August 11, 2008

recycley skirt how-to part 2: vintage sheet double wraparound!

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ok time for my next skirt tutorial! this concept came to me when i was thinking about wanting to make skirts with vintage bedsheets but how some of them can be pretty see-through… so i thought, double layered would be cool… and the double wraparound idea was born! this sheet is a little silly, but the design worked out well, so now i can make more skirts with sheets i like better…

so you take your sheet and cut/rip it lengthwise to the length you want your skirt, then lay it flat across the floor. (if yours is as wrinkled as mine was, you might want to iron it!)

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now: measure around your waist where you want the skirt to sit. divide this number in half, giving you a. measure across the length of the sheet strip. take this full length measurement and subtract a x 4. now divide that number by 3, giving you b. make marks on the sheet starting at the top a from the edge, then b over from that first mark, on the bottom, then across a on the bottom, b over on the top, a across the top, over b on the bottom, and then the remaining width on the bottom should be a. don’t worry about following those written directions, i made a diagram!

skirt tutorial

the easiest way to mark the points is to fold the sheet lengthwise and just make sure you’re marking on the correct side, like this: (i used green sharpie, but it’s probably better to use something that’s actually meant for marking on fabric…)

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now just cut between the marks and you’ll have 4 panels that’ll fit together to make your skirt. the 2 sheet edges don’t flare out, so choose which end you like better to be the front/outside and use the other end panel for the opposite side. sew all the panels together, and you have a double wraparound skirt!

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a note about sizing/adjustments…. my b measurement was 5 1/3 inches, which worked well for the amount of flare (a-line angle) it gave my knee-length skirt. the design might look a bit crazy if the flare angle is much more than mine, and if you’re thinner than me then it probably will be, depending on your sheet + skirt length. if you’re making a longer skirt, b can be bigger, and if your skirt is shorter then b should be smaller – you’ll want to look at the angle of flare when you make the marks and see if it looks ok. if the angle is too much and you need a smaller b, try dividing by 4 instead of 3 – if the new b makes for a better angle, mark your fabric the same as the diagram but add an extra b flare at one of the edges, so you’ll have a triangle of scrap fabric left over. make sense? if b is still too big when dividing by 4, try dividing by 5, and making both end panels flare out on both sides, leaving two scraps.

and for the closure…. i used buttons because i had just been sorting my button stash and wanted to use some, but it would be super easy to do a tied closure. because of the double wrap design, the inside end is right behind the outside end, with one layer of fabric between. so, to make a tied closure, you’d just snip a buttonhole in that in-between piece right where the two ends line up, and attach ties (fabric strips, ribbons, whatever you want) to each of the end corners. when putting on the skirt, bring the inside tie through that hole, and tie with the outside, yay! (if you want to use buttons like mine, there is one hidden button on the inside holding the inner panel closed. i marked where to put all the buttons and buttonholes by wrapping the skirt around me how i wanted to wear it and safety-pinning where they should go.)

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oh yeah i almost forgot to mention – after sewing the panels together, i hemmed the top and bottom edges. i left the inside edge raw because it’s hiding and i’m lazy (not lazy, just always rushed). the outside edge was the original sheet hem. if you like the deconstructed look, sheets have nice raw edges so you can just leave them alone.

after the skirt was complete and i tried it on, i found that since the buttons are lined up along the side edge, i could wear the skirt backwards if i wanted to…

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and when playing with different skirt positions i discovered that i really like how it looks with the seam down the middle!

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ok i hope this tutorial made sense, it’s a little weird. the basic concept is easy – 4 a-line panels, the tops each measuring half of your waist. if you have an a-line skirt that fits you well, feel free to ignore all my equations and stuff and just use that skirt as a template to make your own pattern! just trace the skirt flat on the sheet 4 times to make your 4 panels, it should work well… ok have fun finding and recycling some rad vintage sheets!

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Filed under: clothing,general crafts,skirts,tutorials — leethal @ 12:06 pm
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