A simple gathered skirt is a classic wardrobe staple, and they are surprisingly easy to make! Follow these simple steps to create a pattern suited for your measurements, for a flattering, beginner level skirt with an elastic waist.
- 2 yards of fabric of your choice. ( We used Kaffe Fassett Cactus Dahlias Red cotton print fabric.) Cotton prints, poplin, broadcloth,, and linen are all great fabric options for this skirt!
- Tape measure
- Marking pen
- 1” Knit elastic
Making the Pattern:
Take your waist measurement and measurement from your waist to where you want the skirt hem to finish and add 2”.
Fold your fabric in half, across the grain, right sides together.
Along the fold, measure and mark the length of your skirt.
For the width of the bottom of the skirt, use this calculation:
For the waist measurement, simply divide the bottom line drawn on your fabric, divide by 2:
Connect the outer marks for the skirt sides
To account for the curve of the body, measure 2” down on each line at the fold, and draw a curve.
Your skirt front pattern piece is done!
Trace it for the back skirt piece and cut it out.
*Tip: Extending the center hem of the back skirt piece 1” or more will allow for backside curves
In addition to the fabrics mentioned above, this skirt would work up beautifully in chambray, eyelet, lawn, rayon challis, chiffon, lace and more – Just add a lining! Trace and cut 2 more skirt pieces out of the lining fabric, and shorten the skirt liner length by 2”
Sewing the Skirt:
Right sides together, join sides with 3/8” seams and finish seams as desired (overlock or zig zag stitch).
Use 1” knit elastic, and determine the length using this formula: waist measurement – 2”. Join the elastic with a ¼” overlap zig zag stitch. Measure and mark the elastic and the skirt into fourths, and pin onto the underside of the skirt.
(If adding a liner, place the sewn lining in the skirt before pinning and attaching the elastic.)
Use a wide zig zag stitch to over-edge stitch and attach the elastic to the skirt. Stretch as you sew to ensure evenness.
Fold the skirt waist over so that the elastic is concealed and top stitch.
For more helpful details about making the waistband, check out this video for the self-waistband method.
Try the skirt on to ensure proper fit for the hem. The formula used for length allows for a 1” hem. Watch this helpful video for basic hem techniques!