Friday, July 22, 2011

how {not} to make a bias cut skirt: a tutorial

I've made a lot of clothes in my life. I started with Barbie's wardrobe when I was 6.
I sewed my way through college as a costume design major,
and am now sewing clothes for my daughters, and all y'all's daughters too!
I never use a pattern, but often start with something I already have that I like.
But that doesn't mean I do it right every single time.
Usually it doesn't turn out just how I planned,
and there is some alterations that take place before I will actually wear it.
If I like it enough to make it again, I'm one step closer to making it perfect.
The more I make it, the better it gets.
But you've got to start somewhere.
And you've got to not be afraid to just start, and maybe do it wrong.

Here I will show you my first attempt at an easy peasy bias cut skirt
that I do actually wear (in public).

I knew I wanted to use this rust striped polyester I picked up at the Goodwill.
It has a bit of stretch, but not much.
And I wanted a seam up the front with the stripes pointing down.
To cut on the bias means that you are cutting at an exact 45 degree angle from the selvage edge.
An easy way to acheive this is to fold your fabric like you do a snowflake.

I had a skirt that fit me well, so I laid it on top of my bias fold
and felt confident that I would get the right size piece (remembering seam allowances).
But here was my mistake:
I cut both layers.
Which meant that my stripes were not going to meet up in the center.
They both went from high on the left to low on the right.
I needed to cut out another piece to mirror the first,
and then repeat for the backside.

Once I got all four pieces cut out (front and back).
I evened up the hemlines, sewed the seams, and did a topstitch.
I really wanted the look of the topstitch,
and often with polyester anywhere you want a crease, you need to sew it in.
(remember sewn crease front polyester pants?).

For the waistband I just made a long wide strip with my high hip measurement,
including seam allowances.
I doubled the width I wanted it to eventually be,
folded it over and sewed it to the top of the skirt.
Here's what I did wrong:
The polyester does not have much stretch, and so the waistband fit my hips,
but was not tight enough on my waist.
This meant that I needed to retrofit my waistband to fit my waist more snug.

After taking longer than I originally planned (picture a good amount of seam ripping here),
the skirt was finally wearable.
And I actually love it.

From blog photos


  1. I LOVE IT! I wish I had your sewing talent!

  2. yay for you it looks great! i've been doing the same sort of thing lately, just sewing things i ACTUALLY love? i basically never did that before, but i guess maybe I've gotten better. or maybe its just cuter fabric? lol :)

    the style projects


I love getting comments! I will now be responding to your comments right here in the comment section. Thank you for taking the time to tell me how you feel!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...