Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Mommy skirt

Ah, the post pregnancy wardrobe.  Not too flattering, is it?  All your maternity stuff is way too big (and let's face it, you can't stand to look at it anymore).  All your pre-pregnancy clothes are still too small.  If you're like me, you may have even gotten back to pre-pregnancy weight, but still nothing fits those hips. Grr.

I wanted to make something that would fit, was flattering and yet forgiving.  There's nothing like an A-line skirt, right? I didn't want to spend a lot of time on darts and zippers.  Have I mentioned how much zippers frighten me?  So, I present to you the elastic waist A-line Mommy skirt.

This skirt is great with any fabric with a nice drape, but if you choose a knit fabric, make your dimensions a bit smaller since that fabric will stretch.  Here, I've used a yellow gingham.  I actually lined this skirt too (my first!), since the fabric was a bit too transparent for my liking, but I'll get to that. 

Depending on how long you want your skirt to be, you should be able to complete this project with one yard of fabric, along with 3/4" elastic and coordinating thread.  I used my serger and regular sewing machine, but you don't need a serger.

Let's start with some measurements.  Okay deep breath. Measure your waist and the widest part of your hips.  Since this will be pulled up over your hips, we need the waist to be able to stretch to that size.  Then determine how long you want your skirt to be.  Finally, determine the widest part of your skirt.  I find 56" works well, but I vary that depending on how much material I have. 

Waist 28"
Hips 36"
Length 20"
Bottom 56"ish

So, based on the above measurements, I'm going to need to cut two rectangles of fabric at 28x22 (WxL).  Since this will be a lined skirt, I'm going to cut two more rectangles of lining with the same dimensions.

To make this skirt A-line and not so poufy at the waist (because that flatters no one), we will be cutting the rectangles at an angle.  To determine the angle, we make an adjustment based on the hip measurement and total width of the fabric.  Since the width is 56 and the hip is 36, we need to cut the fabric 5" on each side for each rectangle.  The easiest way to do it is to layer all pieces and fold in half the long way.  On a cutting mat, angle your straight edge 5" in at the top to the outside corner at the bottom.  The picture below explains it more clearly:

So now we have two trapezoidal pieces of gingham along with the lining.  Layer lining, gingham (wrong side down), gingham (wrong side up), lining.  Sew up both sides.  I used my serger for a cleaner, more finished look, but a simple straight stitch will do.  If you use a straight stitch, use a zig zag stitch near the edge to prevent fraying. 

To make the casing for the elastic waist, I serged along the top raw edge and then folded both gingham and liner down 1".  Sew the casing closed using a straight stitch, leaving a one inch opening to insert the elastic. I cut 3/4" elastic according to my waist measurement above and threaded it into the casing using a safety pin.  Over lap the elastic end by one inch and sew securely.  I like to do a boxed X. 

This is a good place to try on your skirt to see if you like how the waist fits and figure out how much to need to hem it.  If you're happy with the waist, sew the 1" opening closed.  I also like to stich the elastic in place along the sides just to keep it from twisting.  I wanted this skirt to come to my knees, so I'm going to do a 1" hem.  Serge around the bottom edge of the skirt just as you did for the top.  Fold over one inch and hem using a straight stitch.

That's it, your skirt is done!  I was able to do all of mine in one nap!  Good luck! 

No comments: