Monday, May 21, 2012

Tutorial: Knit Maxi Skirt

I have been a sewing fiend lately.  I like to get projects in here or there, but I have been abnormally prolific lately.  My latest (and most favorite!) thing I have been sewing are knit maxi skirts.  

Last summer when I was visiting family in Utah, I went to a fabric warehouse with my sister-in-law and stocked up on TONS of $1/yd knit fabric.  Although I had big plans for it originally, it has sat on my shelves, relatively untouched.  Inspired by all of the maxi skirts I am seeing this season, I used THIS tutorial as a base as to how I should construct the skirt.  After reading the tutorial, I still wasn't exactly sure how to make my correct size, so I created a pattern from an existing skirt of mine and made it knee length so that I would only need 1 yard of fabric (and if it was crappy then I had only wasted one yard instead of two!) My first attempt turned out pretty good, but it felt a little big around the waist and I didn't like the fold-over waistband sitting right on my hips.  The last thing I need sitting around my hips is 4 layers of knit (2 layers, folded in half) all bunched together to create a nice, large roll under my t-shirt.  Or is that just me? ;)  I fixed both problems from the original skirt by cutting my waistband pieces smaller, both width-wise and height-wise.  By doing this, I was able to create a nice, tight, waistband that tucks me in a bit (if you know what I mean...), as opposed to a loose waistband with lots of extra fabric.  

I created this little picture to show you the dimensions of the skirt I made, in hopes that it will help you size yours correctly. I have a waist measurement of 28.5" and a hip measurement of about 35."  I wear a pant size 6, and am 5'11" tall with a 34" inseam.  The white pattern piece you see is the pattern I made for my first skirt, and the outlined section was how I cut my full-length skirt.  One of my favorite things about this skirt is how long it is.  Maxi skirts in the stores almost always hit at - or right above - my ankle, and it just makes me smile to have this skirt skim my heels.

I didn't take a picture of my waistband pieces, but I cut them 14" long and 4" wide.  Once I sewed the waistband pieces together, I stretched the waistband to fit the 16" opening that I cut at the top of the skirt. This gave me the nice, tight 2" waistband I mentioned above.  (again, refer to this original tutorial for more specific pictures)

This is a picture of the skirt hot off the sewing machine and while it hugs a little more than I traditionally like in this picture, it had stretched to the perfect tightness about an hour into wearing it.

Don't mind the dirty mirror or the squinting person in the mirror....I'm obviously not very experienced at self picture taking. :)
Using a serger (or sewing machine), this skirt requires exactly 5 seams and about an hour of your life from start to finish, including the pattern drafting.  I used my serger for every seam, and the sewing part of this skirt took no more than 10 minutes.  I've decided that at a couple of dollars a pop, these skirts are going to be my summer wardrobe staple.

1 comment:

Tara said...

that's awesome!! I saw this on pinterest and was looking at the pattern yesterday. It was kind of confusing to me how to size.. I think I'm gonna try it.. I LOVE maxi skirts.. And that making it you can make it to your height.