Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Skirt Refashion! (for a grown-up.)

My friend passed a skirt on to me that she never wore because of a funky fit, but she had held onto it because of this cool fabric.  I'm so glad she did!

Ooh!  Pretty!

This skirt started life as a mid-calf length skirt that flared out to a full circle at the hem.  Yikes! Not the most flattering cut.  I knew I wanted to make the skirt shorter, and narrower, and I also needed to take in the waist.  But the skirt had that great pop of color at the hem that I wanted to keep, so I couldn't just shorten it.

Wah-wahhhhh.

I decided to cut off the top and make it into a separate waistband.  The skirt had a hidden side zipper, which I wanted to reuse, but in order to make the waistband that I wanted I needed to shorten the zipper.  This was easy-peasy--I just hand-sewed some thread around the spot where I wanted the zipper to stop, then cut off the rest.  I actually pinned the spot before sewing and cutting to make sure I would still be able to get the skirt over my hips with the shorter zipper.

See the little cluster of thread wrapping around the zipper at the seam?  I did that!

For the bottom part of the skirt, I used a skirt I already had to figure out how wide I wanted the hemline to be. Then I measured my waistband to see how many inches I needed at the top.  Then I cut the skirt into pieces that would fit onto the waistband.  It was a little tricky to get the shape right because a circle skirt has a curved hemline if you're not using the whole circle--so I had to curve the waistband a bit too to pull up that center part of the hem.

Now, a skirt with pockets is about my favorite thing in the whole world.  But for some reason, I'm not a huge fan of patch-style pockets topstitched to a garment.  Of course, creating in-seam pockets is more difficult, and I'd never done it before, but I reverse-engineered the pockets on a skirt I love, and BAM!  I came up with these roomy pockets using the extra fabric cut out of the sides of the circle skirt.  There's probably a great tutorial out there on how to do this, so I won't try to walk you through what I did--I just guessed and worked it out.

I put that black fabric there to show you how big the pockets are in relation to the skirt.
 I used the pockets on my existing skirt as a template.

My pocket was made from leftover fabric from the bottom edge of the skirt,
hence the yellow trim peeking out!

After I got the pockets figured out and attached to the bottom part of the skirt, I put the right sides of the waistband and bottom part together, pinned them (it required some strategic tucking because they weren't exactly the same size) and sewed it all up.  I tried it on and had to do a little folding/topstitching in some places to get it to lay flat, but once I did that and ironed/trimmed everything, I was very happy with the way it turned out.

And YAAY!  Pockets on a skirt make me so happy!


Update:  I found several pocket tutorials online, but this one at naptime crafters seems like the closest to what I actually did.  Plus, I can't wait to try her skirt tutorial now!

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