Saturday, August 29, 2009

Make It: Quick and Easy 2-Tiered Skirt

Here's a little story: The other day I was at the fabric store with my girls and I had the brilliant idea to take them over to the character fabrics and let them choose their very favorite so I could sew them a skirt.

Gracie practically flipped out with excitement as she ooooh'd and ahhhh'd over all the fabric. Dora, Care Bears, Barbie, Strawberry Shortcake... she loved them all.

"You can pick out one fabric. Pick your very favorite. The one you want more than anything," I said. I was excited for them and eager to see what they would choose. Finally, after walking back and forth, inspecting everything there was to offer, Gracie made her decision.

"I pick this one," she said excitedly. It was a blaring red and yellow McDonald's print with french fries, golden arches, and Ronald McDonald's creepy clown face all over it. She wanted to be a walking advertisement for fast food? Um. No.

"Not that one. Pick a different one," I had to say. Yes, I felt bad... but seriously. The fabric was creepy. And I refuse to let my kid become the poster child of American obesity. So she ended up with Angelina Ballerina and Annelie excitedly grabbed 'Pinkie Pie' aka My Little Pony. And I sewed their skirts.

The End.

Okay, about this skirt. Basically, I'm totally lazy, but I still like to make cute things for my kids. So. This skirt... it's ridiculously simple, only takes about 20 minutes to put together, and doesn't require a pattern at all. Awesome.

Step One: Gather Materials

1/2 yard of patterned fabric - needs to be at least 40 inches long
1/2 yard of solid cotton fabric (for underskirt) - needs to be at least 40 inches long
bias tape in coordinating color - needs to be at least 40 inches long
lace/ruffle trim - needs to be at least 40 inches long
Pinking shears if you have them
elastic - measure to fit waist. I buy the 1/4 width because it is super stretchy
pins and safety pin

*Sewing machine and basic sewing skills necessary!

Step Two: Cut fabric to size

The skirt will be aprox. 40 inches wide, but the length depends on your kiddo. I like to count on the ruffled bottom edge (the lowest point of the underskirt) hitting just under my kids knees. This will make the skirt long enough to last a couple of years. Seriously, I made these same skirts last summer and they will still fit next summer. That stretchy elastic waist helps!

*Make sure your length is about 1 inch longer than you want the skirt to be! You'll need to fold over the top about an inch to make room for the elastic and have a clean edge!

Once you figure out how long to cut it, make sure both pieces of fabric are just about the same size - length and width - with the underskirt only about 1/4 inch shorter than the top skirt.

Step Three: Attach bias tape to bottom of top layer of skirt.

I like the zig zag stitch in a contrasting color. It's cute.

Step Four: Attach trim to bottom of underskirt fabric

I love that ruffle trim that attaches like bias tape. So easy!

Eyelet lace is also a really cute trim. My oldest prefers fancier pink lace, so I just tucked the fabric in about 1/4 inch and sewed the lace on using the zig zag stich.

Step Five: pin the two fabrics together and sew

Line the two fabrics up so they match along the top. Make sure they are facing the same direction! Then fold over about an inch (if you plan on snipping the excess fabric off with pinking shears - if you don't then you'll want to fold under, then fold again, so the edge is clean and the fabric won't fray) and pin in place.

Sew, sew, sew!
And snip the excess fabric.

Step Six: Slip in the elastic. It's easiest to stick a safety pin on one end, so you have something to work with as you push the elastic through. Pin in place! It's so annoying when your elastic slips and you have to start over!

And Last: Hold the sides of the fabric together, with the print fabric on the inside and the underside of the underskirt facing out. Pin in place. Then just straight stitch down, from top to bottom. Make sure you really get that elastic sewn in, by going over it a few times. You don't want the elastic to come undone when the skirt is sewn closed!

Then just snip off the excess fabric next to the seam with your pinking shears, turn right-side out, and VOILA!

Of course, as I am addicted to Winklepots korker bows (That's Holly's online shop, in case you didn't know) I sent her a photo of the fabrics and had custom hair bows made to match. My kids are SERIOUSLY in love with their skirts and matching hair bows. They don't leave home without them!




  1. aaawwww you make the sweetest stuff for your girls!!

  2. Those skirts are sooooo cute and I love the ones you made for Peri and Ryah. Adorable! Fab tutorial, maybe I'll have to dust off my sewing machine now. :o)

  3. Wow - those are adorable skirts...I may have to give one a try for my little one.

  4. Awesome!!!! What a wonderful tutorial!
    Thanks for sharing.

  5. Are your two girls ever NOT cute?? (Don't say it's when they're acting bad, because all your stories of your "hellions" are still pretty darn cute.)

    I posted a link to your tutorial on Craft Gossip Sewing:

    :) Anne

  6. Such cute skirts, so are the little models.
    Thank you for sharing your tutorial. You made it look so easy.

  7. Great tutorial,I'm a beginner and i find it so easy to follow.Going to try this today and come back with my skirts.Thanks for sharing!!

  8. Hi! I made an Ariel version of this and love it, but am curious as to where you get your fabric? Thank you!


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