This is the first, of many, sewing tutorials that I will be sharing. Being self taught, I have always been a very freestyle kind of seamstress, for the most part staying away from patterns and making up my own designs by just taking measurements. Now that is not to say I don't like others patterned designs, I do and there are so many great ones out there, I just prefer to work this way with my own and lucky for you it is easier to share this way. So after a friend asked how I make skirts for my girls and since lighter clothing is beginning to make its way out of the closets, this seemed like the logical starting point (taking the place of a hooded baby/toddler bath towel...up next now).
This "everyday skirt for kids" is what I base most of my skirts and variations of skirts on for kids. You can make it for a toddler(I personally wait until walking because it gets in the way of crawling) all the way up to a preteen...but not any larger (trust me..past the age of 12 and the eyes will start rolling). Also, remember to choose what YOU and your child like. It is YOUR interpretation. Use a contrasting edge... it doesn't have to be perfectly matching. Think fun, not serious.
Everyday Skirt for Kids
fabric, I use quilting cotton, enough to cover your measurements (make sure print on fabric isn't one way for older sizes or it will run the wrong way, side to side instead of up and down) 3/4 yard will cover most ages over 4, you may need more if making a larger size or have a very tall kid and 1/2 yard will do for younger ages to 3 or 4 or less than an 18 inch length. Always measure first before getting fabric though, all kids are different sizes!
double fold bias tape (1/2" or 1", whichever you prefer) in a coordinating color
3/4" non roll elastic
matching thread (make sure it looks good with the bias tape)
safety pin (not too small)
scissors and pinking shears(to keep seams from fraying and causing holes)
1. Wash, dry and press fabric.
2. Measure waist, times by 2 to get width. (If under 42" add 1 inch for seam allowance, over 42" add 2 inch for seam allowance. For example, if you have a 24" waist double to 48" and add 2 inches to get 50" for the width)
3.Measure length, start at waist and measure to about an inch under the knee(or whatever length you like). To this number add 1 1/2" for the elastic waistband casing.
4. Cut fabric to your measurements. Fabric should be folded in half like it came off the bolt from the store. For the under 42" waist width use one side width of the fabric for the waistline and the bottom selvage of the fabric as your back seam and only seam(when opened you will have one large piece of fabric cut). For the over 42" waist width use the folded edge as your waistline as a starting point then measure down to get your length, then when you are done cutting you can cut along the fold to open up the waistline(you will have two pieces of fabric that match your measurements and will have two side seams)
5.Sew seams together(right sides facing each other) using a 1/2" seam allowance. Trim seam edge slightly with pinking shears to prevent fraying. Press seam open with iron.
6. At waistline and wrong side facing out, press 1/2" around, then press 1" around to create casing for elasic.
7. With folded side facing up, sew casing as close to edge as possible, making sure to back tack at front and end, leaving a 2" opening to feed the elastic through.
8. Cut elastic, size of kids waist minus 2 inches(to keep from slipping down). Attach safety pin to one end of elastic and feed through casing. Without twisting, overlap ends an inch and sew elastic together in a square along the edges. Sew casing shut.
9. Right side out and starting at the hem edge seam, lay fabric in the bias tape, pinning along edges. Leaving about 5" at each end for connecting.(Make sure longer edge of bias tape is on the backside).
10. Starting a few inches in front of the side seam, sew the bias tape around until a few inches from the starting seam and back tack. Lay bias tape flat and cut each end 1/2"past opposite side of seam. Open up all folds of tape and with right sides facing, match up folds and sew together using 1/2" seam allowance. Fold all edges back together(pressing seam open while you fold it all back together) and finish sewing down.
Please do not hesitate to ask questions in the comments link under the post or email me directly. Happy skirt sewing!