curve.

  6. 6

    Measure down the vertical fold from the point you just cut to the length you would like your skirt to be and mark that point. Do the same along the top horizontal and straight out along the cut curve. Connect those dots with an arc and cut along the line.

  7. 7

    Measure your hip circumference. Subtract your waist measurement from your hip measurement. Open up the fabric, which will look like a doughnut. Measure from the waistline circle straight down to the number you just calculated and cut on this line. This will allow the skirt to widen enough to slip over your hips when it is finished.

    How to make chiffon skirts for ballet
    Sheer fabrics such as tulle or chiffon are difficult to sew. It is best to serge the edges. (Sheer Curtain image by Empath from
  8. 8

    Serge or zigzag stitch along all raw edges to keep them from fraying. Sew the bias cut ribbon along the top of the waistline. Make sure to leave extra length on both ends to allow you to tie on your skirt. If desired, you can also sew a bias cut ribbon to the bottom hem.

    How to make chiffon skirts for ballet
    Bias cut ribbon can also be made from leftover fabric. (white ribbon image by Liz Van Steenburgh from

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