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Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Tutorial: Kissing Cousins Skirt

My sister just had her third daughter. Her oldest two girls are ages seven and five.  They'll both be starting school soon, and I thought it would be nice to make them something special for them.  It's always hard to adjust to adding a new member to the family, especially when they are being showered with gifts.

I suggested to Clark that we should make them each a skirt.  He was excited about the idea, and immediately began offering design advice.  He insisted that Hallei's skirt should have red roses, and Ellee's should have hearts. He also wanted big pockets, and a bow.
Sometimes it's easier not to fight with a three year old, so we ran with his plan (after several of my revisions were shot down).

My nieces are very similar in size, so I lucked out, and was able to use the same measurements for each skirt. My skirts were sized to about a 7, but you could easily adjust the skirt to any size, all you need is a waist measurement and an approximate length.

The skirt is pretty basic. It has an elastic paper bag waist, side seam pockets, a contrast band along the hem of the skirt, and a wide sash around the waist. I was pretty pleased that I was able to make the skirts with materials that I had on hand, they would have been cuter in coordinating fabrics, but my pocket book is quite pleased that I stuck with my stash.  

Making the skirt for a loved one, and don't know exact measurements?  I didn't either, but I found this sizing chart from Children's Place to be quite helpful. I'll share my measurements for a girls size 7, but don't be afraid to adjust it. 

2 coordinating fabrics : 3/4 yd for main fabric, 3/4 yd for band/sash.  If fabric is smaller than 45"   wide, you will need additional yardage.
elastic-enough for waist plus 1/2"

Cut two rectangles of main fabric, 15 1/2"x 22 1/2" (waist measurement plus 2(seam allowance).
Cut two rectangles of border fabric, 8 1/2"x22 1/2".  
Cut two strips of border fabric to form the sash, 8 1/2"x 34" (Sash length = waist x 3).
Cut four pocket pattern pieces, two right facing, and two left facing. 

We'll start with the sash. Sew the two cuts of sash with right sides together, forming one long strip. Press seam open.  Fold the sash right sides together.  Angle the corners if desired.  Press.

Leaving a 5-6" opening along the middle of the sash, sew the sides and ends of the sash. Clip corners.  Turn the sash right side out. Press.

You can finish off the sash one of two ways: press the open edges of the sash inward, and either topstitch around the entire sash securing open edges, or hand stitching the opening closed. I prefer the hand stitched method, but tried them both.

Next, take your border rectangles, place them right sides together, and sew the two side seams. Press the seams open, and turn right sides out.

Fold the border in half, and press.

If you have a serger, you can create some narrow chains for belt loops.  Cut two 6" chains. 

If desired, serge raw edges of side rectangles of main fabric. Position one pocket on each side of the skirt pieces, with right sides together, 3.5 inches down from the upper edge of the skirt. Pin in place.

Position chains 1/4" above the top of pocket pieces. 

Stitch both chains and pockets in place.

Fold out the pocket pieces so that they are outside the skirt body.  Position front and back skirt pieces right sides together.  Match up pockets. Pin in place. Beginning at the upper edge of the side seams, sew down until reaching pockets, pivot, and stitch around the perimeter of the pocket, pivot, and continue stitching down to the bottom edge of the skirt. Repeat on remaining side. Turn right side out.

Press the pockets flat.

Match up the bottom edge of the main skirt, with the upper edge of the border.  Right sides should be together.  Match up side seams, and stitch together.  Press seam up.

Topstitch 1/8" away from seam, on the main fabric, securing the seam.

Press under the top edge of the skirt 2 1/4".  

Stitch around the entire skirt, 3/4" away from the folded edge,creating the upper edge for the elastic casing. Leaving a 3.5" opening in the center back of the skirt, stitch 1.25" away from the upper casing seam.

Thread the elastic through the casing. Overlap elastic ends by 1/2". Stitch together.

Distribute the gathers from the elastic waistband evenly, and stitch the opening in the casing shut.

Thread sash through belt loops, and tie in a lovely little bow. All done, a cute little pocketed skirt for the little girls in your life.

Don't forget, you can save 10% on all of your orders from the P&G eStore, during the month of August. 


Charity said...

Clark has good taste! Both skirts are adorable. I love the sash and the contrast band. =)

Unknown said...

So cute! You are amazing, and I agree, Clark has good taste!