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Thursday, March 29, 2012

The Buttercup Skirt: A Tutorial

About a year ago I picked up a  remnant at Joann's;  it was this darling yellow floral fabric, but I only had about a quarter yard of it.  There are only so many things that you can do with a quarter yard of fabric, and this project is one of them (alright, so this used two separate quarter yard cuts, but still very little fabric).  I call it the buttercup skirt.

This little skirt has two layers, and a very slight paper bag waist. I made a 0-3 month skirt, and I'll give you my dimensions, but you could easily adjust the pattern to fit your little one.  The pattern is really simple.


2-1/4 yard pieces of material
16" of 1" elastic
Coordinating thread
12 inches of ribbon
Fray check
Sewing supplies
30 minutes of uninterrupted time

I was working with a 16" waist.  The skirt has a front and a back piece of both layers.  I cut two layers that were 8.5" long, and 17" wide.  I used 1/2" seam allowances for the skirt.  So basically, you want each piece to be as wide as the circumference of the waist. 

I placed the skirt panels right sides together, and sewed them at the side seams.

I then created a narrow hem on both layers of skirt.  To create a narrow hem you can simply press the raw edge under 1/4" twice.  The second time you turn it under, you will be encasing the raw edges.  I am sort of wishing that I would have used a scallop stitch on the hem....I think that it would have been cute.

Once both of your layers are hemmed, you are going to make sure that both of your skirt pieces are right side out.  Place your lining layer on top of the outer layer of the skirt, with the wrong side of the lining on the right side of the outer skirt.  Pin along the upper edge.

Sew a seam along the top edge of your skirt pieces.

Turn the lining layer of the skirt up, and away from the outer layer.

Press the upper seam down toward the lining layer. Fold the outer layer of the skirt down over the seam.

As you fold the outer layer of the skirt down, you are going to shift the upper skirt edge seam down 1/2 inch.  Doing so will cause the lining layer of the skirt to hang below the outer skirt layer, and will create, and will prevent any of the wrong side of the lining material from showing along the paper bag waist. Make sure that the seam shift is uniform along the entire circumference of the skirt.  Press the upper edge.

On the right side of the skirt, stitch 1/2" away from the upper edge of the skirt, around the entire skirt. Doing so will create the upper edge of your elastic casing.

Next, stitch 1 1/8" away from your upper casing stitching line, leaving a 1.5" opening for elastic insertion.

Thread your elastic through the casing opening that is accessible between skirt layers.

Overlap your elastic 1/2", and  stitch around the elastic overlap.  I like to use a zig zag stitch for this step, and it allows for greater stretch.

Once your elastic is connected, distribute your gathers along the elastic.  Pull the fabric flat along the casing opening.  Stitch the casing closed.

On the center front of the skirt, attach a  twelve inch ribbon at the base of the elastic waistband.  I attached mine using a very tight zig zag stitch.  You can create a tight zig zag stitch by reducing the stitch length on your machine.  I did not trim my ribbon prior to attaching, that way I could tie my bow, and then trim my tails as needed.

Tie your bow, trim the tails, and apply fray check to the ends to prevent fraying.

That's it.  You're done.  A super simple little baby skirt.

I am pairing the skirt with a little embellished onesie.  I love this gingham ribbon.  Yellow, polkadots, and gingham, three of my favorite things on a little girl.

Thanks for reading!  Be sure to show off your finished projects in the flickr pool.


Magda said...

Such a lovely and simple project! love the skirt!!!

Unknown said...

So adorable! I love the waistband -- I'm not a big fan of the BIG paper bag style, but a little something like this is fun! And your staging is fantastic - love the ric rac clothesline

J-Money said...

This is such a cute idea. I love this type of things for little ones. I don't have any children yet, but I am loading up on the ideas for when one comes along.

myecoblog said...

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Ruth E. said...

This was so cute and I have a new granddaughter so I just had to make this! Thanks so much for sharing. If you would like to see mine, my blog is

Anonymous said...

Precious--love the way you formed the offset layers.