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It’s Day Fourteen of National Sewing Month! Don’t forget to visit Seams and Scissors every day to find daily giveaway opportunities and sewing ideas! To enter today’s daily giveaway, find the contest rules and leave a comment below. Also look out below for details on how to enter our National Sewing Month grand prize that includes a BERNINA 215 Sewing Machine! Too see the daily blog posts, projects of the day, and more National Sewing Month details, click here.
Today’s National Sewing Month post is brought to you by Nienke from Pienkel!
Hello fellow sewists, this is Nienke, from the Dutch blog Pienkel and I’m very happy to be here for National Sewing Month! I have to admit my husband’s face was quite scared when I mentioned this, since every month seems to be sewing month over here. More often than not, our kitchen table is hidden somewhere below the sewing machine, serger and fabric, lots of fabric… However, he isn’t even the main victim of my sewing craze, I mainly sew for our three kids and – increasingly – for myself.
So, regardless of his frowns, today in honor of National Sewing Month, I made a tutorial for a tiered skirt. I love this look on my girls; it’s sweet, yet very suitable for school days. Plus, it’s great for using some scraps.
I hope you enjoy this one, please do not hesitate to get in touch if you have any questions, or finished creations to show off! What I love most about my sewing nowadays is the great online sewing community and the wonderful people I have met there. So you’re more than welcome in my virtual sewing space; I’d love to meet you!
Tiered Skirt Tutorial
– Fabric. The amount depends heavily on the size you’re making, I used 8″ of the purple fabric and only 4″ of the pink, for a size 18 months. Light to medium weight fabrics work best for this style.
– Regular sewing notions, such as thread and pins.
The skirt is built up of four rectangles. From top to bottom on the photo above, you need a rectangle for the waistband and one for each tier. To cut these, you need two measurements of the designated wearer: hip circumference and desired length of the skirt. The width of the first rectangle is hip circumference plus 3″. Height is twice the width of your elastic, plus 2″. The next three rectangles are all the same height. This is the desired length, divided by three, plus 3/4″. To decide on the width, multiply the width of the rectangle above by 1.3.
For example, my girl has a hip circumference of 20″. The waistband pattern piece thus is 20+3=23″. I used 3/8″ elastic, so the height of the waistband is 3/8+3/8+2=2.75″. Desired length of the skirt is 10″, so each tier has a height of (10/3)+0.75=4.1″. Each tier is 30% wider than the one above, so the top purple tier is the width of the waistband times 1.3, so that makes 23×1.3=29.9″. The middle pink tier then, is the purple tier times 1.3, so that makes 29.9×1.3=38.9″. The final purple tier is the width of the pink tier, times 1.3, so that makes 38.9×1.3=50.5″.
So, for a hip circumference of 20″ and a skirt length of 10″, you cut:
– Pink waistband: 23″ x 2.75″
– Purple tier: 29.9″ x 4.1″
– Pink tier: 38.9″ x 4.1″
– Purple tier: 50.5″ x 4.1″
Finish the edges of all rectangles, with serger or zigzag.
Sew two rows of gathering stitches on the top of each tier, one 1/8″ from the edge and the second 2/8″ from the edge. For gathering stitches, you use a long straight stitch. Make sure you do not backstitch at beginning or end, and leave long threads hanging on both sides. Be careful not to stitch your second row over the first one. I accidentally did cross my stitching on one of these pieces and it caused both my gathering threads to break.
Now pin the top tier onto the waistband, right sides together, at both sides and the middle only.
Gently pull on either the two bobbin threads or the two top threads of your gathering thread to gather the excess fabric of your tier. Do not pull both bobbin and top thread at the same time. Pull carefully, until the width of your tier matches the width of the waistband. Distribute the gathers evenly and pin into place.
Stitch the tier to the waistband, using a regular straight stitch and 3/8″ seam allowance. If your gathering thread shows on the right side of the seam after sewing, you can rip the gathering thread out. If it doesn’t show: don’t bother. Repeat these steps for the next two tiers, gathering them to match the tier above. Press your seam allowances towards the top of the skirt.
After sewing all tiers together, fold the skirt – right sides together – to close the side seam and pin. Make sure the tiers all match up nicely. Stitch the side seam, from bottom to top. This keeps the seam allowances in the right direction.
Fold the waistband 1″ towards the wrong side of the fabric and press. Now fold the waistband in half, covering the seam allowance and stitch line made previously. Pin into place.
Topstitch the waistband into place. I prefer to do this on the outside, however be careful to catch the inside in your stitching as well. Leave one or two inches open, to insert the elastic.
Insert the elastic into the waistband. I use a safety pin to thread the elastic through the tunnel and pin the other end onto the skirt, to prevent it from slipping in. Sew the ends of the elastic together and close the last inches of the waistband.
Fold the hem of the skirt 3/8″ towards the wrong side of the fabric. Press, pin and stitch.
Give the entire skirt one last press…
… and you’re done!
Don’t miss all of Nienke’s amazing projects at Pienkel!
Also remember to check out the Project of the Day right here!
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