A long, billowy skirt offers comfort, freedom of movement and a touch of romance. Making a long, flowing skirt is all about having more material than you would use to make a traditonal skirt. One of the easiest ways to make the fabric flow is to gather excess fabric around an elastic waistband. This project is at the beginner sewing level and is one of the easiest projects for a novice seamstress. You can make this kind of skirt for an adult or a child by varying the fabric length and waistband measurements based on the size of the wearer.
Measure the desired length of your skirt. Measure from your waist down to your ankles. Add an extra 5 inches for a waist and seam allowance. Cut the shorter side of the fabric to equal this measurement, if it is less than 36 inches.
Fold the top 1 1/2 inch of fabric over toward the wrong side of the fabric. Iron it in place. Fold about one quarter of the 1 1/2-inch fold up under the larger fold, and pin it in place. Sew the three layers of fabric together using a ¼-inch seam allowance. Remove the straight pins as you go. This will leave a small 1 1/4-inch pocket along the entire seam line. Later on, you will thread the elastic through this pocket to make your waistband.
At the bottom of the fabric--the side opposite the seam you just made, fold 1/4-inch of the fabric up toward the wrong side of the fabric. Iron it in place. Double the fold you just made over an additional 1/4 inch to hide the raw edge of the fabric--this will be your hem. Hold the hem line in place by pinning the fabric with straight pins. Sew the hem in place, using a 1/4-inch seam. Remove the pins as you sew.
Fold the fabric in half vertically so that the right sides of the fabric are facing eachother. The hem will be on the bottom and the waistband seam is on the top. Pin the two sides of the fabric together. Then, sew them together using a ½-inch seam. This will make a tube out of the fabric. Stop sewing when you reach the waistband. You need to thread the elastic through the open hole at the waistband before sewing the side seam all the way closed.
Measure your waist, and cut a strip of 1-inch thick elastic to 1 inch shorter than your waist measurement. Stick a large safety pin through the end of the elastic strip. Thread the safety pin and elastic through the pocket in the top seam. After threading the elastic through the waistband, sew the two ends of the elastic together.
Turn the skirt back inside out, and sew the waistband together as in Step 4. Turn your skirt right side out, and it is ready to wear!
Things you need
- Measuring tape
- 36-inch by 48-inch fabric
- Sewing machine
- Iron and ironing board
- 1-inch thick elastic strip
- Straight pins
- Safety pin