Stripey Bubble Skirt Tutorial
Hi, ladies and gents! As I mentioned, I was trying to go to sleep one night and just when I was fully relaxed and starting to doze, I had a skirt idea come to me. Thankfully, I have a notebook and pen on my nightstand so I grabbed my phone and used the glow from its screen to hurry and draw it out so I wouldn’t forget, without waking my husband. This is the skirt. It adds my love for piecing fabrics together along with my daughter’s love for all things to be as comfy as possible. It has a knit waistband and it’s a bubble skirt all rapped up into one fun package. It’s also jelly roll friendly and the measurements are a cinch to figure out. Let’s get started.
How To Figure Out Your Measurements:
I’m making this skirt for my three year old, Quinn. Since we are adding the pieced fabrics element, we’ll be sticking with the basic quilters ¼″ seam allowance.
Quinn’s measurements are: 19½″ around her waist and 10½″ to her knee.
For the knit waistband, take your child’s waist measurements and divide it by 2. So for Quinn 19½″ divided by 2 is 9¾″. The waistband on any size skirt is 5½″ wide; therefore, I’ll cut TWO 5½″ × 9½″ rectangles for Quinn’s skirt. We will be folding over the waistband before sewing it which will make it approximately 2½″ when all is said and done.
For the strips for the skirt, we will be cutting them 2½″ wide by the width of the fabric. Take the length you measured to your child’s knee. Quinn’s is 10½″. We just figured out the waistband is going to be 2½″ so we have a remainder of 8 inches. When finished, each strip measures 2″ (without the seam allowance). So, two goes into eight four times. Add that to the 2½″ waistband and we are right at 10½″ which is the length to her knee. So for Quinn’s skirt I’ll need four strips.
Take those strips and cut them the same width as your child’s waist measurement (19½″ for Quinn). You’ll need two of each color (you can get both out of one strip if your child’s waist is smaller than 21″).
For the lining, take the finished measurement of your strips (finished our strips are 2″ — I have four strips so that is 8″) and subtract ½″. This will keep the lining from peeking out the bottom. Cut two the same width as your child’s waist measurement — the same length we are cutting the strips. For Quinn that number is 19½″.
Final measurements for Quinn:
- waistband (2) 5½″ × 9½″
- four stripes, each cut at (2) 2½″ × 19½″
- lining (2) 7½″ × 19½″
- ¼″ navy blue knit fabric
- (1) 2½″ strip by width of fabric per stripe in the skirt (If you’re child’s waist is bigger than 21″ you’ll need two strips or fudge a bit and make them a tad shorter, it’ll just be a tad less full. Just make sure you cut the lining fabric the same length as your strips.)
- ⅓″ to ½″ lining fabric (depending on the child’s height)
Cut out and iron all of your fabrics.
First, let’s make the waistband. Take your two rectangles and sew them together (using our ¼″ seam allowance) on the shorter sides.
Fold the waistband in half with the raw edge on the inside.
Tack the raw edges together with a running stitch (change the setting on your machine to a longer stitch length) ⅛″ from the edge. This is just so the two don’t shift on us when we attach the skirt. Set the waistband aside.
Now take one of each of your 2½″ strips and decide what order you want them in.
Make sure you switched your sewing machine back to a regular stitch length, then sew the strips together lengthwise.
Repeat with the other strips. You should have two separate panels.
Since I am a quilter, we’ll be ironing the quilter’s way. Take the panels to the iron and iron your seams down on the first panel. On the second panel, iron all of your seams up.
Put your panels right sides together (make sure the same strips are on the top) and butt your seams together on the sides. Sew both ends.
Iron the side seams flat.
Top stitch each strip. I like to top stitch above and below each seam.
Take your lining panels and sew together on each side. Iron the seams open.
Now take your skirt and put it inside the lining with right sides together.
Pin the bottom edges together all the way around, then sew.
Pull the two apart and iron that seam from the right side of your fabrics.
Now match up the top seams and pin. Sew a gathering stitch around the top using ⅛″ seam allowance.
Pull the top threads of your gathering stitch to gather the skirt in until it’s approximately the size of your waistband.
Put your skirt inside the waistband so that all of the raw edges are at the top. Slowly pin the two together starting at the side seams and trying to keep the gathering equal all the way around.
Sew. This is the only raw edge of our skirt. If you have a serger, now would be the time to use it. If you do not, sew a zigzag stitch over the seam allowance to finish it off.
Turn the waistband right side up and you’re finished!
We took the skirt out for a spin by doing chalk paint outside on a windy day. 🙂
Please let me know if you have any questions. It’s pretty tricky to do the sewing, writing of the tutorial, and photo taking all at the same time by yourself. I need an assistant. 🙂