Here we are at Part 4 of the Handmade Life Series! Today we are learning how to sew an A-line skirt.
Hey–no screaming and running away! I saw that!! (grins)
Ok, I’ve started out with the pattern from You Can Make This (dot com). I highly recommend this pattern as it goes from girls’ sizes 6 up through Juniors 7-9. Or Misses 0-2. Basically very easily workable for the size and length you need. There are no pattern pieces, just use a rotary cutter (or scissors like I do), a ruler, and go to town.
First, you figure out what size you need. I have been at odds here, as Miss Jess has grown to a 12/14, yet the length of an 8/10. She’s gotten a wee chunky in the belly, but is also so solid built and athletically built, so this pattern works out great. So, go to your printed out pattern pages, find the waist measurement you need, and the length you want. I have cut for a size 12/14 and the length of a 8/10. Makes for an interesting skirt, but she likes them.
Then you cut your fabric pieces. This is excellent for scraps! I’ve blended different blues together in tea cups, butterflies, moires, etc.
Now, get your iron (and a water bottle if you like to steam press as I do), and press em out pretty. I’m odd that way, but I like steam pressed fabric.
From there, I like to use a French seam. This is putting the pieces of fabric wrong sides together, then doing a straight stitch. I then clip close to the seam (without cutting into the seam) and turn the pieces where the right sides are together.
Press the seam and make it all nice and neat.
I do the French seams mainly, as I do not use a serger. I use a Singer Fashionmate (with all the cute little embroidery stitches that mimic hand stitches), and a 1973 Singer Scholastic workhorse with straight and zig zag only.
After you piece together your strips of fabric, go back and top stitch. I do this after each strip is joined, but that’s my preference.
Once this is all done, cut your A line according to instructions in the above mentioned pattern.
Sew the side seams together. I again use French seams.
Use the pattern’s instructions to make an elastic waist. I personally fold down the top about 1/4 inch, then another 1/2 inch or 1 inch depending on the size of elastic I have on hand. I then stitch down the folded area all the way around except for maybe an inch left open. I slip a safety pin through the elastic and guide it through the casing and all the way around. Then I adjust the elastic to where I think would be comfortable, and make sure it hasn’t twisted during insertion. I then stitch the ends of the elastic together and snip off leftovers. I then allow the elastic to slide into the casing and then stitch down the little opening. Afterward, I go around to the opposite side of the waistband and stitch a vertical stitch across the elastic to tack it in place so there’s less chance of rolling.
Then hem the bottom. I really prefer using bias, but you can also fold up and stitch.
There you are–a simple A line skirt!
If you like a single fabric print, simply add the number of fabric lengths together and add 1/2 inch per panel and then use that number to cut a single panel of fabric instead of the strips.