How to make a wide elastic band skirt

Updated April 17, 2017

Elastic waist skirts have greater longevity than other skirt styles because they can easily fit a person at various sizes. Even if you don't have to deal with weight fluctuation, a skirt with an elastic waistband is easier to put on than skirts without. This skirt style comprises a gathered material skirt and a wide piece of elastic serving as the waist. You can choose any type of fabric for the skirt, from lightweight and colourful to heavy and subdued for a more business look.

Wrap the wide elastic around your waist, or wherever you want the skirt to sit when you are wearing it. Overlap the elastic by one inch and sew it closed on the overlap with a sewing machine. Cut off the excess elastic.

Measure the widest part of your hips using a measuring tape. Multiply this number by one and a half to find the width of the fabric needed for the skirt. For example, if your hips are 36 inches wide, you will need 54 inches of fabric.

Hold the measuring tape vertically from the place where the skirt will sit and allow it to hang down. Get the length of your skirt by checking the measurement of where you want the skirt hem to end. Add two inches to this figure.

Cut out the fabric according to the measurements you took using sharp scissors. Fold the fabric in half, with the right sides facing each other, so it is only half as wide as its full width.

Sew the fabric closed along the vertical edge, then fold up the bottom horizontal edge by 1 inch. Sew the bottom edge in place to create a clean hem.

Sew along the top horizontal edge of the fabric with a long, wide stitch. Hold the ends of the stitch and gather the fabric up to make a ruffle.

Place the elastic band inside the fabric on the end with the gathered edge. Pin the elastic and fabric together with a 1 inch overlap. The right side of the fabric should be facing the elastic.

Sew the elastic and fabric together and remove all of the pins. Turn the skirt right side out and trim off any hanging threads. Press the side and bottom seams with an iron for clean lines.


Adjust the fullness by adding more or less fabric to suit your taste and body type.


Do not make the elastic too tight on your waist as it can be uncomfortable and restrict your breathing.

Things You'll Need

  • Wide elastic
  • Sewing machine
  • Scissors
  • Measuring tape
  • Fabric
  • Iron
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About the Author

Leah Perry has been writing articles, product descriptions and content since 2006 for websites like My Dear Child, Modular Kitchen Cabinets and On Track Lighting. The subjects of her works span topics from children to home and garden, home improvement, sewing and cooking.