Taking on a straight skirt sewing project was a new adventure for me. I keep telling myself to try sewing from a pattern, but my stubborn creative side says, "I don't need that!"
On one hand, sewing without a pattern is frustratingly brutal and I feel like pulling my hair out when I don't understand how to put something together and remind myself, "Someone's already done this!". On the other hand, I end up stretching my sewing skills and brain to greater heights and I feel a big sense of accomplishment when I'm done.
Sewing a Straight Skirt
Making your own patternThere really is no method to my madness, but if you're like me and like to
I laid out an existing skirt I like the fit of, folded it in half and traced around it on a piece of pattern paper (I use craft paper). Since this is a straight skirt, I traced the shape of a rectangle about an inch from the outside of the skirt. Then I traced with a dotted line, the actual shape of the skirt.
That was pretty much my pattern. A big rectangle.
I cut out one panel for the front and two panels for the back.
I trimmed as I put the pieces together and ended up cutting a panel slightly too small. Drat!
So I had to end up cutting 4 panels for the back instead of 2. Luckily I had enough fabric. Breathe.
At the point I had sewn all the panels together and put the zipper on, it started to look like a real skirt. But it was still just a big old rectangle. If I were only Sponge Bob Square Pants.
Time to begin the process of fitting the skirt.
Aaaah! I'm not gonna lie, that scared me.
Fitting a Straight SkirtThis was the trickiest part for me.
How to get a rectangle to fit around my waist, fit comfortably, flatter my figure, and maintain balance between the front and back of the skirt, would be a challenge.
Adding DartsI thought there were only two ways to put darts in. The right way or the wrong way. Turns out there are many different options when fitting a straight skirt. Some don't put them in at all! Gasp!
I stumbled upon this article when searching options for fitting my straight skirt. It cracked me up and made me want to slap the writer at the same time. I highlighted my favorite part. Oh please! You did NOT just tell us to exercise! If I had a pot belly (which, p.s., is such a rude way to say it) I'd be totally offended. ha!
Anywho, moving on.
If you have a flat stomach, congratulations.
If you have even a bit of a tummy, straight skirts will show it unless you create your fit to disguise it.
I ended up putting 2 darts in the front, but just slightly away from center, darted the side seams twice to create more of a curve around my hips, and added two darts in the back.
It took several fittings, sewing and pinnings, but I eventually got it to fit me close to perfectly, if I do say so myself.
And here is the end result, in all its straight skirt glory:
You can see one of the front darts here
I ended up using a hook and eye to close the waist because my zipper ended up being a touch lower than I thought it would be (I put the zip in before turning over the waistband). Still works for me!
Putting a slit in the back was so easy. I don't know why it always seemed intimidating.
This denim is light-weight with a bit of stretch, so it will be perfect for summer with a colorful t-shirt and sandals.
One skirt down, two to go!
My next two will be from blue and white seer sucker cotton and a light-weight flowy hawaiian print cotton. Still deciding on styles, but I'm thinking one will be gorded and the other maybe straight with a ruffle. One more breath before jumping in. J
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