Clara is my girl that loves to wear skirts. Like LOVES them.
I’ve tried making her shorts and nope. She doesn’t want them. Lucy however, is the opposite and will wear shorts and jeans every day. I love how we each have fashion preferences that are built into us. Fashion Nature.
So since it’s summer, and since a pretty stack of fabrics showed up in my mailbox, I decided to make Clara yet another skirt…but with a reversible twist!
It’s so simple, yet this is the first time I’ve done it!
I’m excited to share the steps with you guys.
And I’m especially excited to share these fabric beauties with you. Ahhhhh, isn’t that the prettiest line up of colors and designs in the photo above? These fabrics are part of the Everlasting Fabric collection by my Art Gallery sister-designer and friend, Sharon Holland. Do you guys follow Sharon on IG and on her site? She is such a treat, as a person and an artist. I have loved learning her process for design, and trying out one of her quilt patterns. (I still need to share my finished quilt with you!)
Sharon asked me to be part of the Everlasting Fabric Blog Tour (click the link to enter her fabric giveaway) which has an adorable story behind the fabrics. You have to click over and read it. This red fabric had me at first sight. So I had to say YES!
Yes to sewing in the midst of summer.
Yes to a skirt with two personalities:
And Yes to taking more pictures of Clara. She always keeps me smiling with the poses. I love it. And if you really want to reverse this post, to way back in the day…here’s the last time I took photos at this same wall. Lucy was even younger than Clara is now! In fact, I don’t think Clara was even born yet. Oh little Lucy and Owen. My how time flies. (And how photo skills improve. I think.)
Okay, ready to sew??
Grab your pretty fabrics and let’s make this simple, reversible skirt.
HOW TO SEW A REVERSIBLE SKIRT
Use a 3/8 inch seam allowance, unless otherwise noted.
• Select two cute fabrics.
I used two prints from the EVERLASTING Collection.
I used quilting cotton for both layers, but you could use many different types of fabric for this: silky fabrics, lace, rayon, knits, etc.
I used 1 yard of each fabric, for my 7 year old daughter, with a 22 inch waist.
• CUT 2 rectangles of each fabric (see diagram below).
WIDTH of each piece = 2 times your waist measurement.
LENGTH of each piece = Desired finished length, plus 1 inch.
The dimensions of the skirt are up to you, but I think this skirt is extra fun, when it’s extra full. So I like to make the finished total width to be 4 times the waist measurement, which means you will cut each fabric piece 2 times the waist measurement.
For example: Measure your child’s waist, or your waist. My daughter has a 22 inch waist, and I want the finished skirt to be 15 inches long (from her waist to knees).
So I am going to cut 4 pieces (2 from each fabric) that are each 44 x 16 inches.
NOTE: It’s important that both skirts are exactly the same dimensions and size. If any fabric shifts as you sew, no worries. Just keep trimming and “squaring up” the pieces so they stay the same size as you go. This skirt is very forgiving.
SEW THE TOPS TOGETHER
With right sides together, sew the two skirts together along the TOP.
Press the seam open.
Now press the last 4 inches of each of the long edges over, a 1/2 inch. This will help in a later step.
SEW THE BOTTOMS TOGETHER
With right sides together, sew the two skirts together along the BOTTOM….BUT DO NOT sew the 4 inch ends that we pressed under. These ends will create an opening for us in a later step.
SEW THE OTHER SIDE SEAM
This is the exciting part that makes the whole reversible process work. It will feel a little awkward to bring the remaining side pieces together, since they won’t lay entirely flat. But just do your best, and watch the sewing magic unfold!
Bring the two red sides together (with right sides of the fabric together) and pin in place. Continue pinning all the way down the side seam, along the pink fabrics as well. Then sew the side seam together. Tuck that seam back inside the opening we left at the bottom.
And BOOM, you’ve got a tube of fabric, double-sided, just waiting to become a skirt!
SEW A CASING AROUND THE WAIST
Using coordinating threads for both your fabrics, sew a casing around the top of the skirt, about 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 inches wide. It just needs to be wide enough for your elastic to go through. I like to use 1 inch wide elastic. But if you wanted a really chunky waistband, you could use 2 inch wide elastic and sew your casing 2 1/2 inches wide. It’s up to you.
MAKE SURE TO LEAVE a 2 inch wide gap in the casing, so you can get the elastic in and out of the casing. I like to leave the gap on the side seam, so it’s on the same side as the bottom opening.
STRING ELASTIC THROUGH THE WAISTBAND
• Cut the elastic the length of your waist. So for my daughter, I cut it 22 inches long. I find that this particular skirt tends to be slightly heavier than other Simple Skirts that I’ve made, because you have two layers of fabric. So a slightly tighter waistband helps it stay up better.
• Place a safety pin on one end of the elastic. Insert the safety pin through the opening at the bottom of the skirt, and start to string the elastic through the casing. Push the elastic through with one hand and shimmy/gather the fabric with the other hand. Secure the other end of the elastic to the fabric with another safety pin. Push the safety pin all the way around till it comes out the other side. The skirt will be very gathered. So just do your best to keep shimmying the fabric around and spacing it out.
• Overlap the two ends of the elastic about 3/4 of an inch. Make sure the ends are not twisted inside or out. Sew the ends together using a zig zag stitch.
• Sew the casing closed using a straight stitch, following the same stitch line we sewed earlier.
SEW THE HEM
Final step! Pull those open edges of the skirt together. Make sure the raw edges are still tucked under (the edges that we pressed over a 1/2 inch in an earlier step), pin them together, and sew around the entire hemline, using a 3/8 inch hem allowance.
And you’re done! Yay!
One adorable skirt, with two personalities.
Check out all these other add-ons you can do with your skirt:
• Sew trims or rick-rack to the bottom
• Add a separate waistband
• Add a faux drawstring to the waist (though keep in mind, when the skirt is reversed, you will feel that on the inside of the skirt.
• Add a fun sash around the skirt
• Add outer pockets
• Make a skirt from an old scarf or repurposed fabric
• Add a monogram
• Use a unique fabric
I considered adding some lace to the bottom of the red fabric, which would have been adorable. But sometimes simplicity is my favorite option. Cause then you can accessorize the look with fabric braids. Ahhh. I need to try this in my own hair.